The 9 Most Famous Landmarks to See in Japan

If you’re thinking about taking an interrail trip to Japan in the near future, you’re probably wondering which landmarks you should visit. And whilst there are hundreds of notable sights, there are particular famous landmarks that stand out from the crowd. 

No matter what time of the year you’re visiting, the following 9 landmarks are bound to have you in awe. Must-sees, your interrail trip will be simply unforgettable.

1) Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

A fascinating yet emotional landmark to visit whilst you’re in Japan is the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. showcasing the horrors of the 1945 atomic bombing, it commemorates the victims in a beautiful way. One of the most popular landmarks to visit, it educates tourists on the historic day. In the park, there is a museum, cenotaph, memorials and more.

2) Mount Fuji

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Unsurprisingly, second on this list is the beautiful and captivating Mount Fuji. situated in the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, it’s arguably the most recognizable sight. The highest mountain peak in Japan, it’s a perfect day trip if you’re visiting nearby Tokyo. A UNESCO site, it’s incredible to visit at sunrise and sunset. 

If you’re looking for an adrenaline-fuelled activity, you could even climb it! Although it will take you about 7 hours.

3) Itsukushima Shinto Shrine

Situated in Hiroshima Bay, the Itsukushima Shinto Shrine is an iconic landmark that’s dedicated to the wind god’s (Susanoo) daughters. Featuring two buildings and several different structures, it’s been designated as a National Treasure by the Japanese Government.

A picturesque UNESCO World Heritage Site on the banks of Miyajima island, it dates back to the 8th-Century and is an unforgettable place to visit. Within the bay lies the dramatic torii (that gate that’s pictured above), lush forests and the peaks of Mount Misen.

4) Jigokudani Monkey Park

Located near Nagano, Jigokudani Monkey Park is a world-famous attraction that’s beloved for its hot springs and a large population of Snow Monkeys. Particularly beautiful to visit throughout the winter months, it makes for a fabulous day trip when interrailing in Japan. Spend your time at the monkey park wandering along its walkways and taking in the picturesque views.

5) Himeji Castle

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Showcasing the exquisite Japanese architecture, Himeji Castle is set on a hill in the city. Made up of 83 rooms, it dates back to 1333 and was used to defend against enemy armies throughout the feudal period. Although it’s been rebuilt and renovated throughout the years, it hasn’t lost its extraordinary charm.

Because of its beauty, it’s also been featured in numerous films – including You Only Live Twice. A must for anyone visiting Himeji, there’s so much to see at this opulent castle. 

6) Fushimi Inari Shrine

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Perhaps the most iconic shrine in Kyoto, the Fushimi Inari Shrine is popular with tourists and locals alike because of its unique red torii gates. When visiting the shrine, you can walk to the summit of Mount Inari, admire the numerous statues of foxes and indulge in the incredible nature surrounding it. The perfect opportunity to take breath-taking photos, you won’t forget your trip to this historic shrine.

7)  Shibuya Crossing

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If you’re looking for a landmark unlike any other, then Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo is the ultimate site to see. One of the world’s busiest and most photographed intersections, hundreds of thousands of tourists and locals cross over it every day. Situated in between huge skyscrapers and hundreds of LED screens, you’ll love the thrill you’ll feel as you make the journey – just make sure you get over to the other side in good time!

8) The Great Buddha

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Arguably the most famous Buddha statue in Japan, The Great Buddha of Kamakura stands a jaw-dropping 11.3 metres tall. Created with bronze, it dates back to 1252 and is situated within the Kotokuin Temple. A UNESCO World Heritage Sites and designated National Treasure of Japan it’s a must-see landmark when you’re interrailing around Kamakura.

9) Tokyo Skytree

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Located in eastern Tokyo, the Tokyo Skytree stands tall above Sumida Ward. The tallest structure in the country (standing 643m tall), it has an aquarium and shopping complex at the bottom of it. When visiting the Tokyo Skytree, not only should you visit these, but take the voyage up to one (or both) of its observation decks to enjoy sights over the capital.