Japan Discovery

  • days: 17
  • from $9,830

Flights Included

Countries Visited:

  • Japan

Description

Autumn Colour & Spring Cherry Blossom departures

Colours-of-Japan-200px

Discover Japan's stunning Autumn Colours (Sep-Nov) as they sweep the country or witness the magic of Cherry Blossom (Mar-Apr).

New April 10 & 12 2017 departures released! Book now to secure final Cherry Blossom spots for 2017.

Discover the many different sides of fascinating Japan on this in-depth journey. Explore the metropolis of Tokyo, see iconic Mt Fuji, ride the bullet train, soak up the peace and tranquillity of historic Takayama and admire the culture of Kyoto.

Metropolis to Mountains

Immerse yourself in the hustle and bustle of Tokyo. We’ll learn the age-old culinary art of making sushi, visit the famous Tsukiji Fish Market and Sumo Museum, Asakusa Kannon Temple and the shopping districts of Ginza, Shinjuku and Akihabara. Leave the city behind and travel to Hakone and Mt Fuji to experience a more traditional side of Japanese life. Here we stay in old-style ryokan accommodation, have a chance to enjoy a hot springs bath and sample a delicious Japanese dinner. We’ll tour iconic Mt Fuji and ride a sky gondola for breathtaking vistas over the volcanic Hakone Mountains.

The history and heart of Japan

Travel to historic Takayama and wander through heritage-listed Shirawakago. We’ll learn the traditional art of Japanese rice paper making and explore a local market. Catch the famous bullet train to moving Hiroshima. We discover Miyajima Island, the Itsukushima Torii Gate and visit the Peace Memorial and Atomic Bomb Dome. Board the bullet train to Kyoto, Japan’s cultural heart. We see the stunning Kinkaku-ji Golden Pavilion and the heritage-listed Kiyomizudera. We’ll get hands-on, enjoy sake tasting and have the chance to wear a traditional Kimono! Kyoto is also the perfect base from which to venture to Nara and Mt Hiei, where we visit a traditional Buddhist sanctuary and enjoy a traditional Buddhist lunch.

Urban Osaka

Our adventure ends in bustling Osaka, Japan’s capital of commerce. We tour the city, visiting the Dotonbori District and the floating garden at Umeda Sky Building, and bid farewell to Japan with a traditional-style group dinner.

Itinerary 2016/17

Abbreviation: [B,L,D] Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

For Departures up to April 2, 2017

Day 1. Depart Australia

Day 2. Arrive in Tokyo

Welcome to Tokyo! On arrival, we will be met and transferred to our hotel. The rest of the afternoon is at leisure.

Day 3. Tokyo

Special Experience: Begin the day at Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Fish Market, one of the world’s largest wholesale markets for fish, fruit and vegetables. We learn the age-old culinary art of making sushi (which we’ll get to enjoy once we’ve finished).
This afternoon we visit the Akihabara electric town and take a stroll through the shopping district of Ginza, before sharing a Japanese-style group welcome dinner. [B,L,D]

Day 4. Tokyo

An exciting day exploring one of the world’s largest and most cosmopolitan cities. Our sightseeing includes the Edo Tokyo Museum, Asakusa Kannon Temple, Nakamise, and the famous Sumo Museum, dedicated to Japan’s national sport. This evening we’ll experience the neon lights and hustle and bustle of the Shinjuku District. [B]

Day 5. Tokyo - Hakone

We begin our morning with a stroll through the beautiful Hamarikyu Garden. Then we visit the famous shrine of Tsurugaoka Hachimangu and the Great Buddha (Koutokuin), on our way to Kamakura, the site of the first samurai government. In the early afternoon we travel to Hakone, where the rest of the day is at leisure. [B,D]
Special Experience: For the next two nights, we stay in an authentic ryokan guesthouse! We’ll have the chance to bathe in natural hot springs and enjoy a traditional Japanese dinner.

Day 6. Mt Fuji

A highlight of any trip to Japan is a visit to majestic and iconic Mt Fuji! We stop at the fifth station (weather permitting) to take in the stunning views of the surrounding area. Later we’ll ride a gondola and enjoy magnificent vistas of the volcanic Hakone Mountains, Mt Fuji as well as the Sagami Bay. [B,D]

Day 7. Hakone - Takayama

We travel by rail to the historic town of Takayama, and explore the narrow, traditional streets on foot. [B]

Day 8. Takayama

We wander through the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage site of Shirakawago with its famous gassho-zukuri (‘like hands in prayer’) thatched roofs, designed to withstand the massive snowfalls of winter. This afternoon we discover the traditional art of Japanese rice paper-making. [B]

Day 9. Takayama - Hiroshima

We rise early today and visit a local market before continuing our rail journey to Hiroshima, via Nagoya. The rest of the afternoon is at leisure for you to explore at your own pace or relax. [B]

Day 10. Hiroshima

This morning we cruise out to tranquil Miyajima Island and see the giant Itsukushima Torii Gate, before returning to Hiroshima for lunch. This afternoon we’ll visit the Peace Memorial Park, the Atomic Bomb Dome and the very moving Peace Memorial Museum, commemorating the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. [B,L]

Day 11. Hiroshima - Kyoto

Travelling by bullet train, we make our way to historic Kyoto, Japan’s cultural capital. On arrival, we visit stunning Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion). The temple’s top two floors are completely covered in gold leaf and the pavilion is set amongst beautiful gardens. [B]

Day 12. Nara

We travel to Nara and visit the beautiful Todai-ji (Great Eastern) Temple. We’ll then stop at famous Deer Park, where more than 1,000 deer roam freely. This afternoon we’ll see one of Japan’s most celebrated temples, the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Kiyomizu-dera. [B]

Day 13. Kyoto

Today we discover the art of creating Japan’s unique crafts and culinary delights! [B]
Special Experience: Enjoy a variety of local activities including fan making, sake brewing & tasting, and a chance to dress in a traditional kimono.

