Day 1 : Tokyo - Arrive & Meet Your Group
Welcome to Tokyo! Once you arrive and check in at the hotel, you'll then have plenty of time to recover from your flight and relax before you meet everyone in your group.
Day 2 : Tokyo - City Tour and Nightlife
Tokyo is an incredible contrast of ultra-modern and ultra-traditional that will blow you away! First up is a visit to the Senso-ji Temple; Tokyo’s oldest Buddhist temple surrounded by traditional Japanese markets, before heading over to the stunning Meiji Shrine. Next up we discover colourful Harajuku as well as the iconic Shibuya Crossing (the world’s busiest intersection!) Later we'll experience some of Japan’s quirky restaurants and hilariously tiny bars in Shinjuku.
Day 3 : Tokyo - Fish market, Sushi Class & Arcades
Today we'll discover the organised mayhem of the Tsukiji Fish Market, once the largest operating markets in the world! Afterwards a sushi master will teach you the art of rolling your own fresh sushi. This evening we'll head for the bright lights of Akihabara. From classic arcade games to the insanity of Japanese photo booths, you'll soon learn why they call this 'Electric City'. Game on!
Meals :Breakfast, Lunch
Day 4 : Nagano - Travel to Nagano, Sake Tasting and Brewery Visit
Today we have the need for speed as we board our first ‘Shinkansen’, the famous Bullet train, and rocket through the Japanese countryside at over 200mph! Once in Nagano we'll get a chance to taste locally brewed Sake. Our home tonight is a 'Ryokan', a traditional Japanese Inn where we'll sleep on bamboo mats (it's comfy, trust us!).
Day 5 : Nagano - Snow Monkeys and Shiga Kogen National Park
Today we head into the mountains to see the famous Snow Monkeys. These Japanese Macaques play among the trees in summer, whilst in winter you'll catch these guys bathing in natural hot springs to escape the cold. We'll then explore the lakes and forests of the Shiga Kogen National Park, a beautiful site year round.
Day 6 : Travel from Nagano to Hakone
Leaving Nagano behind we'll shoot off again by bullet train to the stunning Hakone, a spot famous in Japan for its jaw dropping views of Mount Fuji.
Day 7 : Hakone to Osaka
We'll spend the morning exploring Hakone by pirate ship and cable car, where on a clear day you'll have unrivalled views of Mt. Fuji. Next up is Osaka, where we'll head out to the vibrant Dotonbori canal region for dinner and then party in the crazy neon nightlife.
Meals :Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8 : Osaka - Osaka Castle
Spend the morning relaxing or exploring Osaka's awesome shopping. Later we'll visit the incredible Osaka Castle, first built over 400 years ago. Here we'll learn the importance of Japanese history and Japan's ancient warriors, the Samurai.
Day 9 : Koyasan - Temple Stay
We head back to the mountains today for a once in a lifetime experience – staying overnight in a traditional 1000 year old Buddhist Temple in the fascinating town of Koyasan. Here we'll be taught meditation by the monks, served their traditional cuisine and have a guided night-time stroll through Japan’s largest cemetery, a truly other-worldly experience! We’ll spend another night sleeping in traditional Japanese style surrounded by the beauty of the temple grounds.
Meals :Breakfast, Dinner
Day 10 : Koyasan to Kyoto
Today we wake up early for an unforgettable experience – watching the Buddhist monks perform their morning prayers and fire ceremony. We’ll be served breakfast by the monks before travelling to our last destination, Kyoto, Japan’s ancient capital. When we arrive, there'll be time to chill in our awesome accom before heading out for dinner and drinks.
Day 11 : Kyoto - Bamboo Forest, Golden Pavilion & Geishas
Make sure your phones charged today! First up is the Instagram famous Bamboo Forest of Arashiyama, perfect for shots surrounded by the towering bamboo. We then head to the beautiful Golden Pavilion, a temple covered entirely in gold, before visiting Gion, the famous home of Japan’s beautiful and mysterious Geishas.
Day 12 : Kyoto - Fushimi-Inari & Samurai Experience
Today the endless bright orange Torii gates of Fushimi-Inari await us! One of Japan’s most iconic shrines will blow you away as we explore the winding trails of the ancient mountain. In the afternoon, we will be taught how to wield a traditional sword by a sensei descended from the Samurai. Experience the finesse of these weapons as you channel your inner warrior and slice through rolled bamboo.
Meals :Breakfast, Dinner
Day 13 : Kyoto - Check out and Onward Travel
Your amazing 13 day adventure comes to an end. You can either check out and make your way back home, stay on longer in Kyoto or continue your travels in Japan. If you’ve booked the return to Tokyo add-on, this includes your return bullet train journey back to Tokyo station. The return journey takes approx. 4 hours and your departure time from Kyoto is flexible to suit your onward travel needs. You can leave Kyoto as early as 7-8am if you need to and arrive at Tokyo station as early as approx 12pm. If you’re flying out of Tokyo that day, the earliest we recommend flying out is 3pm.