Majestic Japan Be captivated by the beauty and traditions of Japan during this 11-day guided tour. Travel to Kyoto, a cultural hub for the country, where you can bask in the serenity surrounding the iconic Golden Pavilion. See the Giouji Temple - a Buddhist place of worship set amidst a moss-covered forest - and feast on a traditional Kyo-Kaiseki lunch as you watch an apprentice geisha perform beside you. In Tokyo, choose to make decadent sushi rolls using the finest quality fish during a private cooking class or join a Local Expert and explore the fashionable Omotesando and Harajuku neighborhoods before sampling a local lunch. Then discover the river valley of the Oirase Gorge, walking along its crystal-clear waters while marveling at the amber leaves that surround you. Later, journey to a local brewery for a private sake tasting and behind-the-scenes tour, led by a sake brew master.
5 Dinner (D)
10 Breakfast (B)
9 Lunch (L)
Choose between two carefully selected activities
Mt Fuji: Visit the Itchiku Kubota Art Museum, where you’ll enjoy its unique architecture, wander the serene gardens and marvel at its collection of beautiful kimonos.
Mt Fuji: Ride the Kachi-Kachi Ropeway cable car to fully embrace the breathtaking views of the lake and the mountain.
Choose between two carefully selected activities
Tokyo: Participate in a private sushi-making class in Tokyo and discover why it takes ten years to perfect this 2000-year-old Japanese art from a master sushi chef. Afterwards, enjoy a freshly prepared Highlight Lunch where you can marvel at his culinary brilliance.
Tokyo: Join a Local Expert and head to the Omotesando and Harajuku neighbourhoods known for their fashion, art and design before indulging in lunch.
Additional Included Highlights
: You will be escorted by one of our fine Travel Concierges, handpicked to serve as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
: Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary, available on departures with 15 or more guests.
: At every hotel, you'll be treated to seamless baggage handling, with prompt delivery inside your room.
: Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
: Stay connected with friends and family with hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
: Complimentary airport transfers are included on start and end dates and when additional accommodation has been booked through Luxury Gold. Guests will be transferred with fellow Luxury Gold Travellers that arrive on the same flight. Complimentary train station transfers are included when train travel is included within the itinerary. Transfers to train stations or alternate hotels, in the same start or end city of the itinerary, may be requested but are not guaranteed.
Osaka: Discover why Osaka is known as the kitchen of Japan on a stroll through Donburi street with a Local Expert. Taste local specialities such as rounds of ground octopus wrapped in batter, called Takoyaki.
Hiroshima: Indulge in the local favourite of Okonomiyaki, a savory pancake dish consisting of wheat flour batter and other ingredients cooked on a teppan.
Kyoto: Enjoy a performance by a Maiko, an apprentice Geisha, skilled in the art of classical dance and entertainment, as you savour a Highlight Lunch of traditional Kyo-Kaiseki cuisine. Admire the balance of taste, texture and colour in this Kyoto speciality.
Tokyo: During a Your Choice Evening, choose from two hand-picked restaurants, each specialising in local delicacies. Try Shabu-shabu, sizzling hotpots of meat and vegetables, or Teppan-yaki, where rice, meats and vegetables are freshly cooked on the grill in front of you.
Sendai: Experience a truly Japanese tradition when you enjoy a tea ceremony at a traditional tea house. Learn the art of making the perfect matcha green tea as you follow the custom.
Oirase: Enjoy a rare opportunity to meet a brewmaster, Takumi Sato, and learn about the essence of sake in a special guided visit of his brewery. Share some of the sacred drink of Japan in the stunning surroundings of Oirase.
Tokyo: Tradition meets innovation as you enjoy a fine dining experience with new friends at Hoshinonaruki. Using age-old Japanese culinary techniques and seasonal ingredients, this is a dining experience that truly brings the flavour of the country to life.
Osaka: Explore the fascinating Osaka Castle, a famous landmark that was pivotal in the reunification of Japan during the 16th century. Marvel at the variety of cultural artefacts showcasing the history of Osaka.
Osaka: Visit the top of the Floating Garden Observatory in the Umeda Sky Building for incredible city views.
