Magical Japan
 
11 days: Land of the Samurai
including the Japanese Snow Monkeys
  • Tokyo: (2 nights)
  • Matsumoto (1 night)
  • Yudanaka Onsen - Snow Monkeys (1 night Ryokan)
  • Kiso Valley, Nagano (2 nights with Onsen spa)
  • Choice of Western or Japanese style room in Kiso
  • Magome -Tsumago
  • Kyoto: (3 nights)
  • Nara
  • Japanese Tea Ceremony
  • Fully Guided Small Group tour
  • Quality Ryokans, Onsen Spa & Hotels
  • Optional:Sumo Tournament & Geisha performance

Images of Japan

Magical Japan Tours enquiry@magicaljapan.com
  Tel from UK 0161 440 7332
  Tel from USA 1-213-325-2627

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itinerary below Price & Departure dates

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matsumoto castle

 

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mt fuji bullet train

 

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silver pavilion kyoto

 

Tour Details at a Glance

  • Fully Guided Small Group tour.

  • Meeting service and airport to hotel transfer on arrival.
  • Experienced professional English speaking Tour Guide/Tour Leader from Day 3 to 10
  • Quality selection of hotels and superb Ryokans with spa facilities.
  • All transfers and entrance fees included.
  • Daily Breakfast, 3 Evening Meals.
  • Luggage transfers between destinations as stated in itinerary.
  • No hidden extras, all entrance fees & transport included.
  • Guided tours by private coach, Bullet trains and public transport all included.
  • Airport transfer on departure.
  • International flights can be provided - Full ATOL Protection
  • Day 1
    Depart from your preferred airport for your flight to Tokyo. Meals on board.

    Day 2 Tokyo
    Arrive at Narita Airport in Tokyo, where you will be met upon arrival
    and transferred to your centrally located hotel in Tokyo. The rest of the day is at your leisure to adjust to the 9 hours time difference.

    Stay 2 nights at the highly regarded Villa Fontaine Shiodome Hotel (or similar).

    Day 3 Tokyo (Breakfast at your hotel)
    After breakfast in your hotel, meet your Tour Leader and profession Tour Guide who will look after you during your tour and travel with you throughout.

    Today we explore Tokyo and our first stop is to the Tsukiji Fish Market which is the biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and famous for the tuna and sword fish trading which frantically takes place in the early mornings.

    Afterwards we travel to the impressive Meiji Shrine which is dedicated to the spirits of Emperor Meiji and his consort. Pass through the huge Shinto Torii gates and take a leisurely walk in the peaceful forest leading to the Shrine, far away from the hustle and bustle of modern Tokyo.

    Later we visit Tokyo's most colourful and popular Buddhist Temples, the famous and bustling Asakusa Kannon Temple.

    Our final stop is to the Tokyo National Museum which contains many of Japans and Asia's most precious and historic sculptures, paintings and archaeological objects.

    Return to our hotel in the late afternoon and enjoy free time in Tokyo. Your Tour Guide can advise on places to visit, or good places to eat.

    Day 4 Tokyo - Matsumoto (Breakfast at your hotel)
    In the morning we gather in the hotel lobby to meet our Tour Guide for todays activities.

    Due to luggage restrictions on the bullet train, we have arranged an 'overland luggage transfer', to take your large luggage directly to your hotel in Kiso. Therefore prepare a small overnight bag for your nights stay in Matsumoto & Yudanaka. (1 large bag per person for the overland luggage transfer).

    Today we take a guided tour of Tokyo to visit the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace, the main residence of the Emperor of Japan. The massive East gardens are part of the inner palace, designed during the Meiji era and include traditional Japanese gardens, tea-ceremony rooms, guard Houses and the stone remains of Edo Castle.

    Enjoy free time in Tokyo until mid afternoon, where we gather in the hotel lobby for our train transfer to Matsumoto with our Tour Guide. Upon arrival in Matsumoto, we take a private taxi to our Hotel.

    In the evening we take a leisurely guided walk to see the illuminated Matsumoto castle magestically lit up in the night.

    Accommodation at the Matsumoto Hotel Kagetsu (or similar).

