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Having lived in Singapore, Nepal, South Korea and Hong Kong, I am captivated by Asia. Having traveled to every country in Asia, and worked in luxury travel for many years, curating once-in-a-lifetime trips comes naturally to me.
- from $3,704 PP
- 7 Nights
- Mar - May & Sep - Oct
- 12 hrs from London / 14 hrs from NYC
Discover the best of Japan in this compact but compelling 8-day itinerary. Begin in the fascinating city of Tokyo, exploring highlights such as the Imperial Palace, Sensoji Temple, and Omotesando shopping street. You’ll visit Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Market and enjoy a sushi lunch created especially for you before heading to Hakone for private tour under the shadow of soaring Mount Fuji. Journey to Kyoto to wander through the famous Arashiyama bamboo grove and marvel at its magnificent temples, concluding with a tour of Nara and its famous deer park. Your transfers, accommodation, daily breakfasts and private tours are included.
Our Flexi - Promise
Low Deposit To Book
Book your trip with us and pay a reduced deposit with the rest 90 days before your departure
If you are not comfortable travelling, you have the right to cancel and get a refund up to 45 days before your departure
ATOL & ABTOT Protected
Your trip with us is fully financially protected by our travel insurers. Peace of mind guaranteed.
No Change Fees
We will not charge you any admin fees if you would like to change your travel dates or destination with us
- 7 nights 4 or 5 star hotel accommodation
- Delicious daily breakfasts plus other meals as per itinerary
- Airport departure and arrival transfers
- Train tickets, transport cards, and taxi transfers as described
- Private guided tours in Tokyo and Kyoto as described
- 24/7 support from our dedicated staff
- Flexible, personalised itinerary based on your interests
Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1 Tokyo: Transfer from Narita or Haneda Airport
Your 7-night adventure begins by touching down into Tokyo. While it’s one of the world’s largest and most densely packed cities, it’s also one of the cleanest and relatively easy for travellers to navigate. Upon your arrival you will be welcomed to Japan by our local representative who will assist you to the appropriate shuttle bus transfer to your hotel. After getting arriving and getting settled in, you might want to stretch your legs by doing a little exploring. There’s no clearly marked center, rather a patchwork of diverse neighborhoods, some evoking the past with their wooden buildings, temples and glowing lanterns, others look like something out of the future with their soaring skyscrapers.
Day 2 Tokyo: City Tour
After a peaceful night’s rest, meet your local guide to discover some of the city’s most fascinating places, utilizing Tokyo’s user-friendly public transportation system. Your guide will first give you a practical overview of the tour to come, addressing any queries you have on public transport, trains, and activities, before you head out together to explore. Start by visiting the home of the Imperial family, the Imperial Palace and the explore the old town area, enjoying the traditional side of the city, including Sensoji Temple, its oldest and most popular temple. Journey to Meiji Shrine, a shrine dedicated to the deified spirit of Emperor Meiji by subway, and then if time allows, take a stroll down Omotesando shopping street, lined with the flagship stores of some of the top fashion brands in the world. This is highly flexible itinerary which can be adapted to suit your particular interests.
Day 3 Tokyo: Tsukiji Market tour and sushi making class
A half-day tour this morning delves into tasty Tokyo cuisine, starting at Tsukiji Market. Until recently it was the world’s largest fish market, selling around 450 different types of fish. Although the inner market moved to a new location, the outer market is still here with fresh fruits and vegetables, and an outstanding seafood section. Explore it with you a local guide while enjoying samples along the way. Afterwards, visit a Japanese chef nearby who will fill you in on Japanese food culture, and answer any questions you have about sushi, helping you to create a personalized selection of mouth-wateringly fresh options for lunch.
The remainder of the day is then at leisure for you to explore independently. Please ask your consultant for suggestions on how to make the most of your free time in the Japanese capital.