Day 14. Kyoto - Mt Hiei - Osaka

We experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony before visiting the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Buddhist sanctuary of Enryakuji Temple. Located on the sacred mountain of Mt Hiei, it offers beautiful views over Kansai. Here we’ll enjoy a traditional Buddhist lunch. [B,L]

Day 15. Osaka

We begin our city tour at Osaka Castle, built at the end of the 16 century by famous warlord Hideyoshi Toyotomi. We venture to the Dotonbori District and stop at the Umeda Sky Building (floating garden) for scenic views over central Osaka.
Tonight we’ll enjoy a Japanese-style group farewell dinner. [B,D]

Day 16. Depart Osaka

We transfer to Kansai Airport to begin our journey home. [B]

Day 17. Arrive in Australia

Itinerary 2017/18

Abbreviation: [B,L,D] Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

For Departures from April 3, 2017

Day 1. Depart Australia

Day 2. Arrive in Tokyo

Welcome to Tokyo, Japan’s dazzling capital city. The remainder of the day is at leisure to relax or begin exploring. 

Day 3. Tokyo

Special Experience: Begin the day at Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Fish Market, one of the world’s largest wholesale markets for fish, fruit and vegetables. We learn the age-old culinary art of making sushi (which we’ll get to enjoy once we’ve finished).

This afternoon we visit the Akihabara ‘Electric Town’ and take a stroll through the shopping district of Ginza, home to iconic fashion houses and luxury shops. This evening share a Japanese-style group welcome dinner. [B,L,D]

Day 4. Tokyo

An exciting day exploring one of the world’s largest and most cosmopolitan cities. Our sightseeing includes the Edo Museum and the Asakusa Kannon Temple, where the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy is enshrined. We continue to Nakamise, and the famous Sumo Museum, dedicated to Japan’s national sport. 

Special Experience: Enjoy a sumo wrestling demonstration by retired athletes over a traditional Chanko-nabe (hot pot) lunch.

This evening we’ll experience the neon lights and hustle and bustle of the Shinjuku District. [B,L]

Day 5. Tokyo - Hakone

We begin our morning with a stroll through the beautiful Hamarikyu Garden. This landscaped garden is surrounded by a seawater moat and has been remodelled based on the 17th century villa of the Shogun Tokugawa family. Then we visit the famous shrine of Tsurugaoka Hachimangu. We continue to the Great Buddha (Koutokuin) before travelling in the early afternoon to Hakone. [B,D]

Special Experience: For the next two nights we stay in an authentic ryokan guesthouse. We’ll have the chance to bathe in natural onsen (hot springs) and enjoy a traditional Japanese dinner.

Day 6. Mt Fuji

A highlight of any trip to Japan is a visit to majestic and iconic Mt Fuji! At approximately 3,776 metres it is Japan’s highest mountain. Now a dormant volcano, Mt Fuji, or Fujiyama as it is known locally, can be seen on a clear day from Tokyo. We stop at the fifth station (weather permitting) to take in the stunning views of the surrounding area. Later we’ll ride a gondola and enjoy magnificent vistas of the volcanic Hakone Mountains and Mt Fuji, as well as the Sagami Bay. [B,D]

Day 7. Hakone - Takayama

We travel by rail to the historic town of Takayama and explore the narrow, traditional streets on foot. We visit the Takayama Jinya, a former government outpost established to bring the Hida Province under the direct control of the Shogunate. [B]

Day 8. Takayama

We wander through the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage site of Shirakawago with its famous gasshō-zukuri (‘like hands in prayer’) thatched roofs, designed to withstand the massive snowfalls of winter. This afternoon we discover the traditional art of Japanese rice paper-making in Gokayama. Rice paper, or Washi, is commonly used in the traditional paper-folding art of Origami, practiced in Japan since the early 1600s. [B]

Day 9. Takayama - Hiroshima

Early this morning we’ll visit a local market before continuing our rail journey to Hiroshima, via Nagoya. Hiroshima is a city with great historical significance, forever remembered as the site of impact from the world’s first atomic-bomb, where so much devastation occurred. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at leisure in this naturally beautiful city. [B]

Day 10. Hiroshima

This morning we cruise out to tranquil Miyajima Island and see the giant Itsukushima Torii Gate which seems to float on top of the water at high tide. Renowned for being a World Cultural Heritage site today, Miyajima is an island where it is believed that people and gods dwell together. Since ancient times, the island itself has been worshipped as a god and this belief has been passed down from generation to generation. We return to Hiroshima for lunch. This afternoon we’ll visit the Peace Memorial Park, the Atomic Bomb Dome and the very moving Peace Memorial Museum, commemorating the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. [B,L]

