Cherry Blossom Japan - 15 Days** from $10,940

Explore the traditions and culture of the land of the Samurai warrior, the exquisite Geisha and the Tea Ceremony, against a backdrop of glorious cherry blossoms.

Tokyo • Kamakura • Mt Fuji • Lake Suwa • Takayama • Shirakawago • Kanazawa • Hiroshima • Himeji • Kobe • Kyoto • Miyajima • Nara

Notes:
** “Prices are subject to variable and seasonal pricing, prices are subject to demand, market conditions and availability.
Please contact us for further details and availabiltiy.”

Schedules

Adelaide – Tokyo

Airport Arrival Transfer
Upon arrival you will be meet by a local representative and transferred to your Hotel

Welcome to Tokyo!
Before you set your foot outside the hotel door, be aware of Tokyo’s complicated address system. Very few streets have names and instead are identified by numbers indicating building, block and area. 1-11-18, Shibuya, Shibuya-ku would therefore translate as the 18th building of the 11th block of the 1st area of Shibuya in Shibuya ward. Invest in a bilingual map of Tokyo and don’t hesitate to ask police for directions, as even the locals can get confused. Once you have grasped the navigation system, Tokyo is a delight to get around. The metro is super efficient, the city is clean and people are courteous and friendly. Though addresses may be confusing, Tokyo is divided neatly into 23 wards, each with a  certain distinctive characteristic. Visit Asakusa for old-town charm and temples, Ginza for shopping, Mecca and Akihabara for electronics galore. Blend old and new to get a taste of Tokyo’s great diversity. Variety is Tokyo’s key. Few other world cities are as wonderfully idiosyncratic. International and local influences intertwine in cuisine, festivals, music, galleries, shopping and even accommodation. Bizarre and fast-moving, yet peaceful and intrinsically religious, Tokyo’s identity is above all, distinctly Japanese, despite existing as a world of its own.

Tokyo

A city sights tour begins with a visit to the Koishikawa Korakuen Park, a peaceful garden begun in 1629 and influenced by Chinese design. Stroll in Ueno Onshi Park before a visit to the Edo Tokyo Museum. In the afternoon visit Chidori-ga-fuchi, a moat in the Kokyogaien Gardens, then it is time for shopping in the famous Ginza district.

Tokyo

Visit Meiji Jingu Shrine and the historic entertainment district of Asakusa to see the Sensoji Temple and to browse in Nakamise Arcade. Travel to the top of the Tokyo Sky Tree (350m) for views over the city then return to the hotel by 1.30pm. Afternoon at leisure.

Kamakura Excursion (B, L)

Take an excursion to Kamakura to see the Daibutsu, or great Buddha statue, visit Hase Temple and walk along the Dankazura, a raised stone  walkway through an avenue of cherry blossom trees leading to the Hachimangu Shrine. Also visit Komyohi Temple.

Tokyo – Mt Fuji – Lake Suwa (B, D)

Transfer by coach to Tokyo station for the bullet train ride to Odawara then transfer by coach to Lake Ashi for a cruise on the beautiful lake. Lunch is at a local restaurant before travelling on by coach to the 5th station for views of Mt Fuji, the highest peak in Japan, weather permitting. Continue on to Lake Suwa to stay one night at a ryokan, the Hotel Beniya in Japanese rooms.

Lake Suwa – Takayama

Travel by coach to Takayama today. Visit the Matsuri-no-mori museum before enjoying a Tea Ceremony and the museum at Chya-no-yu-no-mori. Stay at Associa Takayama Resort for two nights (or similar)

Takayama

Take a half day tour of Takayama, visiting the Miyagawa morning markets, Takayama Jinya and a local sake brewery, followed by time to explore the quaint old streets of Sannomachi.

Takayama – Shirakawago – Kanazawa (B, L)

The charming village of Shirakawago is visited with its traditional thatched roof houses. Visit the Miboro Dam before lunch at the Shirakawago and Observatory. Visit Wada House, a typical Gassho-zukuri style house built in the form of hands in prayer. There is free time to wander in the heritage village of Ogimachi. Continue to Kanazawa for a two night stay at the ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel (or similar)

Kanazawa (B, D)

Tour Kanazawa today with a visit to Kenrokuen, a highly revered private garden. The local Omicho markets are next, followed by a visit to the Nomura Samurai residence. Enjoy a Gold Leaf experience, where gold is beaten to a very thin sheet and used for decoration. Spend some guided time at the Higashi Chaya district – a traditional neighbourhood with tea houses where geisha perform.

Kanazawa – Hiroshima (B)

Travel by train to Hiroshima, via Kyoto, arriving at your hotel around 3pm. Stay two nights at the Sheraton Grand Hiroshima Hotel (or similar)

Miyajima Excursion (B,L)

Travel to Miyajima Island by coach and ferry. Take a guided walking tour to see the Itsukushima Shrine and striking red torii gate and the glorious cherry blossoms. After lunch, visit the Hiroshima Peace Park and the very moving Peace Museum and Atomic Bomb Dome.

Hiroshima – Himeji – Kobe – Kyoto (B)

Travel by coach to Himeji and visit the Himeji Castle. Travel on to Kobe and visit the Kobe Harbor Land shopping centre. Arrive at your hotel in Kyoto, Japan’s cultural capital, at around 5pm. Stay three nights at the ANA Crowne Plaza Kyoto (or similar)

Kyoto (B)

A full day of sightseeing includes a visit to Nijo Castle. The castle area has several gardens and groves of cherry and plum trees. In another beautiful garden setting, visit stunning Kinkaku-ji or Golden Pavilion, with its top floors covered in gold leaf. Explore Gion, the city’s most famous entertainment district and the centre of its traditional arts. Experience one of these as you dress up in a traditional kimono.

Nara Excursion (B,L)

Travel to Nara and immerse yourself in culture of the first permanent capital and birthplace of much of the Japan’s traditional arts and literature. Visit Todaiji Temple to see the Great Buddha statue, the Deer Park, Kasuga Shrine and Kinkaku Temple.

Departure Transfer (B)

Tour concludes this morning after breakfast