In love with Amazing Scenery in Japan’s Walkable Cities

tokyo walk

In the latest ranking by Compare the Market AU, Tokyo was the 6th most walkable city in the world. Beyond the capital, however, Japan is a paradise for pedestrians offering convenience and safe, friendly streets. Given this newfound renown, its high time to feature the country’s top walkable cities and shine a spotlight on Awaji Island as a place to stroll amid stunning scenery.

Tokyo: The 6th Most Walkable City in the World

tokyo - most walkable cities in japan

Tokyo’s ranking as the world’s 6th most walkable city shows the country’s urban vitality and pedestrian-friendly infrastructure. From bustling, neon-lit lanes to suburban retro “shotengai” shopping streets, there’s worlds within worlds that only an ambler can discover.

Visit Shibuya and Harajuku, where iconic streets set the stage for a dynamic urban experience. The Asakusa district offers a taste of Tokyo’s historical charm, home to the iconic Senso-ji Temple and the bustling Nakamise shopping street.

Beyond the urban sprawl, Tokyo also boasts lush green spaces and waterfront promenades ideal for a stroll. Shinjuku Gyoen, one of the city’s largest parks, features meticulously landscaped gardens and tranquil walking paths, a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. Meanwhile, the Odaiba waterfront offers scenic views of Tokyo Bay, dotted with art installations and a white sand beach.

Kyoto: Get a sense of Japan’s Historical Values

walk in kyoto

Kyoto is one of the most treasured, walkable cities in the world, with the charm of its rich history and culture. Kyoto captivates with its ancient traditions and walking paths. Amble through the enchanting streets of Gion, where geishas gracefully walk between wooden houses. The historic district of Higashiyama is also famous for pedestrians, where ancient temples and shrines appear at every turn.

Arashiyama is another iconic region, renowned for bamboo groves and scenic riverside pathways. Find hidden gems and traditional crafts along Kyoto’s walkable neighborhoods.

Nara: Stroll in Harmony with Deer

walk in nara

Nara truly stands out as an underrated gem in Japan, offering a unique blend of historical landmarks, serene landscapes, and authentic cultural experiences. The city’s pedestrian-friendly layout and compact size make it an ideal destination for leisurely walks and exploration.

Undoubtedly, the highlight of the city is Nara Park. Here, you can mingle with friendly deer, regarded as sacred messengers of the gods. Explore iconic temples like Todai-ji, home to the awe-inspiring Great Buddha statue. The tranquility of Nara Park is an escape from the bustle of urban life. Come connect with nature and history in a serene setting.

The streets of Naramachi offer glimpses into the city’s rich merchant history. Well-preserved houses and traditional shops line picturesque lanes. Wandering through these historic streets, soaking in the ambiance of centuries-old craftsmanship is a joy.

Kanazawa: Blend of Tradition and Innovation

kanazawa walk

Kanazawa is a city that seamlessly blends tradition with innovation, making it a fascinating destination for young travelers seeking an authentic Japanese experience. Although not as famous as some other cities, Kanazawa’s historical districts, exquisite gardens, and vibrant arts are captivating. As one of the most walkable cities in Japan, Kanazawa offers a wealth of attractions to explore on foot.

At the heart of Kanazawa lies the Nagamachi district. Here, narrow lanes and beautifully preserved residences harken back to the city’s feudal past. Take a stroll through this historic neighborhood, imagining the lives of the samurai who once called it home.

No trip to Kanazawa is complete without a visit to Kenrokuen Garden, one of Japan’s most celebrated landscapes. The manicured lawns, tranquil ponds, and seasonal flora make Kenrokuen a masterpiece. Stroll along its winding paths and pause to admire picturesque viewpoints and elegant teahouses.

Awaji Island: Tranquil Stroll Amidst Picturesque Scenery

Awaji Island lies in the Seto Inland Sea just a stone’s throw away from Kobe in Hyogo Prefecture. The island is an idyllic retreat from the crowds of mainland Japan. While the other destinations on our list are undoubtedly captivating, the recent influx of tourists to Japan may lead to crowded streets and attractions. For those seeking a quieter alternative, Awaji Island is popular with its peaceful atmosphere and breathtaking ocean views.

Although Awaji Island may not have the same level of convenience as its urban counterparts, its charm lies in an unhurried pace and natural beauty. Here, it is possible to meander along scenic coastal paths, taking in panoramic vistas of the shimmering sea and rugged coastline. The island’s lush greenery and colorful blooms provide a picturesque backdrop for strolls.

A highlight of Awaji Island is Awaji Hanasajiki Flower Park, where visitors can walk amidst a kaleidoscope of seasonal blooms while savoring the gentle sea breeze. For anime enthusiasts, the nearby Nijigen no Mori theme park offers a unique experience, featuring attractions inspired by beloved series such as Naruto, Godzilla, and Dragon Quest.

On the island’s west coast, a leisurely walk unveils many wonderful seaside restaurants, where you can try delectable cuisine while witnessing panoramic ocean views. As day transitions to dusk, Awaji Island treats visitors to one of Japan’s most spectacular sunsets, casting a golden glow over the tranquil sea and painting the sky in vibrant hues.

Check out this article if you are interested in doing a virtual walk on Awaji Island using the street view.