Expand your horizons and join us for the fun during the Takayama Festival during our Takayam Festival | Grand Tour package. Take part in the Takayama Festival, known for huge floats and mechanical puppet shows, taiko drums, paper lanterns, and laughter! Make your vacation memorable with a Grand tour visiting Japan's must see spots on the three main islands!
|Tour Starts||Tour Ends||Price|
|Takayama Festival | Grand Tour 15 Days|
|Tour Starts||Tokyo||Tour Ends||Osaka||Twin Share||USD7,098||Single||USD8,548|
14 nights 15 Days
Tokyo - Nagano - Shirakawago - Takayama - Kanazawa - Shiga - Nara - Kyoto - Hyogo - Shimane - Hiroshima - Kumamoto - Takachiho - Beppu - Matsuyama - Tokushima - Takamatsu - Osaka
11 nights Western and 2 nights Japanese-style hotel with hot-springs, Daily Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, and 3 Dinners, All ground transportation and airport transfers, Admission Fees, Tax & Gratuities at all included Destinations Bullet train ride, Tea Ceremony and other Japanese activities, Full time service of licensed English speaking tour, Guide Handbook and Tour Goods Package Free Wi-Fi in Bus & Most hotels
10 Apr, 05 Oct
Narita Int'l Airport (NRT) or Haneda Int'l Airport (HND)
Welcome to Japan! We will have transportation services to take you to your hotel. Please refer to your tour handbook for more information. Rest at the hotel and be ready to start your exciting tour tomorrow.
From Narita Airport to downtown hotel in Tokyo - about 90 mins (Bus)
From Haneda Airport to downtown hotel in Tokyo - about 30 mins (Bus)
Hotel : Tobu Hotel Levant Tokyo or similar
|Day 2 (Meals : B/L)|
All Day :Free at your leisure
We have cleared up the day for you to explore and enjoy Japan as you wish. You can either 1) enjoy the entire day as you wish, 2) visit Tokyo Disney Land, Fuji Q Amusement Park, or Sanrio Puroland, 3) or go on a private-guided tour through Nikko or Kamakura. For those who wish to visit Tokyo Disney Land, Fuji Q Amusement Park, or Sanrio Puroland, your tour guide will be happy to explain directions. (Not all fees included for additional tour options. Please contact us in advanced for this service)
Hotel : Tobu Hotel Levant Tokyo or similar
|Day 3 (Meals : B/L)|
Tokyo & Nagano | Traditional Japanese Kimono Art
Morning : [Hakone] Itchiku Kubota Art Museum
Afternoon : [Nagano] Matsumoto Castle
Evening : Hotel
After our time in Tokyo, our Takayama Festival tour will stop by Lake Kawaguchi for some sight-seeing before making our way to our hotel. We will first head off to enjoy the fine works of art at the Kubota Art Museum. Itchiku Kubota was a textile artist who devoted his life to recreating the forgotten 15th century Tsujigahana fabric dyeing technique. Many of his work is on display at this museum. Before making our way to the next destination, we will stop for Hoto, a Japanese noodle dish native to the Yamanashi area. A hybrid of miso soup and flat udon noodles, this dish is truly a local Japanese specialty.
After lunch, your Takayama Festival tour is off to the imposing Matsumoto Castle nestled in the Northern Alps of Japan. As one of the few remaining original Japanese castles intact since construction, the castle's 5-story, 6-layer tower built int he Bunroku Period (1593-1594) is Japan's oldest existing castle tower and is designated as a national treasure. Remaining unscathed over centuries, Matsumoto Castle, or Karasu-jo (Crow Castle), is one of the best spots for viewing cherry blossoms and enjoying traditional Japaneses arts and architecture. Our Takayama Festival tour will spend some time enjoying the scenery and relaxing with the stunning view of the city from Matsumoto Castle. We then proceed to the hotel.
Hotel : IROHA GRAND HOTEL Matsumoto Ekimae or similar
|Day 4 (Meals : B)|
Nakasendo & Takayama | Takayama Night Festival
Morning : [Gifu] Magome | Tsumago
Afternoon : [Takayama] Takayama Old Town
Evening : Takayama Festival / Hotel
Today, our Takayama tour will have several stops before arriving in the city of Takayama. We’ll be following the Nakasendo Trail and enjoy a brief hike between Tsumago and Magome, the forty-second and forty-third stations of the trail respectively. The two towns are well-preserved and even go as far as making sure that electrical wires, TV antennas, and telephone poles do not show, allowing visitors to experience what it was like walking through town during the Edo Period. Enjoy some wagashi Japanese sweets and relax with a cup of tea before we make our way to Takayama.