Day 4 Tokyo: Transfer to Hakone National Park
This morning you will take Japan’s famous shinkansen bullet train to Odawara, just 35 minutes’ west of Tokyo, gateway to the beautiful Hakone National Park. On arrival you have the rest of the day to explore Hakone independently. We recommend a cruise across Lake Ashi, where on a clear day, spectacular Mount Fuji will make an impressive appearance. Taking the Komagatake Ropeway to the summit of Mount Komagatake, you’ll marvel at it again, weather permitting. Once at the top, if luck is on your side, enjoy a jaw-dropping panoramic view of the mountain, Lake Ashi and Hakone. In the evening a sumptuous multi-course kaiseki dinner will be served at your ryokan accommodation.
Day 5 Kyoto: Transfer to Kyoto; private city tour
This morning you’ll transfer back down to Odawara and then board the shinkansen again for the three-hour journey to Kyoto. Once arrived at your Kyoto hotel, take time to settle in and get refreshed before meeting your local guide in the lobby for a half-day tour via public transport. Start at Kinkakuji Temple, or Golden Pavilion, one of Japan’s most iconic sites, towering over a reflective pond. Next, visit the ornamental Nijo Castle, built in 1603, and then stroll through the five-block-long Nishiki Market shopping street where you’ll find some of the city’s most famous foods and kitchen items.
Day 6 Kyoto: Bamboo Grove and Temple Tour; dining tour of the Gion
Meet your private guide this morning for a half-day tour that visits two of the most famous and stunning places in Kyoto, Arashiyama Bamboo Grove and Nonomiya Shrine, which lie on the outskirts of town, surrounded by mountains. You’ll get to stroll through the towering, green bamboo forest for a fairytale-like experience before venturing to the ancient shrine where centuries ago, single imperial princesses stayed for at least a year in order to purify themselves before beginning their duties as a royal. UNESCO-listed Tenryuji Temple will be visited too. You’ll enjoy a traditional Buddhist lunch here while gazing out over the gorgeously landscaped gardens. Later in the evening you’ll meet a local foodie guide for an exceptional dining tour of Kyoto’s historic, and highly atmospheric Gion district.
Day 7 Kyoto: day trip to Nara
Today you will make a self-guided visit to neighbouring Nara. Train tickets and guiding notes will be included in your pack. Just 45 minutes’ from Kyoto by train, Nara was Japan’s former capital during the eighth century, home to many ancient buildings from the period. Start by visiting the world’s largest wooden building, Todaiji temple with its famous Great Buddha before heading to Kasuga Taisha. Founded in 768 AD, it features hundreds of stone and bronze lanterns that have been donated by worshippers over the years. Stroll through Nara Park, often referred to as Deer Park as it’s inhabited by over 1,200 friendly deer, a symbol of the city. On your return to Kyoto, we recommend taking a slow stopping service and alighting at the iconic Fushimi Inari Shrine, in the southern suburbs of Kyoto.
Day 8 Kyoto: Departure Day
At the appropriate time today you will join a shuttle transfer from your Kyoto hotel to Osaka Kansai International Airport for your return flight home. If you’re not ready to leave Japan just yet, contact our travel experts who will be happy to create a bespoke addition to your itinerary.
What's not Included
- As we have clients from all over the world. Our itineraries do not include flights. If you would like us to include flights in your trip, we are happy to do so. Please speak to your travel specialist at the planning stage to include them.
- Gratuities for local guides
- We strongly advise all guests purchase comprehensive travel insurance
- Visas if required
Let’s get started making this itinerary yours.
Speak to experienced Destinations Experts about designing this itinerary around your budget and trip preferences
Why book with Unforgettable Travel Co.
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We are a licensed and fully bonded tour operator financially protected by both the Civil Aviation Authority (ATOL) and the Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust (ABTOT). All clients that travel with us are fully financially protected.
Our travel experts live and breathe the destinations they specialise in. This shows in their passionate to create hand crafted trips for our clients. We don’t offer cookie cutter trips, just truly unforgettable journeys unlike any other.
The Best Guides
What makes our trips extraordinary is the unique immersive experiences we include. We pride ourselves in our black book of sought after expert guides, game rangers and local contacts who believe in our philosophy, unforgettable.
From the moment you book your trip, we are on hand 24/7 to assist you throughout your journey. With regional offices around the world, we have ground logistics teams on hand to help you every step of the way.
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