What are some of the best things to do in Nagoya, Japan?
After all, Nagoya is a place not many people really think about if they are thinking of traveling to Japan.
The reason for this is because many people often think that there isn’t really much to do here in this city.
However that statement is false.
There are quite a few things you are able to see and do as long as you look hard enough.
After all, it is the fourth largest city in Japan, as well as being the center of the automotive industry of the country. It is here where you’ll find all the major car brands such as Toyota, Mitsubishi and Honda.
Plus, there are other interesting things as well.
This place is also known for having deep roots through history with an emphasis on samurai and ninja culture.
Whatever it is you are looking for, this city will probably have it.
So if you are interested in finding out what things you can see and do here in this city, then you are in the right place.
Here are the top 20 things you should see and do in Nagoya.
- 20 Things To See and Do In Nagoya
- Visit The Toyota Exhibition Hall
- Check Out Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology
- Nagoya Castle
- View Nagoya Castle Summer Night Festival
- Check Out Atsuta-jingu
- Go Up Nagoya TV Tower
- Roam Around Noritake Garden
- Visit Tokugawa Art Museum
- Visit The Nagoya City Science Museum
- Have Fun At Nagoya Matsuri
- Eat Delicious Food
- Check Out The Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium
- Check Out Higashiyama Zoo & Botanical Gardens
- View Osu Kannon Temple
- Check Out Nittaiji Temple
- Check Out The World Cosplay Summit
- View The City From Sky Promenade
- Check Out SCMAGLEV and Railway Park
- Visit The Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art
- Watch A Sumo Tournament
20 Things To See and Do In Nagoya
Visit The Toyota Exhibition Hall
As you may have read earlier above, Nagoya is the center for the automobile industry in Japan. It is also the hub for the Toyota production line. Because of this, there is also a Toyota Exhibition Hall where you can find quite a few vehicles that have been made from this Toyota Factory.
One of the best features of the Exhibition hall is that you are able to see some of the newest and best cutting edge technology that Toyota is working with.
Aside from the cars, this place also offers a tour that will give you some insight as to how Toyota got started and how it became such a global brand it is today.
So if you like cars or if you just like engineering in general, this place would be a dream come true.
Check Out Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology
Like we said earlier, this city is the center of the automobile industry. And one of the biggest is Toyota. They built a Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology building here so visitors can see just how Toyota is like.
You’ll be able to find all kinds of awesome robots, model cars and galleries that tell how Toyota came to be. There are also galleries dedicated to the textile industry as Toyota use to be a textile firm.
Nagoya Castle is an astonishing castle that was built back in the edo period of the 17th century. However due to WWII, this castle was destroyed. It has since been rebuilt and allows for visitors to roam around the castle.
Inside you are able to check out all kinds of different weaponry and costumes on display that will tell you the history of Japan. You’ll also be able to go through many different rooms and imagine how it was like back in the past.
View Nagoya Castle Summer Night Festival
The Nagoya Castle Summer Night Festival is a festival that happens during summer time on the grounds of Nagoya Castle.
The area will be filled with beautiful lanterns as well as having people performing all kinds of different performances all around.
They even have stalls where they sell treats and local hand crafted items.
A nice place to have some fun and unwind.
Check Out Atsuta-jingu
Atsuta-jingu is a shrine that dates back to almost 1,900 years ago. It was believed to have been established by Emperor Keikō.
Unfortunately, just like many other buildings that were built long ago in Japan, this too has been destroyed over the years and been rebuilt.
It is now considered to be one of the most important Shinto shrines in all of Japan.
Aside from the shrine, there is also a famous Treasure Hall that you may visit which includes weapons, masks, paintings and other relics from the past.
Go Up Nagoya TV Tower
Nagoya TV Tower if one of Nagoya’s feature landmarks that is also one of the oldest of its kind in Japan. It is even older then the now famous Tokyo Tower.
This tower stands at an incredible 180 meters high and allows visitors to go up to its observation deck where you are able to look at amazing views of the city.
Roam Around Noritake Garden
Noritake Garden is a place that is over 100 years old, as it dates back to the 1900’s. The garden itself was built on the grounds of one of Japans most famous ceramic companies to introduces the company and its products while providing a recreational space for visitors to have fun.
You’ll be able to roam around the garden and see all kinds of old antiques such as old fashioned kilns and other things used in the ceramic industry. They also have a gallery where you can learn more about the history of ceramics.
Aside from that, because this place use to be a ceramics company, you are able to make and glaze your own pieces here.
Visit Tokugawa Art Museum
Tokugawa Art Museum is a place to learn all about the history and culture of Japanese art.
This museum has over 10,000 items for display as you can check out many galleries that are dedicated to the art work of particular shogun families.
So if you love art then this place should definitely be on your list of places to visit.
Visit The Nagoya City Science Museum
Nagoya City Science Museum is considered to be one of the best museums in the entire country of Japan.