Day 11. Hiroshima - Kyoto

Travelling by bullet train, we make our way to historic Kyoto, Japan’s cultural capital. Here we visit the stunning Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion). The temple’s top two floors are completely covered in gold leaf and the pavilion is set amongst beautiful gardens. [B]

Day 12. Nara

We travel to Nara and visit the beautiful Tōdaiji (Great Eastern) Temple. We’ll then stop at the famous Deer Park, where more than 1,000 deer roam free. This afternoon we’ll see one of Japan’s most celebrated temples, the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Kiyomizu-dera. Founded in 780 on the site of the Otowa Waterfall in the wooded hills east of Kyoto, it derives its name from the fall's pure waters. [B]

Day 13. Kyoto

Today we discover the art behind Japan’s unique crafts and culinary delights! [B]

Special Experience: Enjoy a variety of local activities including sake brewing & tasting, and a chance to dress in a kimono. Then witness a traditional dance performance by Maiko (Geiko^ apprentices).

^Geiko is the term for Geisha in Kyoto.

Day 14. Kyoto - Mt Hiei - Osaka

We experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony before visiting the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Buddhist sanctuary of Enryaku-ji Temple. Located on the sacred mountain of Mt Hiei, it offers beautiful views over Kansai. Here we’ll enjoy a traditional Buddhist lunch. This afternoon we make our way to Osaka, stopping at the Umeda Sky Building (Floating Garden) for scenic views over the central city. [B,L]

Day 15. Osaka

We travel by bullet train to visit Himeji Castle. Japan’s largest and most-visited castle, it is regarded as the finest surviving example of Japanese castle architecture. We’ll then venture into Osaka’s Dōtonbori District in the early evening to take in its famous lights and thriving food scene. Tonight we’ll enjoy a Japanese-style group farewell dinner. [B,D]

Day 16. Depart Osaka

Today we begin our journey home. [B]

Day 17. Arrive in Australia

Inclusions

Travel

  • Return economy class flights from Australia to Japan. Taxes included
  • 5 rail journeys in Japan
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of tour (for 2016/17 program)
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of tour (if using group tour flights, for 2017/18 program)
  • All touring in air-conditioned vehicles

Accommodation & Meals

  • 12 nights in good quality hotels (3-4 star)
  • 2 nights in a traditional ryokan guesthouse including a typical Japanese onsen (hot springs) bath followed by a Japanese dinner party while dressed in traditional yukatas
  • 14 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 4 dinners, including group welcome and farewell dinners

Tour Guides

  • English-speaking locally based national guide throughout

Sightseeing

Enjoy 3 nights in Tokyo with ample time to explore one of the world's liveliest cities 

  • Early morning tour of Tsukiji Fish Market and sushi making experience including lunch.
  • Visit Akihabara electric town and stroll through Ginza District.
  • City tour of Tokyo including Edo Museum, Asakusa Kannon Temple, Nakamise shopping arcade, Sumo Museum.
  • Witness a sumo demonstration and enjoy a typical sumo meal. (for 2017/18 program)
  • Witness Shinjuku by night on a walking tour.
  • Stroll through Hamarikyu Garden, a typical feudal lord garden from the Edo Period and one of the best spots in Tokyo from which to view Hanami.

Experience a serene natural environment

  • Visit Mt Fuji's fifth station (weather permitting) to take in the magnificent views of the surrounding area.
  • Enjoy a gondola ride with its amazing 360 degree view of the volcanic Hakone Mountains.
  • Visit Miyajima Island, located 30 minutes from Hiroshima and classified as a sacred island, to see the Itsukushima Shinto Shrine which stands in the ocean during high tide.
  • Travel to Nara's famous Deer Park, where more than 1,000 deer roam free.

Appreciate Japan's ancient traditions in Takayama and its modern history in Hiroshima 

  • Stay 2 nights in a traditional Ryokan and relax while bathing in the natural hot springs.
  • Take in the sights of old historic Takayama on foot including the Takayama Jinya, a beautiful traditional Japanese building and visit the morning markets.
  • Visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Shirakawago, famous for its old gassho-zukuri thatched roof farmhouses. Gassho-zukuri means "constructed like hands in prayer" as the farmhouses' steep thatched roofs resemble the hands of Buddhist monks in prayer.
  • Tour the Peace Park, built to commemorate the dropping of the atomic bomb over Hiroshima.
  • Visit the Atomic Bomb Dome, the city’s only remaining bomb-damaged building, and the very moving Peace Memorial Museum (by audio tour).

A city of more than 1,000 Buddhist temples, Kyoto 

  • Tour the temples of Kyoto, Japan’s former capital and very much the cultural heart of the country. Our tour includes the Heian Shrine, the Kinkaku-ji Zen Temple (Golden Pavilion) and the Kiyomizu-dera Temple (Pure Water Temple).
  • Enjoy a traditional Tea Ceremony en route to Mt Hiei.
  • Learn more on traditional and cultural Japan as we actively participate in sake brewing & tasting, Japanese fan making and Kimono wearing. (for 2016/17 program)
  • Learn more on traditional Japan as we actively participate in Sake brewing & tasting and watch a Maiko Dance performance. (for 2017/18 program)
  • Visit the Buddhist sanctuary at Mt Hiei, founded in 788 AD, and one of Japan’s most important cultural, religious and artistic centres. Enjoy a tea ceremony.

