Cherry Blossom Tour

13 Days

£4,299

A 13 day tour that explores the very best of Japan’s culture and nature, during the popular cherry blossom season. Journey on the famous bullet train, stay in some traditional accommodation, and sample the local specialities including fresh sushi and Hida Beef. Witness Mount Fuji, spend time in the cultural city of Kyoto and visit the beautiful Japanese Alps region. Other tour highlights include a visit to a wasabi farm and a sake brewery as well as Himeji Castle, one of the most famous castles in Japan.

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Details

Day 1 UK to Tokyo
Take a scheduled flight from your regional UK airport to Tokyo.

Day 2 Arrive Tokyo
Arrive at Narita Airport where you will be welcomed by our representative and transferred to your accommodation. The rest of the day is at leisure.

Day 3 Tokyo Sightseeing (B)
This morning, after breakfast, enjoy a sightseeing tour of Tokyo. Visit Tsukiji Market, the worlds’s largest Fish
Market, and continue to Asakusa Kannon Temple where legend has it that fisherman brothers discovered an image of Kannon (the goddess of mercy) in the Sumida River around 1,370 years ago and were inspired to
enshrine it. This is followed by a stroll along Nakamise Shopping Street. Visit the Imperial Palace for a photo opportunity, and on to Shinjuku Gyoen Park, one of the best cherry blossom viewing spots in Tokyo. The last
stop of the day will be the Tokyo Tower, which is the second tallest self-supporting steel tower in Japan, opened in 1958.

Day 4 Tokyo to Hakone to Mt Fuji (BD)
Visit Koishikawa Korakuen, a seventeenth century botanical garden maintained by the University of Tokyo, featuring many species of tree and plant, as well as a small Japanese landscape garden, particularly nice during the cherry blossom season. Travel to Hakone by coach. Enjoy a short cruise on Lake Ashi and continue to the Owakudani Ropeway. Tonight you will stay at traditional Japanese ryokan where, after dinner, you can enjoy a complimentary hot spring spa.

Day 5 Fuji to Takayama (BD)
Start your trip to Mt. Fuji. Climb up to the 5th station by coach, about 2,300 metres above sea level. Your tour continues to Takayama for a two night stay with dinner each evening, stopping en-route to visit the Daio Wasabi Farm, to see how this famous Japanese ingredient is grown.

Day 6 Takayama (BD)
After breakfast, enjoy a full day city tour, including visits to Takayama-Jinya, Matsuri no Mori, Kamisannomachi Street and the Folk Craft Museum.

Day 7 Takayama to Shirakawago to Kanazawa (B)
Travel to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Shirakawago, famous for the 250 year old, traditional gasshou-zukuri farmhouses. Continue to Kanazawa for an overnight stay. Discover authentic Samurai houses before touring the Kenrokuen Garden and Kanazawa 21st Century Museum.

Day 8 Kanazawa to Kyoto (B)
Morning departure from Kanazawa for Kyoto, Japan’s ancient capital. The first stop will be the stunning Kiyomizu-dera Temple, built in the hills east of Kyoto 780 years ago, to marvel at the wonderful views of the
city. This will be followed by a trip to Gion, Kyoto’s renowned Geisha district and popular nightspot, where visitors can experience authentic local life. At the end of the day, check into your hotel.

Day 9 Kyoto and Nara Day Tour (B)
After breakfast leave the hotel for a sightseeing tour of Kyoto and Nara. Visit the Daibutsuden (Great Buddha Hall) at the Todai-ji Temple, one of the world’s largest wooden buildings and one of the best known temples in Japan, enshrining a gigantic bronze statue of Buddha. Next you will visit Nara Deer Park where the deer roam freely, and you can feed or pet them (special food is sold in the park grounds). Return to Kyoto in the afternoon for the celebrated Kinkaku-ji Temple (Golden Pavilion), followed by a Kimono show at the Nishijin Textile Centre. Return to the hotel.

Day 10 Kyoto to Hiroshima (B)
Your main luggage will be transferred from Kyoto to Osaka, so pack a small bag for your stay in Hiroshima. After breakfast, visit the Heian Jingu Shrine, home of perhaps the world’s most authentic and exquisite
Japanese Garden. Continue to Nijo Castle, which was built in the early 17th century, before leaving Kyoto by the bullet train to Hiroshima. Why not try a bento box aboard the train for your lunch. On arrival visit the Peace Memorial Park and Genbaku-dome (The Atomic Bomb Dome), the symbol of Hiroshima, a city that advocates world peace. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. While all structures vanished in the atomic bomb explosion, only this building miraculously remained standing. Check into your hotel for an overnight stay.

Day 11 Hiroshima to Miyajima to Osaka (B)
After breakfast leave the hotel for a ferry ride and sightseeing tour of Miyajima to visit the Itsukushima Shrine. It is a picturesque sight where the mountains, sea and red shrine buildings blend in harmony. The entire island
is designated as a historic site, and is one of the three most beautiful sites in Japan, along with Matsushima in Miyagi and Ama-no-hashidate in Kyoto. After lunch, transfer to Osaka by bullet train. On Arrival, you will visit Osaka Castle for a photo opportunity and the Shinsaibashi area, before checking into your hotel.