    Day 5 Matsumoto - (Nagano) - Yudanaka (Breakfast & Buffet Dinner)
    After breakfast we gather in the hotel lobby to meet our Tour Guide for a walking tour of Matsumoto, where we visit Matsumoto castle, known as 'crow castle' due to its unique black exterior. Matsumoto castle is one of only four castles designated as National Treasures of Japan and is stunningly beautiful. Afterwards we continue our tour around Matsumoto and stroll around the traditional old quarter (Nawate Dori).

    Later we transfer to Matsumoto station by taxi, where we take the train to Nagano. Free time at Nagano station for lunch and afterwards we continue our train Journey to Yudanaka Onsen. We arrive at our Ryokan late afternoon, where you can relax and enjoy the Onsen 'hot spring spa' before having a Japanese set dinner made with fresh seasonal ingredients.

    Accommodation at the Issano Komichi Biyuno Yado Ryokan (or similar) with indoor and outdoor 'Onsen' spa bath facilities.

    Day 6 Yudanaka - Snow Monkeys- Kiso valley (Breakfast & Buffet Dinner)
    After Breakfast at your Ryokan we visit the Snow Monkey park with our guide. Enjoy watching the red faced Japanese snow monkeys, which often can be seen bathing and relaxing in the volcanic hot springs.
    We return to our ryokan and depart Yudanaka around midday for Nagano by express train, where we have free time for lunch before boarding our train to Nagiso.

    Upon our arrival at Nagiso in late afternoon, we transfer to our hotel in Kiso by Shuttle bus. Buffet dinner is served at our Hotel.

    Accommodation at the Kisoji Hotel (or similar) staying in either a western or Japanese style room with Tatami mats and futon beds. Hotel has Onsen hot spring spa facilities. (please specify your preferred room type at time of booking)

    Day 7 Kiso - Magome - Tsumago - Kiso (Breakfast & Buffet Dinner)
    After Breakfast at your hotel we transfer to Magome by local bus and take a scenic walk along the old Nakasendo trail to Tsumago. Comfortable shoes are recommended.

    To make your train journey more comfortable on Day 8, we have arranged to transfer your large luggage (1 piece/person) directly to Kyoto arriving the next day. Please leave your large luggage at the designated place in the morning before joining todays tour.

    The two towns of Magome and Tsumago were once postal towns connected by the Magome - Tsumago Trail. The trail leads through the hilly countryside and passes right alongside the houses and fields of local residents and takes about 9km, 3hour walk to complete. This was a trail which formed part of the Nakasendo postal route between Kyoto and Edo (Tokyo).

    The town of Magome has been beautifully restored in contrasts with the striking authenticity of neighbouring Tsumago. Tsumago is known today as one of the best preserved historical towns in Japan and walking along its car free streets is like stepping back in time to the early Edo Period, where Samurai walked the streets. Return to Kiso and have Japanese buffet dinner at your Ryokan.

    Accommodation at the Kisoji Hotel (or similar) staying in Western or Japanese style room, with Onsen spa facilities.

    Day 8 Kiso - Kyoto (Breakfast)
    Today we take the Kodama bullet train & local trains to Kyoto via Nagoya with our guide. Upon arrival at Kyoto we take a short walk to our Hotel to check in.

    In the afternoon we take a walking tour of Kyoto to visit the impressive and must-see Kiyomizu Temple built perched on the hillside overlooking Kyoto. We then walk though Ninnenzaka and Sannenzaka on one of Kyoto's most beautiful walks, which takes us down into the Gion area of Kyoto, famous for Geisha's. Enjoy walking down narrow streets lined with old wooden houses, traditional shops and restaurants. On our way we will visit Kodaiji Temple located in a beautiful part of Kyoto sitting atop a hill. Built in 1605 the temple contains absolutely stunning Zen Gardens, bamboo grove, tea houses and is one of the most beautiful Zen temples in Japan.

    Accommodation at New Miyako Hotel or similar (3 nights)

    Day 9 - Kyoto (Breakfast)
    We enjoy a full day of sight seeing with our tour Guide. We take our own private coach to visit Nijo Castle, commissioned by Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate. One of the most intriguing features is the "nightingale floors" designed to squeak like birds when anyone walks on them and designed to warn occupants of sneak attacks by Ninja assassins.

