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From Japan’s Inland Sea to the Alps (2020 Itinerary)

11 days

Never more than 16 guests

Our Distinctive A+R Style

+ Come face-to-face with the real Japan as our expert native guide introduces you to residents eager to share insight into their lives.
+ Experience Japan’s enduring ways when you dine with Geisha, sample fine sake, and visit the world-famous Tsukiji Fish Market.
+ A skilled Tokyo chef teaches you how to prepare restaurant-quality sushi.
+ Hear colorful stories of Kyoto’s Geisha and Kabuki traditions on a guided stroll through the historic Gion district.
+ Learn about the ancient tenets of Japanese landscape design at Kenrokuen Garden.
+ Journey to the alpine hamlet of Shirakawago, known for its unusual century-old farmhouses.

Visit 5 UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Show all itinerary details

Day
1

You’ll be met at the airport and guided to the coach that will take you to the deluxe Granvia Hotel.

Day
2

Your exploration of Kyoto c begins at Nijo Castle where you can try to walk in stealth across the Nightingale Floor, designed to chirp in warning if would-be assassins penetrated into the Shogun’s chambers. You’ll also tour Kinkakuji Temple and Sanjusangendo with its 1,001 statues of Kannon, Goddess of Mercy. Then delve into Japan’s enduring traditions when you dine with Geisha at lunch and stroll in Gion where Kabuki traditions began long ago. Meals B+L+D

Day
3

Across the Inland Sea to Miyajima and Hiroshima

Hotel Granvia - Kyoto, Japan

Cross the island-dotted Inland Sea to Miyajima Island and visit Itsukushima Shrine c, established in the 6th century. Just off shore, a majestic red Torii Gate* rises from the sea. In Hiroshima, you’ll visit Peace Memorial Park, where the Memorial Museum stands as a sobering reminder of the destruction wrought by the Atomic bomb. Back in Kyoto, your evening is free. Meals B

*Miyajima's Itsukushima Shrine will undergo restoration work from 2019 - late 2020 and scaffolding will cover the torii gate for much of this period.
 

Day
4

Excursion to Nara, Japan’s First Capital

Hotel Granvia - Kyoto, Japan

Discover the ancient capital of Nara c where Buddhism was first introduced to Japan nearly 1,500 years ago. You’ll visit Todai-ji Temple, one of the largest wooden structures in the world and home to an immense statue of Buddha. Stroll the peaceful lantern-lined forest paths of Kasuga Shrine before returning to Kyoto.

This evening, if you wish, we can arrange for you to enjoy the hospitality of a traditional Japanese inn. Set in a landmark 18th-century structure in the heart of Kyoto’s Gion district (where Geisha and Kabuki traditions began long ago), the deluxe family-owned Yoshi-ima Ryokan offers an authentic Japanese experience. You’ll spend the night in a spacious tatami-matted room with a private en suite bath and enjoy a traditional Kaiseki dinner and Japanese breakfast. The Yoshi-ima’s Buddhist Alter Room, Teahouse and Courtyard Garden enrich your memorable overnight. Meals B

Day
5

Journey to Kanazawa and visit the Nomura Samurai Residence and Kutani Kosen Pottery Studio to see skilled artisans at work. While strolling through Kenrokuen, revered as one of Japan’s finest gardens, you’ll learn firsthand about the 6 elements of traditional landscape design which have been incorporated so perfectly here. Overnight at the deluxe Nikko Hotel. Meals B

Travel to the mountain hamlet of Shirakawago c, famous for its “Joined Hands” farmhouses. More than a century old, they derive their name from their steeply pitched roofs which look like hands joined together in prayer. Continue to the deluxe Associa Takayama Resort. Meals B+L+D

Day
7

Mingle with residents at the busy morning market and then admire perfectly-preserved buildings like Takayama Jinya, a government hall of the Edo era. Enjoy a tasting of fine sake and tour the Folk Craft Museum. At the Festival Floats Exhibit Hall, you’ll see parade floats dating back 400 years, many with cleverly engineered figures that can be animated when these floats are used in the town’s colorful spring and autumn festivals. Meals B

Journey by rail to Tokyo and transfer to the Keio Plaza Hotel. After time to refresh in your Premier Grand room on the Club Floor, join your guide for a walking tour in the vibrant Shinjuku district. Meals B