: Experience travelling like a local as you ride the high-speed bullet train. Catch views of snow capped mountains and quaint Japanese towns as you journey between each city. This feat of modern engineering brings new joy to train rides.
Hiroshima: Spend some quiet moments in the emotive Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and see the A-Bomb Dome, the only structure left standing.
Kyoto: Wander around the famous Giouji Temple, where the bamboo trees and green groves inspire relaxation. This tiny temple with the thatched roof entrance is a sanctuary and one of the most scenic temples you’ll see in the city.
Kyoto: Join your Travel Concierge for an orientation of Gion neighbourhood, known as Kyoto's geisha district. See well-preserved wooden machiya houses and...
Day 1 - Welcome to Osaka, Japan! On arrival at Kansai or Itami airport, you will be welcomed and taken to your five-star hotel situated in the heart of the city. Your Travelling Concierge can be found at a welcome desk on the ground floor between 16:00 and 18:00 for any questions or concerns you may have. At 19:00, meet your Travelling Concierge and travel companions at the hotel's Rainbow Lounge for your Welcome Dinner. Enjoy stunning views over Osaka while you enjoy delicious Japanese cuisine including tempura and sushi. Accommodations: Imperial Hotel, Osaka. Meals: Dinner with Wine
Day 2 - Highlights of Osaka. Relaxed Start Situated in the heart of Japan where rivers and sea routes converge, Osaka is a hub of cutting-edge architecture, exotic flavours and laid-back locals. Today you will discover the city's highlights, starting with a visit to the top of the Floating Garden Observatory in the Umeda Sky Building for incredible city views. Then, together with your Travelling Concierge and fellow travellers, discover why Osaka is known as the kitchen of Japan as you stroll along Dotonbori Street with a Local Expert and try local specialities such as Takoyaki, a local favourite made of wheat flour based batter and filled with minced or diced octopus. In the afternoon, enjoy a visit to Osaka Castle, one of Japan's most famous landmarks, before enjoying a two-course lunch near the castle. With the evening at leisure, ask your Travelling Concierge for local recommendations to explore this wondrous city. further. Accommodations: Imperial Hotel, Osaka. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 3 - A Local Perspective on Hiroshima. Experience Japanese technology at its best as you journey to Hiroshima station on the Shinkansen bullet train. On arrival, explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Peace Memorial Park and Museum, the only structure left standing after the first atomic bomb was dropped during World War II. The bomb was the single-most destructive force ever created by humankind and changed the course of history forever. During your visit, meet a survivor who will share insights into this dark chapter of world history. For lunch, you will be treated to traditional Japanese savoury pancakes known as Okonomiyaki, a dish typical of the region. Your journey continues by bullet train to Kyoto, known for thousands of years as the Imperial capital of Japan. After you check in to your centrally located hotel the rest of the evening is yours. Accommodations: Hotel Granvia, Kyoto. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 4 - The Temples and Geisha of Kyoto. Relaxed Start Kyoto is Japan's geisha capital, and during your city tour with your Travelling Concierge you will discover why this is the hub of ancient tradition and culture. Marvel at the Zen Buddhist temple of Kinkakuji, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and see its famed Golden Pavilion to appreciate its classic architecture, intricate history and expansive gardens. Visit the famous Giouji Temple, situated on a majestic grove of bamboos and maple trees, where you'll learn about local folklore and explore the temple's thatched hut and walk through the indigenous bamboo forest. Savour a Highlight Lunch of traditional Kyo-Kaiseki cuisine made of seasonal ingredients, whilst you enjoy a performance by a Maiko, an apprentice geisha. Central to Kyoto culture, geisha are highly-skilled entertainers, specializing in classical music, dance, conversation and games. This fine art has evolved over many centuries and today attracts visitors from around the world. Embark on a walk around the vibrant Gion neighbourhood, known as Kyoto's primary geisha district. With free time to explore for the rest of the evening, perhaps enjoy the local teahouses, lantern-lit restaurants and bars or simply absorb the electric atmosphere, as you shop for souvenirs. Accommodations: Hotel Granvia, Kyoto. