Adventures through Japan
Cascading cherry blossoms, soaring bamboo forests, temples, pagoda-style buildings, massive modern cities and everything in between: It is easy to fall in love with Japan on this tour.
Japan is a country filled with tradition and steeped in modern amenities. Over the course of two weeks, you get a taste of both. Your time will begin in the capital city of Tokyo, where soaring skyscrapers and premier shopping districts are all within walking distance of amazing historic sites. Moving on through the country, you will feel serene at the ancient Senso-ji Buddhist Temple, you will be left in awe of the natural glory of Mount Fuji and you will be humbled by seeing the sites in Hiroshima. Miyajima Island is filled with shrines for you to uncover, while the ancient capital city of Kyoto provides a look at centuries-old architecture and a taste of some of the country’s staples, rice and sake. Buddhist buildings, temples, Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, Nara Deer Park and the modern city of Osaka round out your time in the country, allowing you to see some of the best old, new and natural sights Japan has to offer. As if the exciting destinations and marvelous sites were not enough, your travel through Japan is done along the rails, giving you an unforgettable perspective that lasts well-beyond the 14 days you spend in this unique country.
Highlights and Inclusions
- Flight from London to Tokyo, via Dubai, and from Osaka to London, via Dubai
- Rail and coach travel throughout your tour
- 11 nights' hotel accommodation, with breakfast each day and 1 traditional Japanese lunch
- Guided tours of Tokyo and Kyoto and a guided visit to Mount Fuji
- See Owakudani volcanic valley & cruise Lake Ashi
- Travel on the bullet train to Hiroshima and Kyoto
- Visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and Osaka Castle
- A walking tour of Miyajima Island and experience a sake tasting
- Excursions to Arashiyama bamboo forest & Nara deer park
- Fully escorted by a UK Tour Manager from start to finish
Days 1 & 2 - Journey to Tokyo
Board your flight to Dubai, then once in the United Arab Emirates continue your journey by air, flying directly to Tokyo where you'll arrive on Day 2. A coach transfer is included to your hotel and after time to check in, there'll be a short orientation tour of the area.
Days 3 & 4 - Sightseeing in Japan's Capital
Begin your Japanese experience with a full day’s guided city tour of Tokyo, where cutting-edge technology sits alongside ancient temples, flashing neon lights, and shining skyscrapers towering above stunning Shinto shrines. Included in the sights you'll see are Tokyo's government building, whose observation deck you'll visit for panoramic views over the city, the Meiji Jingu Shrine, dedicated to deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken, as well as some free time in Harajuku and Omotesando, one of Tokyo's premier shopping districts. After seeing the regal double-bridged entrance to the Imperial Palace Plaza, you'll head into the Ginza district, renowned for its sushi restaurants.
Continue on your explorations on the morning of Day 4 as you travel by coach the Senso-ji Buddhist temple, dedicated to the Bodhisattva Kannon - otherwise known as the goddess of mercy. Afterward, take a stroll along Nakamise shopping street, one of the oldest of its kind in the whole of Japan. Enjoy a group lunch at a local restaurant before an afternoon and evening at leisure.
Day 5 - Mount Fuji
Today you'll travel by coach to Mount Fuji, one of the highlights of your tour and arguably Japan's most distinctive landmark. Driving along the foot of the famous mountain and up its northern slopes, arrive at the Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station, which provides the closest view of Mount Fuji possible, unless you make the hike to its summit. If the weather doesn't allow for a safe ascent, there'll be a visit to the Mount Fuji Visitor Centre instead. Following your visit, take the Hakone rope-way (cable car) to the sulphurous hot springs at Owakudani, after which you'll descend to Lake Ashi for a short cruise.
Day 6 - Hiroshima
Board the world-famous bullet train today for a high-speed journey to Hiroshima, a city that rose to prominence after the dropping of the atomic bomb by the United States Air Force on 6th August 1945. Approximately 90% of the city was levelled, and Hiroshima's busiest commercial district was eradicated - leaving an open field. This was turned into the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, which opened on 1st April 1954. You'll also spend time at the A-bomb Dome, the closest building to the hypo-centre of the bomb that remained at least partially standing. It would have been demolished, but was more intact than originally thought, and in 1996 it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Entrance is also included to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.
