Discover Japan
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Discover Japan

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Japan is a country of captivating contrasts, where ancient gods rub shoulders with modern technology, skyscrapers give way to lush paddy fields and bustling crowds disperse into the tranquillity of a classical garden. This tour is the perfect introduction to this fascinating archipelago.

NEW April 2017 departure date, perfect for the Cherry Blossoms, on sale now!
Call us on 0800 1445 242 or click here to enquire. Limited Availability!

tour duration 13 Days from
tour price 4,590pp
tour type Group Tour

Places Visited

UK - Tokyo (2N) - Mt Fuji - Yatsugatake (1N) - Takayama (2N) - Kanazawa (1N) - Kyoto (3N) - Nara - Koya - Wakayama (1N) - Osaka (1N) - UK

Tour Highlights

Witness the fusion of modernity and tradition in Tokyo
Ascend the iconic and inspirational Mount Fuji
Wander through the thatched-roof village of Shirakawago
Stop in amazement at the dramatic flair of the Matsumoto Castle
Explore the authentic Japanese town of Kyoto
Meander through the 10,000 red torri arches of the Fushimi Inari Shrine

Days 1-2 Fly to Tokyo
Fly overnight to the neon-lit metropolis of Tokyo, Japan's capital city.
Days 1-2 Fly to Tokyo
Day 3 Sensoji Temple
Tokyo is the ultimate 24-hour city, but look behind its frantic, high-tech frontage and you’ll find plenty of tranquil backstreets and old temples to explore. Head to the top of the Tokyo Skytree for panoramic views over the city before taking a wander through the districts of Asakusa and Nakamise. Stop at Sensoji Temple and the Imperial Palace and later stroll through Hamarikyu Gardens. Enjoy your evening meal whilst cruising along Tokyo Bay.
Day 3 Sensoji Temple
Day 4 Mt Fuji
Take the speedy bullet train to Odawara and cruise on Hakone's Lake Ashi for views of Mt Fuji, before taking the Komagatake cable car for spectacular views of the lake below. Later, head up to Mt Fuji's 5th Station to enjoy the amazing vistas of the valley below. Continue to mountainous Yatsugatake for an overnight stay.
Day 4 Mt Fuji
Day 5 Matsumoto Castle
Head to Nagano where we will explore the formidable 16th century Matsumoto Castle. Stop at a sake brewery to learn about the process of making Japan’s most revered liquor, before travelling to Takayama, nestled high in the mountainous Hida region.
Day 5 Matsumoto Castle
Day 6 Explore Takayama
Head to the Miyagawa Morning Market and sample some of the delicious local fruits and vegetables. Later take a wander round the traditional houses of the area and visit the local museums – Takayama Festival Floats Exhibition Hall, Kusakabe Folk Museum and Takayama Jinya.
Day 6 Explore Takayama
Day 7 Travel to Kanazawa
Journey to the UNESCO World Heritage listed Shirakawago, famous for its gassho-zukuri farmhouses, some of which are over 250 years old. Continue to Kanazawa and visit the Nomura Samurai House, followed by a stroll through the Old District.
Day 7 Travel to Kanazawa
Day 8 Kenroku-en Garden
This morning wander through the beautiful Kenrokuen, one of the ‘Three Great Gardens of Japan’. Visit the 21st century Museum of Contemporary Art. After lunch, drive to Kyoto, Japan’s ancient capital.
Day 8 Kenroku-en Garden
Day 9 Explore Kyoto
Start the day with a visit to Ryoanji, a Zen temple with an excellent example of a dry landscape garden. Visit the famous Kinkakuji Temple, also known as the Golden Pavilion, due to its gold-like exterior before learning the traditional Japanese art of origami and enjoying a traditional tea ceremony.
Day 9 Explore Kyoto
Day 10 Discover Nara
Drive to Nara, the former imperial capital, and visit Todaiji Temple, the world’s largest wooden structure and home to Japan’s largest Buddha. Also visit Isuein Gardens, known for its natural ponds, before returning to Kyoto, stopping en route at the mesmerising Fushimi Inari Shrine.
Day 10 Discover Nara
Day 11 Koya-San
This morning, drive to Koya-San, the centre of Shingon Buddhism. Visit the Kongobuji Temple and Garan temple complex. Next see Okunoin, Japan’s largest cemetery and is home to the mausoleum of Kobo Daishi, founder of Shingon Buddhism. This evening, transfer to Wakayama for dinner and an overnight stay.
Day 11 Koya-San
Day 12 Travel to Osaka
This morning drive to Osaka, Japan’s third largest city. See the spectacular Osaka Castle and explore the Dotonbori district, a restaurant mecca, where you can sample Osaka’s plethora of mouth-watering bites. Take a cruise on the Yodogawa River before a farewell dinner tonight.
Day 12 Travel to Osaka
Day 13 Fly Osaka to UK
Fly to the UK, arriving home the same or following day.
Day 13 Fly Osaka to UK

