Enchanting Japan

Enchanting Japan

  • Dining on authentic seafood dishes in Izu Peninsula 
  • Taking part in a tea ceremony in Kyoto 
  • Visiting Hiroshima’s Peace Memorial Park 
  • Snapping photographs of the iconic Miyajima Island

Age-old temples and towering skyscrapers, cutting-edge technology and ancient traditions: discover the contrasts on our Enchanting Japan itinerary.

On this tailor-made tour you’ll travel around Honshu, Japan’s main island, soaking up the culture, history and heritage of this captivating country. In just under two weeks you’ll have the chance to ride the world-famous bullet train, learn how to shape a bonsai tree in a hands-on lesson, walk the narrow streets of Kyoto looking out for glimpse of elusive geisha and experience the buzz of Tokyo at the start and end of your holiday. Want to tweak the itinerary? No problem! Speak to our Asia travel experts to create the perfect getaway just for you.

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Tokyo

Tokyo

Land in Japan’s largest city and be met in the arrivals hall by your driver. You’ll be taken to your hotel in a shared transfer and then check in to your room. The rest of the day is completely free to either relax and get over the jetlag or to get out and explore this city of contrasts.

Day 1: Arrive Tokyo

Day 2: Guided Tour of Tokyo

Tokyo

Your itinerary really kicks off today with a guided tour of the capital, starting in Asakusa, Tokyo’s old town where the city’s oldest temple – the red and gold Sensoji – still stands. Wander up and down Nakamise shopping street lined by food stalls and souvenir shops – this is a good place to pick up trinkets to take home! Jump on board Tokyo Water Bus and travel down the Sumidagawa River, arriving directly at the Hamarikyu Garden – this peaceful place is in stark contrast to the skyscrapers that surround it. In the afternoon visit Meiji Shrine, a popular location for weddings before strolling the wide tree-lined Omotesando shopping street. Please note: if you would prefer to tour the city by private car, please speak to our travel experts.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 2: Guided Tour of Tokyo

Day 3: Free Day in Tokyo

Tokyo

We’ve given you today to spend as your leisure, free to explore the manga and fashion crazes, walk the city streets and peer down on Shibuya Crossing – said to be one of the busiest pedestrian crossings in the world. Alternatively, we can arrange an optional tour, choosing from two options.


Your first option is a half day Tokyo Gardens and Fire Ceremony Tour, visiting the 18th century Kiyosumi Teien Gardens in the eastern Fukagawa district and the Fukagawa Fudo-do Temple complete with goma-kito ceremony where a Buddhist priest burns consecrated wooden sticks to provide protection. The second option is a full day tour to the Tokyo Bonsai Museum: you’ll have a chance to see the extensive display and learn about the care taken in growing these trees, as well as partake in a 60-90 minute lesson on how to shape a bonsai at the nearby Seikoen Bonsai School.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 3: Free Day in Tokyo

Day 4: Izu Peninsula

Tokyo - Izu Peninsula

Leave the city behind as you head to Izu Peninsula, an area south of Mt. Fuji with an eclectic mix of traditional hot springs and seaside resorts. May you own way to the station in Tokyo in time for your limited express train – ask us about arranging private transfers – for a scenic two hour journey taking in rugged coastline – the train even slows down at times to give you a better view! On arrival into Izu-Kogen Station you’ll be met and taken to your hotel by taxi: this evening dinner is included, giving you a chance to try delicious regional seafood dishes.

INCLUDES : Breakfast, Dinner

Day 4: Izu Peninsula

Day 5: Kyoto

Izu Peninsula - Kyoto

Get back on the train and travel south to Kyoto, changing at Odawara to switch to the high speed Shinkansen bullet train – during the three hour journey, keep an eye on the right hand side for views of Mt. Fuji as you speed by! When you arrive in Kyoto, make your own way to your hotel, or speak to our travel experts about arranging a private transfer.


