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Majestic Japan

Duration 11 days

Destinations visited :
  • Japan
    ,

Be captivated by the beauty and traditions of Japan during this 11-day guided tour. Travel to Kyoto, a cultural hub for the country, where you can bask in the serenity surrounding the iconic Golden Pavilion. See the Giouji Temple — a Buddhist place of worship set amidst a moss-covered forest — and feast on a traditional Kyo-Kaiseki lunch as you watch an apprentice geisha perform beside you. In Tokyo, choose to make decadent sushi rolls using the finest quality fish during a private cooking class or join a Local Expert and explore the fashionable Omotesando and Harajuku neighborhoods before sampling a local lunch. Then discover the river valley of the Oirase Gorge, walking along its crystal-clear waters while marveling at the amber leaves that surround you. Later, journey to a local brewery for a private sake tasting and behind-the-scenes tour, led by a sake brew master.

Take a look at your day-by-day itinerary or contact us on 0207 620 8952 to find out more.

DAY 1

Welcome to Osaka, Japan!
Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport. On arrival at Kansai or Itami airport, you will be welcomed and taken to your five-star hotel situated in the heart of the city, where there is time to relax. At 20:00 meet your Travelling Concierge and travel companions at the hotel’s Rainbow Lounge for your Welcome Dinner. Enjoy stunning views over Osaka while you enjoy delicious Japanese cuisine including tempura and sushi.
Hotel: Imperial Hotel Osaka.
Meal: Dinner with Wine

DAY 2

Highlights of Osaka.
Situated in the heart of Japan where rivers and sea routes converge, Osaka is a hub of cutting-edge architecture, exotic flavours and laid-back locals. Experience Osaka Your Way as how you will observe the city’s many highlights is your choice. You can board the chic Osaka Aqualiner to see the national library and 16th Century Osaka Castle, while you cruise on the Yodo River, a particularly beautiful option during cherry blossom season. Alternatively, you may visit the Floating Garden Observatory in the Umeda Sky Building, a landmark of the city offering incredible views in every direction. Then, together with your Travelling Concierge and fellow traveller, discover why Osaka is known as the kitchen of Japan as you embark on a food-tasting exploration along Dotonbori Street with a passionate local foodie. Try local specialities such as Takoyaki, rounds of ground octopus wrapped in batter, before sitting down to a tasty two-course lunch. With the evening at leisure, ask your Travelling Concierge for local recommendations to explore this exotic city further.
Hotel: Imperial Hotel Osaka.
Meal: Breakfast,Lunch

DAY 3

A Local Perspective on Hiroshima.
Experience Japanese technology at its best as you journey to Hiroshima station on the Shinkansen bullet train. On arrival, explore the UNESCO World heritage Site of Peace Memorial Park and Museum, the only structure left standing after the first atomic bomb was dropped during World War II. The bomb was the single-most destructive force ever created by humankind and changed the course of history forever. During your visit, meet a survivor who will share insights into this dark chapter of world history. Then, catch a ferry to Miyajima Island to visit the Itsukushima Shrine and see the elaborate O-torii gate rising majestically out of the sea. Take a moment to stroll around this peaceful island, before returning to Hiroshima on the ferry. You may wish to finish your visit with a special prayer for peace. Continue to Kyoto by bullet train where you check in to your hotel, a modern architectural masterpiece located in the centre of the city.
Hotel: Hotel Granvia Kyoto.
Meal: Breakfast,Dinner with Wine

DAY 4

The Temples and Geisha of Kyoto.
Kyoto is Japan’s geisha capital, and during your city tour with your Travelling Concierge you will discover why this is the hub of ancient tradition and culture. Marvel at the Zen Buddhist temple of Kinkaku-ji, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and see its famed Golden Pavilion to appreciate its classic architecture, intricate history and expansive gardens. Visit the famous Giouji Temple, situated on a majestic grove of bamboos and maple trees, where you’ll learn about local folklore and explore the temple’s thatched hut and walk through the indigenous bamboo forest. Savour a Highlight Lunch of traditional Kyo-Kaiseki cuisine made of seasonal ingredients, whilst you enjoy a performance by a Maiko, an apprentice geisha. Central to Kyoto culture, geisha are highly-skilled entertainers, specializing in classical music, dance, conversation and games. This fine art has evolved over many centuries and today attracts visitors from around the world. Embark on a walking exploration of the vibrant Gion neighbourhood, known as Kyoto’s primary geisha district. With free time to explore for the rest of the evening, perhaps enjoy the local teahouses, lantern-lit restaurants and bars or simply absorb the electric atmosphere, as you shop for souvenirs.
Hotel: Hotel Granvia Kyoto.
Meal: Breakfast,Lunch

