A country where four seasons have shaped the very cultural fabric of this ancient nation.
Japan is made up of four main islands situated in north-eastern Asia between the north Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Japan. It’s nearly equivalent to half the size of New South Wales, surrounded by more than 4,000 smaller islands.
See Japan all over – where modern and ancient cultures collide
Best known nowadays perhaps for its technology, electronics, modern design and dancing robots, Japan is one of the few nations to have emerged from an industrial revolution with its traditional culture intact. Our tours to Japan from Australia cover all four main islands. Honshu is the largest and is home to the modern capital, Tokyo and Kyoto, the ancient and now still cultural capital of Japan.
Try our Japan All Over Tour if it’s your first time or you want to see it all. If you’re an experienced Japan traveller, try our Japan Northern Autumn Festival Tour for a unique experience of the Ainu culture and wilderness areas in the relatively undeveloped areas of Hokkaido.
Travel to Japan by the seasons
Japan is a country of spectacular natural beauty, with each change in the season shaping its culture over thousands of years. Our Japan holiday tours are designed to take advantage of the seasonal changes, so you can experience the natural and cultural delights of this wonderful country.
Spring holiday and cherry blossom tours to Japan
With the coming of spring in March, vivid blue skies replace the drab misty days of late winter and the country comes alive with Japan’s famous cherry blossoms. It is as if a heavy blanket has been lifted and the whole country celebrates “hanami” (blossom viewing) picnics of bento lunch boxes under spectacular canopies of pale pink blossoms on centuries-old manicured trees.
The patience necessary for cultivating these magnificent cherry trees and their miniature bonsai cousins over decades reflects the patient and polite society that has evolved over centuries. The Japanese people are one of the friendliest you are likely to encounter and are tolerant of strangers, proud to show and share their heritage.
Summer festival tour to Japan
In Summer the wet season arrives and washes away the fallen petals and revitalises the land. The bamboo forests thrive and the deciduous trees develop luxuriant coats of dark green foliage. Summers are hot in Japan and after the rain, a steamy sultry atmosphere descends across the island country. The famous moss gardens are at their best and the locals visit the temples and enjoy traditional cool dishes such as soumen and soba (cold noodles) and shaved ice, fruit and syrup, hiyayakko (chilled tofu), seaweed salads and sushi.
Our Kyoto Ancient Festival & Northern Japan Dreams Tour immerses you in the colour and ritual of a 1,000-year-old festival in the cultural capital, Kyoto and then whisks you up to Japan’s northernmost island of Hokkaido, home of the Ainu people. The Ainu are believed to be the original inhabitants of Japan with their own language and culture, but over thousands of years have been pushed further and further north. Until little more than a hundred and fifty year years ago, they still lived a hunter-gatherer lifestyle and lived in harmony with the wilderness around them.
Autumn Japan tours coloured by the season
A welcome cool change rolls across the country as Autumn approaches in September and people begin to promenade in the cool night air. There are traditional harvest festivals and others commemorating ages past, night fairs, colourful lights and tantalizing street stalls. As the days shorten it is as if a switch has been flicked and there is a spectacular appearance of vibrant orange and red autumn colours from maple, elm and oak trees which paint a beautiful canvas across the countryside. Silk kimonos, still worn by women and young girls at festivals and formal occasions, sport patterns which reflect these autumn hues.
Our Japan Autumn Dreams Tour and Japan Gourmet Autumn Tour traverse the main island of Honshu, from Himeji and Miyajima in the South through Kyoto, rustic villages and mountain retreats to Tokyo in the North.
Small group tours to Japan
If you’re looking for a small group tour to Japan with a guide who knows the culture like the back of their hand, see why JANESCO Travel offers the best Japan tours from Australia. Meet your guide