Hello I'm an Indian male looking for a way to get to Japan, and I do not have a companion as of yet (damn cheap friends and family). Well I was looking into going around late August or early September, and am still lost on where exactly I would be going or what I'd be seeing yet. I can move my times to a later date but cannot do anything before the 20th of August. Since I'm a college student I'm on a tight budget but still want to travel to see the "real" Japan. I want to spend a few weeks to travel around and see the sites and cities/towns. If someone could help out and point out what and where the must see's are, and if possible some accommodations like hostels while traveling I would really appreciate it. Also if there is anyone out there that is going to Japan around that time and wants a buddy, I'm all yours
I went to Japan in late-August a couple of years ago. The weather should be hot and humid so not a problem.
Thing is though, Japan is probably the most expensive country in the world to live in, so I don't know how far a tight budget will go.
Hotels are upwards of £150 a night, so we booked a Ryokan - about £80 a night for up to four, so good value if you're sharing, and a really authentic Japanese experience.
I remember coming across a YMCA hostel in Kyoto when I was surfing the net before we went. Didn't use it, so can't comment, but this might be the way to go. Also, I would see if the Universities have any empty accommodation at that time - might be cheap.
Tokyo was great - keep lots of change in your pockets!
Hiroshima was really atmospheric - an ordinary city now, but with an extraordinary past.
Ryokan is very Japanese. But if you want cheaper accomodation there are many hostels and weekly mansions. Try to find one from this site's accommodation link.
Suggestions about where to go:
Kyoto is a must. It's very exotic, lots of temples, beautiful! And it feels great when you walk along the small street/lane with nice shops along the way. See Kinkaku temple, Kiyomizu temple.
Nikko - There is Nikko National Park, and there is Edo-mura, a theme park which resembles Japanese Edo era - it's interesting. You can see people wearing traditional clothes, samurai, ninja attractions etc., eat at one of those interesting shops,... You can also go to an "onsen" (hot spring bath) in Nikko.
In Tokyo, try the monorail, see the view of Tokyo bay and the Rainbow bridge, go to Odaiba. Many cafes with the view of Tokyo bay. (You can get a free map of Tokyo at train station.) Try Harajuku a crowded area with many shops.
Off the beaten track - try a local park. I went to Inogashira park in Utsunomiya. Rented a bicycle there - in the park there is a fishing spot, we parked our bicycles and went fishing while enjoying the nice clean air.
I heard that Kirishima National Park in Kyushu (southern island) is beautiful. Also Mt. Fuji, you can "climb" it without trouble because there is already an easy path.
Try to find info about Oze, Rishiri, Shomyo. They are places with beautiful views.