DAY 5

From Kyoto to Tokyo.
Board the bullet train and journey to the iconic capital city, Tokyo, where cutting-edge modernity meets ancient tradition. The city is an economic powerhouse and home to national museums, festivals, theatres and sacred temples. Seasonal tea ceremonies date back a thousand years and play an important part in Japanese culture, they are central to good hospitality. Experience this for yourself when you visit a traditional teahouse and learn how to prepare the perfect cup of Matcha Green Tea. Try your hand at making sushi with the highest-quality fish and discover why it takes ten years to become a Master Sushi Chef, before sitting down to a delightful Highlight Lunch. Spend your free time exploring Ginza, one of the world’s most luxurious shopping districts and known as the Champs-Élysées of Tokyo. During a Your Choice Evening you’re in for a true local experience with the choice of two hand-picked restaurants, each specialising in local delicacies. You may try either Shabu-shabu which are hotpots of meat and vegetables or Teppan-yaki where rice, meats and vegetables are freshly cooked on a grill.
Hotel: Imperial Hotel Tokyo.
Meal: Breakfast,Lunch,Dinner with Wine

DAY 6

Mount Fuji.
Mount Fuji is Japan’s tallest mountain standing at 3,776 metres above sea level and is registered as The National Monument of Japan. Admire spectacular views from the observatory at the 5th Station, before venturing down to Lake Kawaguchi where you will be captivated by the flawless reflections of the mountain. Continue to enjoy spectacular views of this UNESCO World Heritage Site as you enjoy lunch made of fresh, seasonal ingredients at a local restaurant. In the afternoon, explore the lake-side village and visit the Icchiku Kubota Art Museum with its unique works of art, traditional architecture and seasonal gardens. Return to your hotel where you are at leisure to relax or explore as you wish.
Hotel: Imperial Hotel Tokyo.
Meal: Breakfast,Lunch

DAY 7

Journey to Sendai in Northern Japan.
Journey north by bullet train, your destination is the Sendai, known as the City of Trees. This is a true locals region, off-the-beaten path and away from the tourist crowds. Enjoy a private cruise along the dazzling Matsushima Bay, taking in views of countless pine-covered islands. The bay has often featured in Japanese poetry since ancient times. Disembark at Katsurashima Island and meet the owner of a local inn. Dine as the locals do with a seafood lunch as the owner shares their insights of life on the island. Return by ferry to Matsushima, where you explore the site where Aoba Castle once stood before witnessing samurai performance by local artists. Continue to your five-star hotel where the evening is at your leisure.
Hotel: The Westin Sendai (Superior Rooms).
Meal: Breakfast,Lunch

DAY 8

Hachinohe and Hirosaki Castle.
Journey to Hachinohe via bullet train. On arrival, absorb the unique atmosphere of Hashoku Centre Market. Visit Hirosaki Castle, famous for its bright cherry blossom trees that bloom between April and May. Meet a cherry blossom doctor who will explain how his team nurture these beautiful trees from sapling to maturity and ensure all the cherry blossoms of the region are strong, healthy and able to thrive during the cherry blossom season. As you explore the Tsugaru han Neputa Village you will see the colourful decorations used during the summer Neputa Festival and watch skilled craftsman at work, they spend month lacquering to create the perfect chopsticks. You then enjoy a special, VIP Experience, a private musical performance of Tsugaru Shamisen and Taiko, traditional Japanese guitar and drumming. Your journey continues to Oirase Gorge, one of Japan’s most-revered nature havens.
Hotel: Hoshino Resorts Oirase Keiryu Hotel, Oirase Gorge.
Meal: Breakfast,Dinner with Wine

DAY 9

Exploring Oirase Gorge.
The spectacular Oirase Gorge is a place of special scenic beauty. Wander along the crystal-clear Oirase Keiryu stream, admire the cascading waterfalls and marvel at the seasonal colours of the indigenous forest. Journey to a local brewery in the Tohoku region to taste Japan’s national drink, sake, then enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. Return to Tokyo via bullet train, where you are leisure to relax or continue your own exploration of this intriguing city.
Hotel: Imperial Hotel Tokyo.
Meal: Breakfast,Lunch

