ITINERARIES Kobe in 1 Day Discover architecture, history, and unforgettable waterfront views
One of Japan's most culturally eclectic cities, Kobe is easily accessible from Osaka and Kyoto by train
- Taking a cruise on Luminous Kobe 2, Kobe's giant restaurant cruise ship
- Sipping delicious herbal tea at Kobe Nunobiki Herb Gardens
Begin your adventure through Kobe by taking the Kobe Nunobiki ropeway up to the Kobe Nunobiki Herb Gardens, home to a variety of herbs and flowers spanning 200 species. Take in sweeping views of the city from the top of the mountain.
A short walk from the base of the ropeway on foot is Kitano, a historic district once home to many of the city’s foreign merchants.
Foreign trade boomed around the 19th century, and several of the homes in the Kitano area remain relatively untouched. Many of these former mansions, known as Ijinkan, have been repurposed into museums and are today open to the public.
Running down towards the port is Kobe Tor Road, one of the city's most culturally defining streets.
Just to the east of Tor Road are the towering torii gates of Ikuta-jinja Shrine. Founded in the year 201 A.D. this shrine has deep ties to Kobe. The surrounding area is the core of Kobe's modern downtown, and the shrine hosts many major festivals throughout the year.
As the day rolls into dusk, there's no better place to visit in Kobe than the harborside Meriken Park. Scale the 108-meter-tall Kobe Port Tower for unforgettable views of the glittering city skyline. For an extra-special experience, book a ride on the Luminous Kobe 2, one of Japan's largest restaurant cruise ships.
Consider a visit to the Kobe Animal Kingdom, a flower and animal park situated on Port Island. Perfect for children but with plenty of attractions for adults too, the park features a hands-on petting zoo and a giant greenhouse, great for exploring when the weather is less than ideal.