Day
9

Enjoy a special early morning visit to the famous outdoor fish market in Tsukiji where the city’s best chefs come to procure the freshest seafood. Then join one such chef to learn the art of preparing sushi. Enjoy the fruits of your labor for lunch before ascending the Tokyo Observatory for breathtaking views over the city. Delight in the colorful stalls of the Nakamise Arcade and visit Asakusa Kannon Temple; dating to the 7th century, it’s the oldest temple in the city. Meals B+L

Day
10

Travel to the 5th Station of Mt. Fuji and continue to beautiful Hakone National Park, beloved for its pine forests and lovely views of Mt. Fuji. Enjoy a cruise across picturesque Lake Ashi and ascend Mt. Komagatake by cable car for sweeping views over the forested mountains. Return to Tokyo with time to refresh before tonight’s Farewell Dinner. Meals B+D

Day
11

Depart Tokyo

Step aboard the comfortable airport limousine coach for your trip to the airport. Meals B

Private Tour Add-Ons

Hong Kong Insider

Enhance your travels through China and Asia with our signature Hong Kong Insider. We include your choice of deluxe or luxury hotel, chauffeured transfers when you come and go, and our exclusive Hong Kong Insider sightseeing tour.

Be a Beijing Insider

This Private Tour in Beijing includes your choice of deluxe or luxury hotel, both handpicked for their terrific city-center locations. Then join your expert personal guide for extensive sightseeing that will reveal the rich history and modern spirit of China’s vibrant capital.

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Save $1,000 Per Couple
+ $500 Solo

Pay in full at time of booking.

Stay in a Japanese inn...  

Enjoy dinner and a night at the Yoshi-ima Ryokan here in Kyoto’s Gion district on Day 4. Just $195 per person double, $200 single.

Takayama's Seasonal Festivals  

With colorful centuries-old traditions, Takayama’s Spring + Fall Festivals are highlighted by a spectacular parade of giant floats, many of them dating to the 17th century with remarkable, ingeniously-animated moving parts. Go in Spring and delight in the island’s famed Cherry Blossoms or join us in the fall for the brilliant autumn foliage – what the Japanese call Momiji.

 

Get Your Kimono
on in Tokyo

When you think Japan and Japanese aesthetic, the kimono immediately comes to mind.   This deceptively simple but eternally elegant garment has been the national dress of the Japanese for centuries... Read More >>

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26 March 202005 April 2020$7,699GuaranteedCherry Blossom Season
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04 April 202014 April 2020$7,699GuaranteedCherry Blossom Season
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06 April 202016 April 2020$7,699GuaranteedCherry Blossom Season
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09 April 202019 April 2020$7,699AvailableTakayama Spring Festival
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11 April 202021 April 2020$6,999Available
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14 May 202024 May 2020$6,999Available
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18 June 202028 June 2020$6,499Available
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09 July 202019 July 2020$6,499Available
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10 September 202020 September 2020$6,699Available
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17 September 202027 September 2020$6,699Available
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24 September 202004 October 2020$6,699Available
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08 October 202018 October 2020$6,999Available
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15 October 202025 October 2020$6,999Available
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22 October 202001 November 2020$6,999Available
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22 March 202101 April 2021$7,699AvailableCherry Blossom Season
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City-Center Hotels$7,699Available
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25 March 202104 April 2021$7,699AvailableCherry Blossom Season
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04 April 202114 April 2021$7,699AvailableCherry Blossom Season
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City-Center Hotels$7,699Available
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07 April 202117 April 2021$7,699AvailableCherry Blossom Season
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City-Center Hotels$7,699Available
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09 April 202119 April 2021$7,699AvailableTakayama Spring Festival
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12 April 202122 April 2021$6,999Available
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Family + Friends

Travel is one of  life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Combine our limited-time pay-in-full discount with our Family & Friends offers and save even more:
  • Save $50 more per person when 3 guests go
  • Save $100 more per person with 4 people
  • Save $150 more per person with 5 people
  • Save $200 more per person with 6 or more people!

Pay-In-Full

Save $1,000 per couple + $500 solo on all of our Small Group, Small Ship and Private Journeys when you pay-in-full at time of booking.

Book Your Air

Ask about international air service, including business class. See your travel agent or call us for current international airfare associated with this program. We offer both economy and business class fares. Prices are in U.S. currency and are per person based on double occupancy, unless otherwise noted. Availability is limited.

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