Also Available

Private Departures for this tour

If the dates we have available for this tour don't suit your needs, or you are not sure travelling as part of a group is for you, maybe a Private Departure would be more ideal. Based on exactly the same itinerary as the group tour, our Private Departures give you the freedom to choose your own departure date and simply enjoy your holiday with your family, your partner, or your friends. On Private Departures your tour will be led by an English speaking local guides in each destination

Tailor Your Tour

If you like most of the itinerary which we have suggested but you'd like to change the route and the accommodation, speak to our specialist Tailormade team, who can build your perfect itinerary based around where you would like to go, what you would like to see and how much you'd like to spend. Just call us on 0800 9884 888 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.

15-Mar > 27-Mar - £4,890
22-Mar > 03-Apr - £4,990
29-Mar > 10-Apr - £4,990
30-Mar > 11-Apr - £4,990
02-Apr > 14-Apr - £4,990 LIMITED
05-Apr > 17-Apr - £4,990 LIMITED
12-Apr > 24-Apr - £4,890 LIMITED
13-Apr > 25-Apr - £4,890 LIMITED
14-Apr > 26-Apr - £4,890 LIMITED
17-Apr > 29-Apr - £4,790 BOOK NOW
19-Apr > 01-May - £4,790 BOOK NOW
10-May > 22-May - £4,690
17-May > 29-May - £4,690 BOOK NOW
13-Sep > 25-Sep - £4,590 BOOK NOW
20-Sep > 02-Oct - £4,590 BOOK NOW
27-Sep > 09-Oct - £4,590 BOOK NOW
11-Oct > 23-Oct - £4,590 BOOK NOW
22-Oct > 03-Nov - £4,590 BOOK NOW
08-Nov > 20-Nov - £4,590 BOOK NOW

Additional Price Information:

Based on London Heathrow departures
Flight upgrades available on request
Land only from £3890 (Tokyo - Osaka)
Single room from £590

14-Mar > 26-Mar - £5,490 BOOK NOW
18-Mar > 30-Mar - £5,590 BOOK NOW
21-Mar > 02-Apr - £5,690 BOOK NOW
25-Mar > 06-Apr - £5,690 BOOK NOW
28-Mar > 09-Apr - £5,690 BOOK NOW
01-Apr > 13-Apr - £5,690 BOOK NOW
04-Apr > 16-Apr - £5,690 BOOK NOW
08-Apr > 20-Apr - £5,590 BOOK NOW
11-Apr > 23-Apr - £5,490 BOOK NOW
18-Apr > 30-Apr - £5,390 BOOK NOW
09-May > 21-May - £5,290 BOOK NOW
12-Sep > 24-Sep - £5,290 BOOK NOW
19-Sep > 01-Oct - £5,290 BOOK NOW
26-Sep > 08-Oct - £5,290 BOOK NOW
24-Oct > 05-Nov - £5,290 BOOK NOW
31-Oct > 12-Nov - £5,290 BOOK NOW
07-Nov > 19-Nov - £5,290 BOOK NOW

Additional Price Information:

Based on London Heathrow departures
Flight upgrades available on request
Land only from £3890 (Tokyo - Osaka)
Single room from £590

Wendy Wu Tours, inspect all of our hotels to ensure they meet the high levels of service which we require for our guests. If the hotels details below for your tour are not available, hotels of a similar standard will be used.

Tokyo Sunshine Prince
Tokyo Sunshine Prince - Tokyo (2 Nights)
hotel star rating

The Sunshine Prince is located in Sunshine City, a shopping and entertainment hub of Tokyo and close to Ikebukuro Station, providing convenient transport links to the rest of the city. The hotel’s en-suite rooms are simple, comfortable and traditionally furnished with a television, electric kettle, a mini fridge and a safety deposit box. Facilities in the hotel include onsite restaurants serving Japanese, Cantonese and Western cuisines, a café and bar and a 24 hour convenience store.

Ryu Resort Takayama
Ryu Resort Takayama - Takayama (2 Nights)
hotel star rating

The Ryu Resort allows guests to appreciate the natural scenery of the area. Facilities include a swimming pool, tennis courts, a bar and a relaxing onsen. Each of its Japanese-western style rooms have an ensuite bathroom, tea making facilities and a satellite TV. There are three on site restaurants serving excellent local cuisine.

