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Meet the snow monkeys and see Japan’s cherry blossom - CANCELLED
We are currently sourcing new dates to run this trip in 2021. To register your interest click here.
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Japan in springtime is a sight to behold, with the cherry trees blooming in pink blossom (known as sakura). But there is so much more to the Land of the Rising Sun and now's your chance to discover all it has to offer on this amazing tour of the magical country.
Rich with centuries-old tradition, Japan has tranquil temples and picturesque old towns alongside the bright lights and technical innovation of ultra-modern cities, including Tokyo. You will spend 11 days immersing yourself into the culture, including a day's guided tour of Tokyo's fabulous gardens, including the Imperial Palace East Garden and Shunkaen Bonsai Museum. Starting your trip among the dizzying skyscrapers of Tokyo, you will also see the other side of life in the country, taking a ride on the famous bullet train to Kyoto.
The highlight of your tour will be a trip into the Japanese Alps to the Jigokudani Monkey Park. There, amid the area's natural hot springs, you will have the chance to get up close to the famous Japanese snow monkeys, who congregate to bathe and play around the warm water. Accustomed to humans, the monkeys ignore their guests, allowing you to observe without disturbing them.
Reasons to book
Exerience Japanese tradition
Best time to travel
Enjoy the sakura
See Mount Fuji
Sail on Lake Ashi
- Return international flights
- Nine nights in comfortable accommodation
- Nine delicious breakfasts, four lunches and four dinners
- Excursion to the Jigokudani Monkey Park to see Japanese snow monkeys
- Ride on the famous bullet train to Kyoto
- Boat tour of spectacular Lake Ashi
- Excursions to Mount Fuji and the gardens of Tokyo including Hamarikyu Garden
- Activities inlcuding shodo, Japanese calligraphy, in Tokyo, an informative hands-on sushi making workshop, an intricate tea ceremony ritual, and the chance to sip matcha and nibble traditional sweets in Kyoto
Days1-2Arrive in TokyoTokyo, Japan
On arrival in Tokyo, Japan's vibrant, innovative capital city, you will be met by an English-speaking driver and transferred by private vehicle to your hotel where you will have any free time to relax or explore.
Day3Tokyo Gardens tourTokyo, Japan
Begin your full-day tour of Tokyo Garden by private vehicle with your English-speaking guide. Visit the Shunkaen Bonsai Museum, showcasing artful bonsai trees in sleek galleries and outdoor gardens with koi ponds. You will then have some free time to explore the Ginza area and enjoy lunch. In the afternoon, visit the Imperial Palace East Garden and take a stroll through the classic landscapes of Hamarikyu Garden. Later, return to your hotel.
Day4Sushi making and shodoTokyo, Japan
Today, soak up the ambience of Senso-ji Temple, Tokyo's oldest Buddhist temple before browsing the stalls of Nakamise shopping street. You will then have the opportunity to take part in a Sushi making workshop, where you will be able to taste your own creations for lunch. Afterwards, take part in a Shodo experience, where you will learn the traditional art of Japanese calligraphy. Later, return to your hotel. This evening, cruise the waters of Tokyo Bay and enjoy dinner from the perfect vantage point to admire the supercharged lights of the city.
Day5Mt. Fuji, Hakone and Lake Ashi boat tripMt Fuji (Japan), Japan
This morning, travel around 3 hours by road from Tokyo to Mount Fuji where you'll ascend 2,400 meters up Japan's most iconic sight to the 5th Station (weather permitting). Transfer to the spa region of Hakone and embark on a cruise on the spectacular Lake Ashi. Next, fly high above the lake on the Komagatake Ropeway to the summit of Mt Komagatake where the views of Mt Fuji will be breathtaking. Later, transfer to Yudanaka, where on arrival you will check-in to your ryokan and enjoy a Japanese style dinner.
Day6Snow Monkeys at the Jigokudani Monkey ParkJigokudani , Japan
After your Japanese style breakfast at your ryokan, travel deeper into the Japanese Alps to see the Japanese Snow Monkeys at the Jigokudani Monkey Park. These creatures are unique in the fact that they make use of the area's natural hot springs, bathing and playing in and around the water. Later, transfer to Nagano, where you will spend the afternoon visiting the 7th century Zenkoji Temple, one of Japan's most popular
Day7Bullet train to KyotoNagano, Japan
Today, transfer to Nagano station to take the JR limited express train to Nagoya. Once you arrive at Nagoya change trains to board the JR bullet train to Kyoto. On arrival in Kyoto, transfer to your hotel where the rest of your day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Day8Kyoto tourKyoto, Japan
Begin your exciting tour of Kyoto by visiting the beautiful Kinkaku-ji Temple, also known as the "Golden Pavilion". Continue to Ryoan-ji Temple home to Japan's most famous Zen garden. Here you will have the opportunity to begin your journey towards inner peace by learning the basics of Zen meditation. Next, visit Heian Jingu Shrine before enjoying a taste of authentic Japanese culture, experiencing the elegant ritual of a tea ceremony.
Day9Osaka and Umeda Sy GardenOsaka, Japan
You'll be privately transferred to Osaka, where on arrival you'll learn about the turbulent history of the magnificent Osaka Castle, followed by the Umeda Sy Garden, which offers great views of the city. Afterwards, enjoy a delicious lunch at a local restaurant before transferring to your hotel.
Day10Day trip to NaraNara, Japan
Drive to Nara, a former capital of Japan, Admire the magnificent Daibutsu, the world's largest bronze statue of Buddha at Todaiji. The grounds of the temple are occupied by Sika Deer, regarded as messengers of the Shinto gods. Next, visit Kasuga Shinto Shrine, one of Nara's most famous shrines. After lunch, transfer back to Osaka where the rest of the day is free time to begin discovering this exciting city. In the evening, sit down to enjoy a farewell meal.
Day11Depart Osaka – Arrive UKOsaka, Japan
Transfer to Kansai airport by private vehicle and fly to the UK, arriving home the same or following day.