Osaka

This is your first contact to Japan, an interaction with a world completely different to what you are used to. We find important that you meet different aspects of this island in such cultural discovery. You will see, taste, hear, smell, touch and feel Japan. There will be tradition, futurism, history, gastronomy… and much more!

This is a quick overview of your itinerary. Please feel free to download the PDF brochure below with detailed information.

ESSENTIAL JAPAN at a glance:

Osaka - Kyoto - Nara - Fushimi Inari - Himeji - Koyasan - Mt. Fuji - Ushiku Buddha - Nikko - Kawagoe - Takaragawa Onsen - Hakone - Tokyo

WELCOME TO JAPAN!
DAY

01

All travelers are picked up at Osaka International Airport and taken to Kyoto by taxi or rapid train service. You will check in at GranVia Kyoto hotel or similar. This hotel features 30sqm soundproof rooms within Kyoto station’s main structure. Then you will enjoy free time to take a first glimpse of Kyoto and explore the surroundings. You might as well dive into the swimming pool, exercise at the gym or rest for the next day. It is also possible to exchange foreign currency at this hotel.

TREASURES OF KYOTO
DAY

02

This day will be spent exploring the treasures of Kyoto: The Kinkakuji or “Temple of the Golden Pavilion”, a National Special Historic Site and a National Special Landscape, the impressive Nijo Castle, and many other wonders of the old capital such as the Ryozen Kannon and Kodaiji temples, all of them listed in our PDF itinerary below.

 
Then you will be given some spare time to do shopping in traditional streets before enjoying a delicious matcha tea with sweets.

FUSHIMI INARI AND NARA
DAY

03

The Fushimi Inari is one of the most iconic shrines of Japan, known for the thousands of reddish tori gates that make up its mystic corridors.


Enjoy the company of friendly deer and fantastic park views on the way to the next temple: the magnificent Todaiji, the world’s largest wooden construction. Inside sits an overwhelming 15 meters (49 ft) tall Buddha weighing over 550 tons. This temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Outside the main hall you will find a wooden statue of a disciple of Buddha that is said to cure illness. Ask your tour guide how to use the Binzuru’s healing powers!

KOYASAN
DAY

04

Day 4 will be spent exploring the ancient Mount Koya with an unforgettable overnight stay at a Buddhist temple. Enjoy one of the most sacred places in Japan, enter a temple with a very interesting past, and contemplate the largest rock garden of Japan.


When the night falls, get yourself immersed in a natural hot spring that lies at the backyard of the temple where we will sleep over.

BACK TO KYOTO AND SPARE TIME
DAY

05

After checking back in at the Kyoto hotel you will be given a free day to roam, explore, shop and visit any sites you wish to see. The old capital of Japan is rich in ancient sites so take in all the sights, smells and sounds and rejoice getting lost wandering the historic streets. You may also want to experience a dinner served by real geishas!

HIMEJI CASTLE AND MOUNT SHOSHA
DAY

06

Himeji’s magnificent Castle has stood perfectly intact for over 400 years and has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a Special Historic Site and a National Treasure by the Japanese Government.


The Kokoen gardens are just around the corner. These gardens consist of nine separate, walled gardens designed in various styles of the Edo period: a waterfall pond, pine tree garden, bamboo garden, flower garden and a tea garden for guests to relax in a traditional tea ceremony house.


The Mount Shosha, its suspended bell that you will be able to strike, its atmosphere, its ancient temple complex where the Last Samurai was filmed and other details are hidden in our free PDF file below!

TOKYO MAIN DISTRICTS
DAY

07

After checking in at Shinagawa Keikyu Exx In Hotel or similar, our next stop will take you to Harajuku and its famous Takeshita Street. After your meal you will be taken to the Meiji Jingu shrine, one of the most important shrines of the capital. We will continue our walk down to Shibuya district. You will cross the world’s most popular and busiest street intersection and visit the statue of Hachiko before heading to Shinjuku district, which houses the busiest railway station in the world.

 
There you will enjoy spectacular panoramic views of the city from the top of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, where you can also grab a cup of coffee.

SPECIAL EDO PERIOD
DAY

08

The theme of this day is the Edo period, in which the government power was transferred from Kyoto to Edo (actually Tokyo). It is the period between 1603 and 1868 characterized by economic growth, strict social order, isolationist foreign policies, a stable population, peace, and popular enjoyment of arts and culture.


You will be given three interesting options to experience Edo: Kawagoe, Nikko or Warp Edo Station. This special day will be completed with a visit to the wonderful Tokyo-Edo Museum. Please find further details in the Essential Japan brochure below.

TAKARAGAWA ONSEN
DAY

09

Takaragawa Onsen is the second Japanese hot spring that you will enjoy in Japan. Surrounded by mountains and nature, this is one of the best hot springs in the country.


We will arrive at Takaragawa Onsen past noon and will devote the day to absolute relaxation. You will enjoy an overnight at a Japanese-style room with tatami and futons. Outside the building you will find three open-air rotenburo pools at different temperatures and guarded by statues of impressive Buddhist deities.

ACTIVITIES A LA CARTE
DAY

10

This is a free day to carry out activities of your own choosing upon check-in back at Shinagawa’s hotel. Your tour guide will provide directions and relevant information on the activities you have chosen. The Essential Japan PDF brochure compiles a list of irresistible recommendations to make the most of this day!

DAY TRIP OF YOUR CHOICE
DAY

11

You will be able to pick with your travel mates one of the following options to crown your trip to Japan:


- Option 1: Day trip to Mount Fuji
- Option 2: Hakone Shrine
- Option 3: Ushiku Buddha and Kamakura

 

Regardless your day trip option for this day, a helicopter night cruise over Tokyo is scheduled at 20:00 (8pm).

SUMO WRESTLERS’ TRAINING, GOING BACK HOME
DAY

12

Get ready to witness how Sumo Wrestlers collide with each other and shake the floor you stand on. This training is not open to the public, so it’s very unlikely to see anyone else around us, making this a very special event.


Travelers joining this amazing adventure come from different countries and cities around the world, so their departure time from the airport will differ. That makes it impossible for us to program other activities during this day, but you will have the option to spend the rest of your time in Japan as you wish, perhaps picking one of the options listed for Day 10!