DAY 10

The Highlights of Tokyo.
Visit the Sensō-ji Buddhist Temple, the oldest and most-visited temple of Japan, and wander along the famous Nakamise Street and explore Kappabashi, a local back-street known as Tokyo’s foodie hub. In the evening, get ready for a dazzling Celebration Dinner as you venture to the heart of the city. Tokyo Shiba Tofuya Ukai is a famous restaurant with old-world charm and surrounded by a Zen garden. It specialises in tofu cuisine, but you will savour a range of intricately prepared dishes including simmered eggplant and fried shrimp, fresh sashimi and deep-fried tofu coated with miso, all accompanied with beer or wine.
Hotel: Imperial Hotel Tokyo.
Meal: Breakfast,Dinner with Wine

DAY 11

Farewell Japan.
Bid farewell to your travel companions and head to Narita or Haneda International Airport for your onward journey. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.
Meal: Breakfast

Exceptional Dining

  • Kyoto: Enjoy a performance by a Maiko, an apprentice Geisha, as you savour a Highlight Lunch of traditional Kyo-Kaiseki cuisine made of seasonal ingredients.
  • Tokyo: During a Your Choice Evening choose from two hand-picked restaurants, each specialising in local delicacies. Try Shabu-shabu which are hotpots of meat and vegetables or Teppan-yaki where rice, meats and vegetables are freshly cooked on a grill.
  • Tokyo: Relax as you enjoy a saké tasting, one of Japan’s most well-known rice wines.
  • Tokyo: Participate in a private sushi-making class in Tokyo and discover why it takes ten years to perfect this 2000-year-old Japanese art before sitting down to a freshly prepared Highlight Lunch.
  • Tokyo: Enjoy a famous tea ceremony and watch as they show you the traditional art of making matcha green tea.
  • Tokyo: Savour Tokyo’s finest cuisine, such as fresh sashimi, seasonal grilled fish or delicious deep-fried tofu during your Celebration Dinner at the famous Tokyo Shiba Tofuya Ukai. Surrounded by a Zen garden, this elegant restaurant is an oasis in the heart of Tokyo and transports you to an era of Japanese grandeur.
  • Dining Summary: 10 Breakfasts (B), 6 Lunches (L) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW).

Journey Highlights

  • Osaka: Discover why Osaka is known as the kitchen of Japan during your food-tasting exploration with a knowledgeable local foodie. Taste local specialities such as rounds of ground octopus wrapped in batter, called Takoyaki, and savory pancakes, named Okonomiyaki.
  • Osaka: Experience Osaka your way and chose to observe the city skyline on the chic Osaka Aqualiner or visit the Floating Garden Observatory.
  • Miyajima: Visit the Itsukushima Shrine and see the famous red Otorii Gate.
  • Hiroshima: Travel by ferry to Hiroshima and take in the beautiful scenery.
  • Hiroshima: Visit the emotive Hiroshima peace memorial park.
  • Hiroshima Join in the paper crane making and learn about the meaning behind this symbol for peace.
  • Kyoto: Join in the sight-seeing in Kyoto with your Travelling Concierge and discover this hubs ancient culture.
  • Kyoto: Discover this hub of ancient tradition and culture. Visit the Zen Buddhist temple of Kinkaku-ji, and embark on a walking exploration of the vibrant Gion neighbourhood, known as Kyoto’s Geisha district.
  • Kyoto: Visit the famous Giouji Temple one of the most scenic spots of this area, overlooking the moss covered grotto.
  • Kyoto: Enjoy a short walk in the bamboo forest, a most magical experience.
  • Kyoto: Join your Travelling Concierge for an orientation of Gion neighbourhood known as Kyoto’s geisha district.
  • Tokyo: Visit the Sensō-ji Temple, the oldest temple in Japan.
  • Tokyo Join in the exploration of Nakamise Street and Kappabashi the local backstreet known as the foodie hub.
  • Mount Fuji: Soak in the magnificent views of Mountt Fuji from the 5th Station.
  • Kawaguchi: Be captivated by the peacefulness of Lake Kawaguchi and explore the sights.
  • Tokyo: Visit the Icchiku Art Museum and see traditional kimono displays.
  • Sendai: Join a private cruise along the dazzling Matsushima Bay to Katsurashima Island.
  • Matsushima Bay: Meet the owner of a traditional Japanese inn and learn about their life.
  • Aoba Castle: Witness a samurai performance by local artists.
  • Matsushima Bay: Explore the sights where once stood the Aoba Castle.
  • Hachinohe: Visit the Hashoku Centre Market.
  • Hirosaki Castle: Visit the Hirosaki Castle and admire the surrounding park grounds. In spring the grounds are decorated with flowering cherry blossom trees.
  • Hachinohe: Learn about the meticulous care and nurturing of cherry blossom trees from a cherry blossom doctor who ensures all cherry blossoms, from saplings to mature trees are healthy and thriving during the beautiful cherry blossom season.
  • Tsugaru han Neputa Village: See the colourful decorations for the summer Neputa Festival and witness an exclusive, private musical performance of Tsugaru Shamisen and Taiko, traditional Japanese guitar and drumming.
  • Oirase Gorge: Join in a gentle nature walk through Hachimantai National Park.
  • Tokyo: Join in panoramic sight-seeing of Tokyo, explore Ginza the shopping district also known as the Champs- Elysees of Tokyo.
  • Bullet Train: Experience travelling like a local as you ride the high-speed bullet train. Catch views of mountains and quaint Japanese towns as you journey between each city.

