All Aboard the Sushi Train
Helloooo Tokyo. Get your fix of Japanese culture with temples, sushi, and shopping galore. Soak up Nikko’s outlandishly beautiful natural niceties. Spy Geishas in Kyoto’s Gion district, then get your Tina Turner on in any of the city’s karaoke bars.
Geishas are trained to sleep with little blocks of wood under their necks. Rice is scattered on the floor, so if their heads slip off the blocks it will stick to their head. Embarrassing.
Day to Day Itinerary
Day 1-3: Tokyo
Konnichiwa! Welcome to Japan!
As travellers are arriving from all over the world, there are no activities planned for day 1. You are expected to attend a group meeting in the evening, however - your group leader will leave a notice for you at the hotel detailing the exact time and place. Tokyo is a dynamic, modern hub, the thriving capital of an ancient land. Contradictions are everywhere, as hi-tech gadgetry and neon lights play an integral part in the lives of a population steeped in tradition. As our time in Tokyo is limited, we strongly recommend that you arrive a few days prior to this trip in order to explore the city. Ueno Park, with its many galleries and museums, is a great place to spend a day, the Sensoji Temple is a serene way to pass an afternoon, and the sumo stables are a must-see.
- Tokyo - Tsukiji Fish Market - Free
- Yoyogi Park - Free
- Shinjuku Garden - JPY200
- Tokyo - Ghibli Animation Studio visit - JPY1000
- Meiji Shrine - Free
- Sensoji Temple - Free
- Tokyo Imperial Palace - Free
Day 4-5: Nikko
We catch the train to Nikko (approx. 2 hrs).
On our train journey to Nikko, we have a chance to appreciate the spectacular countryside that makes Japan such a fabulous destination. Nikko has been a sacred site since the middle of the 8th century and the shrines and temples dotted throughout the area are inspiring evidence of the city's glory. A visit to Toshugu Shrine in particular is highly recommended. The mausoleum of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the warlord who controlled all of Japan and whose shogunate lasted 250 years, the shrine contrasts with the traditional minimalist style commonly used throughout Japan. Instead, every corner of this monument is covered in intricate gold-leaf and lacquerwork, paintings and patterns. Alternatively, you can go up to Chuzenji Lake and Yumoto for hiking and natural hot springs (and even optional skiing if the weather permits!).
Our Ryokan in Nikko has shared facilities and is located within walking distance of the world heritage area.
- Nikko - Toshogu Shrine - JPY1300
- Rinno-Ji - JPY400
- Kanmangafuchi Abyss - JPY200
- Iemitsu Mausoleum - JPY550
Day 6-9: Kyoto
On the afternoon of day 6 we travel to Kyoto by bullet train (approx. 3 hrs).
In the evening, we head out to Gion, the famous Geisha district. Even today, we can observe the age-old tradition of immaculate geisha girls visiting members of the wealthy elite in small teahouses tucked away down tiny back streets - but only if you know when and where! The Gion Corner is a cultural centre where we can get a taste of Japanese performing arts, anything from flower arranging to a lion dance.
Kyoto was once the imperial capital of Japan and as such, is one of the most beautiful cities in the country. With over 2,000 temples, shrines and gardens, Kyoto is a great place to get 'lost' in - so get out, walk the streets and soak up the wonderful atmosphere in your free time. Our last night in Japan is spent in Kyoto, so make sure you do some last-minute shopping or, in true Japanese tradition... go out for karaoke!
There are no activities planned for day 9 and you are able to depart the hotel at any time. Check out time is 10.00am. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel.
- Kiyomizu Temple - JPY400
- Sanjusangendo Temple - JPY600
- Sento Imperial Palace - Free
- Kyoto Tower - JPY770
- Fushimi Inari Shrine - Free
- Gio - Ji - JPY300
What to know
This trip is run by our sister company, Intrepid.
Nuts and Bolts
Tour leader throughout the trip and local guides at some sites, all accommodation and transport as per itinerary.
Summary of accommodation, transport & meals
- 2 nights Guesthouse
- 6 nights Ryokan
International flights, arrival and departure transfers, departure and airport taxes, visas, all other meals, all optional tours or activities during free time, transfers outside of the tour program, travel insurance, laundry, tips and items of a personal nature.
There are no included activities on this tour and all entrance fees to sights are optional. The costs below are approximate and should be used as a guide only as are subject to change:
Nikko - Toshogu Shrine - JPY1300
Rinno-Ji - JPY400
Kanmangafuchi Abyss - JPY200
Iemitsu Mausoleum - JPY550
Kiyomizu Temple - JPY400
Sanjusangendo Temple - JPY600
Sento Imperial Palace - Free
Kyoto Tower - JPY770
Fushimi Inari Shrine - Free
Gio - Ji - JPY300
Local Emergency Contacts
In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, Peregrines local ground representative Venture can be reached on +81 (80) 3012 9269
The operator for this Geckos Adventures trip is our experienced sister company Intrepid Travel. Your group will therefore be a mixture of Geckos booked passengers and other international like-minded travellers.
About this Information
The information provided here is given in good faith and has been compiled with all reasonable care. However, things change and some of the information may become out of date. Please ensure that you have the most up-to-date information for your trip. We recommend that you check the trip notes for your tour around one month before departure. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff in Australia. We are here to help you!
22 April 2014
General Contact Details
Phone: +61 3 8601 4444
Web: Visit Geckos