Explore Osaka's castles and modern architecture

  • Visit Osaka Castle, built in the late 16th century. (for 2016/17 program)
  • Visit Himeji Castle, regarded as one of the finest examples of prototypical Japanese castle architecture. (for 2017/18 program)
  • Explore the Dōtonbori district.
  • Enjoy magnificent views over central Osaka from the Umeda Sky Building (Floating Garden) for scenic view of central Osaka.

Accommodation

Accommodation

For all Departures except April 10 & 12 2017

Please note these hotels apply to all departures except those on April 10 & 12 2017 which are listed on the other Accommodation tab below this one.

Shinagawa Prince Hotel, Tokyo

The Shinagawa Prince Hotel is located at the southern gateway to the Tokyo metropolis with breathtaking views of the city and Tokyo Bay. Besides its convenient location, this impressive multi-functional hotel complex offers a wide array of dining and entertainment options. The hotel is home to a 10 screen multiplex theatre, a cabaret, bowling centre, indoor swimming pool, indoor tennis courts, indoor golf centre, and a great selection of restaurants!

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box; indoor swimming pool

Hotel Okuyumoto, Hakone

The Hotel Okuyumoto boasts a rustic open-air bath set beside a mountain stream. Surrounded by the peaceful natural scenery of Hakone, enjoy the hot springs and the beauty of Japan’s natural environment. The hotel is a 9-storey structure with mostly Japanese-style rooms and is located approximately 10 minutes from Hakone Yumoto station.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge

Hida Hotel Plaza, Takayama

Just a 5 minute walk from Takayama Station, Hida Hotel Plaza boasts a rooftop spa with mountain views, a heated swimming pool and 7 dining options including Japanese, French and Chinese cuisine. Hida Plaza’s rooms are elegantly furnished in either Western or traditional Japanese decor. The spa offers indoor and outdoor hot spring baths, massage, a hot tub and a mist sauna. The hotel is also only a 15 minute walk from the historical Old Private Houses, and a 20-minute walk from Higashiyama Temple.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box

Sheraton, Hiroshima

The Sheraton Hiroshima is conveniently located in the city next to JR Hiroshima Station with direct access to the bullet train and bus terminals. The property features two restaurants, a bar/lounge and a health club with spa, indoor poool and steam room.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; indoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

New Miyako Hotel, Kyoto

As the largest hotel in Kyoto with 986 rooms, the New Miyako Hotel combines comfort with functionality. Located in front of the Shinkansen (Bullet Train), Japan Railways and Kintetsu-Kyoto Station, the New Miyako Hotel is in a prime location. The hotel’s many restaurants provide various dining options including Japanese, Chinese and European buffet-style dining.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge

Hotel Monterey Grasmere, Osaka

Hotel Monterey Grasmere Osaka is directly connected to JR Namba Train Station, a 10-minute walk from Dotonbori Shopping Street. Featuring British-style interiors, the hotel offers an art museum and 4 dining options with panoramic city views. The hotel houses 2 Japanese speciality restaurants and a tea lounge.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box (at reception); tea & coffee making facilities

Sheraton Miyako Hotel Osaka

Centrally located and in close proximity to many restaurants and sightseeing attractions, the Sheraton Miyako offers 8 restaurants & lounges as well as fitness centre, indoor heated pool, massage, barber shop, florist, beauty salon, currency exchange and gift store.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box; indoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Accommodation listed is subject to change and the list should be used as a guide only. Every effort is made to avoid changes however if a change becomes necessary then accommodation of a similar standard will be used.

Accommodation

Accommodation

For April 10 & 12 2017 Departures only

Please note these hotels only apply to our April 10 & 12 2017 tour departures. Please refer Accommodation tab above this for all other departures dates.

Shinjuku New City Hotel, Tokyo

Conveniently located in the heart of Shinjuku, one of Tokyo's largest entertainment and business districts, the Shinjuku New City Hotel boasts spacious guest rooms designed for comfort with all the modern conveniences. Along with a restaurant, this hotel features a bar/lounge and a cafe.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; tea & coffee making facilities

Setsugetsuka Ryokan, Hakone

Set in the beautiful mountains of Hakone, the Japanese-style Setsugetsuka Ryokan offers comfortable rooms featuring private open-air hot spring baths and balconies. The hotel also offers public baths and two restaurants, one specialising in seasonal local dishes and the other sushi and tempura.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box

Takayama Ouan, Takayama

 Takayama Ouan features traditional Japanese designs and tatami flooring throughout. It boasts a rooftop open-air natural hot-spring bath, cosy family baths with mountain views, sauna and spa. The property is just a 7-minute walk from Takayama's Old Town and Miyagawa Morning Market.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; tea making facilities

Hiroshima Garden Palace, Hiroshima

Located just a 5-minute walk from the station, Hiroshima Garden Palace offers convenience and modern comforts in a delightful garden setting. Guests can enjoy traditional Japanese food at the restaurant or relax in the tea lounge overlooking a waterfall.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box; tea & coffee making facilities