Our Japan tour will finally reach Takayama. After checking into the hotel, we will follow the sound of drums to make it just in time to witness the festival in full swing. Takayama Festival is considered to be one of the best festivals in Japan. Their huge floats will light up the night’s sky with many arrays of color paper lanterns.
Hotel : Takayama Green Hotel or similar
|Day 5 (Meals : B/D)|
Takayama, Shirakawago & Kanazawa
Morning : Takayama Morning Market / Takayama Festival / Takayama Old Town / Takayama Jinya
Afternoon : Shirakawago / Nagase House / [Kanazawa] Kenrokuen Garden
Evening : Hotel
We’ll begin our day in Takayama with a visit to the morning market, one of the many areas in the city with buildings and shops more than 300 years old. Enjoy exploring the area by visiting the numerous vendors and important sightseeing spots. We recommend trying Hida Nikuman (beef buns) or Gohei-Mochi while at the market.
While at the market, we also recommend visiting the Takayama Jinya, a building which served as the local government office from 1692 up until 1969. Now a public museum, you can learn about the history of the building as well as old government documents and city plans of the area. The tour will also take a stroll through Takayama’s old town district which is filled with many well-preserved buildings from the Edo Period back when the city thrived as a wealthy merchant town.
Your group will then make its way to the small, rural farming village of Shirakawa-go, famous for its thatched-roof houses made using the gassho-zukuri method. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, you will get a glimpse into the traditional Japanese farming life in the early eras. A visit to the Nagase House, will provide insight on the various tools and trinkets used in the farming village back in the day.
Our last stop of the day will have you taking in the beautiful landscape of Kenrokuen Garden. Considered one of the top three most beautiful landscape gardens in Japan, Kenrokuen contains everything nature has to offer including streams, hills, and seasonal flowers which are sure to calm the soul.
Hotel : Yamashiro Onsen Rurikoh or similar
|Day 6 (Meals : B)|
Shiga & Kyoto
Morning : Moss Village & Wisdom Forest
Afternoon : [Shiga] Miho Museum / [Kyoto] Ninenzaka / Tea Ceremony
Evening : Hotel
We begin our day with a visit to the Koke no Sato Wisdom Forest. The Forest of Wisdom is one of the best places to see various Japanese moss, and the Wisdom House in the forest is meant to encourage guests to share experiences with others or engage in a workshop before getting lost in nature.
We then make our way to the Miho Museum to enjoy a morning filled with contemporary and Japanese art. Designed by world-renowned architect I.M. Pei, the Miho Museum is a modern architectural treasure located in the quiet forests of the Shiga prefecture and is meant to blend seamlessly into the surrounding nature. Take in the calm and picturesque grounds while enjoying the works of art on display ranging from classic modern-day artworks to treasures from ancient civilizations.
The tour will then head to Kyoto for a hands-on lesson on the tea ceremony in Ninenzaka. Learn about the history and meaning behind the ceremony as you watch it being performed before your eyes. Try your hand at making a traditional cup of matcha!
Hotel : Vischio Kyoto Hotel By GRANVIA or similar
|Day 7 (Meals : B/L)|
Kyoto & Nara
Morning : [Kyoto] Arashiyama / Jin-riki-sha Ride / Golden Pavilion / Maiko Dining Experience
Afternoon : [Nara] Todaiji Temple / Deer Park
Evening : Hotel
Our day in Kyoto will start off with a spirited rickshaw ride through the serene Arashiyama Bamboo Forest. Experience what it was like to get around the city back in the day as you enjoy the relaxing scenery.
Next, the group will make its way to the Golden Pavilion, or Kinkakuji Temple, an absolute must-see attraction where the upper two floors are covered with gold leaf making for a spectacular photo-op. We continue the tour with a kaiseki lunch accompanied by a maiko performance. Maiko are apprentice to Geisha and the meal is a great chance to take photos and learn about Kyoto's traditional culture.
The tour will then head to Nara to explore Todaiji Temple and the Deer Park. Todaiji Temple is considered one of the largest wooden buildings in the world and holds the largest Buddha statue in Japan, a truly impressive sight to behold. A short walk over and you will stand among the deer of the Nara Deer Park. Considered divine, the deer are adored by people all over the world.
The rest of the day will be spent at Fushimi Inari Shrine, home of the famed thousand torii gates. Explore the area by either making your way through the torii gates to the Omokaru Stone or watch the local priests performing prayers every so often.
