A country both steeped in tradition and at the forefront of technological innovation, Japan somehow strikes a perfect balancing act between the serene and frenetic, the quaint and kooky, the reserved and the outrageous. Boasting exceptional natural beauty, sublime cuisine and countless points of cultural intrigue, this trip from Kyoto to Tokyo ventures right into the heart and soul of a truly fascinating country. Meander through tranquil Zen gardens, travel at breathtaking speeds by bullet-train, spend one night in a traditional ryokan and then the next seeking out the liveliest of karaoke bars – this is a destination that never fails to surprise and enamour.

Start
Kyoto, Japan
Finish
Tokyo, Japan
Countries
Japan
Themes
Explorer
Code
CJKJ
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 16
Carbon offset
251kg pp per trip

Take in the extraordinary sights and spectacles of Japan


Highlights

  • Take a stroll through the tranquil temples and Zen gardens of Kyoto
  • Watch for real-life geishas pottering through Gion
  • Breathe in the crisp mountain air of Mount Koya
  • Take a sobering stroll though Hiroshima’s Peace Park
  • Explore the defensive ramparts and fortifications of Himeiji Castle
  • Step back in time in medieval Tsumago
  • Shop for handcrafted souvenirs in Nakamachi
  • Feel the energy of buzzing Tokyo

Itinerary

Discover Kyoto's luxuriously landscaped Zen gardens, its enchanting temples and intriguing handicraft centre on a guided orientation tour of the city. In the late afternoon, head out on a tour of Gion, the geisha district, with the option of having a group dinner at one of the local eateries.
Steeped in mysticism and religious history, the Koya-san temples provide a tranquil setting for trying shojin ryori (vegetarian cuisine) and witnessing the resident monks in meditation. Venture out to Okunoin cemetery, a place of exceptional natural beauty and serenity and the resting place of some of Japan's most illustrious historical figures.
Board a bullet train bound for Hiroshima, stopping off en route at the scenic samurai castle of Himeiji. Arrive in Hiroshima and visit the Atomic Bomb Museum and Peace Memorial Park for a sobering glimpse into Japan's darkest moment. Catch a ferry out to Hiroshima Island for some trekking or ride a cable car up Mt Misen for exceptional views of the bays and islets way down below.
Head for the mountains and experience an overnight stay in a traditional ryokan. Spend the day exploring the quaint village roads and pristine forest trails of medieval Tsumago.
Journey further into the Japanese hinterlands to the charming mountain town of Matsumoto. Browse the merchant district of Nakamachi for local handicrafts and marvel at imposing Matsumoto Castle.
Arrive in space-age Tokyo. Lap up all the treasures and spectacles this astonishing neon-lit capital has to offer. Take a soak in the spas of Miyanoshita, ascend Togendai (weather permitting) for commanding views of Mt Fuji or amble through the heavenly gardens of Hama Rikyu. In spare time, perhaps head to Harajuku for an insight into eclectic Japanese youth culture, before venturing out for a final group dinner.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
11 breakfasts3 dinners
Transport
Bus, Train, Train (bullet)
Accommodation
Hotel (9 nights), Monastery (1 night), Ryokan (1 night)
Included activites
  • Himeji - Himeji Castle
  • Hiroshima - Miyajima Island
  • Hiroshima - Peace Park & Museum
  • Kyoto - Gion District Guided Tour
  • Kyoto - Handicraft Centre
  • Kyoto - Kinkakuji Temple
  • Kyoto - Nijo Castle
  • Kyoto - Ryoanji Zen Garden
  • The A-Bomb Dome - Hiroshima

Dates

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Notes

1. A 7 day Japan Rail Pass is included in the price of your trip. For those wishing to stay and travel longer in Japan, an Japan Rail Pass extension (total 14 days) is available. Please contact us at time of booking regarding this service.
2. Due to high demand for hotel rooms and the smaller properties we use on this tour we are unable to offer a Single Supplement in 2015.
3. Due to the expense of private transport, distances of airports from cities and the fact that Japan has very efficient public transport airport links, an Complimentary Arrival Transfer is not included on this tour.
4. This trip is run by our experienced sister company Peregrine Adventures.

Important notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trips notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View trip notes

Reviews

Our Classic Japan trips score an average of 5 out of 5 based on 5 reviews in the last year.

Classic Japan, March 2015

Classic Japan, March 2015