    Later we visit the famous Golden Pavilion (Kinkakuji Temple) and Ryoanji Temple, which has Japan's most famous Zen rock garden. We then have a great opportunity to experience a Japanese Tea Ceremony, where we learn about the traditions associated with this ancient ritual.

    In the afternoon we use public transport to visit Ginkakuji Temple (Silver Pavilion) and take a scenic walk along the Path of Philosophy which passes by many temples and shrines and follows a canal lined by hundreds of cherry trees, which explode into colour during Spring, making this one of the city's most popular hanami (cherry blossom viewing) spots.

    Day 10 Kyoto -Nara - Kyoto (Breakfast)
    Today we take a short train journey to Nara with our guide. Upon arrival we explore the ancient capital city of Japan and enjoy strolling through the Deer Park. We will also visit the impressive Todaiji Temple and Great Buddha.

    Return to Kyoto early afternoon and the rest of the day is free for you to explore Kyoto on your own. As always your Tour Guide can advise on places to visit, or good places to eat.

    *** To complete your Japan experience we can arrange an 'Optional' Geisha Special Dance & performance by an Authentic Geisha and Maiko. Ask for prices & details***

    Day 11 -Kyoto - Osaka - homewards (Breakfast)
    Today we say Sa-yo-na-ra. Transfer to Osaka, Kansai airport by Airport shuttle service for your departure flight homewards.

    2013 Tour Price - £2355 / $3770 per person based on Twin share
    2013 Arrival Date in Tokyo
    Special Tour Details
    Prices

    22nd March

    Spring Blossom
    £2355 / $3770

    29th March

    Spring Blossom
    £2355 / $3770

    5th April

    Spring Blossom
    £2355 / $3770

    12th April

    Spring Blossom
    £2355 / $3770

    11th October

    Early Autumn colours
    £2355 / $3770

    18th October

    Autumn Leaves
    £2355 / $3770

    1st November

    Autumn Leaves
    £2355 / $3770

    8th November

    Autumn Leaves
    £2355 / $3770

    *** Arrive date in Tokyo is Day 2, Departure date from UK and any other western countries is usually the day before, ie day 1***

    Price Includes (The prices shown above are 'per person')

    • Meeting service and airport to hotel transfer on arrival.
    • Experienced professional English speaking Tour Guide/Tour Leader from Day 3 to 10, who will accompany you throughout your tour.
    • Quality selection of hotels and superb Ryokans with spa facilities.
    • All transfers and entrance fees included.
    • Daily Breakfast, 3 Evening Meals.
    • Free luggage transfer from hotel to hotel (1 piece per person) between Tokyo to Kiso and Kiso to Kyoto. (Therefore no large luggage at Matsumoto, Yudanaka and 1st night Kyoto, please prepare a small bag to carry with you for these days).
    • No hidden extras, all entrance fees & transport included.
    • Guided tours by private coach, trains and public transport all included.
    • Airport transfer on departure.

    Price Does Not Include

    • International flights. These can be provided with Full ATOL Protection
    • Optional tours. Sumo Tournament tickets & Geisha Dance tickets.
    • Travel Insurance.

    FAQ and Further Tour Information
    Please see our FAQ page for further essential tour information.

    This tour is suitable for travellers of all ages, who are reasonably fit and healthy. Add on extensions are available to suit your requirements.

    * Snow monkeys are wild animals and therefore their activities can not be guarranteed.

    Our itinerary is designed according to the most up to date information available at the time. The above itinerary highlights the main attractions that are to be visited each day. In regards to expected transfer times and train times these may vary as they are subject to schedules and availability controlled by the various railway companies. It is extremely rare that itineraries ever need changes and we will always act in your best interest to handle any amendments if this did occur. However we reserve the right to change, amend or alter the itinerary if required, for example occasionally the tour sequence and duration of time spent in each city can change due to local conditions which are out of our control or due to heavy traffic conditions or bad weather. Please refer to the booking form for detailed terms & conditions.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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