Colours of Northern Japan (Flights Included)

18 Day Small Group Tour from Tokyo to Sapporo with Bunnik

Book online and enjoy exclusive savings on Bunnik's 18 Day Colours of Northern Japan (Flights Included). A beautiful journey Itinerary through Northern Honshu and Hokkaido, taking in the incredible natural colours of the forests, gardens and hidden temples. Ride the bullet train, soak in a natural onsen and stroll more

Our Price From:
$ 10,583
Per Person ($AU)
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$ 212
Per Person ($AU)
Small Group Tour Starts In
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Small Group Tour Ends In
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3.5 - 4 Star
Max Group Size
Small Group
Trip Style
Small Group
Scenic / Cultural
Trip Style
Scenic / Cultural
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Trip Operated By:
59 Reviews
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1 Depart Australia
2 Arrive In Tokyo
Welcome to Tokyo, Japan's dazzling, ultra-modern capital city.
3 Tokyo
We begin the day at the grounds of the Imperial Palace, residence of Japan's Imperial Family, and situated on the former site of Edo Castle. We'll also visit the Meiji Shrine, an oasis in the heart of the bustling Shibuya district, dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji. This afternoon we'll experience the neon lights and hustle and bustle of Shibuya before admiring the city lights on a dinner cruise around Tokyo Bay in a typical Japanese-style houseboat from the Heian Era, known as a yakatabune. (B/D)
4 Tokyo - Sendai
This morning we transfer to the station to board the bullet train to Sendai. Here we'll visit the Sendai City Museum, which houses a reproduction model and digital display so you can imagine it as it stood in its heyday. (B/D) Special Experiences: Experience the local cuisine at a special dinner where we'll try the delicacy of gyutan (beef tongue).
5 Matsushima Excursion
We spend the day discovering Matsushima and its iconic bay, ranked one of Japan's most scenic views for centuries. Hit by the earthquake and tsunami of 2011, we'll visit the City Earthquake Memorial Museum and the area devastated by the tsunami. We'll also visit the Entsū-in Temple. After some free time for lunch, we'll enjoy a cruise on the stunning bay, dotted with some 260 pine islets. (B)
6 Sendai - Morioka
Today we explore the Iwate Prefecture at the easternmost point of the island of Honshu. We'll visit the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Buddhist temple of Chuson-ji, founded in 850 according to the Tendai sect, and Konjikido Hall. (B) Special Experiences: Admire the impressive waterfalls, rock formations and limestone caves on a scenic cruise along the Geibikei Gorge. Enjoy local folk songs sung by the boatmen as they guide us through the spectacular gorge.
7 Morioka
This morning we'll discover the garden city of Tono, known as a treasure trove of Japanese folklore, thanks to its legends of spirits, animals and supernatural creatures. Our sightseeing includes the Municipal Museum and Tono Furusato Mura, a recreation of a traditional farming village. This afternoon we'll explore the Morioka Castle Ruins Park. (B/D) Special Experiences: Take part in the local Wanko Soba tradition for dinner tonight. These soba noodles originated in Morioka and Hanamaki; by tradition you quickly eat small servings from small bowls, which are repeatedly refilled.
8 Morioka - Oga
We depart for Tezukurimura this morning and tour the Japanese Cultural Arts and Crafts mall, where we'll take part in an indigo-dyeing experience. (B/L/D) Special Experiences: Explore the Kakunodate Aoyagi Samurai Manor open-air museum and discover the rich history and way of life of samurai and their wealthy families.
9 Oga
Learn about the fascinating legend of Namahage and the tradition of its yearly festival this morning at the Museum. We'll then tour the Shinzan Folklore Museum and Shrine. The afternoon is free for you to enjoy the natural onsen (hot springs) and facilities of our ryokan accommodation. (B/L/D)
10 Oga - Hirosaki
Sit back and enjoy the scenic drive this morning to Hirosaki. After stopping for lunch, we'll discover majestic Lake Towada, the largest crater lake on the island of Honshu. The water here is so clear that you can peer down more than 10 metres into it. We'll also visit Oirase Gorge, one of the most beautiful river areas in Japan. (B/L)
11 Hirosaki - Aomori
Special Experiences: Wander through the stunning Hirosaki Castle Gardens, one of the best places in Japan to witness the breathtaking cherry blossoms and autumn colours. This afternoon we'll continue to Aomori via the Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse which offers a glimpse into the spectacular Nebuta Festival held each year in August. (B/D)
12 Aomori - Hakodate
We board the bullet train for Hakodate on Japan's northernmost island of Hokkaido. We'll see the famous star-shaped fort known as Goryokaku and visit the tower observatory for panoramic views. This afternoon we'll take the Hakodateyama Ropeway to the top of Mt Hakodate and enjoy the views of the city and surrounds. (B)
13 Hakodate
Today we discover the city of Hakodate, starting with the Jomon Culture Centre, which provides insight into the distinctive Japanese culture that has lasted for more than 10,000 years. We'll also visit the Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse, the first commercial warehouse in this important port city. Enjoy some time at leisure before we tour the historic Motomachi District. (B)
14 Hakodate - Sapporo
This morning we take the train north to Sapporo, famous for its ramen and beer. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure to explore. (B)
15 Sapporo
We spend the morning in the port city of Otaru on Ishikari Bay, and explore its beautifully preserved canal area. Otaru is also famous for its glass and we'll visit the original Kitaichi Glass Sangokan in a converted fishery warehouse. As well as a place to shop for souvenirs, it is also famous for a grand hall lit with one-of-a-kind oil lamps. (B)
16 Sapporo
Today we'll visit Hokkaido Shrine, which enshrines three pioneering gods.  Special Experiences: Discover the history of beer making in Japan and the famous Sapporo brewery at the Sapporo Beer Museum, and enjoy a tasting of ‘Fukkoku Sapporo Bakushu' - a unique beer brewed according to traditional methods dating from 1881. This evening we'll enjoy a group farewell dinner. (B/D)
17 Depart Sapporo
Today we begin our journey home. (B)
18 Arrive Australia
Level of fitness: This tour features 2+ hours of walking, often across uneven ground and in areas of high altitude or heat and humidity on 1 or more days.

