Grab the kids and head to the place where spiritual tradition meets modern tech – Japan of course! Start in Tokyo, where you’ll explore the Harajuku district, kawaii culture and ancient shrines. Learn how to play the Taiko drums and soak up the neon lights before heading to the countryside. Enjoy a farm stay experience in Kawane to get a breath of fresh air and tuck into a farm-to-table feast with your gracious hosts. Wander through temples and markets as you immerse yourself in the culture and tradition of Kyoto. End it all in Osaka, where you’ll take a sushi-making class and toast to a trip well-travelled!
Dates and availability
1. Please note that these trips are for adults and children travelling together and there must be at least one child under 18 with you.
2. Minimum age for children on this trip is 5 years old.
3. A discount of 10% applies on this trip to children 17 years and under at time of travel.
4. A Single Supplement is currently not available for this trip due to limited rooms at our chosen accommodation.
5. It is essential you pack light and compact for rail travel in Japan. Size restrictions for luggage on Shinkansen (bullet) trains apply. Luggage over 160–250 cm may require an additional USD 10 fee per train journey. Luggage over 251 cm will not be permitted on the Shinkansen trains at all. Please notify your tour leader at your welcome meeting if your luggage is over 160–250 cm so they can make the necessary arrangements! Failure to notify your tour leader of luggage over 160–250 cm will require the passenger to pay the oversize luggage fee.
6. Accommodation in Japan can be difficult to secure at short notice. If you are travelling in Japan before or after your trip, we recommend booking accommodation at least one month in advance of travel. For families wanting to book a triple room we can request these, however they may not be available in all cities. Where a triple room is not available we can request a twin share room plus a single room.
7. March to May and September to November are both high seasons for tourism in Japan. While the weather is good during this period (and March to April is great for viewing cherry blossoms), you will find major sites are very crowded with both Japanese and international tourists during these months.
8. We know the idea of travelling overseas with picky eaters, particularly kids, can be daunting. However, most of our families find the diversity of Japanese food surprising. Trying different foods is great fun and an opportunity to understand a little about Japanese culture. Some of the different meals you can enjoy include sushi, soba noodles, ramen noodles, monjaki and okonomiyaki (savoury pancakes), takoyaki (ball-shaped fried snack – a bit like the Japanese equivalent of fish fingers) and yakitori (skewered chicken). There are also great treats to try including green tea Kit Kats and ice-creams, pounded-rice desserts such as mochi and dango and sweet red bean in a variety of forms. Yum! For anyone in search of food for a picnic the majority of department stores have food halls (depachika) with an eyepopping selection of different types of food. Also, convenience stores (combini) are around nearly every corner and have snacks to tempt the fussiest eater. If in doubt and needing a little taste from home, the Japanese chain Moss Burgers have great hamburgers and you can find western options like pasta, pizza and great bakeries in the major cities. If you have any concerns, chat to your leader at the start of the tour.
9. Some of our families are surprised by the traditional Japanese breakfast foods and the western variations that our accommodation provides. Rice or noodles with fish or meat are common breakfast foods in Japan. Typical western foods available generally include toast, eggs, tea and coffee and sometimes cereals.
10. 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.