Come for Tokyo, stay for the rest
Most people will come to Kanto for Tokyo but the region has other talents that are well worth setting aside some time to explore.
Kanto is a region on the eastern side of Japan’s main island, Honshu, and is the most urban and densely populated area in the country.
At the heart of the Kanto region lies the sprawling Tokyo megalopolis, extending all the way outwards from Tokyo Bay to the surrounding mountains that make up the regional border. The majority of visitors to Japan will arrive via Tokyo Narita Airport, which is actually located in Chiba prefecture about 60 kilometers east of the capital and where you’ll also find Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea.
Just south of Tokyo lies Kanagawa prefecture, which includes the cosmopolitan port city of Yokohama, as well as the historical coastal town of Kamakura. Hakone, with its many onsen (hot spring baths) and beautiful views of nearby Mount Fuji is a popular romantic getaway.
Further to the north, the mountains of Gunma prefecture offer a great range of outdoor activities from skiing in the winter to white water rafting in the summer. The ancient shrines and temples of Nikko in neighbouring Tochigi prefecture are a designated World Heritage Site. Autumn in Nikko is world-famous for its spectacular koyo or changing colors of the leaves.
The Kanto region also includes a number of volcanic islands in the Pacific Ocean. The largest of the Izu islands, Izu Oshima, can be reached in under 2 hours by high-speed jetfoil from Tokyo. For a seriously remote experience, it’s a 25-hour ferry ride to the subtropical Ogasawara Archipelago for breathless vistas and a spot of sunset whale watching.