Day 12 Osaka to Himeji and Kobe to Osaka (B)
After breakfast at the hotel, leave for Himeji Castle, one of the most ancient and well-known castles in Japan. Continue to Kobe China Town, also known as Nankinmachi, and Motomachi, a lively area perfect for shopping, gourmet food and nightspots in the centre of Kobe. Enjoy some free time here for lunch (at own expense), and a wander around the Harbour area in Kobe, before moving on to a Sake Brewery in the Nada District. There were three reasons for the development of Sake brewing in the 18th century that made the name of Nada known throughout Japan. One was the discovery of Miya-mizu, excellent water quality for making Sake; two, the production of high quality rice, an ingredient in Sake; and three, a convenient location for transportation by sea. Return to your hotel in Osaka.

Day 13 Fly to UK (B)
Day at leisure until your transfer to Kansai International Airport by airport shuttle bus. Fly to your regional airport in the UK.

Your Hotel Accommodation

Tokyo: Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba

A city resort hotel, the Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba Hotel is located in the Tokyo Bay area and is around a 7-minute walk from the beach. Spacious guestrooms have modern amenities including safety deposit box, fridge, TV, hairdryer and toiletries.  Teppanyaki Restaurant Hamayu and Star Road Dining and Bar offer spectacular skyline views from the 30th floor. There is also a sushi restaurant, a Japanese and Chinese restaurant in addition to several other cafes and bars on site.

Kawaguchiko: Jiragonno Fuji No Yakata

The hotel is situated in the Aokigahara Ocean of Trees spreading to the foot of Mt. Fuji. It is about 20km from the Lake Kawaguchi. Ideally located in peaceful village surrounds, a short car ride from Fujikawaguchiko and Fujiyoshida. Provides complimentary entrance to indoor and outdoor baths. Room on the ground floor have direct access to the gardens. The rooms on the upper level have views of Mt. Fuji.

Takayama: Ryu Resort & Spa

The Ryu Resort & Spa is located in a scenic wooded area in the tranquil Shokawa Highland region, a 35-minute drive from JR Takayama Station.  Rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) flooring and Japanese futon bedding. A spacious living room area includes a flat-screen TV, a refrigerator, and an electric kettle. The en suite bathroom features amenities and slippers.  Guests can soak in the natural hot spring bath, both indoor and open-air.

Kanazawa: Ana Crowne Plaza Kanazawa
Located in front of JR Kanazawa Station, ANA Crowne Plaza Kanazawa offers rooms with free internet and free video on demand. It features 4 restaurants, a concierge and bicycle rentals.

Kyoto: Hotel Monterey Kyoto – 27 March 2019 Departure Only

Located around a 15 minute walk from the Imperial Palace, the Monterey Hotel is just a short walk (150 yards) from Karasumaoike subway station.  JR Kyoto Station is around a 10 minute drive away. Guestrooms have flat-screen TV, free wired internet and smartphones for guests use. The Zuientei Restaurant serves a selection of local Japanese cuisine and there is a French restaurant serving a selection of French dishes in elegant surroundings. Coffee and cocktails can be enjoyed at The Library Cafe and Bar.

Kyoto: New Miyako – 3 April 2019 Departure Only

The New Miyako Hotel is situated just a leisurely five minute walk from Kyoto Subway Station. All the rooms are air-conditioned and come equipped with a flat-screen TV, a refrigerator and have free WiFi. The hotel’s  beauty salon, convenience shop are available for guests to use. There are six dining options including the buffet restaurant Le Plaisir serving international dishes, Shisen serving Chinese Sichuan cuisine and the famous Restaurant Kyoyamatoya, which has been in existence for over 100 years, serves seasonal Japanese fare.

Hiroshima: Grand Prince Hotel Hiroshima

Overlooking the Seto Inland Sea, this urban resort hotel is located a 15-minute drive from central Hiroshima. The hotel offers 5 dining options, a seasonal outdoor pool and hot spring baths. The hotel is featured in Michelin Green Guide Japan 2013.

Osaka: Hotel Vischio Osaka by Granvia

The Vischio Osaka Hotel is due to open in June 2018.  It is conveniently located just a 5 minute walk from JR Osaka Station and offers a relaxing and refreshing atmosphere.  Comfortable guestrooms have neutral décor and modern amenities.  There is an Italian Restaurant offering an interesting fusion of Italian and Japanese cuisine.  A buffet menu is also offered.

Tour Name: Cherry Blossom Tour

Tour Code: CBT13
Duration:
13 Day

Depart Return Price From
27/03/19 08/04/19 £4,399
03/04/19 15/04/19 £4,299
25/03/20 06/04/20 £4,549
01/04/20 13/04/20 £4,449

Land Only from £3,499
Single supplement £790

The deposit for these arrangements is £300 per person. Balance is due 10 weeks before departure.

Please call 020 8543 8133 for more information or to make a booking.
Book early to avoid disappointment!

PRICE INCLUDES:

  • International flights
  • Accommodation
  • English speaking guides
  • Transfers
  • Bullet train
  • Baggage transfers for one piece
  • Meals as specified (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner).

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • Local tips
  • Personal spending
  • Travel Insurance