Hotel Granvia, Hiroshima

The Hotel Granvia in Hiroshima offers modern and comfortable accommodation in a fantastic location. Directly connected to the JR Station, the property is the perfect starting point for exploring Hiroshima and its many attractions. The hotel offers 6 restaurants, karaoke rooms and a lounge/bar.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; tea & coffee making facilities

New Miyako Hotel, Kyoto

As the largest hotel in Kyoto with 986 rooms, the New Miyako Hotel combines comfort with functionality. Located in front of the Shinkansen (Bullet Train), Japan Railways and Kintetsu-Kyoto Station, the New Miyako Hotel is in a prime location. The hotel’s many restaurants provide various dining options including Japanese, Chinese and European buffet-style dining.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge

Hearton Hotel, Kyoto

Centrally located within walking distance of some of Kyoto's major attractions, the Hearton Hotel offers modern and comfortable accommodation with western beds and bathrooms. The proeperty also features a cafe, restaurant, gift shop and laundry service.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box (at reception)

Hotel Monterey Grasmere, Osaka

Hotel Monterey Grasmere Osaka is directly connected to JR Namba Train Station, a 10-minute walk from Dotonbori Shopping Street. Featuring British-style interiors, the hotel offers an art museum and 4 dining options with panoramic city views. The hotel houses 2 Japanese speciality restaurants and a tea lounge.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge; safe deposit box (at reception); tea & coffee making facilities

Accommodation listed is subject to change and the list should be used as a guide only. Every effort is made to avoid changes however if a change becomes necessary then accommodation of a similar standard will be used.

Dates & Prices

Dates & Prices

Autumn & Spring Cherry Blossom departures

Colours-of-Japan-200px

Discover Japan's stunning Autumn Colours (Sep-Nov) as they sweep the country or witness the magic of Cherry Blossom (Mar-Apr).

New April 10 & 12 2017 departures released! Book now to secure final Cherry Blossom spots for 2017.

Starts Ends Save Total Cost* Status Book
11/03/17 27/03/17   $9,640 Fully Booked  
21/03/17 06/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
23/03/17 08/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
25/03/17 10/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
27/03/17 12/04/17   $9,840 Fully Booked  
29/03/17 14/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
31/03/17 16/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
02/04/17 18/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
03/04/17 19/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
04/04/17 20/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
05/04/17 21/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
06/04/17 22/04/17   $9,830 Limited Seats Call
08/04/17 24/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
10/04/17 26/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
11/04/17 27/04/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
12/04/17 28/04/17   $9,830 Limited Seats Call
15/04/17 01/05/17   $9,830 Fully Booked  
13/05/17 29/05/17   $10,195 Limited Seats Call
27/05/17 12/06/17   $10,195 Available book now
10/06/17 26/06/17   $10,195 Available book now
19/08/17 04/09/17   $10,195 Available book now
12/09/17 28/09/17   $10,195 Available book now
25/09/17 11/10/17   $10,195 Available book now
08/10/17 24/10/17   $10,395 Available book now
21/10/17 06/11/17   $10,395 Fully Booked  
28/10/17 13/11/17   $10,395 Guaranteed Departure book now
04/11/17 20/11/17   $10,395 Available book now
11/11/17 27/11/17   $10,395 Available book now
18/11/17 04/12/17   $10,395 Available book now
10/03/18 26/03/18   $10,495 Available book now
20/03/18 05/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
24/03/18 09/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
26/03/18 11/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
28/03/18 13/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
30/03/18 15/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
02/04/18 18/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
04/04/18 20/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
07/04/18 23/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
09/04/18 25/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
11/04/18 27/04/18   $10,595 Available book now
Valid From: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Hobart, Launceston & Perth
Other departure cities:
Tips: Tipping is not expected, however this is at your discretion
Taxes: Total cost includes - air taxes of $590pp
Single supplement: $1,550 (subject to seasonality)
  • Day/Date Variations: Due to airline flight schedules day of arrival and day of departure may vary depending on your city of departure
  • Taxes & Fuel Costs: Total cost includes air taxes. Taxes and fuel surcharges change regularly so above levies shown as a guide only
  • T&C: All prices shown are per person based on twin share and include airfares, all taxes and tips. Prices and itineraries correct at current time but are subject to change. Please call for more details. View our full terms & conditions here.

Weather

Weather

Tokyo

Most popular times to travel to Japan are spring (March - May) and autumn (September - November). The months of March and April are particularly pleasant as these are the cherry blossom months.

Tokyo

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

8

9

12

17

22

24

28

30

26

21

16

11

Ave Min C

-2

-1

2

8

12

17

21

22

19

13

6

1

Rainy Days

5

6

10

10

10

12

10

9

12

11

7

5

Kyoto

Kyoto is located in the central part of the island of Honshu and enjoys a humid sub-tropical climate that features two major seasons a hot summer and a cold winter. Kyoto’s summer is May-September and has an average of 28.