Hotel : Vischio Kyoto Hotel By GRANVIA or similar
|Day 8 (Meals : B/D)|
Hyogo & Shimane
Morning : [Hyogo] Himeji Castle
Afternoon : [Shimane] Adachi Museum of Art
Evening : [Hiroshima] Hotel
Our Japan tour begins the day by heading to the Himeji prefecture to invade the remarkable Himeji-jo, or Himeji Castle. Himeji-jo was registered as a UNESCO distinguished site in 1993, representing Japanese castle architecture at its peak. Nicknamed White Heron Castle due to the Japanese castle's graceful white walls, Himeji Castle maintains almost all of it's original structures from its initial construction in the early 1600�s. Unlike some of the country's other castles, this classic Japanese castle has overcome wars, earthquakes, and natural disasters over the last four centuries. The grounds inside showcase the history of Himeji, and the castle grounds are perfect to enjoy scenic views of Japanese flowers and nature!
From there, our cherry blossom tour will travel west to the Shimane Prefecture to explore the Adachi Museum of Art. The art museum is known for its great collection of artwork and amazing Japanese gardens. The musuem's art collection includes fine works from illustrious talented Japanese artists including Yokoyama Taikan, Takeuchi Seiho, Hashimoto Kansetsu, and Sakakibara Shiho. While the art is impressive, the true gem is the museum's impressive array of Japanese gardens. Split into six smaller gardens, each garden provides a distinct feel and atmosphere. Enjoy the relaxing scenery with your tour guide and gaze upon the stunning Japanese flowers. The art museum's impresive Japaense gardens have been named the Best Garden in Japan annually since 2003 by the Journal of Japanese Gardening and received the top rating of three stars by the Michelin Green Guide Japan. Enjoy this scenic area before we make our way to our hotel.
Hotel : Dormy Inn Izumo or similar
|Day 9 (Meals : B/L)|
Morning : [Miyajima] Itsukushima Shrine
Afternoon : [Hiroshima] Peace Memorial Park / A-Bomb Dome
Evening : Hotel
Our vacation begins with a Hiroshima tour through the city's can't miss destinations. One of the main highlights in Hiroshima is the A-Bomb Dome, the only surviving building from the aftermath of World War Two's atomic bombing. Surrounding the magnificent A-Bomb Dome is the Peace Park Memorial where travelers can see and read about the history of the war. The A-Bomb Dome has been preserved as a reminder of the tragedy for future generations and to symbolize its wishes for everlasting peace. Walk along the park with your tour guide to see famous attractions like Sadako�s statue and the Freedom Bell.
In the afternoon ourJapan Tour will head to Miyajima, an island south of Hiroshima known for its Itsukushima Shrine, or floating torii gate. During high tide, the torii gate looks as though it is floating in water, creating a unique sight, considered one of Japan�s three most beautiful sights. Miyajima is also known for its mouthwatering momiji manju (maple leaf shaped cake with red beans) and delicious oysters which you can enjoy while your tour group explores scenic island. The rest of the day will be spent touring the city with your Japan tour guide who will show you all the best places Hiroshima has to offer. We then return to the hotel.
Hotel : Rihga Royal Hotel Kokura or similar
|Day 10 (Meals : B/L)|
Morning : [Nagasaki] Nagasaki Peace Memorial Park
Afternoon : Glover Garden / Oura Church
Evening : Hotel
Our day begins in Nagasaki where we will be visiting several historically significant locations. The first stop will be the Nagasaki Peace Memorial Park, a symbol of peace and a testament to the horrors of war. The Peace Statue sits at the epicenter of the blast from the atomic bomb dropped on the city. The right hand points up to symbolize the atomic bomb while the left hand points towards future peace. The statue's bent right leg symbolizes meditation, while the bent left leg represents the need to stand up against war. The closed eyes are to offer prayers and respect for the victims' souls lost in the devastation blast.
We will serve a local favorite champon and sara udon for today's lunch. Both champon and sara udon are noodle dishes that originated in Nagasaki.
From there, our vacation will head to Glover Garden which exhibits Western style mansions. After viewing these gorgeous mansions, we will continue with our foreign influences to the Oura Catholic Church. The Oura Catholic Church is Japan’s oldest standing Catholic church. This was added to UNESCO World Herrtage Site as Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region in 2018.
