Bachelor of Japan 11 days / 10 nights
Day 1 – Arrival
Arrive at Narita Airport in Tokyo and transfer to your hotel.
Day 1 – Tokyo
Start the tour by visiting the oldest temple in Tokyo, “Sensō-ji” along with its famous Thunder Gate located in Asakusa. According to legend, two brothers were fishing in the nearby Sumida River when they happened to catch a statuette of Kannon – the goddess of mercy. They tried repeatedly to return the statuette to the river, only to have it returned back to them the following day. As such, they decided to construct the Sensō-ji temple in order to honour Kannon. The temple was completed in 645. The traditional Nakamise shopping street leading to the temple is a splendid place to buy Omiyage (souvenirs) and snacks. Try the popular Asakusa snack “Ningyo-yaki” (lit. baked dolls), which are made into many amusing shapes depending on the shop. Afterwards, enjoy a spectacular view from one of the tallest towers in the world, the Tokyo Sky Tree. Head for the river and embark on a river cruise taking you from Asakusa to the Hama-Rikyu garden. At this landscape garden, pay especially attention to the 300 year old pine tree as well as normal sized trees styled in a Bonsai (miniature tree) manner. Take the Yurikamome Transit Line which is Tokyo’s first fully automated transit system controlled solely by computers. Step off at Odaiba, a set of small artificial islands dating back to the early 1850s made for protection against American naval incursion (especially Commodore Perry and his fleet). Nowadays it is filled with modern architecture and entertainment facilities. Also visit the Oedo onsen (public bathing facility) located at Odaiba. It contains a variety of activities such as foot baths, public baths, massages, games, food, doctor fish (spa treatment with fish) and more.
Day 2 – Tokyo
Start the day by visiting the famous Tsukiji fish market, the biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world. It swirls with busy people and moving carts creating an authentic atmosphere. Later head to the Yasukuni shrine, a place of great controversy in Japan, China and Korea. The shrine commemorates over 2.5 million people who died for Japan in conflicts dating back to the Meiji restoration (1868-1912). The accompanying museum documents these events. Travel further to the Meiji shrine which is dedicated to the spirits of Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shōken. After exploring the nearby Yoyogi park, it is time to have a look at modern Tokyo! Choose your favorite district and explore modern Tokyo with its never-sleeping atmosphere. Some popular districts are: Shinjuku (busy area with skyscrapers, electronics, dept. stores, red light district), Harajuku (teenage culture, fashion, cosplay, art museums, shopping, restaurants), Shibuya (youth fashion and culture, nightclubs, restaurants, bars) Akihabara (electronics and “Otaku” culture).
Day 3 – Tokyo / Nikko day trip
Enjoy leisure time in Tokyo or visit nearby places such as Nikko, a town containing Toshogu, Japan’s most decorated shrine and mausoleum of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate. Also have a look at the Kegon waterfall which ranks as one of Japan’s three most beautiful waterfalls. Feel free to contact us for other suggestions or guiding requests.
Day 4 – Takayama
Finally it is time to ride the famous Shinkansen bullet train with travelling speeds at up to 300 km/h. The trains are known for their extreme safety, having no injuries on record despite having carried nearly 10 billion passengers since 1964. Arrive in Nagoya and transfer to a regular train heading for Takayama, a unique traditional Japanese city located in the Gifu prefecture. Due to its high altitude and isolation from other areas of Japan through 300 years, the city has formed a one-of-a-kind culture and is especially known for its inhabitants’ expertise in carpentry.
Check in at a cozy Japanese Ryokan (inn) with excellent access to many sightseeing spots. Visit the Hida Folk Village, a genuine open air museum, together with our guide or on your own. Here you are able to see unique architecture in over 30 traditional houses stemming from the Edo Period (1603-1868). Inside the buildings, tools and utensils are displayed, some very unique and some perhaps similar to your home country! Also go where tourists usually don’t go and have a look at “Suza - The World Shrine” which is the headquarters of a religious cult, the Sukyo Mahikari. The building is an impressive sight mixing elements from many religions and cultures. It features golden roofs, Shinto shrine architechture, Islamic style towers, the Star of David, the Wheel of Dhamma, an enormous hall, big fish tanks and more. Enjoy free time the rest of the day.
Day 5 – Takayama
After waking up, visit the morning markets which are being held in Takayama on a daily basis. The stands sell local crafts, farm products, fruits, snacks and more. Have a stroll or ride a Rickshaw or a bicycle through the old town of Takayama, a beautifully preserved area with buildings and streets dating back to the Edo Period. Several doors are open to public featuring traditional arts, craft, tools and goods. Optional: Travel back in time by visiting Shirakawa-go, a charming and historical village registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The thatched roofs of the traditional farmhouses, some of which are more than 250 years old, resemble monks’ hands being put together in prayer. This building style has been named “Gassho-zukuri” which translates to “constructed like hands in prayer”.