Kyoto

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

7

8

11

17

22

26

30

32

27

22

16

10

Ave Min C

0

0

3

8

13

18

22

24

20

13

7

3

Rainy Days

23

20

20

16

15

18

20

14

17

14

16

21

Currency

Currency

Japan, Yen

The official currency in Japan is the Japanese Yen (JPY; symbol ¥)

  • 1 Japanese Yen = 100 sen
  • Notes are in denominations of ¥10,000, 5000, 2000 and 1000
  • Coins are in denominations of ¥500, 100, 50, 10, 5 and 1

Level of Fitness

Levels of Fitness

Levels-of-Fitness-sml

To get the most from your Bunnik tour you will need a good level of fitness and mobility and an open mind. Many of the best sights can only be accessed on foot. You should be able to walk at least 3.5km or for 2-3 hours with no walking aids on uneven ground, climb several flights of stairs and be prepared to board small boats. You should also be able to carry your own bags - porterage is not included in our tipping costs and extra services may not always be available. Passengers who are 70 and over will be required to obtain a doctor’s clearance before travelling.

Reviews for Japan Discovery

This tour has a rating of 5 stars based on 36 reviews.

Here's what others have had to say about this tour.

Japan Discovery Excellent 5
The people of Japan were so respectful and helpful especially our wonderful tour guide Naoko who went out of her way to help us and make sure our tour went smoothly. We loved staying in the Ryokan and experiencing the Japanese way of life. Travelling on the bullet train was quite an experience. The hands on experiences in making such things as sushi, fans and artificial food displays were also a highlight. Alex & Rosanna Tavan - September 2016
Japan Discovery Well organised, diverse experiences, interesting sites visited. 5
Fondest memories: Everything especially in Kyoto. Particular activities such as sushi making, fan painting, kimono wearing and plastic food assembly. Banquets and ryokan stay at Hakone. Seeing Mount Fuji. Bullet train trips.Visit to Tokyo-Edo Museum. Visits to Shirakawago village, temples and shrines. Keith Gardner - September 2016
Japan Discovery Fabulous Guide and Tour 5
Very happy with our choice. Great mix of modern living and Japanese culture, busy cities and quiet areas. Our guide, Naoko, was well-informed, professional and a pleasure to meet. Accommodation was well placed and clean, the ryokan being a great experience. Train travel .... amazing! Thank you Bunnik Tours Chris Webber - September 2016
Japan Discovery Loved small group and itinerary 5
Fondest memories; Mt Fuji on a clear day. making the fans and plastic food. Group got on well together Cheryl Young - May 2016
Japan Discovery Our tour guide, Naoko was marvellous. 5
Loved staying in the Ryokan, eating Japanese food, getting out of the big cities, visiting world heritage villages, bullet train. Suzanne Jordan - April 2016
Japan Discovery A great cross section of Japanese life, culture and places 5
Visiting Hiroshima was confronting but worthwhile. Highlight was being in several places to see cherry blossoms and seeing the Spring festival in Takayama. Staying in the Ryokan in Hakone was also a highlight. The guide for the tour was exceptional - the best I have ever come across. Warren Freeman - April 2016
Japan Discovery A new culture 5
Hotel accommodation was good. The tour guide's knowledge and commentary on all our visited sites was excellent. Rae O'Shaughnessy - April 2016
Japan Discovery I loved the opportunity to see a cross section of the Japanese culture 4
Highlights were Mt Fuji, staying in a ryokan, Hiroshima (my dad was in the occupation forces), snow above Nikko and the cherry trees in bloom. Jane Lindsay - March 2016
Japan Discovery We loved everything! 5
The 'Land of the Rising Sun'. Japan, did not disappoint. On the contrary, the tour, at that time of the year with the picturesque Sakura (cherry blossom) will leave us with unforgettable memories. Our tour guide Naoko was highly knowledgeable in history, super organised, but above all so friendly and welcoming to introduce us to her country. To be able to truly taste real Japan in history, culture, people, food, scenery etc...simply, you have t be there to soak up the experience. Highly recommended! Until next time, Sayonara. Alena & Victor Vondra - March 2016
Japan Discovery Awesome guide, itinerary, variety and so many blossoms. 5
Fondest memories and highlights were Nikko in the snow; Mt Fuji from my window in Tokyo!; Kamakura; everything about Hakone; Takayama - beautiful; Trains - especially bullet trains; Hiroshima and Miyajima Island; Golden Pavilion and Kiyomizudera Temple, Kyoto; and Kimono textiles in Kyoto. Stephanie Cooper - March 2016
Japan Discovery Love the itinerary 4
From the big cities of Tokyo & Kyoto, to the tranquility of Nikko, Miyajima Island & Nara, I loved this itinerary. Fellow tour members were a great bunch of people. Loved the hot baths at the Ryokan at Hakone & our TD 'Saki', was a delight. The leaves were turning, so the autumn colours were lovely. Pauline Burgher - October 2015
Japan Discovery It had all been organised beautifully with no hiccups. 5
Highlights were the sensational autumn leaves - the gingko trees in particular; The nice hotels and Ryokan at Hakone; The excellent weather; Our Japanese guide, Kyoko, who was excellent and committed to giving us a great experience; And having a large bus to travel in all the time. Elizabeth Turner - October 2015
Japan Discovery The group size, competent guide and well-balanced itinerary were great. 4
Highlights were the warmth of the Japanese people, and the contrast between ancient and modern Japan. Peter Bradshaw - November 2015
Japan Discovery Loved everything...accommodation, meals, flights, bullet train, tour guide, tour content and itinerary 5
A great variety in the content of the tour and bullet trains made travel less time consuming. Pauline Kay - October 2015
