Nagoya is the third-largest city in Japan and one of the best places to visit, especially for foodies. It is centrally located between Tokyo and Osaka.
Nagoya meshi is a distinctive local food. The city is gradually gaining a reputation for its gastronomic culture.
Of course, there are lots of other things to do in Nagoya than eat. It is home to numerous outstanding cultural assets, contemporary museums, and big retail areas. You may study about Toyota’s history in one museum and then cross the street to see major art works in another.
Don’t know where to begin? With this guide to the greatest Nagoya attractions, you can plan a thorough tour of the city…
Do you have any other trip plans on the horizon? Check out all of our other attraction guides highlighting some of the world’s top vacation spots!
What to do in Nagoya: Top Attractions & Places to Visit
Marvel at the latest restorations of Nagoya Castle
Nagoya Castle, which was built in 1612 and was destroyed during WWII, has undergone numerous significant renovations.
A visit to the castle is an essential element of Nagoya tourism, however it is not the most stunning landmark. The castle is getting even more modifications. Large portions of the castle are being dismantled and rebuilt to more nearly reflect the original.
Depending on when you come, the castle may not even be available to the public, but you should still go to see the work in progress.
Explore the many exhibitions holding valuable cultural items if you’re fortunate enough to come while the castle is open. You may read about the lives of individuals who resided in the castle and tour the higher levels of the castle tower.
Examine ancient artifacts at Tokugawa Art Museum
Tokugawa Art Museum, one of Nagoya’s numerous museums, houses unique objects and treasures from the Tokugawa family. The museum has approximately 10,000 works, and you’ll get to view a substantial portion of them on the guided tour.
Plan to spend at least two to three hours exploring the major exhibitions if you go to the museum. It’s a must-see for history aficionados, but everyone else should have a fantastic day as well.
The features include authentic samurai armour and swords. You may study how the samurai trained for combat and have a better understanding of the Tokugawa Shogun area’s history.
Enjoy tranquillity at Atsuta Shrine
If you’re stuck for things to do in Nagoya, pay a visit to a shrine. Nagoya, like other major Japanese cities, is home to a number of culturally significant shrines. The most-visited is Atsuta Shrine.
Millions of people visit this beautiful temple, which has traditional Japanese architecture. It’s in the middle of a park, which adds to the tranquil environment.
This temple, like many others in Japan, has valuable historical artifacts. The treasure hall has about 4,000 historical antiquities, some of which are on exhibit.
If you’re fortunate, your visit will coincide with one of the shrine’s 70 festivals and festivities.
Visit the world’s largest planetarium at Nagoya City Science Museum
The Nagoya City Science Museum is a beautiful place with interactive exhibits that will take your breath away, such as an artificial tornado that can reach up to nine meters in height and an astounding replica of the aurora borealis.
These attractions serve to make the science museum one of the top places to visit in Nagoya, but the true jewel is the planetarium. It is the world’s largest planetarium, dubbed Brother Earth.
With a circumference of 35 metres, you get a very realistic view of the night sky in the midst of the day.
Marvel at a miniature Nagoya cityscape at Legoland Japan
Adding a trip to Legoland Japan to your Nagoya itinerary will be memorable for youngsters and adults who are kids at heart.
To explore the park, you may purchase tickets online in advance. You can even stay at the Legoland Japan Hotel, which is designed to seem like a full-size Lego construction.
The exhibitions vary from life-size exhibits to tiny replicas of important Japanese towns. One of the most intriguing things to see in Nagoya is the small representation of Nagoya made out of Legos.
The whole skyline, including all prominent structures, is included. You’ll be able to point out the locations you’ve visited along your journey.
Drive a bullet train simulator at SCMaglev and Railway Park.
Apart from Legoland, there are several other noteworthy Nagoya attractions, such as the Railway Park. It debuted in 2011 and illustrates the evolution of the high-speed bullet train.
It also contains a realistic simulator that puts you behind the wheel of one of the bullet trains. It’s a pleasant display for visitors of all ages.
The museum also has 39 full-size trains and a big railway model diorama. While rail enthusiasts will like this site the most, everyone will appreciate the fascinating museum.
The only possible problem is that practically everything is in English!
Pay your respects at Osu Kannon Temple.
The Osu Kannon Temple is located immediately beyond the retail center. The temple, like Nagoya Castle, has been restored many times by the city.
Osu Kannon offers more than simply the opportunity to visit another sacred location. It also serves as the home of the Osu Library, which has approximately 15,000 historical volumes and manuscripts. It also possesses rare copies of the Kojiki, the country’s earliest historical book.
When you arrive, make a wish on a piece of paper and attach it to the big red paper lantern hanging from the ceiling. Your desire could possibly come true.
Browse knick-knacks on Endoji Street and electronics on Osu Street
Osu is the place to go in Nagoya for shopping, eating, manga, and maid cafés. The major thoroughfare in the Osu business area is Osu Shopping Street, which stretches for many blocks.
Osu is Nagoya’s entertainment and cultural center. There are around 1,200 enterprises offering almost anything, including electronics and toys.
Endoji is the polar opposite of Osu. Instead of rows of contemporary businesses with bright billboards and advertisements, you get rows of ancient historic buildings and warehouses.
Endoji is a historic retail strip that is a short walk from Nagoya Station, making it simple to visit. It’s also just adjacent to Endoji Temple, if you wish to see another temple on your trip to Japan.
Where to stay: The best hotels for sightseeing in Nagoya
Choosing where to stay in Nagoya, like many larger cities in Japan, may be difficult if you don’t know where to begin. For most first-time visitors, Naka Ward is the ideal spot to start their quest since it is home to several of Nagoya’s most popular attractions.
Here are a few suggestions…
Daiwa Royal Hotel D-CITY Nagoya Nayabashi: A 3-star hotel that is one of the best value options in the city. It’s about a five-minute walk from here to Fushimi Station and the Nagoya City Science Museum. Breakfast is provided at no additional cost.
Lamp Light Books Hotel: Book fans will adore this mid-range hotel, which has a big collection of books in the common area. The rooms are great as well, with basic contemporary design and, in some instances, your own little balcony.
Hilton Nagoya Hotel: One of the city’s best luxury alternatives, this central hotel features all the facilities you’ll need to make your stay in Nagoya enjoyable, including an indoor swimming pool, tennis court, and various on-site eating options. Daily shuttles to Nagoya Castle and JR Nagoya Station are also provided for free.