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Japan: Land of the Rising Sun

13 Days | An onsen-soaking, sake-sipping, bullet train-zipping tour

4.9 out of 5 based on 70 reviews submitted.
Explorer
From
USD $4,811
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This 13-day tour of Japan will introduce you to the cultures – old and new – that define this small but influential archipelago. Beginning in tech-mecca Tokyo and finishing with three nights in Kyoto, this immersive tour will also introduce you to lesser-known cities through Japan’s centre and southern reaches. Discover scenic beauty on the Hakone ropeway, sip the best sake in Takayama, find out about the Hiroshima of today and wonder at the floating torii gate of Miyajima. You’ll have a local to guide you through these lesser-known destinations and reveal layers of culture and history.

Trip overview

Map of Japan: Land Of The Rising Sun including Japan
Start
Tokyo, Japan
Finish
Kyoto, Japan
Theme
Explorer
Destinations
Japan
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Style
Original
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 - Max 12
Trip code
CJST
This trip generates 56 kg of CO2-e per person per day.
We offset these emissions on your behalf. But we know that is not enough, so we also have a carbon reduction target.

Why you'll love this trip
  • Soar high above Lake Ashi and (on a clear day) get a glimpse of glorious Mt Fuji on a ride on the Hakone ropeway.
  • Be impressed by the efficiency and ultra modernity of Japan’s bullet trains as you zip from place to place.
  • Explore traditional Japanese culture in Edo-period Takayama and visit a folk village, tour a 600-year-old market and a enjoy a sake brewery tasting.
  • Visit the Peace Park for moving insight into the devastation of the atomic bomb in Hiroshima, then cruise to peaceful Miyajima Island where wild deer roam the streets.
  • Finish your tour with three nights in Kyoto, Japan’s cultural capital and home to literally thousands of temples, the Gion District where Geisha entertain the wealthy elite and renowned Kyoto sushi.

Is this trip right for you?
  • We think Japan is best explored on foot, so this tour involves lots of walking. Please ensure you bring sturdy walking shoes and comfortable clothes. To make the most of the trip, it's best if you have at least a moderate level of fitness.
  • In some destinations you may be staying in a minshuku, which is a Japanese-style inn. It’s a great taste of tradition, however not everyone finds futon mattresses on the tatami-mat floor, small bathrooms and close proximity to other guests comfortable. Read more about it in the ‘Accommodation’ section of the Essential Trip Information. For some departures, we may swap them with hotels or vice versa depending on seasonal availability. Please consult your booking agent if you need more details.
  • Be prepared to pack light and smart for this trip as you'll be required to carry your own luggage between train stations and to hotels, which can include going up and down multiple flights of stairs in crowded areas.

Itinerary

Map of Japan: Land Of The Rising Sun including Japan

Inclusions

Meals

2 breakfasts, 2 dinners

Transport

Boat, Public Bus, Cable Car, Ferry, Metro, Bullet Train, Train

Accommodation

Hotel (8 nights), Japanese Inn ( 4 nights)

Activities
  • Nikko - Toshogu Shrine
  • Hakone - public onsen
  • Hakone - Cable car/Ropeway
  • Hakone - Lake Ashinoko boat cruise
  • Takayama - Hida Folk Village
  • Takayama - Market visit
  • Takayama - Sake brewery tasting
  • Hiroshima - Peace Park & A - Bomb Dome
  • Hiroshima - Peace Museum
  • Hiroshima - Miyajima Island
  • Himeji - Himeji Castle
  • Kyoto - Temple/Shrine entrance (2)
  • Kyoto - Gion District walk
Add on activities
  • Tokyo - Hama Rikyu Garden - JPY300
  • Tokyo - Sumida Hokusai Museum - JPY400
  • Tokyo - Tokyo National Museum - JPY1000
  • Tokyo - Ueno Park - Free
  • Nikko - Bus to Chuzenji Lake (return) - JPY2500
  • Nikko - Imperial Villa - JPY600
  • Hakone - Open-Air Museum - JPY1600
  • Hakone - Checkpoint Museum - JPY500
  • Hakone - Onsen (public hot spring bath) - JPY1500
  • Takayama - Festival Float Museum - JPY1000
  • Takayama - Kusakabe Traditional House - JPY1000
  • Takayama - Bike hire (per day) - JPY1000
  • Takayama - Showa Museum - JPY1000
  • Takayama - Takayama Jinya Building - JPY440
  • Miyajima - Itsukushima-jinja Shrine - JPY300
  • Kyoto - Bike hire (per day) from - JPY1000
  • Kyoto - Sanjusangendo Temple - JPY600
  • Kyoto - Obanzai cooking class - JPY7150
  • Kyoto - Kiyomizu-dera - JPY400
  • Kyoto - Tea Ceremony with Maiko/Geisha - JPY13000
  • Kyoto - Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion) - JPY500

Dates and availability

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Important notes

1. A Single Supplement is currently not available for this trip due to limited rooms at our chosen accommodation.
2. It is essential that you pack light and compact for rail travel in Japan. There are size restrictions for luggage on Shinkansen trains. Luggage from 160cm to 250cm may require an additional JPY1000 oversize luggage fee per train journey. Luggage over 251cm will NOT be permitted on the Shinkansen trains at all. Please notify your tour leader at your Welcome Meeting if your luggage is from 160cm to 250cm so they can make the necessary arrangements.
3. We are currently unable to book pre or post trip accommodation at our start and finish point hotels due to limited room availability. We recommend booking a hotel of your choice through your booking agent.
4. We are not able to book airport shuttle service for Japan now. Japan has an extensive and efficient public transport system and the joining and finishing point instructions are listed in the Essential Trip Information.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides 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.

Read Essential Trip Information

Reviews

4.9 out of 5 based on 70 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

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Lim-Ghec Jade · Traveled January 2024
Lovely! Thank you for the treasured memories and giving us an amazing unforgettable experience! We saw the highlights of Japan.The guide was very helpful and knowledgeable.Helped us to see the amazing and incredible country: safe, clean, has delicious food and great shopping. We saw Japan’s amazing history, culture and technology. Thank you! An unforgettable trip and we really didn’t want to part! The group was great! ❤️
Review submitted 23 Jan 2024

Mya · Traveled January 2024
I would highly recommend Daisuke. Very friendly and fun guy to be around. He is very efficient when it comes to public transport He know where we have to go and how to get there. We were almost never late and a lot about Japanese culture.
Review submitted 22 Jan 2024

Rosalind · Traveled November 2023
Was a great way to see some key highlights for my first trip to Japan. Was delighted to be able to enjoy some hidden gems too, due to our guide Asako. Her relationship with the local Ryokan owners was really beautiful to see, and it made our time at each one extra special. It was super helpful to have intrepid organise 2 weeks of a long trip and I would recommend it for first time visits especially!
Review submitted 29 Nov 2023

Judy · Traveled November 2023
I thought November might be too cold for “The Land of the Rising Sun Tour” but it was perfect. I loved travelling by Japan’s amazing Rail system. Our guide Asako made everything super easy for us. Having all tickets ready for us, even getting up early to line up for the day’s activities, so we wouldn’t have to. I cant recommend this trip highly enough. Japan, I will be back!
Review submitted 02 Dec 2023

Manojkumar · Traveled November 2023
This is a wonderful trip which gives you feel for the culture and history of Japan, seen through its landscapes and architecture. Asako was a brilliant team leader and her passion for the history of her country was clear fro all to see. I would highly recommend any trip to Japan led by Asako and her colleague Nobuyuki.
Review submitted 02 Dec 2023
Japan: Land of the Rising Sun
From
USD $4,811