This afternoon is your chance to experience a traditional tea ceremony. An expert instructor will perform the ceremony, teaching you about the various types of tea, the instruments used to prepare it – translations as required provided by your guide – and explain the meaning behind each movement and the importance the ceremony holds in Japanese culture.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 5: Kyoto

Day 6: Guide Tour of Kyoto

Kyoto

You’re halfway through your tour! Today you’ll explore the former imperial capital of Japan, visiting some of Kyoto’s most important UNESCO World Heritage Sites while using the city’s comprehensive bus system. We start off at the Kinkakuji Temple, more commonly known as the ‘Golden Pavilion’, famed for its gold-leaf exterior and three distinctive architectural styles, before heading to the ornamental Nijo Castle, former residence of Edo Shogunate and surrounded by well-kept gardens. Carry on to Nishiki Market lined with over a hundred restaurants and shops selling all things food related from fresh seafood to cookware. At the end of the day, you’re given a choice: either take in the views of the city from the Kiyomizu (Pure Water) Temple or instead visit Sanjusangendo, a Buddhist temple famous for its 1001 statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy. Please note: if you would prefer to tour the city by private car, please speak to our travel experts.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 6: Guide Tour of Kyoto

Day 7: Day Trip to Nara

Kyoto - Nara

Travel to Nara, a short 45 minute train journey from Kyoto – with your local guide for a day trip to this former capital, home to many temples and shrines from the 8th century. There are three stops to your itinerary starting with Todaiji temple which houses the world’s largest wooden building as well as Japan’s biggest bronze Buddha, then moving on to Nara’s celebrated Kasuga Taisha shrine – here you’ll find hundreds of bronze and stone lanterns donated by worshippers. End your day with a wander through Nara Park, fondly nicknamed ‘Deer Park’ for the 1000s of tame deer who live here.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 7: Day Trip to Nara

Day 8: Okayama

Kyoto - Okayama

In the morning embark on your self-guided tour of Okayama, a former castle town and now important transport hub just an hour’s journey on the bullet train from Kyoto. Head to the historic Kurashiki Bikan area where black-and-white tiled buildings and weeping willows line the canals where cargo-style boats once carried rice from storehouses to the nearby port. These buildings have now been converted into boutiques, galleries and cafés creating a unique mix of Japanese and western architectural styles. You may also want to consider visiting the Ohara Museum which houses the largest private collection of modern and contemporary western art, as well as pieces from the Japanese Folk Art movement. Stay overnight in Okayama.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 8: Okayama

Day 9: Hiroshima

Day 9: Okayama - Hiroshima

It’s all aboard once again as you depart from Okayama on the Shinkansen bullet train headed to Hiroshima, an hour-long journey. Once you arrive, make your own way to the hotel – or speak to us about arranging private transfers – and check in before spending the rest of the day at your leisure, either relaxing at the hotel or heading out to explore.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 9: Hiroshima

Day 10: Hiroshima & Miyajima Island

Hiroshima - Miyajima Island

Today you’ll set out on a guided tour of Hiroshima’s Peace Memorial Park, an area of remembrance to all those who lost their lives with the dropping of the atomic bomb during World War Two. The park sits in the site where the bomb was dropped – known as Ground Zero – and is an expansive green area with memorials, monuments, statues and a museum. After you’ve had time to look around take a short ferry to Miyajima Island, a holy place of Shintoism in the Island Sea and home to one of the most beautiful – and most photographed – sites in the country, the Floating Torii Gate. The entire island is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and you’ll have time to explore the many shrines and temples that are dotted around. Did you know that it is forbidden to give birth or die on the island?

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 10: Hiroshima & Miyajima Island

Day 11: Tokyo

Hiroshima - Tokyo

On your final full day in Japan travel back to Tokyo, where you’ll be departing from the following day. Ride the bullet train into the city and check in to your hotel – if you would like us to arrange private transfers to and from the stations, please let us know. Once you’ve arrived in Tokyo you are free to spend your remaining time exploring – perhaps eating at one of the city’s cheap (but delicious) noodle houses, drinking at an izakaya bar popular with local workers or watching the bustle and buzz of people at the famous Shibuya Crossing.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 11: Tokyo

Day 11: Depart Japan

Tokyo - Onward Destination

After checking out of the hotel, you have free time until your scheduled transfer to Narita or Kansai Airports for your departure flight.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Pricing

All prices shown represent a from price per person based on low season travel unless otherwise stated.
Availability of tour components and flights seats change continually, affecting the final price. The lead-in price given is therefore for guidance only.
To obtain a tailored quote for you and your party, please call one of our travel experts today.


Mar - May 2020; 16th March 2020 - 31st May 2020

Jul - Aug 2020; 1st June 2020 - 31st August 2020

Sep - Oct 2020; 1st September 2020 - 31st October 2020

Important Info

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