It is also home to one of the worlds largest planetarium.
Aside from the planetarium, it features all sorts of stuff like the “Tornado Lab”, the “Electric Discharge Lab” and the “Deep Freezing Lab,” which simulates conditions at the earth’s polar regions.
A perfect place for kids and adults all alike who love science.
Have Fun At Nagoya Matsuri
The Nagoya Matsuri is a pretty popular festival that is held each year in October.
The festival is dedicated to the “Three Heroes” of Nagoya and takes place in Hisaya-odori. It is here where you can watch all kinds of floats pass by that are decorated with a variety of puppets.
There are also performances happening all around which makes it even more entertaining.
Eat Delicious Food
Nagoya isn’t really known for food as well as other things, but it still has quite a few delicious items that they serve.
In Nagoya, miso is probably the most well known food product as the city is known for its miso production.
So some things like miso katsu or the miso nikomi udon are some of the foods you could try here.
Check Out The Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium
One of Nagoya’s premier attractions is the Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium.
It is here where you are able to find all kinds of marine life. From bottle nose dolphins, beluga whales, and other such creatures kept at the aquarium.
Not only that, but this place also does shows with dolphins.
It is a perfect place for all marine life lovers as you get to relax and learn all about the wonder life from the ocean.
Check Out Higashiyama Zoo & Botanical Gardens
Higashiyama Zoo and the Botanical Gardens are two separate things that are located right next to each other.
On one side you have a zoo which is home to a huge variety of animals. It is here where you can see all the animals and learn a lot about them. This zoo is also one of Asia’s biggest zoos.
On the other side, you have the Botanical Gardens which is home to a huge variety of plants.
A pretty neat place if you want to learn something new or just find a place to unwind.
View Osu Kannon Temple
The Osu Kannon Temple is a popular Buddhist temple here in Nagoya. It was built during the 12th century of the Kamakura Period and has since been relocated to its current location. Like other old buildings in Japan, this temple was also rebuilt.
The main object of worship at the temple is a wooden statue of Kannon, the goddess of mercy.
Aside from that, you can also come here to buy a variety of local charms which is said to bring good fortune. Not only that, but twice a month, this place is host to a flea market so you can casually browse around and see if there is anything you would like to buy.
Check Out Nittaiji Temple
Nittaiji Temple is a Buddhist temple that was built in 1904 in order to keep the ashes of Buddha, given to Japan by the Kingdom of Thailand.
Because this temple was built from a relationship between Japan and Thailand, you are bound to find all sorts of items that reflect both of these cultures.
Its one of the more unique temples you’ll find in Japan.
Check Out The World Cosplay Summit
Nagoya is home to the World Cosplay Summit.
If you are into anime or cosplay, then this will definitely peak your interest.
This place features all sorts of people dressed up in amazing cosplay as well as acting out certain scenes from different kinds of anime.
They also do cosplay contests in which cosplayers will compete against one another to see which one has the best cosplay of all.
View The City From Sky Promenade
The Sky Promenade is considered to be the tallest observation deck in all of Japan.
The observation deck is located on the 44th to 46 floors of the tower and allows you to get a panoramic view of the entire city of Nagoya.
Aside from the views, this tower also has some restaurants that feature amazing sky views of the city if you choose to decide to eat over there.
Check Out SCMAGLEV and Railway Park
SCMAGLEV and Railway Park is a place that any and all train lovers will love to see.
You are able to roam around the place and learn the entire history of train travel in Japan. As well as going to different interactive exhibits that make the whole thing a whole lot of fun.
This museum displays a number of actual trains including historic steam locomotives, world record setting experimental shinkansen (bullet train) and the latest magnetic levitating trains (maglev).
Visit The Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art
Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art is an art museum that is filled with all sorts of interesting collections and galleries for you to see.
Some highlights that this museum has to offer are paintings by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse and also Max Ernst. It also has a variety of other works by many Japanese artists as well.
Not just paintings, but you’ll also find jewelry, ceramics, and other kinds of items here also.
Watch A Sumo Tournament
The Sumo Tournament in Nagoya is known to take place in July and lasts for 15 days.
If you are here during that time, you can come here to watch some of the best sumo wrestlers battle it out to see who is the best.
You know…I never really understand why people say there is nothing to do in the city of Nagoya.
Just looking at this list, there are a ton of amazing and fun things for anyone to see and do.
So hopefully this will change peoples minds and show them that this city is indeed fun and you’ll be able to do all sorts of stuff here.
Also, if you are planning to visit Japan anytime soon, you might be interested in some of my other Japan posts.
- Tokyo – 20 Things To Do In Tokyo
- Osaka – 18 Amazing Things To Do In Osaka
- Kyoto – 14 Awesome Things To Do In Kyoto
- Japan – 20 Amazing Foods You Have To Try In Japan
Or you can check out my complete list of things to do in Japan by clicking here.
Let me know how your trip goes!