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Essential Japan Self Guided Tour

9 days fr £1,436pp

Tokyo • Hakone • Kyoto

Save 10% + transfers · 8 nights fr £1,915 pp (Including flights)

Engross yourself in the fascinating culture of Japan with our special self-guided tour. Enjoy a trip taken at your own pace, beginning in bustling Tokyo where you can explore the bright lights, then take in the gorgeous nature of Hakone, gateway to Mount Fuji, before ending in culture-rich Kyoto, with its vast array of temples, towers and castles. You'll also spend a night in a Ryokan, a traditional inn with hot springs and fantastic local food.

Save 10% + transfers

8 nights from £1,915pp (incl flights)
Valid 02/01/2022 - 01/07/2022
020·7962·9933
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TOUR DETAILS
Accommodation:
  • Standard fr £1,436pp
  • Superior fr £1,739pp
Validity (selected dates between):
  • 02/01/2022 - 30/09/2022
  • 15/10/2022 - 15/12/2022
Also included:
  • 6 nights accommodation on BB basis
  • 2 nights accommodation on HB basis
  • Airport transfers with meet & greet
  • PASMO passes in Tokyo & Kyoto
  • Train tickets as specified
Not included:
  • International Flights (unless otherwise stated)
Overview
The timeless and fascinating country of Japan is a place where ancient traditions are fused with modern life as if it were the most natural thing in the world. On the surface, Japan appears exceedingly modern, but travelling around it offers lots of chances to connect with the traditional culture. Whatever time of the year you visit, Japan has the power to enthral even the most jaded traveller and on this nine day self guided tour you will discover just why.
Day 1
Arrive Tokyo
On arrival at Tokyo’s international airport you will be met by one of our experienced tour representatives who will be waiting to assist with transportation into the city, helping you to board the right train or find the appropriate shuttle van. After reaching the hotel and checking in, the remainder of the day is free for you to go out and explore on your own and try one of the local restaurants for your first taste of Japanese food. Overnight at either Hotel Gracery Shinjuku or Gate Hotel Tokyo.
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Day 2
Tokyo
Today you can begin with an early morning visit to Meiji Shrine to avoid the crowds. Tokyo’s most famous shrine sits in the middle of a lovely park. Nearby is the shopping haven of Harajuku where you find Takeshita Street, an alley filled with boutiques, shops and cafes. Walk along Omotesando, known as Tokyo’s Champs-Elysées then take the metro to the smart district of Ginza, and see the Imperial Palace. Finally stop in Asakusa, the oldest Geisha district and home to Senso-ji Temple.
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Day 3
Tokyo
Another self-guided day exploring Tokyo or its outlying areas. Visit the city's world-class museums and art galleries or take an excursion outside. You can go to Kamakura, one of Japan’s former capitals and a delightful seaside town which is home to many ancient shrines and temples. Located north of Tokyo, Nikko is a city that lies in the mountainous area of Tochigi Prefecture well-known for its national park which is a delight to visit.
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Day 4
Tokyo to Kiso Fukushima
Start this journey in the afternoon through Nakasendo in Kiso Valley, one of the five routes that branched off the former capital of Japan. The exciting bullet train ride from Tokyo to Nagoya is then followed by the scenic journey on the limited express train Wide View. After arriving at Kiso Fukushima Station you check in to the Urara Tsutaya Hotel and the rest of the day and evening is free for you to go out and explore.
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Day 5
Kiso Fukushima
Today you begin the journey to Tsumago, one of the post towns that flourished in the Edo Period. Tsumago is now a Nationally Designated Architectural Preservation Site, thanks to the collective effort of its locals to preserve most of the remaining historical buildings. After a Japanese-style breakfast and train and bus ride, start your three-hour walk along the Nakasendo Trail. Back at Kiso Fukushima tonight enjoy a nice soak in the onsen before a wonderful traditional dinner.
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Day 6
Kiso Fukushima to Kyoto
This morning you are free to take a stroll around Kiso-Fukushima after an early breakfast meeting the locals and shopping for souvenirs before catching the local train to Kyoto, the reigning cultural capital of Japan, which is home to 2,000 shrines and temples with 17 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. After checking-in, to either the Vista Premio Nagomitei or Royal Park Hotel, the rest of the day is free for you to go out and explore.
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Day 7
Kyoto
Today explore the former imperial capital and visit some of Kyoto’s World Heritage Sites using the comprehensive bus and subway systems. Start by visiting ornamental Nijo Castle then head north to Kinkaku-ji Temple, the Golden Pavilion and Ryoan-ji Temple, the site of Japan's most famous rock garden. Later visit Kiyomizu-dera or pure water temple and finish the day with a stroll through the atmospheric Higashiyama district, where busy lanes lead up to Kiyomizu with its quaint shops.
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Day 8
Kyoto
Head out of town this morning and travel to Nara. For 74 years during the 8th century, Nara was Japan’s capital and many of the temples and shrines built at that time still remain. It is a small town, with most of its main tourist spots located around Nara Park, where a great number of tame deer can be found. Visit Todai-ji Temple, the world’s largest wooden building and home to Japan’s biggest Buddha, and Kasuga Taisha, Nara’s most celebrated shrine.
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Day 9
Depart Kyoto
Today your wonderful self-guided tour around Japan comes to an end. Do some more sightseeing or souvenir shopping in Kyoto before taking the shuttle bus to the airport to catch an onward flight or begin your journey back home. This tour is a great way to see so many of the country's highlights and you are free throughout the nine days to explore wherever you want without being tied down to a particular schedule.
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