Luxury Hotels

  • Osaka: With over 100 years of hospitality experience, this five-star Imperial Hotel Osaka places you along the Okawa River in the heart of vibrant Osaka. Stay in the midst of one of Japan’s best cherry-blossom-viewing locations and enjoy a range of state-of-the-art facilities, including a luxury spa and fine-dining restaurants.
  • Kyoto: Hotel Granvia Kyoto is more than a modern hotel located in the heart of Kyoto as it features over a thousand modern and traditional artworks by local, Kyoto-based artists.
  • Tokyo: The grand Imperial Hotel Tokyo has welcomed royalty, heads of state and celebrities for over 120 years. Stay within walking distance of Tokyo’s most iconic attractions and enjoy award-winning dining, flawless Japanese hospitality and five-star facilities.
  • Sendai: Old-world elegance and modern comforts combine to make the luxurious Westin Sendai an ideal oasis in the heart of the city, within your Superior Rooms.
  • Oirase Gorge: Exclusively situated moments away from the serene Oirase Keiryu stream, this luxurious resort hotel offers spacious bedrooms, five-star facilities and easy access to natural hot springs situated in the nearby forest.

VIP Experiences

  • Hiroshima: Be part of a truly poignant travel experience, as you meet a survivor of the 1945 Hiroshima atomic bomb, which destroyed most of the city during World War II and changed world history forever.

INCLUSIVE LUXURY GOLD SERVICES

  • You will be escorted by one of our fine Travelling Concierges, handpicked to serve as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Luxury Gold is proud to offer various modes of transportation, from luxury coach to included train travel and more, so that you always travel in comfort and experience your journey and destination in the best possible and most appropriate way.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert’s fascinating commentary, available on departures with 15 or more guests.
  • At every hotel, you’ll be treated to seamless baggage handling, with prompt delivery inside your room.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included – you’ll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travelling Concierge will enchant you with a Luxury Gold Flourish, which is a local speciality representing the destination.
  • Complimentary, private airport transfers are included on start and end dates and when additional accommodation has been booked through Luxury Gold. Complimentary, private train station transfers are included when train travel is included within the itinerary. Transfers to train stations or alternate hotels, in the same start or end city of the itinerary, may be requested but are not guaranteed.
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Sun 16 Apr 2023 Wed 26 Apr 2023 £7,425
Sun 07 May 2023 Wed 17 May 2023 £6,875 Guaranteed
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Wed 21 Jun 2023 Sat 01 Jul 2023 £6,875
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Wed 27 Sep 2023 Sat 07 Oct 2023 £7,650
Wed 11 Oct 2023 Sat 21 Oct 2023 £7,650
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Wed 08 Nov 2023 Sat 18 Nov 2023 £7,650

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Majestic Japan

Be captivated by the beauty and traditions of Japan during this 11-day guided tour. Travel to Kyoto, a cultural hub for the country, where you can bask in the serenity surrounding the iconic Golden Pavilion. See the Giouji Temple — a Buddhist place of worship set amidst a moss-covered forest — and feast on a traditional Kyo-Kaiseki lunch as you watch an apprentice geisha perform beside you. In Tokyo, choose to make decadent sushi rolls using the finest quality fish during a private cooking class or join a Local Expert and explore the fashionable Omotesando and Harajuku neighborhoods before sampling a local lunch. Then discover the river valley of the Oirase Gorge, walking along its crystal-clear waters while marveling at the amber leaves that surround you. Later, journey to a local brewery for a private sake tasting and behind-the-scenes tour, led by a sake brew master.