12 DAYS ●
This tour not only visits the famous sights of Japan including Osaka, Nara, Kyoto, Mt Fuji and Tokyo, but is brimful of experiences allowing you to immerse yourself in the local culture, from traditional tea ceremonies to origami.
Our Experience 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, with international flights, accommodation and all the touring listed below. You will be accompanied by our industry-leading National Escorts whose unparalleled knowledge and talent will turn your tour into an unforgettable experience.
Fly overnight to the lively, fast-paced city of Osaka! Depending on your time of arrival, the rest of the day is at leisure to start soaking up the local culture.
Visit the impressive Osaka Castle before cruising along the Yodogawa River. After lunch, continue to Nara and enjoy a leisurely walk through Nara Park to Todaiji Temple and admire the traditional Isuien Garden before returning to Osaka.
Journey by road to Kyoto. Capital for 1,000 years, this enchanting city is the epitome of traditional Japan. Start with a visit to Togetsukyo Bridge located in the heart of the vibrant district of Arashiyama and stroll through the bamboo forest with its towering and impressive thickets. Also visit Ryoanji Temple, home to Japan's most famous zen garden and the famous 'Golden Pavilion' Kinkakuji Temple. Enjoy some free time this afternoon to further explore the city.
Begin the day with a visit to one of Kyoto's most famous sites – Fushimi Inari Shrine, renowned for its 10,000 vermilion torrii gates and follow a forested hillside pathway passing numerous shrines along the way. Later, enjoy the age-old rituals of a tea ceremony with a tea master, and try your hand at origami. After lunch, your immersive experience continues with a fan painting class where you will learn the technique of this highly refined and sought-after visual art.
Spend the morning travelling by bullet train to Nagoya and then journey on the limited express train to Nagano. Upon arrival, head to Jigokudani Monkey Park and walk through a picturesque forested valley to the hot pools where you will see the famous Japanese macaques (snow monkeys) bathe and play. Also visit the 7th-century Zenkoji Temple, one of Japan's most prolific Buddhist temples, before continuing by road to Matsumoto.
Begin the day with a visit to the magnificent 16th-century Matsumoto Castle, also known as 'Crow Castle', due to its intense black exterior. Next, head to a miso house and learn about the process of making this famous Japanese seasoning. After lunch, visit a sake brewery and enjoy a tipple or two! There will be some free time this afternoon to further explore Matsumoto.
Travel by road to the Fuji Five Lakes area. Ascend by road to the 5th Station to view Mt Fuji (weather permitting). Also, enjoy a peaceful cruise on Lake Ashi before taking to the skies on the Komagatake Ropeway to enjoy the breathtaking scenery below. Continue to Mishima and stay overnight.
Journey to Kamakura, a popular coastal city located south of Tokyo. Visit Kotokuin Temple, which houses Japan's second tallest bronze buddha statue, followed by a stroll through Komachi Street which is lined with pretty little shops before visiting Tsurugaoka Hachimangu, Kamakura's most important shrine. After lunch, continue to Tokyo and enjoy a leisurely walk though Hamarikyu Gardens.
Begin the day by ascending to the observation deck at the Tokyo Skytree, the world's tallest tower for panoramic views over the city below. Next, head to the old district of Asakusa and soak up the atmosphere at Sensoji, Tokyo's oldest and most famous temple, before browsing the stalls on Nakamise shopping street. After lunch, explore the Edo-Tokyo Museum to learn about Tokyo's historical heritage. End the day with a cruise on the waters of Tokyo Bay and enjoy dinner from the perfect vantage point to admire the supercharged lights of the city.
Fly to New Zealand, arriving home the following day.
All of our tour departures include international flights and taxes in the price. Our tour prices are from prices based on per person, twin share and are subject to the availability of specific economy class fare levels. 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 Tour would be more ideal.
New Zealand passport holders do not require a visa to travel to Japan. Other passport holders should arrange visas well in advance of departure, if required. Please note that a visa will be required for the China section of our Ancient Empires of China & Japan tour.
While travelling overseas, the Wendy Wu Tours contact number during business hours is +64 9 975 8117. Emergency Assistance (24-hours) is 0044 1888 288 288. You will find mobile phone coverage to be quite high throughout Asia. We recommend contacting your mobile carrier if you intend to use international roaming during your holiday and ensure you investigate all associated call and data costs before you leave New Zealand. Some hotels may have Wi-Fi, which usually comes at a cost.
Tipping is not part of the culture in Japan and therefore is not required during our tours in Japan, but if you would like to show your appreciation, you can do so in local currency. Note that tipping is customary in South Korea and China and for the tours that include those countries, a customary tipping amount is indicated.
Shopping is a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure. In keeping with most people’s interests while on holiday, your tour includes a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs. Included are visits to establishments that provide locally produced goods, unique to your destination. Witness the creation of these products, and see first-hand how their production supports the local economy. As most travellers like to take home souvenirs, we ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity.
We aim to cater to the tastes of the majority of people and so the food is not too spicy or too unusual. Breakfast at your hotel includes local and western dishes. In remote areas, we suggest embracing local specialities. Bento boxes are a common lunch option. A traditional bento contains rice, seafood or meat, with pickled or cooked vegetables. Drinks such as beer, soft drinks or bottled water are at your own expense locally.
At Wendy Wu Tours we are all avid adventurers, constantly seeking out the best ways for you to experience Asia. That's why we are Asia experts and New Zealand's leading Asia tour operator - our customer reviews and numerous awards say it all. This website is all about showcasing both Asia's top sights and its magnificent hidden gems; about the plethora of different types of authentic and exciting experiences that we can offer you; and about giving you the very best holiday, whether it's your first visit or your 10th.
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Wendy Wu Tours offers the best selection of tours to Asia, Central and South America.
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