Japan Spring Escape Tour
Departs Thursday 21st March 2019
Starting in Osaka and ending in Tokyo, this is a short tour at a relaxed pace, exploring out of way places including a stay at an exclusive villa in the countryside, visiting the ancient Japanese capital Nara, visits to world famous art islands in the Inland Sea and to mountain villages along the historical Nakasendo trade route.
Come and join us on a special tour designed with repeat travellers in mind. As experienced visitors to Japan you may want to see something new and we have included new destinations and features that we have found to be popular in recent years. For those of you with nostalgia for the Japan you have previously visited, you may wish to add a pre or post tour to reacquaint yourselves with your favourite sites.
The first permanent capital of Japan, Nara is a city full of historic treasures and tradition. It is home to the world’s largest wooden building – Todaiji which houses the largest bronze Buddha statue in the world.
Nara is home to some of the friendliest deer in Japan, who roam the expansive public park on the outskirts of the city. Purchase some special crackers to feed the deer while you explore the temples and shrines.
A small island among thousands in the Seto Inland Sea, Naoshima packs a punch with contemporary art museums, restored ‘Art House Project’ houses and open air sculptures.
Art and architecture enthusiasts from Japan and beyond flock to the island to see buildings designed by Tadao Ando, paintings by Monet and installations by Yayoi Kusama.
Kiso Valley, nestled in the mountains of Nagano Prefecture, is home to a handful of post towns along the ancient Nakasendo trade route. In feudal Japan travellers would spend several days following the path between Kyoto and Tokyo, staying overnight at post towns along the way.
Magome and Tsumago are two such towns. The ancient feel of the area has been preserved by running power lines underground and banning cars, making Kiso Valley one of the best locations in Japan to place yourself back in the time of Shoguns.
It is difficult to believe that the thronging city of Tokyo, grew from what had been a small, little-known fishing village in 1457 into the largest metropolis in the world with an estimated population of 1,000,000 by 1721. It was the centre of the Shogun regime from the 17th century until Japan was opened up to the west in the late 19th century.
No other place in Japan shows the contrast between the historical culture of the samurai period and the modern technical miracle better than bustling Tokyo, with everything from high tech shopping and outrageous fashion districts to the traditional Imperial Palace.
Upon arrival at Itami Osaka airport, you will be met and greeted by your guide. Transfer to your hotel in Osaka and check in for 1 night.
Note: Airport transfer is not included
In the morning travel to Nara, the ancient capital of Japan. Visit the world’s oldest wooden building and see the largest bronze statue in the world.
Travel on to an exclusive villa in the countryside. This afternoon is at leisure, take in the stunning mountain views or perhaps stroll through the village nearby.
Tonight, enjoy a traditional Japanese style dinner prepared with local ingredients at the villa.
Travel across the Seto Inland Sea to Naoshima. Visit Chichu museum and The Art House Project with a Naoshima Art museum guide. Check in to Benesse House for two nights.
The next day we will visit another art island, Inushima.
After breakfast, check out from Benesse House and catch the Shikoku Ferry from Naoshima to Okayama to catch the Bullet Train for Nagoya. From Nagoya Station you will be transferred to your hotel and check in for 2 nights.
Today we travel to Kiso Valley with its quaint historical post towns, Tsumago & Magome, where cars are banned and signs of modernity such as power lines are hidden to maintain the old style ambiance. After strolling along the old streets and soaking up the atmosphere, return to Nagoya
After a leisurely morning, travel to Tokyo by Bullet Train. Check in to the hotel for 1 night.
Today our journey concludes. Enjoy your last day in Japan with some last minute souvenir hunting before heading to Tokyo airport to take your flight home to Australia.
Note: Airport transfer is not included
Arrive home. Sayounara!
Dreams Series Tours
Enjoy the cool Autumn ambiance and gentle Spring air as you wander through rustic villages, majestic castles and ancient temples. Wonder at the majesty of Mt Fuji and the beautiful Cherry Blossom trees. Follow the Golden Route and visit places off the beaten track, from the Northern island of Hokkaido to the Southern islands of Okinawa and Kyushu.
Our Dreams Series of tours are fully escorted and offer a deluxe service that’s great value for money.
Your Japan Spring Escape Tour package includes:
- Fully escorted tour by experienced English speaking tour escort
- First class train travel by 7 day Japan Rail Pass
- Deluxe quality accommodation
- All transfers and admissions for sightseeing as specified
- Baggage porterage – one piece/person
- Total of 8 Meals: Daily Breakfast (7) and Dinner (1)
- Naoshima and Chichu Museum expert guide
Package tour price: $4,960 pp twin share. Single room from $6,290
Exclusions: Airfares, airport transfers, your travel insurance, beverages with included meals (except where specified).
*Please select One World member carriers for your international flights. This land-only arrangement tour price is designed to combine with One World member airlines for the international flights. Flying with non-One World member airlines may incur extra fees for domestic flights in Japan.