Japan Discovery I loved Japan's beauty, efficiency, politeness, history and food 4
We really enjoyed this tour. It wasn't our cheapest option but we are glad we chose Bunnik. The itinerary was very good. Our consultant did a very good job for us. Above all we would like to praise our guide, Fusako, who was magnificent. Her knowledge, patience, organisational skills, language and sense of humour were hugely appreciated. We could not fault our travel, eating and accommodation arrangements. Everything was perfect, congratulations. We would not want to go on a tour with more than 20 people. We took thousands of photographs and will try to identify the best two or three to submit to your competition. Thanks for the great work! Judy Barton - October 2015
Japan Discovery Loved the organisation, variety, group members, tour guide and transport modes 5
Highlights were Mt Fuji, the Hiroshima Museum and the group dinners. John Rudolph - October 2015
Japan Discovery Every where we went and saw was a highlight 5
Hakone was brilliant, the ryokan experience, with with the traditional foods and hot spring bath, Fuji was great to see, Takayama and Hiroshima, Shirakawago. Although dressing us up in traditional Kimono outfit and walking around whilst a fashion parade was in progress was a bit of a chuckle ..all good fun, would like to return to look at some places further. Everything was a new experience, temples, foods and the country. Russell Hillman - May 2015
Japan Discovery Great value and packed full of great adventures 5
Many highlights - the cherry blossoms on mass, snow at Mt Fuji, Sumo wrestlers, sleeping on a futon in the Hakone Ryokan, and being immersed totally in the food and culture there. Hiroshima was thought provoking given the state of world peace at present. Shinkansens were amazing. Loved the food halls, Department stores and the vending machines. Loved Osaka Castle and the museum within - brought the Samurai and Imperial court history to life. Bought the 2 volume 'Tale of Genji" to read and, of course, a kimono! Anne Irving - April 2015
Japan Discovery Loved Tosh the tour guide 4
Fondest memories would have to be staying in a tradition ryokan in Hakone and Takyama was also very special. Toshi was amazing, not only is she very knowledgeable but goes over and beyond what is expected. Even made sure we saw some extra things that we were interested in, eg organising tickets to see a geisha show. Cathy Stagno - April 2015
Japan Discovery The sightseeing was excellent - everything we expected for the areas visited. 4
Highlights..The train trips through the countryside and between cities to see new and interesting sights such as Mt Fuji and Hiroshima. Toshi was very good - she was knowledgeable and personable. She related well, willingly answered questions and suggested additional activities and experiences. The trains were excellent and the buses were always on times and the drivers very courteous. Airport transfers were punctual and trouble free - well done Bunnik! Jeff & Robyn Dyball - April 2015
Japan Discovery The Japanese culture, our guide Toshi, food, kimonos and ryokans ..Love the itinerary. 4
Our guide Toshi was so kind. Anything mentioned from day one, she remembered & tried to make sure we got to see or do. She was amazing & a credit to you. Loved the cultural experiences, from staying in a ryokan, to making our own paper, fans & dressing in a kimono. Good mix of countryside & city stays. Love the itinerary. Leonie Mullins - April 2015
Japan Discovery Really good introduction to Japan which whetted our appetite. 4
Loved Mount Fuji, the ryokan in Hakkone, hot baths, food. Toshi-san. Shinkansen. The Japanese people. The Group. Toshi made the trip very interesting with her knowledge of Japan and kept a wicked sense of humour. All aspects of the tour were very well handled. All transport within Japan was excellent. It was nice to have a big bus with plenty of room. Ken Bowie - April 2015
Japan Discovery Great organisation so we could see all we wanted. 5
Good group of people to travel well. Absolutely wonderful guide (Kyoko Masumoto) - best ever. Will never forget the cherry blossoms. Or the heated toilet seats! Jane Wright - March 2015
Japan Discovery Loved the hotels, tour guide, inclusions, feeling we were in good hands. 4
The ryokan experience, cherry blossoms in many locations, seeing snow in springtime, bullet train rides, tea ceremony were wonderful experiences. Visiting Hiroshima was moving & insightful. You might like to consider adding bonsai trees to the itinerary. Multi night stays in locations were appreciated & gave us time to do more exploring. Thank you. Trisha Brown - April 2015
Japan Discovery 4
We were lucky to see freshly fallen snow at Mt Fuji - a rare event in spring. Also visited Himeji Castle on the free day in Osaka - every tour should go there - It's awesome. Hotsprings in Hakone and Takayama were invigorating - just terrific. Ruth Murray - April 2015
Japan Discovery Good company, itinerary, great food and excellent guide 4
We were very fortunate to have a very amiable and friendly group and interacting with them was great fun . The local people we came across were also very friendly and helpful, especially when we got lost (not part of the tour). The cherry blossoms and the garden sceneries and some temple complex were very impressive. Peter Chia - April 2015
Japan Discovery Loved atmosphere and experiences, good group, lovely guide, scenery 4
Loved the scenery especially the gardens and Mt Fuji. The bullet train was a great experience with great views. Wanted to see the autumn colours but only caught a few. Hard to get the timing right. Very good balanced group and the trip was very relaxing and enjoyable. Ian Hawke - October 2014
Japan Discovery Staying in a traditional Ryokan was an experience that you definitely need to try. 4
