Arrive In Tokyo
Welcome to Tokyo, Japan's dazzling capital city. The remainder of the day is at leisure to relax or begin exploring.
Special Experience: Begin the day at Tokyo's famous Tsukiji Fish Market, one of the world's largest wholesale markets for fish, fruit and vegetables. We learn the age-old culinary art of making sushi (which we'll get to enjoy once we've finished).This afternoon we visit the Akihabara 'Electric Town' and take a stroll through the shopping district of Ginza, before sharing a Japanese-style group welcome dinner. (B/L/D)
An exciting day exploring one of the world's largest and most cosmopolitan cities. Our sightseeing includes the Edo Tokyo Museum, Asakusa Kannon Temple, Nakamise, and the famous Sumo Museum, dedicated to Japan's national sport. Special Experience: Enjoy a sumo wrestling demonstration by retired athletes over a traditional Chanko-nabe (hot pot) lunch.This evening we'll experience the neon lights and hustle and bustle of the Shinjuku District. (B/L)
Tokyo - Hakone
We begin our morning with a stroll through the beautiful Hamarikyu Garden. Then we visit the famous shrine of Tsurugaoka Hachimangu and the Great Buddha (Koutokuin). In the early afternoon we travel to Hakone. (B/D) Special Experience: For the next two nights we stay in an authentic ryokan guesthouse. We'll have the chance to bathe in natural onsen (hot springs) and enjoy a traditional Japanese dinner.
A highlight of any trip to Japan is a visit to majestic and iconic Mt Fuji! We stop at the fifth station (weather permitting) to take in the stunning views of the surrounding area. Later we'll ride a gondola and enjoy magnificent vistas of the volcanic Hakone Mountains and Mt Fuji, as well as the Sagami Bay. (B/D)
Hakone - Takayama
We travel by rail to the historic town of Takayama and explore the narrow, traditional streets on foot. (B)
We wander through the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage site of Shirakawago with its famous gasshō-zukuri ('like hands in prayer') thatched roofs, designed to withstand the massive snowfalls of winter. This afternoon we discover the traditional art of Japanese rice paper-making. (B)
Takayama - Hiroshima
Early this morning we'll visit a local market before continuing our rail journey to Hiroshima, via Nagoya. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at leisure. (B)
This morning we cruise out to tranquil Miyajima Island and see the giant Itsukushima Torii Gate, before returning to Hiroshima for lunch. This afternoon we'll visit the Peace Memorial Park, the Atomic Bomb Dome and the very moving Peace Memorial Museum, commemorating the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. (B/L)
Hiroshima - Kyoto
Travelling by bullet train, we make our way to historic Kyoto, Japan's cultural capital. Here we visit the stunning Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion). The temple's top two floors are completely covered in gold leaf and the pavilion is set amongst beautiful gardens. (B)
We travel to Nara and visit the beautiful Tōdai-ji (Great Eastern) Temple. We'll then stop at famous Deer Park, where more than 1,000 deer roam freely. This afternoon we'll see one of Japan's most celebrated temples, the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Kiyomizu-dera. (B)
Today we discover the art behind Japan's unique crafts and culinary delights! (B) Special Experience: Enjoy a variety of local activities including sake brewing & tasting, and a chance to dress in a kimono. Then witness a traditional dance performance by Maiko (Geiko^ apprentices).^Geiko is the term for Geisha in Kyoto.
Kyoto - Mt Hiei - Osaka
We experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony before visiting the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Buddhist sanctuary of Enryaku-ji Temple. Located on the sacred mountain of Mt Hiei, it offers beautiful views over Kansai. Here we'll enjoy a traditional Buddhist lunch. This afternoon we make our way to Osaka, stopping at the Umeda Sky Building (Floating Garden) for scenic views over the central city. (B/L)
We travel by bullet train to visit Himeji Castle. Japan's largest and most-visited castle, it is regarded as the finest surviving example of Japanese castle architecture. We'll then venture into Osaka's Dōtonbori District in the early evening to take in its famous lights. Tonight we'll enjoy a Japanese-style group farewell dinner. (B/D)
Today we begin our journey home. (B)