Bunnik Inclusions

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Journey Highlights
  • Explore the grounds of the Imperial Palace, situated on the former site of Edo Castle.
  • Tour the Meiji Jingu Shrine, dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and his consort, Empress Shoken.
  • Stop at the famous Shibuya Crossing, the busiest intersection in Japan and the meeting point of 5 roads in the most populous city in the world. 
  • Admire the bright lights of Tokyo from a yakatabune dinner cruise around Tokyo Bay.
  • Explore the largest city of the Tohoku region, Sendai, including the Sendai City Museum and Aobajo Honmaru Kaikan. 
  • Try the local delicacy of gyutan (beef tongue) at a special dinner in Sendai.
  • Visit the Matsushima City Earthquake Memorial Museum and explore the Tsunami-devastated area caused by the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake & Tsunami.
  • Walk through Entsu-in, a famous Buddhist temple built in 1646 in mourning of the son of the ruling local feudal lord, Date Terumune, who met an untimely death at the age of 19.
  • Cruise on stunning Matsushima Bay, considered to be one of Japan's three most scenic views for centuries.  The bay is dotted by some 260  tiny pine-covered islets.
  • Travel to Morioka and visit Chusonji Temple, established in 850 as a temple of the Tendai sect of Buddhism. Then admire neighbouring Konjikido Hall, which dates back to 1124 and is completely covered in gold.
  • Enjoy a scenic boat trip along the Geibi Gorge, surrounded by impressive waterfalls, rock formations and limestone caves.  These unique boatmen sing local folk songs as they guide you through the gorge. Scenic all year round, it is particularly spectacular during Autumn.
  • Explore the garden city of Tono, including the Tono Municipal Museum and the Furusato Village where you will learn about the performing arts, folk beliefs, farm life and culture of Tono's people.  
  • Tour the Morioka Castle Ruins Park with its beautiful stone walls, a hidden gem of the Tohoku region.
  • Enjoy a Wanko Soba meal, consisting of soba noodles in small bowls, unique to the Morioka Region.
  • Visit the Kakunodate Aoyagi Samurai Manor Museum and learn how the middle and wealthy-class samurai families once lived.
  • Discover the legend and tradition of the Namahage culture, visiting the Nanahage Museum, Shinzan Folklore Museum and the Shinzan Shrine.
  • Spend 2 nights in a traditional Japanese Ryokan in Oga with hot spring bath and sauna.  Enjoy a traditional Japanese dinner on both nights.
  • Travel to Lake Towada, a dual crater lake formed by the caving in of a volcano mouth and volcano eruption.  The scenery during Autumn here is breathtaking.  
  • Stop at Oirase Gorge in the Aomori Prefecture, considered by many to be one of the most beautiful river valleys in Japan. The crystal-clear river runs mostly parallel to the road through a beautiful deciduous forest.
  • Walk through the Hirosaki Castle Gardens, considered one of the best spots in Japan to witness Cherry Blossom and Autumn Colours.  Hirosaki Castle was built in 1611 by the Tsugaru Clan with a 3 story tower, fortified moats, castle gates and some corner turrets.
  • Experience the unique Nebuta Wa Rasse Museum dedicated to the Nebuta Matsuri festival held annually.
  • Take in the magnificent panoramic views of Goryokaku Tower and the surrounding area. Also considered one of the premier spots in Japan for viewing Cherry Blossom and Autumn Colours.