Kanazawa Miyako
Kanazawa Miyako - Kanazawa (1 Nights)
hotel star rating

Conveniently located next to Kanazawa Station, the Kanazawa Miyako offers modern air conditioned rooms with tea/coffee making facilities and satellite TV. The hotel has two on site restaurants serving a mixture of French and local cuisine. Other facilities include a bar and lounge, a convenience store and free internet access in the hotel lobby.

Karasuma Kyoto Hotel
Karasuma Kyoto Hotel - Kyoto (3 Nights)
hotel star rating

Located in the downtown area of Kyoto, the Karasuma hotel has good access to the popular sightseeing spots. The stylish, simple rooms all have ensuite bathrooms and free internet access. The bar offers a menu of seasonal cocktails and guests can dine at the hotel’s two restaurants serving Japanese and Chinese cuisine.

Granvia Hotel
Granvia Hotel - Wakayama (1 Nights)
hotel star rating

Hotel Granvia is conveniently located next to Wakayama train station. The 134 modern guest rooms are sound proofed and feature air conditioning, free WiFi and flat-screen TVs. The hotel has a bar/lounge, a coffee shop and two restaurants, where guests can feast on delicious dishes made with seasonal local products.

Hotel Plaza
Hotel Plaza - Osaka (1 Nights)
hotel star rating

The hotel boasts a central location in the city. It has four restaurants, offering a mixture of western and Japanese cuisine, a café and a bar. Other hotel facilities include a gift shop, a hair salon, a swimming pool and a fitness centre. All guest rooms are air conditioned and feature a TV, electric kettle and a mini fridge. Wifi access is available throughout the hotel.

Tokyo, Mt Fuji & Bullet Train Extension - 4D/3N

Tokyo, Mt Fuji & Bullet Train Extension - 4D/3N

tour duration 4 Days from tour price 940pp
Tokyo Extension - 4D/3N

Tokyo Extension - 4D/3N

tour duration 4 Days from tour price 820pp
Himeji Extension

Himeji Extension

tour duration 2 Days from tour price 260pp
Hiroshima Extension

Hiroshima Extension

tour duration 3 Days from tour price 860pp

A Visa is not required for Japan.

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. To call the UK the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 44, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number. To call Wendy Wu Tours it is 00 44 207 403 7860. Emergency 24 hour telephone (out of office hours) is 00 44 7984 041 625.
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are growing in popularity and you will find high quality coverage. There are active roaming agreements with all phone carriers; however SMS and call rates can be expensive. We recommend that you contact your mobile supplier if you intend to use international roaming during your holiday and ensure you investigate all associated costs before you leave the UK.
Internet & Email
Internet cafes can be found in all major cities and even in some small towns. This is often the easiest and cheapest way to stay in touch. Most hotels have a business centre with internet access, but at a slightly higher rate. Some hotels may have Wi-Fi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is an expected element in the tourism industry today and Japan is no exception. Many passengers are often uncertain of how much to tip so we have established a tipping system whereby every passenger gives a set amount (in US Dollars) to the National Escort who will distribute the amount appropriately. On multi-country tips, this amount will be paid in stages on arrival in each country. If there is no National Escort, you will need to give your money to your Local Guides and tipping amounts for each city will be shown in your final itinerary. The amount for the kitty is calculated for each tour depending on the length, group size and services used during the trip.
We will indicate the tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.

Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure. In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs.
We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy. We are aware that people like to take home souvenirs, so we endeavour to ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity – we do our best to ensure that you don’t get ripped off. 

The cost of all meals is included in your group tour cost. Breakfast is a combination of local and western food, usually served buffet style at the hotel you are staying in. Lunches and dinners consist of traditional cuisine and are served at reputable local restaurants. As is traditional in this region, lunch and dinner consists of small dishes of local cuisine which is then placed on the table for everyone to share so you can experience the variety of speciality dishes. The amount served is more than ample for the whole group. We aim to cater to the tastes of the majority of people and so the food is not too spicy or unusual in taste.
Drinks will be at each tour members’ own expense and paid for at the end of each meal. Beer is widely available and cheap. Western style wine is very expensive to import and is not widely available except at upmarket restaurants. Bottled drinking water, soft drinks, and fruit juices are also widely available – remember that you should only have ice or fruit juices from a trusted restaurant, where they will use boiled or bottled water.

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What's Included

International flights and current taxes
Domestic transportation
All meals
Touring with guides and entrance fees

Why Book This Tour?

This adventure is ideal for travellers with a reasonable amount of time to spend and who want to see the very best bits of Japan. We have designed the tour to make the most of the time available to showcase the key highlights of Japan and have incorporated travel by road to give the opportunity to see the beautiful Japanese countryside.

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