Traditional Japan

The city of Takayama is famous for its biannual Takayama Festival, dating back to at least the mid-1600s, celebrating spring and fall with parades featuring ornate, gilded floats and puppet shows.

Places Visited

Takayama (2N) - Kanazawa (2N) - Kyoto (1N)

Day 1: Tokyo to Takayama
Make your own way to Tokyo station to travel by train (unguided) to Takayama (via Nagoya). Upon arrival you’ll be transferred to your hotel. The afternoon is at leisure.
Day 1: Tokyo to Takayama
Day 2: Takayama
Meet your Local Guide, and go to the Miyagawa morning market. Wander through the Takayama Jinya, which was once the local government office, now a museum. Explore Takayama’s old town, with many buildings and whole streets of houses dating from the Edo Period (1600-1868). End the day at a sake brewery. (B,L)
Day 2: Takayama
Day 3: Takayama – Shirakawa-go to Kanazawa
Visit the Takayama Festival Floats Museum. Travel by shared coach to Shirakawago, nestled in remote mountains and famous for traditional gassho-zukuri farmhouses. In the afternoon, farewell your Local Guide and continue to Kanazawa by shared coach. (B,L)
Day 3: Takayama – Shirakawa-go to Kanazawa
Day 4: Kanazawa
During the Edo Period, Kanazawa served as the seat of the powerful feudal Maeda Clan. Wander through Kenroku-en Garden with your Local Guide. Visit the Nagamachi Samurai district, Kagayuzen Sangyo Kaikan Silk Centre and the Nomura Samurai House, a traditional Japanese home with tea-ceremony room and artefacts from the Edo period. Farewell your Local Guide at Kanazawa station in the afternoon and travel by train to Kyoto. On arrival at Kyoto you will be transferred to your hotel and the rest of your day will be at leisure. (B)
Day 4: Kanazawa
Day 5: Kyoto
Enjoy a free day to explore Kyoto’s many temples. (B)
Day 5: Kyoto
Day 6: Depart Kyoto
Your arrangements end after check-out this morning. (B)

Also Available

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 936 3998 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.

Tour prices are per person, twin share departing Auckland. Regional departures available on request. Additional charges: Tipping is payable on arrival in destination (see Additional Price Information below).

New Zealand passport holders do not require a visa for travel to Japan.

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. It’s a good idea to check call costs with hotel staff or your local guide before making calls, as this can be expensive. A service charge may also be involved. To call New Zealand – the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 64, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number.
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are quite popular and you will find high quality coverage, with active roaming agreements with most of the service providers. Please make sure you are aware of associated costs and have activated your international roaming prior to departure.
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 wifi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is not part of the culture in Japan and is therefore not expected.

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.

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 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.