Hotel : Hotel Trusty Premier Kumamoto or similar
|Day 11 (Meals : B/D)|
Kumanoto & Takachiho
Morning : [Kumanoto] Kumamoto Castle / Johsaien - Castle Town
Afternoon : Ama-No-Yasukawara / Takachiho Gorge / Tunnel Station
Evening : [Beppu] Hotel
Your Japan tour will make its way to Kumamoto to see Kumamoto Castle. Kumamoto Castle is considered one of the three premier castles in Japan, along with Himeji Castle and Matsumoto Castle. Since it suffered tremendous damage from 2016 earthquake, we won't be able enter the castle grounds due to renovations. However, we will be able to see the castle and explore Johsaien, a shopping arcade by Kumamoto Caslte filled with over 20 shops and the Wakuwaku-za museum featuring the history and culture of Kumamoto and the famous Japanese Castle.
We then make our way to Takachiho where we will explore the Awano Iwato Shrine and Amanoyasukawara. The area is said to be the hiding spot of the Sun Goddess, Amaterasu, when Susano-o, the God of Storms, was terrorizing her. Amanoyasukawara is one of the famous power spot where you will see millions of small rocks on top of each other in a cave by a river side. Then we will make our way through Takachiho Gorge. The natural greenery in contrast with the volcanic rock that forms the gorge makes for a magnificent scenery. You will be able to see an amazing water fall at the end of hike.
Our last stop of the day will be the Tunnel Station which houses the Kagura Shuzo Brewery. Sample the local shochu, a traditional Japanese drink made from barley or yam, and shop for potential gifts at this unique destination.
Hotel : Beppu Kamenoi Hotel or similar
|Day 12 (Meals : B/)|
Beppu & Dogo
Morning : [Oita] Yufuin / Kinrin Lake
Afternoon : Tour of Hell
Evening : [Ehime] Hotel
We begin today with a leisurely stroll around the small town of Yufuin. Stop by the many traditional shops along the Yunotsubo Street and sample the many local specialties of the quaint town. We will also make our way to Kinrin Lake for some time in nature as you enjoy the scenery and peaceful koi fish in the lake.
Once we finish our time in Yufuin, we head to Beppu for a visit to one of the famous Tour of Hell hot springs. Each hot spring has a unique feature typically the color due to the different types of minerals present and is truly a one of a kind destination.
Moving on, we’ll take a ferry over to neighboring Shikoku for a visit to Dogo Onsen, which is said to have over 3,000 years of history. The onsen is also widely known for welcoming the imperial family as guests and has a room called Yushinden on reserve exclusively for their use. Dogo Onsen's impressive wooden structure served as a model for the famous film Spirited Away.
Upon arrival to Dogo Onsen, we will walk around the old fashion hot spring shopping arcade that will bring you a somewhat retro experience. You can find a mechanical clock tower that performs every half an hour, a foot bath, and many orange related items as this area is known as the biggest producer of oranges in Japan.
Hotel : Mielparque Matsuyama or similar
|Day 13 (Meals : B/L)|
Takamatsu & Tokushima
Morning : [Kagawa] Ritsurin Garden
Afternoon : [Tokushima] Awaodori Kaikan
Evening : [Osaka] Hotel
Our day will begin heading towards Osaka. Traveling East, our vacation brings us to an interesting Udon Making workshop to learn how to carefully prepare Udon noodles. While ramen is enjoyed around Japan, Udon is a popular thick noodled dish famous in the Southern regions of Japan. Learn first-hand the ways to prepare this delicious Japanese cuisine during your Takayama tour.
Next, we will visit the famous Ritsurin Garden. Michelin Green Guide graded the garden three stars and is a great place to take photos, especially from the highest point that overlooks the entire garden.
After soaking in some natural beauty, the tour will make its way through Tokushima. We will stop at the Awa-odori Museum, a museum dedicated to the prefecture dance of Tokushima. An annual festival where thousands of spectators will flock to the area to watch the dance being performed during Obon season. Here, we’ll learn about the history as well as learn some parts of the dance.
Hotel : Sheraton Miyako Osaka Hotel or similar
|Day 14 (Meals : B)|
Departure Osaka / Your home town or enjoy your extended stay.
Your pleasant and memorable Japan tour ends today. The tour will disband after breakfast. Fly home with cherished memories or enjoy your extended stay in Japan.
From downtown hotel in Osaka to KIX Airport - about 70 mins (Bus)
From downtown hotel in Osaka to ITM Airport - about 30 mins (Bus)
Hotel : N/A
C/O Kinokuniya Bookstores
The Galeries 500 George St
Sydney NSW 2000