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 5 - Mt Fuji and Onto Tokyo. Board the bullet train to Mishima and continue to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mount Fuji. On arrival, enjoy spectacular views of one of the most recognisable landmarks of Japan as you enjoy lunch made of fresh, seasonal ingredients at a local restaurant. See Lake Kawaguchi where you will be captivated by the flawless reflections of the mountain. Your Journey, Your Way. Choose to visit the Itchiku Kubota Art Museum, where you’ll enjoy its unique architecture, wander the serene gardens and marvel at its collection of beautiful kimonos. Alternatively, ride the Kachi-Kachi Ropeway cable car to fully embrace the breathtaking views of the lake and the mountain. Travel to Tokyo and check into your hotel for the evening at leisure. Accommodations: Imperial Hotel, Tokyo. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 6 - Explore Traditional Tokyo. Relaxed Start Tokyo is an economic powerhouse and home to national museums, festivals, theatres and sacred temples. This morning, visit the Tokyo National Museum housing a large collection of artwork and artefacts from Asia. Continue to the Meiji Jingu Shrine and enjoy walking through the serene gardens. Your Journey, Your Way.Choose to join a cooking class and learn about the art of making sushi as you are using the highest quality fish. Discover why it takes ten years to become a Master Sushi Chef, then sit down to savour a delightful Highlight Lunch. Continue to explore Ginza, known as the Champs-Élysées of Tokyo. Alternatively, join a Local Expert and head to the Omotesando and Harajuku neighbourhood, known for their fashion, art and design, before indulging in lunch.During a Your Choice Evening, you're in for a true local experience with the choice of two hand-picked restaurants, each specialising in local delicacies. You may try either Shabu-shabu which are hotpots of meat and vegetables or Teppanyaki where rice, meats and vegetables are freshly cooked on a grill. Accommodations: Imperial Hotel, Tokyo. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with Wine
Day 7 - Journey to Sendai. Journey north by bullet train, your destination is the Sendai, known as the City of Trees. This is a true locals region, off-the-beaten path and away from the tourist crowds. For lunch meet the owner of a local inn on one of the many islands in the bay to enjoy local seafood and hear stories from a local with insights in to life on the island. Enjoy a private cruise along the dazzling Matsushima Bay, taking in views of countless pine-covered islands. The bay has often featured in Japanese poetry since ancient times. Seasonal tea ceremonies date back a thousand years and play an important part in Japanese culture, they are central to good hospitality. This afternoon, experience this for yourself when you visit a traditional teahouse and learn how to prepare the perfect cup of Matcha Green Tea. Continue to your five-star hotel where the evening is at your leisure. Perhaps sign up for a massage at the in-house spa or discover how Kokubuncho comes to life at night time? Accommodations: The Westin, Sendai. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 8 - Tsugaru and Hirosaki Castle. Journey to Shin-Aomori Station via bullet train. On arrival, enjoy lunch at Neputa Village. Visit Hirosaki Castle, famous for its bright cherry blossom trees that bloom between April and May. Meet a cherry blossom doctor, who will explain how his team nurture these beautiful trees from sapling to maturity and ensure all the cherry blossoms of the region are strong, healthy and able to thrive during the cherry blossom season. As you explore the Tsugaru-han Neputa Village you will see the colourful decorations used during the summer Neputa Festival and watch skilled craftsman at work, they spend month lacquering to create the perfect chopsticks. You then enjoy a special experience, a private musical performance of Tsugaru Shamisen and Taiko, traditional Japanese guitar and drumming. Your journey continues to Oirase Gorge, one of Japan’s most-revered nature havens. Accommodations: Hoshino Resorts Oirase Keiryu Hotel, Oirase Gorge. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with Wine
Day 9 - Exploring Oirase. Relaxed Start Explore the spectacular Oirase Gorge, a place of special scenic beauty. Wander along the crystal-clear Oirase Keiryu stream, admire the cascading waterfalls and marvel at the seasonal colours of the indigenous forest. Return to the hotel for lunch made with local and seasonal ingredients. After a day of exploring, perhaps experience a soul-soothing Onsen, a traditional Japanese hot bath, in the nearby forest. For those wanting something more flavoursome, journey to a local brewery to taste Japan's national drink, sake, an alcoholic beverage made from fermenting rice. You will meet Takumi Sato, a sake brewmaster and have an insider tour of his brewery. Accommodations: Hoshino Resorts Oirase Keiryu Hotel, Oirase Gorge. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with Wine
