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zBackroads & Teahouses of Japan

8 days

8 Day Small Group Escorted Tour

Small Group Discoveries for our World Travelers…

  • Discover the essence of Japan’s culture, history and enduring age-old ways as you explore its charming backroads, waterways and wooded trails.
  • Sample hot rice wine and savor traditional Japanese snacks in an historic Edo-era tea house set along the feudal Tokaido highway.
  • Join our special Zen meditation experience at a Buddhist temple in Kyoto, an ancient town revered as the spiritual and cultural heart of Japan.
  • Ascend the forested slopes of Fushimi Inari Shrine as you make your way through its 10,000 red torii gates, featured in the film Memoirs of a Geisha.

Show all itinerary details


Welcome to Tokyo

Check in to your Deluxe Room at the city-center Hilton Hotel.


Out and about in Tokyo

Your day begins with a guided stroll through Hamarikyu Garden, a lovely oasis surrounded by the city’s skyscrapers. Refresh with a cup of macha in a teahouse set on a garden island and then enjoy a cruise along the Sumida River. Step off in Asakusa, one of the city’s oldest districts, to visit Asakusa Kannon Temple and the bustling Nakamise Arcade. Enjoy a hands-on class in the preparation of both nigiri and maki sushi and then sit down to a congenial lunch. Tour the Meiji Shrine before returning to your hotel for a free evening. Meals B,L


Along the forested trails of Kamakura

Travel by rail to Kamakura to visit Jochiji Temple, founded in 1283. A pleasant 2-hour hike along a carefully tended forested trail offers lovely views of the sea. Visit a small Shinto shrine as you make your way to Kotokuin Temple, home to Kamakura’s famous giant bronze Buddha. Marvel at the gilded statue of the Goddess of Mercy at Hase-dera Temple before returning to Tokyo. Meals B,L


Hakone and Mt. Fuji National Park

With forested slopes and the image of Mt. Fuji reflected in the waters of Lake Ashi, this is one of Japan’s most spectacular regions, and we’ve made special arrangements for you to experience its beauty... Ascend by cable car over steaming mineral pools to Mt. Owakudani, cruise on Lake Ashi and hike along one of the last remaining sections of the Old Tokaido Highway. Sample rice wine in an Edo-era tea house and overnight at the Fujiya Hotel. Meals B,L,D


By rail to Kyoto c

Ride the world-famous Bullet Train to Kyoto arriving in time for lunch and a guided afternoon walking or biking tour through the Gion district where Geisha traditions began long ago. Delight in the weeping willows and quaint tea houses that line the Shirakawa Canal and visit the beautiful gardens of the Imperial Palace Park. Continue along the Kamogawa River, lined with cherry trees abloom in the spring, and overnight at the Brighton Hotel. Meals B,L


Out and about in Kyoto

Your exploration of Japan’s spiritual heart begins fittingly with our special Zen meditation experience at a Buddhist temple. Then visit Nijo Castle with its remarkable Nightingale Floor, designed to “chirp” a warning if would-be assassins intruded into the Shogun’s quarters! Visit the vermilion-hued Heian Shrine and marvel at the exotic foods and wares of the bustling Nishiki Market. Enjoy magnificent views from the terrace of Kiyomizu Temple before returning to your hotel.
Meals B,L


Ancient Nara c

Today’s full-day excursion showcases the historic temples of Japan’s first capital including Todaiji, the world’s largest wooden building, and Kasuga Taisha, founded in 768 and famous for its hundreds of bronze and stone lanterns. At Fushimi Inari Shrine, featured in the movie Memoirs of a Geisha, you’ll walk through its 10,000 red torii gates to the summit for amazing views over the wooded hills. Return to Kyoto where your evening is free. Meals B,L


Sayonara, Japan!

Your journey with us ends this morning. Meals B

Private Tour Add-Ons

Be A Hong Kong Insider

Our resident guide will take you around town like a savvy insider to discover facets of Hong Kong which few visitors ever glimpse! We include transfers, a choice of fine city-center hotels, our exclusive Be a Hong Kong Insider full-day private tour, and more!

Be a Beijing Insider

This Private Tour just for your traveling party includes your choice of deluxe or luxury hotel, 5 meals and extensive sightseeing with your own personal car, driver and guide.


Our 3-day FreeStyle Travel package includes a choice of fine hotels, daily breakfast, full day sightseeing with your own personal car, driver and guide and private car airport transfers.


Explore the ancient Buddhist traditions of this thoroughly modern city on a private tour featuring its most significant temples including the Temple of the Golden Buddha and the Marble Temple.


Cherry Blossoms  

Discover Japan’s springtime beauty... From an enchanting Tokyo garden and Hakone National Park to the delicate pink blossoms that line Kyoto’s waterways, our special March and April departures offer the opportunity to experience Japan during one of its loveliest seasons!

Gion Festival  

Delight in the ancient traditions of this festival when Kyoto is filled with color, music and light. Join the revelry, see the decorations and witness a spectacular parade of gigantic floats pulled by teams of men in traditional garb. Book early… This departure always sells out quickly!

Prices are per person, double occupancy, and may vary during holidays and trade shows. Additional surcharges and blackout dates may apply.

Family + Friends

Travel is one of  life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Take advantage of our Family & Friends offer and Save $100 per person anytime you book 4 or more people on the same A+R program.

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