Day 6 – Kyoto
Ride a regular train from Takayama to Nagoya, transfer to the Shinkansen and head for Kyoto, the ancient capital of Japan. You will be given a tailor-made plan for the day based on your personal requests or interests. Visit the chosen spots together with our guide and gain deep knowledge about ancient places, Shinto, Japanese Buddhism and more. You will also be able to participate in activities such as tea ceremony, Japanese traditional clothes rental, Zen meditation, Maiko (apprentice Geisha) dressup and photoshoot, samurai dressup and photoshoot, plus more on request (the activities can also be done on later days).
Day 7 – Kyoto / Hiroshima
Explore more of Kyoto together with our guide, take free time, or head to Uji or Hiroshima.
Uji – A town in the southern part of Kyoto well-known for its premium Japanese tea. Visit the Byodoin Temple and its famous Phoenix Hall which is featured on the back of the Japanese 10 yen coin. Next to the hall lies a unique underground treasure house containing a range of valuable artifacts. Learn how to make Sencha tea from local tea farmers and enjoy different types of tea. Take part in a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, a process not performed in order to merely drink tea, but rather meant as a ceremony to demonstrate respect through grace and good etiquette. Enjoy green tea dinners such as green tea Tempura and green tea Soba.
Hiroshima – Visit the city that became world widely known for being the first city in history to be targeted by a nuclear attack. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park together with its accompanying Peace Memorial Museum surveys the history of Hiroshima and the nuclear bomb. See the skeletal remains of the iconic “Atomic Bomb Dome”, an eerie reminder of the horrors of war. Also have a look at Hiroshima castle, originally built in 1589 and rebuilt after the dropping of the atomic bomb. It served as an important seat of power in Western Japan and now features an informative museum as well as a beautiful view from the top floor. Close to Hiroshima lies the small island of Miyajima, famous for its “torii” gate and shrine built in an inlet above water. The shrine was given its form by Taira no Kiyomori, a very powerful military leader of the late Heian period known for having established Japan’s first samurai-dominated administrative government. The sight is ranked as one of Japan’s three most scenic places. Deers roam among tourists at Miyajima. They have previously been worshipped and considered sacred, but following World War II they became an international tourist attraction instead.
Day 8 – Kyoto
Enjoy your free time exploring Kyoto or participate in some of our optional activities. Feel how it is like being Japanese by renting traditional clothing and stroll around the ancient capital of Japan. Practice Japanese calligraphy or Shodō, “the way of writing”. Still being a mandatory part of children’s education, Shodō is an activity deeply embedded in the Japanese culture. Have a taste of traditional Kyoto cuisine accompanied by Maiko and their extraordinary skills. Enjoy a night of entertainment with drinking games, food, chatting with the Maiko with English explanation and take some photographs to remember the experience.
Day 9 – Kyoto
On your last full day in Japan, join our Kyoto Food Tour accompanied by our guide. Visit food factories and traditional Japanese food shops. Eat lunch at a unique Yuba restaurant (Yuba is a typical Kyoto dish made from the creamy skin formed on the surface of heated soy milk). Visit the famous Nishiki market and purchase ingredients which will be used in the cooking class. Head to our cooking class studio in central Kyoto and enjoy cooking in a traditional wooden townhouse (Machiya) together with local housewives. They are all English speaking and eager to talk. A very informal quiz about your experience in Japan will be held where nice prizes and "graduation" diplomas will be awarded.
Day 10 – Departure
Transfer to Kansai International Airport (KIX) for your flight back home. Hope you enjoyed your stay in the Land of the Rising Sun!
Pris: ca 20.350:- per person i dubbelrum.
What is included?
One dinner at the Takayama Ryokan (inn)
Japan Rail Pass and a 3500 yen charged IC card
2 days of guiding, one in Tokyo and one in Kyoto (Contact us for more or less guiding).
Kyoto Food Tour (see day 9)
What is not included?
International flights and departure taxes
Accommodation pre and post tour
Spending money for souvenirs, snacks, drinks and extras
Activities (calligraphy, traditional clothes rental etc.) and optional excursions
Although our route appears fixed, it is subject to alteration by request as we strive to deliver trips that are tailor-made to the interests of the individual visitors. Typically younger visitors wish to see the youth culture found in Tokyo whereas senior travelers often want to visit good dining spots and historical sights. As such, we would like to inquire you about your interests and requests on beforehand in order to make the best experience suited for you.