Easter Holidays in Japan - Japanspecialist
See all sides of the nation on this scenic spring tour.
Spring is the best season to visit Japan, and every year, it coincides perfectly with the Easter Holidays. On this group tour, you will experience the cultural treasures of Kyoto, the beautiful city of Takayama and its charming old town, Kenrokuen Garden in Kanazawa, considered one of the most beautiful landscape gardens in Japan, the Izu Peninsula with some of the best hot springs in the country and finally Tokyo's vibrant city life.
Take your overnight flight from Eruope to Osaka and get ready for the adventure that awaits.
Welcome to Japan! You arrive at Kansai Airport in Osaka in the morning and take a bus to Kyoto, Japan's cultural capital, where you'll arrive around noon. You explore Kyoto Station, famous for its unique architecture, and we will have a light lunch at a nearby restaurant.
After lunch, you'll check-in at the hotel and in the evening, head to Gion, where you might see a geisha before enjoying a delicious welcome dinner at a local restaurant.
Today you'll visit two of Kyoto's most famous sights, Kinkaku-ji, the Golden Pavilion, and the impressive samurai castle Nijo. After lunch, the rest of the afternoon and evening is free at your own disposal. You could make your way to Nishiki Market in central Kyoto, which, nicknamed Kyoto's kitchen, has more than 100 shops and restaurants.
After breakfast at the hotel, it's off to the southern part of Kyoto and Fushimi Inari Shrine, famous for its thousands of orange torii gates that cover a network of trails behind the shrine's main building.
You'll continue to the nearby Tofuku-ji Temple, a large zen temple with a beautiful Zen garden. Finally, the last stop for this morning will be Sanjusangendo. This temple, known for its 1001 statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy, is Japan's longest wooden structure. After this visit, lunch and the rest of the day will be at your own disposal. You could spend the afternoon in the nearby Higashiyama District with its traditional pedestrian streets and the famous Kiyomizudera Temple.
After breakfast, you'll take the local train to Nara, Japan's very first capital. On foot, you'll make your way to Todaiji Temple, home of the world's largest bronze Buddha statue. We continue on foot through Nara Park, a large park in central Nara, where you can find some of the city's main attractions.
You'll have lunch at a local restaurant and continue through the beautiful forest path that leads up to the Kasuga-taisha Shrine. On both sides of the path, we see the hundreds of beautiful lanterns that are all lit only once a year. Then you'll head to the Kofuku-ji temple with the five-storey high pagoda, where we also visit the small National Treasure Museum, which has a nice collection of sculptures. You'll return to Kyoto, where the evening is free to spend how you wish.
Today, you leave Kyoto and by shinkansen (bullet train) to Nagoya then on to Takayama. The train rides between mountains and rivers and makes it one of Japan's most beautiful train journeys.
You'll arrive in Takayama and head to the old town where you'll stop for lunch. On the menu will be the local Hida beef, a type of Wagyu originating from Gifu Prefecture, where Takayama is located. After lunch, it's time to stroll through the old town's small streets, with beautiful wooden houses, home to shops, cafés, and restaurants. We head back to our hotel and check in. The evening is at your disposal.
After breakfast, you'll head on foot to Miyagawa morning market, located near the old town along the Miyagawa River. After the market, you'll make a stop at the unique Showa-kan museum and visit the beautiful Yatai Kaikan museum, which exhibits the beautiful gold-clad procession floats used at the Takayama's annual Spring and Autumn festivals. The rest of the day is then free to spend how you wish.
Today, you leave Takayama and head to the village of Shirakawa-go. The village is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and many of the homes that make up the village are still actively used as homes, shops, restaurants, or even traditional inns where tourists can spend the night.
You'll visit Kanda House, which dates to around 1850 and after, walk to a viewpoint where the view over the village and its many farmhouses is striking. Next, you'll travel to Kanazawa and enjoy a late lunch. After check-in, the rest of the day is at your disposal.
This morning, you'll join a sightseeing tour in Kanazawa. The tour passes through Higashi Chaya-gai district, where you'll see the beautiful old wooden houses, which in the past were tea houses, where geishas entertained guests.
You'll then continue to the famous Kenrokuen Garden, classified as one of the three most beautiful landscape gardens in Japan, alongside Mito's Kairakuen and Okayama's Korakuen. You later walk from the garden to Kanazawa Castle, which is located in a large beautiful park. From here, you'll visit the samurai neighbourhood of Nagamachi, where you can stroll through the streets on your own and visit the Nomura house, an old samurai residence with a beautiful courtyard. The rest of the day is free to spend as you wish, but a visit to the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art is highly recommended.
After breakfast, you'll continue by shinkansen and local train to the scenic Izu peninsula. Upon arrival at Izu-Kogen station, you'll walk to your ryokan, then continue on foot to the nearby Jogasaki Coastline, where a 10-kilometre hiking trail stretches along the coast through cliffs, stone formations and magnificent nature.
In the evening, you will enjoy a delicious kaiseki dinner with the group. After dinner, be sure to take advantage of the ryokan's onsen baths.
Today you'll travel from Izu Kogen to Tokyo. You'll spend the next four nights in Shinjuku, Tokyo's most vibrant district.
Upon arrival, you'll leave your luggage at the hotel and have lunch at a nearby restaurant. Afterwards, you'll walk to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building to enjoy an excellent view of the city. If the weather is clear enough, it might be possible to see Mt. Fuji.
The rest of the day is at your disposal, and it is easy to find a good local restaurant at a short distance from the hotel.
After breakfast at our hotel, you'll travel to the Edo Tokyo Museum to learn about the evolution of Tokyo. After the museum, you'll move on to Asakusa to enjoy a sushi lunch before visiting Sensoji temple, which is Tokyo's oldest and is dedicated to the goddess of mercy, Kannon.
Nakamise Street, leading up to the temple, has many shops where you can buy traditional Japanese goods at a reasonable price - a great place to look for souvenirs. The rest of the day is open to enjoy however you wish.
This day is free to enjoy however you wish. You could make your way to Tokyo Skytree, Japan's tallest structure, offering stunning views of Tokyo. The island of Odaiba, located in the middle of Tokyo Bay, is also worth a visit. Among the island's many attractions, we recommend the popular teamLab Borderless, a unique digital art museum.
You can also take a full-day trip to Hakone, which must be booked in advance (see below).
Hakone National Park is close to Tokyo and at the foot of Mt. Fuji. Hakone also has an interesting history, beautiful surroundings, and a cool climate all year round. The many volcanoes in the area, including Fuji itself, make the area rich in steaming hot baths with natural spring water.
Your tour leader will take you on a local train from Tokyo to Hakone, where we will take the train through the beautiful valleys to the outdoor museum, with one of the finest collections of modern sculptures.
Later you'll drive further up the mountain and take a cable car up to the active volcanic Owakudani (note that the area is sometimes closed for visits if there is too much volcanic activity). You'll after you’ll take the cable car further down to the shore of Ashi Lake, where you can have a light lunch on your own before taking a relaxing boat trip. After the boat ride, it's back to Tokyo. The rest of the evening is free at your disposal.
Today you'll start the day by visiting the beautiful Meiji Jingu Shrine, located as a green oasis in the middle of the big city, then continue on foot through Yoyogi Park to nearby Harajuku.
After lunch at a local restaurant, it's off to Shibuya, where the rest of the afternoon is at your disposal. You'll meet up with the group later in the evening for a delicious "sayonara" dinner at a nearby teppanyaki restaurant.
It's time to say "sayonara" (goodbye) or maybe "matanee" (see you again) to Japan. You'll take an early morning, transfer to Narita Airport and fly back to Europe.
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