Call to book01904 521 936
Tour Search
#Favourites

Adventures through Japan

Fall in love with this unique country

You are viewing 2020 itinerary. Select departure year
20192020
13 daysFrom £3,195 per person

2020 Tour code: 20JAS

Raildiscoveries

This tour is operated by Raildiscoveries

About the tour

Cherry blossoms, geisha, tea ceremonies, sake, Shinto and sacred temples; Japan has it all, and when you travel through cities and countryside alike by rail, it is all too easy to fall in love with this unique country. This tour is operated by our sister company Rail Discoveries.

Highlights

Raildiscoveries

This tour is operated by Raildiscoveries

What’s included

Itinerary

Days 1-2 - Journey to Tokyo

Board your flight to Beijing, then continue your journey by air, flying directly to Tokyo where you'll arrive on Day 2. A coach transfer is included to your hotel and after time to check, there'll be a short orientation tour of the area.

Tokyo
Days 3-4 - Sightseeing in Japan’s capital

Begin your Japanese experience with a fullday's guided city tour of Tokyo, where cutting edge technology sits alongside ancient temples, flashing neon lights, and shining skyscrapers towering above stunning Shinto shrines. Included in the sights you'll see are Tokyo's government building, whose observation deck you'll visit for panoramic views over the city, the Meiji Jingu Shrine, dedicated to deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken, as well as some free time in Harajuku and Omotesando, one of Tokyo's premier shopping districts. After seeing the regal double-bridged entrance to the Imperial Palace Plaza you'll head into the Ginza district, renowned for its sushi restaurants.

Continue your explorations on the morning of Day 4 as you travel by coach to the Senso-ji Buddhist temple, dedicated to the Bodhisattva Kannon - otherwise known as the goddess of mercy. Afterward, take a stroll along Nakamise shopping street, one of the oldest of it's kind in the whole of Japan. Enjoy a group lunch at a local restaurant before an afternoon and evening at leisure.

Meiji Jingu Shrine
Day 5 - Mount Fuji

Today you'll travel by coach to Mount Fuji, one of the highlights of your tour and arguably Japan's most distinctive landmark. Driving along the foot of the famous mountain and up it's northern slopes, arrive at the Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station, which provides the closest view of Mount Fuji you possible, unless you make the hike to its summit. If the weather doesn't allow for a safe ascent, there'll be a visit to the Mount Fuji Visitor Centre instead. Following your visit, take the Hakone rope-way (cable car) to the sulphurous hot springs at Owakudani, after which you'll descend to Lake Ashi for a short cruise.

Mount Fuji
Day 6 - Hiroshima

Board the world-famous bullet train today for a high-speed journey to Hiroshima, a city that rose to prominence after the dropping of the atomic bomb by the United States Air Force on 6th August 1945. Approximately 90% of the city was levelled, and Hiroshima's busiest commercial district was eradicated - leaving an open field. This was turned into the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, which opened on 1st April 1954. You'll also spend time at the A-bomb Dome, the closest building to the hypo-centre of the bomb that remained at least partially standing. It would have been demolished, but was more intact than originally thought, and in 1996 it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Entrance is also included to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.

Hiroshima
Days 7-8 - Miyajima Island & Kyoto

Just off the coast from Hiroshima, Miyajima Island - otherwise known as Itsukushima - is seen as sacred. Trees cannot be cut here, and some animals including monkeys and deer can roam freely. To further preserve the apparent purity of the island, children cannot be born here. There are also a number of shrines on the island, but none are more famous than the magnificent 'floating' Itsukushima Shrine, which is a recognised UNESCO World Heritage site. Its recognisable gate (torii) is one of Japan's most iconic sights and entrance is included in your tour, after which you'll have some free time to stroll around independently.

On Day 8 travel again by bullet train, this time to Kyoto - Japan's ancient capital. Embark on a tour that takes you to the Fushimi Inari shrine, dedicated to the god of rice and sake before, appropriately, making a visit to the Gekkeikan Okura Sake Museum and enjoying a tasting of this unique national tipple.

Miyajima Island
Day 9 - Arashiyama bamboo forest

Continue sightseeing in and around Kyoto today with visits to the secluded Kinkaku-ji temple and Ryoan-ji temple, both built for the practise of Zen Buddhism. This is followed by an excursion to the the incredible Arashiyama bamboo forest which provides a truly otherworldly experience as you walk through the sprawling grove of bamboo trees which tower, seemingly endlessly, above you.

Arashiyama Bamboo Forest
Days 10-11 - Nara deer park

Transfer by coach to ancient Nara, where you'll make a stop at Nara deer park, so named due to the large number of tame deer that roam around it. Originally believed to be messengers of the gods, the deer were seen as sacred, and killing one of these deer was a capital offence punishable by death until relatively recently. As well as being a vast expanse of beautiful parkland, Nara Park is home to Todai-ji Temple, a Buddhist building founded in the first half of the 8th century. On Day 11 you are free to explore at you own pace.

Todai Ji Temple, Nara
Days 12-13 - Osaka and the journey home

Travel by coach to the futuristic city of Osaka today and explore Osaka Castle, a traditional pagodastyle building dating back to the 16th century, and experience the dynamic Dotonbori district with it's neon signs lining the waterfront. Transfer to the airport on Day 13 for your flight back to London, travelling via Beijing.

Osaka Castle

Additional information

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Hotels

Hotel Granvia Hiroshima

Hotel Granvia Hiroshima, Hiroshima

View hotel

ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel

ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel, Kyoto

View hotel

Kyoto Tokyu Hotel

Kyoto Tokyu Hotel, Kyoto

View hotel

Rihga Royal Hotel, Kyoto

Rihga Royal Hotel, Kyoto

View hotel

Hotel Vischio Osaka

Hotel Vischio Osaka, Osaka

View hotel

Sunshine City Prince Hotel

Sunshine City Prince Hotel, Tokyo

View hotel

Train

Bullet Trains

Enhance your holiday

Upgrades

Flight upgrades
London Hotels
UK rail connections
Worldwide Holidays by Rail 2019/20

Worldwide Holidays by Rail 2019/20

Long haul rail holidays to North America, South America, Asia, Africa and Australasia.

Order brochure

Tailor made for you

Customise this tour with Great Rail Journeys Independent

GRJ IndependentEnquire
Adventures through Japan

Helping you plan your holiday...

Call

Enquire
Luke Simpson
Luke
Helen Laverack
Helen
Lynne Broadley
Lynne
Related inspiration from our journey blog