11 DAYS ●
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From the gleaming metropolis of Tokyo to the lovable Yudanaka snow monkeys to the intricate gardens of Kyoto, experience the wonders of Japan on an independent private tour
Our Wonders of Japan itinerary has been intricately designed for those who wish to see iconic sites and magnificent treasures. You'll travel with the assurance that all your arrangements are taken care of. You will be accompanied by our industry-leading guides whose unparalleled knowledge and talent will turn your tour into an unforgettable experience.
Fly overnight to the dazzling metropolis of Tokyo, Japan’s capital city. Depending on your time of arrival the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
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. Making use of the fantastic public transport, your guided city tour starts on the observation deck of the 634-metre Skytree, the world’s tallest tower. You’ll seek out the delightful landscapes of Hamarikyu Gardens. This evening take a relaxed cruise on the Sumida River for some excellent city vistas. (B,L)
Travel by coach to Hakone, the gateway to Japan’s most iconic landmark – Mount Fuji. Drive to the 5th Station of Mt Fuji where, weather permitting, you can take in spectacular views. Next head to Hakone National Park, take a boat trip on Ashi Lake. From the water, the panoramas of the country’s highest mountain and its surroundings are spectacular. Stroll around Hakone-en Garden
before taking a cable car up Mount Komagatake for even more breathtaking views of the surrounding area. Return to Tokyo. (B,L)
With train tickets in hand, make your own way to the station and take the super-fast, superefficient bullet train through snow-cloaked landscapes to the city of Nagano, which hosted the Winter Olympics in 1998. In Nagano your touring is selfguided. You may like to visit the famous Buddhist Zenkoji Temple, founded in the 7th century and home to what is thought to be the first Buddhist statue ever brought to Japan. Afterwards, continue your journey deeper and take a local train into the northern peaks of the Japanese Alps to stay in the onsen resort town of Yudanaka. (B,D)
Today is a day at leisure which you can use to enjoy the sights of the hot spring resort of Yudanaka. The highlight is the Japanese Snow Monkeys soaking in the natural hot pools of the Jigokudani Monkey Park which is easily reachable from the town, or you can visit a sake brewery or the art-loving town of Obuse. Enjoy dinner at your ryokan. (B,D)
Get yourself back on the train to Nagano, before enjoying a thrilling but comfortable ride on the famous bullet train as you speed through the countryside to Kyoto. The enchanting city of Kyoto, nicknamed the ‘City of Ten Thousand Shrines’, was capital for more than a thousand years; today it is a well-preserved legacy of ancient Japan, full of tranquil temples, silk-clad geisha and sublime gardens. (B)
Taking public transport, a local guide will lead you on an indepth tour of this delightful city, that plays host to 17 UNESCO World Heritage sites, over 1,600 Buddhist temples and 400 Shinto shrines. As imperial capital for such a long period of time, Kyoto perfectly illustrates the development of Japanese architectural styles. Pay a visit to Kinkakuji Temple, the ‘Golden Pavilion’, before wandering through the famous zen gardens at Ryoanji Temple. Continue to the ornamental Nijo Castle, surrounded by stunning gardens and renowned for its decorated sliding doors and ‘chirping’ nightingale floor. (B)
There is so much to see in Kyoto that you have today to explore independently. For those who might want to take their explorations farther afield, a rail pass will be provided enabling
you to use the day to visit one of the nearby cities. Choose Nara, also a former capital full of wonderful heritage; the attractive hillside city of Kobe; Osaka, known for its excellent gastronomy; or the friendly and laidback Hiroshima. (B)
Travel independently to Kyoto’s station to jump back on the bullet train, returning to Shinjuku in Tokyo. Enjoy one last evening in this high-tech metropolis. (B)
Transfer to the airport and fly to the UK, arriving home the same or following day. (B)
Wendy Wu Tours is one of the UK's leading escorted tours specialist and we think it's easy to see why! We are knowledgeable, passionate and innovative about travel in Asia and the world beyond. Combine this with the excellent value, cultural experiences and industry-leading National Escorts that our tours offer and you can trust that you are going to have the best possible experience travelling with us. So, what are you waiting for?
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