Day 10 - The Highlights of Tokyo. Return to Tokyo via bullet train for your last night in this intriguing city. Visit the Senso-ji Buddhist Temple, the oldest and most-visited temple in Japan. Wander along the famous Nakamise Street and explore Kappabashi, a local back-street known as Tokyo’s foodie hub. This evening you will celebrate with your new found friends at Hoshinonaruki, a fine dining experience where tradition meets innovation. Using old Japanese culinary techniques and seasonal ingredients, this is a dining experience that brings Japanese cuisine to life. Accommodations: Imperial Hotel, Tokyo. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with Wine
Day 11 - Farewell Japan. Bid farewell to your travel companions and head to Narita or Haneda International Airport for your onward journey. Meals: Breakfast
This large, bustling port is the starting point for tours to the ancient cities of Kyoto and Nara, the cultural fountainheads of classical Japan. Kyoto's Old Imperial Palace and the shogunal Nijo Castle remain glorious symbols of the power the city held for over 1,000 years. Until 1868, Kyoto was the capital of Japan, filled with elegant timber buildings and, perhaps more than any other Japanese city, imbued with Kami, the divine spirit. You'll sense it everywhere, for there are hundreds of Shinto shrines and over a thousand Buddhist temples, as well as sacred treasure-houses of religious sculpture, painting and exquisite gardens. Nara, City of the Seven Great Temples, lies in an idyllic setting.
Kyoto, as publicized in guidebooks and travel magazines, is a very special city in Japan. In Kyoto, the past still lives on in nearly 2,000 shrines and temples, six historical preservation districts and an abundance of beautiful natural scenery. Through close connections with other forms of culture such as the tea ceremony and performing arts and festivals, textile, dye, ceramics, 'sake'-brewing, fans, dolls, and lacquerware industries, which were supported by imperial, religious and political rulers throughout Kyoto's history, continue to thrive as they were passed down through generations. Kyoto's technological prowess continues to attract worldwide attention. Also, Kyoto is also known as a center of educational and research. It is therefore no surprise Kyoto became the first city in Japan to emerge as a major convention destination and continues to be unrivalled in its popularity. Kyoto has preserved and continues to develop those factors which make it the ideal convention destination: history, culture, tradition, academics, technological progress, accessibility and professional experience in conference management.
Huge department stores brim with shoppers, neon flashes from dusk to dawn, and the entire world pays heed to the slightest fluctuation on the Nikkei Index. From the Imperial Palace and Meiji Shrine to the fabled Ginza district, 20th-century Tokyo is an intriguing composite of East and West. Yuppies sporting Walkmen bow formally in greeting. Women in kimonos and Dior suits stroll side-by-side. Geishas play samisens while disc jockeys play the Top Forty. Japanese houses of wood and paper stand in the shadow of towering steel and mortar. Not far away, one of the world's most impressive sights soars 12,388 feet to its snow-clad peak: Mount Fuji, the majestic symbol of Japan.
Sendai is known nationwide as a modern city that has developed a beautiful landscape in harmony with nature. The Hirose-gawa River runs through its center and lush zelkova trees line its streets. The center of the city, especially, is so full of greenery, with its trees and parks that it is called “City of Trees.” Sendai has many universities and is also well-known as an academic city with contributions to the development of the high-tech industry. Sendai also values history and culture. In Sendai, many traditional events, including the Tanabata Matsuri Festival, continue to this day. In addition, Sendai International Music Competition and Street Jazz Festival, are also popular artistic performances.
Valid Date Ranges
* This departure has been designated a guaranteed departure by the operator, meaning that the minimum number of guests has been met, although still subject to weather and other conditions.
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Prices are per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability and change without notice. Prices reflect land only accommodations, airfare is additional. Blackout dates/seasonal supplements may apply. Trip prices and dates are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. Itinerary and map subject to change.
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