Japan has the craziness of Tokyo, the historical splendour of Kyoto and the culinary overload of Osaka. We look after the travel and accommodation and you need only think about how best to enjoy your time.
Day 1 - TokyoArrival day. Your trip starts today with your arrival in Tokyo. No activities are planned, so arrive early if you can, as there is plenty to see. There will be a pre-departure briefing with your tour guide late in the afternoon. Just check with reception.
Day 2-3 - TokyoTokyo The capital of Japan, Tokyo has to be one of the most modern cities in the world. It seems that every person on the streets has the latest version of everything. Ginza is full of department stores selling the latest fashions, Akihabara is the place to try the latest new gadgets before they become available in the West, and Shinjuku is the fast paced night club area. However, if you look under the surface, Tokyo is still very traditional. You will still see the ladies wearing kimonos around town. People go to temples like Senso-ji to say a few prayers on their way to work. Couples get married in their traditional wedding gowns in the beautiful grounds around the Meiji Shrine. In spring, couples, families and friends sit beneath trees sipping sake admiring the cherry blossoms. Here you can catch a performance of the traditional Kabuki plays or if you are fortunate enough, you may be able to see the Sumo wrestlers throw each other out of the ring during one of the few ‘Bashos’ held each year. Morning orientation tour. Your Tour Guide will take you to the area near the Imperial Palace, which is generally considered to be the city centre, and brief you on the various areas of interest in town. The Imperial Palace, home of the Emperor, is unfortunately not open to the public but can be glimpsed through the trees from one vantage point. Nearby, the Ginza is the main shopping street and the equivalent of Oxford Street in London. A metro ride then takes you across town to Tokyo's major religious site, the Meiji Shrine. This is located in a large park area. Although a reconstruction of the original, it exhibits all the original features of a Shinto Shrine. Other sights to visit are Ueno Park and Asakusa Temple. Free afternoon to explore this multi-faceted city. Perhaps visit Yoyogi Park to view the amazingly vibrant street scenes, temples, pagodas, and shrines of Tokyo. In the evening there is the opportunity to visit a Kabuki theatre. There are many options over the 2 days in Tokyo. An unmissable early morning option is to visit to the Tsukiji fish market. The highlight for some is the theatrical bidding at the tuna auction! OR head up into the stunning Japan Alps, to visit Nikko, home to Toshu-gu Shrine complex. A World Heritage site, the complex was built to house the Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu's mausoleum. OR if the season is right a day trip up Mt.Fuji There is so much to do in this fascinating city.
Day 4-5 - KyotoDepart early for Kyoto on board the Shinkansen bullet train, former Imperial Capital of Japan and home of the country’s most treasured remnants of Japanese imperial life. As the Imperial capital, Kyoto is an essential part of any visit to Japan. Kyoto has some of the most magnificent temples in Japan which date back centuries. There are said to be 2,000 temples, shrines, palaces, museums and traditional gardens in Kyoto. You can wander past huge wooden structures and multi-storied pagodas, all linked with famous walkways and marvel at the huge temples of the Hongan-ji sect or the beautiful Golden Pavilion. Take time out to enjoy the Zen gardens like Ryoan-ji and the Silver Pavilion, take a leisurely stroll down the lovely Philosopher’s path to Nanzen-ji or just walk around Gion and perhaps catch a glimpse of a Geisha going from tea house to tea house. An optional half daytrip to Nara An optional half day trip to Nara, a former capital of Japan is also recommended. Nara is home to Todaiji Temple, the world's largest wooden structure which houses Daibutsu - the big buddha. The beautiful gardens of Nara Park are also inhabited by hundreds of tame deer, revered as messengers of the Gods in Shinto Buddhism
Day 6-7 - OsakaOur next train journey takes us to Osaka, Japan’s ‘second city’, and culinary capital. Two full days to explore dynamic Osaka. There is plentiful shopping and nightlife, as well as cultural sights such as the National Museum of Art and the modern Osaka Science Museum. Tour ends on the morning of Day 7.
What to Know
Tour guide, accommodation, transportation, and sightseeing excursions as per itinerary.
- Visa costs, entrance fees, drinks, tips, laundry and other items of a personal nature. International flights, departure and arrival transfers, meals unless stated in itinerary.
Trip Dates and Prices
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What to know
Does not include entrance fees.