Discover Japan’s Beauty and Traditions: 9-Day Itinerary

Japan 9 Day Itinerary

Discover Japan’s natural beauty and intricate rituals on this fascinating nine-day tour. Wander the streets of Tokyo in a kimono, cruise Lake Ashi with views of Mount Fuji, and soak in soothing natural thermal springs.

Start in laid-back Nagano. Admire Kenroku-en gardens – one of Japan’s top treasured attractions, but avoid the hordes at dawn or at sunset.

Tokyo

Discover Japan’s exciting mix of modern and traditional over nine activity-packed days. Thrill to Tokyo’s neon lights, walk among Kyoto’s serene temples and stroll through the country’s beautiful landscapes.

Start your adventure with a private walking tour in Tokyo, allowing you to explore unique neighborhoods before the crowds. Stroll through Asakusa, home to the iconic Senso-ji temple, and wander around atmospheric backstreets. Then head to Ueno Park and the colorful Ameyoko-cho open-air market before completing your day in Yanaka, an irresistible combination of mom-and-pop shops and temples.

Take a break from the bustle of Tokyo’s shopping streets to admire the grand Tsuzumi-mon gate combining old and new architectural styles. Admire the famous Hachiko statue, a tribute to the loyal dog who met its owner at Shibuya station every day for 9 years. Alternatively, spend a day in Kanazawa where you can admire the elegant Kenroku-en gardens and hunt down kitschy denim souvenirs on Denim Street.

Hakone

Tokyo’s high-tech skyline and centuries-old culture coexist in perfect harmony here, where you can stroll Asakusa’s temples and shops or take a gondola ride across the city lake. During ‘koyo’ season, autumn leaves (koyo) blanket the city in a golden glow.

From Tokyo, take the Odakyu Romance Car train to Hakone-Yumoto Station or direct to Odawara Station on the Hakone Tozan Line. The train is an impressive piece of engineering that uses switchbacks to ascend the mountainous region of Fuji Hakone Izu National Park.

On sunny days, you can spot the iconic Mount Fuji across the surface of Lake Ashi. You can also visit the Pola Museum of Art, an incredible outdoor museum with sculpture artworks in nature, or the natural hot springs of Owakudani. Stay overnight in one of the traditional Japanese guesthouses, known as ryokan, for an authentic experience. Most offer traditional ‘kaiseki’ multi-course dinner service and private onsen baths for guests to enjoy.

Kyoto

A city drenched in thousands of years of history, Kyoto’s palaces, temples and gardens are a feast for the eyes. During your time here, you will explore the Gion ‘Geisha’ district and stroll through the Arashiyama bamboo grove, while visiting Nishiki Market (known as the kitchen of Kyoto).

Aside from its extraordinary sights and wealth of traditional culture, this ancient capital is also home to a flourishing craft scene. Spend time in a local katana workshop with a shokunin, learning about the artisanal skills that go into the creation of these legendary swords.

The best time to visit Japan is in either Spring or Autumn, which is when many of the flowers bloom. However, the country is beautiful all year round and has a rich variety of things to see and do. A highlight of any trip to Japan is its spectacular natural scenery. Throughout the country are a network of lakes, rivers and mountains that make for wonderful hiking and mountain biking.

Osaka

In this vivacious city you’ll discover how to balance Japan’s old and new, with traditional tea ceremonies, whiskey tasting, sushi master classes and the chance to watch professional sumo wrestlers in action. This is also a place of world-class shopping and exquisite art.

Get up close to the country’s rich history as you stroll its streets in a kimono, take a cruise on Lake Ashi and hike up to spectacular views of Mount Fuji, then visit Kyoto for Buddhist temples, gardens and palaces. Immerse yourself in Japan’s rich culture with a geisha walking tour, a group tea ceremony and wander amongst the free-roaming deer in Nara before arriving at Osaka.

Take in Osaka from high above on the incredible Observation Deck at 300, a stunning skyscraper that recreates a Japanese 1920s town complete with gourmet restaurant alley and shops. You’ll even be able to hop on one of the hair-raising rides, including a Spiderman-themed roller coaster that travels backwards!

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