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Home » Destinations » Asia » Japan » Scenic Essential Japan
This distillation of all things Japanese is designed to provide you with a truly unforgettable travel experience.
In the shadow of Mt Fuji, Hakone presents you with the opportunity to see the nearby Owakudani geysers and the unusual Hakone Open Air Museum. Try your hand at Sarubobo mascot-making at Hida Folk Village and origami in Hiroshima. From the large neon pulsing, modern cities of Tokyo and Osaka to the historic villages of Shirakawa-go, Takayama and Tondabayashi, you will see all aspects of Japanese culture and lifestyle during your journey. Enjoy the very best the ‘land of the rising sun’ has to offer, from feudal castles to traditional gardens, sporting traditions to tea ceremonies, from sake to sushi, and everything quintessentially Japanese in-between.
Fly to Narita airport in Tokyo from a choice of UK airports with selected airlines.
Welcome to Tokyo. This invigorating city is the world’s most populous metropolis, where the bright lights of modern life and traditional temples co-exist harmoniously. Enjoy a delightful welcome reception and dinner your hotel, your Special Stay for the next three nights.
Meals Included: Dinner
Visit the Asakusa district, paying your respects at Sensoji, the city’s oldest Buddhist temple.
Visit the Imperial Shinto Meiji Shrine, walk across the busiest pedestrian crossing in the world and see the famous Hachiko dog statue.
Alternatively, visit Shinjuku-Gyoen Gardens before exploring the lively Shinjuku entertainment district, or sample local snacks while strolling through the Yanaka District.
Take in the bright lights of Tokyo during your evening dinner cruise on Tokyo Bay on a yakatabune, an old fashioned houseboat.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Start your day walking through the peaceful Hama-Rikyu Gardens before visiting the National Sumo Stadium and Museum in the Ryogoku District.
Given by Taiko Masters, partake in an interactive, private group demonstration and lesson playing the Taiko drums.
Walk off your lunch in the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace, part of the inner palace area and the former site of Edo Castle’s innermost circles of defence.
Choose contemporary Asian at China Blue. Alternatively, join your Tour Director and immerse yourself in the traditional Japanese evening Izakaya bar scene serving Yakatori and Kushiyaki.
Wander through the Tsukiji outer Fish Market to see the morning’s catch being distributed by the wholesale and retail shops.
Immerse yourself in Japanese cuisine with the help of a local chef, as you prepare your own sushi lunch.
Venture into the countryside on your drive to Hakone and study the art works and sculptures at the Hakone Open Air Museum. Enjoy a Special Stay at your hotel overlooking Lake Ashinoko.
Walk around the hot springs at the summit of the Owakudani geothermal area and admire the stunning scenery during your cable car ride down to your Lake Ashinoko cruise with Mt Fuji as a backdrop. Later, discover the craftsmanship involved in creating kimonos at the Itchiku Kubota Art Museum. Overnight the Fuji View Hotel.
Choose from Japanese or French menus at the hotel restaurant.
En route to Takayama learn how wasabi is made at the Daio Wasabi Farm. Stop at the Hida Folk Village to partake in Sarubobo mascot-making. Enjoy a two night stay at your resort with amazing views over Takayama.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Discover the historical farmhouses of the mountain villages in Shirakawa-go, now a World Heritage-listed Site. Back in Takayama, enjoy a sake tasting and visit to a sake museum, then view the impressive Yatai festival floats before exploring the shops and backstreets of Takayama’s old quarter.
Choose between Le Midi, a French-Italian-inspired bistro in town famed for its Hida Beef, or Sakanaya, a fine Japanese restaurant set in a renovated former sake brewery.
Wander the Miyagawa morning markets before travelling by Express Train to Nagoya and exploring the rebuilt Nagoya Castle. Overlook the flood-lit Nagoya Castle and enjoy your Teppanyaki feast at your overnight Special Stay.
Travel by Shinkansen train to the culturally rich city of Kyoto, home to many World Heritage-listed Sites
Partake in a Japanese tea ceremony whilst dressed in a traditional Japanese kimono, a great photo opportunity
Settle into your four night stay in Kyoto.
Begin with a visit to the Kinkaku-ji or Golden Pavilion before wandering through the classical Zen Garden at Ryoanji Temple. Then wander through the surreal Arashiyama Bamboo Grove before an afternoon at leisure.
Choose between Japanese cuisine at Shinensen Heihachi, or international cuisine at the historic Fortune Garden.
Revel in the atmosphere of the ancient preservation districts or visit the Silver Pavilion and then stroll along the Philosopher’s Walk, especially beautiful during blossom season.
Later marvel at the architecture of Nijo Castle, a classic reminder of the fascinating Edo-period shogunate’s power, before letting yourself loose in the Nishiki Shijo Shopping District during your free afternoon.
After strolling through the Gion District, tonight’s dinner will allow you to interact with a Maiko, an apprentice Geisha, who’ll host your meal presentation. It’s an excellent opportunity to learn about what is involved in becoming a Geisha and the art of Japanese hospitality.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner
Enjoy an excursion to Nara to visit Todaiji Temple and Nara Park. Stop at the Fushimi Inari Shrine, featured in the movie Memoirs of a Geisha.
Ryokan Upgrade – Choose to stay in a Ryokan, a traditional Japanese Inn with futon beds and private facilities including dinner and breakfast. Must be pre-booked before departure.
Board your Shinkansen train to Hiroshima.
Experience an emotional visit to the Peace Park and Museum before visiting Orizuru Tower to create your own special origami donation.
Enjoy two restful nights in Hiroshima.
Sail by ferry to Miyajima Island to visit the Daisho-in Temple and the floating sixth century Torii Gate at the Itsukushima Shrine. On return to the mainland visit the Mazda car factory and see the robots at work on the cars on the production line. Tonight, sample Okonomiyaki, a delicious savoury Japanese-style pancake and specialty of the region.
Travel by Shinkansen to marvel at Himeji Castle, an original and Japan’s most spectacular castle before continuing to Osaka. Enjoy a two night Special Stay.
Located outside of Osaka is the timeless village of Tondabayashi Jinaimachi. Visit a traditional house and wander around this splendid historical time capsule, with houses and buildings that date back to the Edo period. Back in Osaka, marvel at the size of the city from Sky Garden before seeing how beer is produced at the Asahi factory. Tonight relive your experiences at your farewell dinner.
Bid a fond farewell to this corner of Southeast Asia. Transfer to Osaka airport for your return flight home.
Meals Included: Breakfast
Please note, prices listed are guide prices only and are based on 2 people sharing and don’t include any additional supplements. Holiday prices are fluid and dynamic and may be changed at a moment’s notice, prior to booking, at which point they are confirmed. Please call the team free on 0800 707 6229 for more departure dates available and a quote
Please call us free on 0800 707 6229 for pricing and availability
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