Craig and I absolutely loved our Tour Guide Kyoko, who went above and beyond to make sure that our tour of Japan was enjoyed without any hassles. The optional tours that we did with Kyoko should actually be part of the itinerary. The Cherry Blossoms certainly stood out wherever we went. Mt Fuji put on her best display and the biggest Buddah which we saw in Kyoto was absolutely breathtaking. Kyoko went out of her at every new location to take us an orientation tour to find shops and restaurants. Lyn Ballard - March 2015
Japan Discovery Great variety of sites visited, good balance organised/free time 5
Saki was just lovely. A warm and personable guide, she provided a lot of insight into Japanese history and culture and was happy to answer even our most random questions. Train travel was excellent, Buses were comfortable and plenty of space. Locations were all excellent, particularly Kyoto being so close to the station, made the free day very easy to travel independently. Highlights - Visiting Mt Fuji in the cold and snow, Staying at the ryokan in Hakone - experiencing real Japanese tradition, visit to the village in shinakawago - even the drive up through snow and tunnels was beautiful. A good variety of different cultural, scenic and "hands on" experiences. Francesca Caflisch - March 2015
Japan Discovery The cherry blossoms were in full bloom 5
Our guide Naoko was fantastic. I have done many tours and she is probably the best tour guide I have ever had. There was a lot of free time. The cherry blossoms were in full bloom, the picture postcard sight of Mt Fuji and the rides on the Bullet train. Martin Tauro - March 2015
Japan Discovery Fondest Memories? Too many to enumerate - 1800 photos! 4
We had only 1 guide for the whole tour and she was efficient,informative and personable. Loved the variety of cultural experiences, sights and sites visited. Joe Wilder - March 2015
Japan Discovery Perfect clear weather to view Mt. Fuji. Takayama. Autumn colours. 5
Yuko was absolutely outstanding. Perhaps because we had a small group, only nine - which was brilliant! - she was able to go well beyond the call of duty in trying to accommodate each person's specific needs. When time allowed, she took us on many extra excursions in what I am sure was her own time. Hang on to her - she's a treasure. If it is possible for you to contact her, please convey my appreciation. Meredyth Cilento - November 2014
Japan Discovery Loved the variety of Japanese experiences. 5
Highlights - Seeing Mt Fuji on a good day. Buying anything in Japan and having it beautifully pesented and/or wrapped. Seeing a parade from a temple that was unplanned and a highlight. Seeing geishas in Koto. Very balanced. Time to take in each venue.Enjoyed having a bit of free time too. We enjoyed the Ryokan experience. We LOVED the SHERATON in Hiroshima !!! We also loved that the accomodation was always near railway stations ..enabled us to venture out alone, was also close to restaurants, shopping malls etc Sandy Faithfull - October 2014
Japan Discovery Lovely countryside, beautiful gardens, Japanese cleanliness and hospitatility 5
Extremely well chosen sites, everyone loved all the areas chosen Clear views of Mt snow covered Mt Fuji. Staying the Ryokan at Hakone. The size, speed and comfort of the Shinkansen Train. Great variety of Temples and Shrines, Gorgeous Gardens and the charm of Gion in Kyoto. Japanese people always so polite and the cities and countryside was so clean and safe. The Imperial Palace and bustle of Tokyo are memorable. Kyoto was a great favourite. Peace Park in Hiroshima was very evocative and we enjoyed immensely the old town of Takayama and quaint village of Shirakawago. David Tydeman - October 2014
Japan Discovery I found the whole trip memorable 5
What a gem you have in Naoko (our guide). She did a brilliant job. Her care (of 15 ageing Aussies), attention to detail, knowledge and sense of humour made for a relaxing and most enjoyable holiday. Dianne Sullivan - October 2013
Japan Discovery I have never had a dud holiday and this is certainly no exception. 5
A good mix of traditional cultural sites, modern infrastructure, lifestyles and natural beauty spots. The temples and shrines with gold leaf, the manicured gardens, the traditional ryokan, free time at the shops, the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.... The group of fellow travellers was great. We had many laughs and have made some good friends. Ron Smith - April 2013

Have you been on this tour? Have your say below:

Select Rating
Hover mouse over to select stars



Special Experiences!

  • Begin the day at Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Fish Market (one of the world’s largest) and learn the age-old culinary art of making sushi!
  • Enjoy a visit to the famous Sumo Museum to learn about Japan's unique national sport.
  • Stay in an authentic ryokan guesthouse, bathe in the natural hot springs and enjoy a traditional Japanese dinner.
  • Enjoy a variety of local activities including sake brewing & tasting and dressing in a kimono.

Trip Info

Group Size

Max: 20

Transportation

Coach, gondola, local train & bullet train

Tips

Tipping is not expected, however this is at your discretion

Tour Highlights

• Learn about the national sport at the Sumo Museum • Stop at Mt Fuji’s 5th station (weather permitting) to take in the spectacular views • Discover the sights of historic Takayama on foot • Explore World Heritage-listed Shirakawago • Visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park • Tour the majestic temples of Kyoto • Visit Himeji, Japan’s largest castle

Download Brochure PDF

Please refer to web site for most up to date information & pricing

View Tour Map
Travel Story Travel Story Travel Story Travel Story

Bunnik Tours Reviews for Japan Discovery

This tour has a rating of 5 stars based on 36 reviews.