Days 7 & 8 - Miyajima Island & Kyoto
Just off the coast from Hiroshima, Miyajima Island - otherwise known as Itsukushima - is seen as sacred. Trees cannot be cut here, and some animals including monkeys and deer can roam freely. To further preserve the apparent purity of the island, children cannot be born here. There are also a number of shrines on the island, but none are more famous than the magnificent 'floating' Itsukushima Shrine, which is a recognised UNESCO World Heritage site. Its recognisable gate (torii) is one of Japan's most iconic sights, and entrance is included in your tour, after which you'll have some free time to stroll around independently. On Day 8 travel again by bullet train, this time to Kyoto - Japan's ancient capital. Embark on a tour that takes you to the Fushimi Inari Shrine, dedicated to the god of rice and sake before, appropriately, making a visit to the Gekeikan Okura Sake Museum and enjoying a tasting of this unique national tipple.
Day 9 - Arashiyama Bamboo Forest
Continue sightseeing in and around Kyoto today with visits to the secluded Kinkaku-ji temple and Ryoan-ji temple, both built for the practice of Zen Buddhism. This is followed by an excursion to the incredible Arashiyama bamboo forest which provides a truly otherworldly experience as you walk through the sprawling grove of bamboo trees which tower, seemingly endlessly, above you.
Days 10 & 11 - Nara Deer Park
Transfer by coach to ancient Nara, where you'll make a stop at Nara deer park, so named due to the large number of tame deer that roam around it. Originally believed to be messengers of the gods, the deer were seen as sacred, and killing one of these deer was a capital offence punishable by death until relatively recently. As well as being a vast expanse of beautiful parkland, Nara Park is home to Todai-ji Temple, a Buddhist building founded in the first half of the 8th century. On Day 11 you free to explore at your own pace.
Days 12 - 14 - Osaka & the Journey Home
Travel by coach to the futuristic city of Osaka today and explore Osaka Castle, a traditional pagoda style building dating back to the 16th century, and experience the dynamic Dotonbori district with its neon signs lining the waterfront. Transfer to the airport on Day 13 for your flight back to London, travelling via Dubai. Your tour ends at Heathrow airport on Day 14.
Train and Hotel Accommodations
Hotel Granvia Hiroshima, Hiroshima
The lovely Hotel Granvia Hiroshima is your hotel whilst in Hiroshima. Located close to JR Hiroshima Train Station it is the perfect base from which to conduct your explorations. In the hotel, there is a sky restaurant on the 21st floor, which offers wonderful views across the city. There is also a steak house, Japanese and Chinese restaurants, a lobby lounge, and karaoke bar. The well-appointed rooms include a television, air-conditioning, a minibar, and complimentary Wi-Fi.
Hotel Vischio Osaka, Osaka
This hotel, brand new for 2018 has a fascinating concept and represents the latest generation of more eco-friendly city accommodation. Its architecture also has close ties to nature, with wavelike features in the hotel's public areas designed to represent Osaka's status as Japan's water city. Each guest room features tea & coffee making facilities, bathrobe, a hair dryer, safety deposit box, complimentary bottled water and air purifier. Each is en-suite and comes with a range of complimentary toiletries.
ANA Crowne Plaza, Kyoto
In Kyoto, you stay in the ANA Crowne Plaza hotel.
Sunshine City Prince Hotel, Tokyo
In Tokyo, you stay in the Sunshine City Prince Hotel.
Dates & Prices
Select from the packages below to view prices for this tour.
|2nd September 2019||£3,195||Book Now|
|14th October 2019||£3,495||Book Now|
|23rd March 2020||£3,795||Book Now|
|6th April 2020||£3,795||Book Now|
|7th September 2020||£3,395||Book Now|
|5th October 2020||£3,695||Book Now|
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: Departs 2nd September 2019 (£3,195), 14th October 2019 (£3,495), 23rd March 2020 (£3,795), 6th April 2020 (£3,795), 7th September 2020 (£3,395), 5th October 2020 (£3,695)
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Prices are correct at the time of publication, however are subject to change at time of booking. Prices are based on double occupancy. Itinerary and accommodations may vary for 2020 departures, please speak with a rail specialist for details.
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