Take an intrepid adventure travelling by train through Japan with the freedom of exploring independently and added cultural tours. We have everything at hand to guide you on a journey of a lifetime.
You'll get to experience traditional Japanese accommodation with sliding doors, rice paper screens and tatami mats. Authentic cuisine, tea ceremonies and dressing up in kimonos.
A 14-day Japan Rail Pass will be included in this tour allowing you to travel in comfort from bustling vibrant cities, to stunning National Parks in the foothills of Mount Fuji, and the hot springs region of Hakone.
Day 1: Arrive Tokyo
Arrive in Japan’s capital city, Tokyo, renowned for its futuristic architecture, high-rise buildings and characteristic neon lights. Your driver will be ready to meet you and take you to your hotel in the city! On arrival at your hotel, you will be provided with an IC (transport) card to be used for buses and trains
Day 2: Tokyo At Leisure / Evening Shinjuku Tour (B)
Your first day in Tokyo is left to you to explore! Take advantage of the morning to visit the iconic Tsukji Fish Market or wander about Tokyo’s world-class museums and art galleries. A day trip can also be arranged in advance, just speak to one of our travel specialists!
This evening, meet your guide for a 2 ½ hour walking tour of the vibrant Shinjuku district. Enjoy the neon lights, local atmosphere and modern skyscrapers in Shinjuku at night, experience the local Japanese food at an 'Izakaya' in Omoide-Yokocho then head to Golden-Gai which is an atmospheric nightlife district in Kabukicho.
Day 3: Take the train to Yudanaka (B,D)
Leave the bustle of Tokyo behind this morning, as you set off on the Shinkansen or Bullet Train to Yudanaka.
Take a shuttle to your traditional Japanese inn where you can spend the rest of the day relaxing. Tuck into a scrumptious dinner wrapped up in your cosy Japanese robe or yukata. Kick back in the ryokan’s peaceful atmosphere of sliding doors and tatami mats, before drifting off to sleep.
Day 4: Yudanaka Self-guided (B)
After breakfast, take the hotel complimentary shuttle bus to snow monkey park. Unveil the magic of snow monkeys (or Japanese macaques), bathing in the hot springs of Jigokudani National Park. This area varies greatly depending on the time of year but offers a thrilling experience in nature whatever the season, speak to our specialist to find out more…
Day 5: Tokyo To Hakone, Self-guided (B, D)
Wake up early and catch your train to Hakone National Park, the gateway to Mt. Fuji. This small town is famous for its onsen, natural hot springs and surrounded by an abundance of natural beauty.
After a day of exploring, return for a rest in your ryokan, or traditional Japanese inn, with sliding doors, rice paper screens and tatami mats. In the evening, change into your yukata, or lightweight kimono, for a sumptuous kaiseki dinner. Taste the refinement of Japanese heritage during this opulent multi-course meal which is the epitome of Japanese cuisine.
Day 6: Hakone To Kanazawa (B)
Take one last soak in the onsen before undertaking the journey to Kanakawa. Ride the first leg on the world famous Shinkansen bullet train, travelling up to 230km/h! Then, change onto the another train to Kanazawa and to your accommodation.
Day 7: Kanazawa (B)
A full free day at leisure to explore Kanazawa and it's surrounding area. A full free day at leisure to explore Kanazawa and its surrounding area. Our travel specialists can tell you all the highlights to see, including the active Geisha district outside of Kyoto, the Kazuemachi which was left untouched during World War 2 and thus many original buildings are wonderfully preserved.
Day 8: Kanazawa to Koyasan (B,D)
Leave the city behind on a train journey to one of the most sacred places in Japan, Mount Koya. This holy site is the centre of Shingon Buddhism.
This evening, enjoy a shojin ryori dinner, a type of Buddhist vegetarian cuisine. After savouring the flavours common for a monk of Koyasan, it’s time to retire to your traditionally style room. Try to get a good night’s sleep to witness the morning prayers at dawn for a fully authentic stay in this temple.
Day 9: Koyasan Free Day (B,D)
After morning prayer service with the monks and a shojin ryori breakfast, spend the day exploring the temples and forests of Koyasan at leisure. We can tell you a few hot spots not to be missed. (Note: no services organised today).
Day 10: Koyasan to Kyoto (B)
Wake up with the sun to experience the morning service, a rare chance to see the Shingon Buddhist spiritual practice first hand. Observe the rituals, and chanting as the smell of incense envelopes you before breakfast.
After another free day to explore, bid farewell to the fascinating history and fresh air of this ancient mountain town, and venture onwards to Kyoto for your next adventure.
Day 11: Kyoto Full Day Tour (B)
Your guide will meet you to take you to visit two beautiful and iconic UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Ginkakuji and Kiyomizudera.
Ginkakuji, also known as the Silver Pavilion, is a Zen temple with a beautiful moss garden and a unique dry sand garden. Then, take a walk on the Philosopher’s Path, a pleasant stone path through the northern part of Kyoto's Higashiyama district. Experience the ancient Japanese Tea Ceremony called Sao or Cha-no-yu in a traditional Japanese house. Then visit Kiyomizudera, to admire the temple’s panoramic views of Kyoto from the 13 metre high veranda.
Day 12: Traditional Tea Ceremony and Cooking Class
Learn a wide range of Japanese culture including tea room and tea tools, along with the history of the Way of Tea. As part of this program, you can experience a Tea ceremony while enjoying being dressing up in a long-sleeved Kyo-yuzen brand kimono. This afternoon enjoy cooking and eating a variety of dishes in cozy atmosphere just like in Izakaya restaurants (Japanese style pubs)!
Evening at leisure to explore this beautiful city.
Day 13: Departure
Travel in comfort on Japan's fast and efficient high-speed rail network back to Tokyo where you’ll meet your guide for an afternoon ‘pop culture’ tour of the city, exploring some of Tokyo's latest trends and fashions. After the tour, your guide will take you to the station for your shuttle to the airport for your flight home.
Tours and transfers as specified including entry fees
Accommodation in hotels as stated, or similar, with daily breakfast
Train tickets as specified in the above itinerary
Service of English Speaking Local Guide for all included sightseeing (except free days)
Meals as specified in the above itinerary (drinks are not included)
Government tax and services charge
A welcome pack with all information and contact details handled to the traveler upon arrival at the airport or at your first accommodation (depending on your booking arrangements)
Japan Rail Pass (standard) 14days
Local standard (regular car) train and tickets and bus tickets as mentioned in itinerary
Services Not Included
International and domestic airfares and taxes, unless otherwise specified
Visa expenses, processing and issuance fees (Visa is not needed for citizens of many countries, however please enquire with your local authorities)
Meals other than specified as included
Travel Insurance or expenses of a personal nature (mini-bar, phone call, laundry, etc.)
Tips or gratuities
Drinks or personal expenses or entrance fees for any extra sightseeing or optional activities
Prices vary according to season. Price is based on two people sharing a twin or double room. Please ask us for the full itinerary and add-ons.
All itineraries shown can be amended to suit your personal requirements. To find out more, give us a call on 01453 883937 or email firstname.lastname@example.org