  • Ascend Mount Hakodate via the Hakodate Ropeway, the most heavily used aerial cable car in Japan. Witness the amazing views of Hakodate and its harbour.
  • Spend a full day exploring Hakodate including Hakodate Jomon Culture Centre, Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse.
  • Learn about the history of beer making in Japan including some unique tastings on a visit to the famous Sapporo Beer Museum. 
  • Visiting Hokkaido is not complete without a stop at the Hokkaido Shrine, built in 1869. This important shrine was dedicated to Shinto deities offering spiritual uplifting to the pioneers of the area.
  • Visit the Otaru Canal, a central part of the city's busy port in the first half of the 20th century. Stop at the Kitaichi Glass Sangokan, a historical stone-on-wood frame building dating back to 1891.
Trip Inclusions
  • Return economy-class flights from Australia to Japan. Taxes included
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of tour (if using group tour flights only)
  • 3 rail journeys in Japan
  • All touring in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Tipping is not part of the Japanese culture, so tips are not expected 
Accommodation & Meals
  • 13 nights in good quality hotels (3-4 star)
  • 2 nights in a traditional Ryokan guesthouse including a typical Japanese onsen (hot springs) bath followed by a traditional Japanese dinner
  • 15 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 7 dinners, including group welcome and farewell dinners
Your Tour Guides
  • English-speaking locally based national guide throughout
Trip Notes
  • Accommodation, itinerary and inclusions subject to change.
  • Disruptions to itinerary may occur.

Prices & Dates

Flights Included! International flights included.
Repeat Travellers Enjoy exclusive benefits and savings!
Past Client? Save an additional $100 per booking!
Trip Starts Trip Ends Status Offer Save Now Our Price  
Tuesday 08 Oct 2019 Friday 25 Oct 2019 212per person 10,583per person Enquire
Tuesday 15 Oct 2019 Friday 01 Nov 2019 212per person 10,583per person Sold Out
Tuesday 22 Oct 2019 Friday 08 Nov 2019 212per person 10,583per person Enquire
Tuesday 05 Nov 2019 Friday 22 Nov 2019 212per person 10,583per person Enquire
Tuesday 08 Oct 2019 Friday 25 Oct 2019 245solo traveller 12,225solo traveller Enquire
Tuesday 15 Oct 2019 Friday 01 Nov 2019 245solo traveller 12,225solo traveller Sold Out
Tuesday 22 Oct 2019 Friday 08 Nov 2019 245solo traveller 12,225solo traveller Enquire
Tuesday 05 Nov 2019 Friday 22 Nov 2019 245solo traveller 12,225solo traveller Enquire
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Return flights are included in the trip price. Surcharges by the airline may apply depending on availability.
Note: Prices include air taxes and fuel surcharges, this amount is correct at time of brochure release and subject to change. Note air supplement may apply depending on airline availability and departure city. The majority of departures above will proceed or are guaranteed to depart (based on a minimum of 2 passengers). We will outline the status of your departure date in your quote along with all applicable discounts and specials.

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Trip Notes
Trip prices are per person, and reflect applicable discounts. Discounts are subject to availability, exclusive to Global Journeys and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change by Bunnik. Full terms & conditions are available here.