Best of Japan Tour including Hiroshima
JAPAN TOUR HIGHLIGHTS
Join other Solo Travellers on this 12-day trip of a lifetime, discovering the very best of Japan. Begin your Best of Japan Tour in Tokyo, the city that never gets old, where tradition meets modernity and neon skyscrapers tower over historic temples. Take a day trip to the beautiful Mount Fuji, Japan’s most famous landmark. Sip on sake before spending the night in a traditional Japanese ryokan in Takayama. Travel around on the country’s famous bullet trains. Learn the art of sushi-making in Kyoto, the former imperial capital. And finally visit Hiroshima, the world’s first atomic bomb target, now home to the stunning Peace Memorial Park. Now is the time to explore what this fascinating country has to offer so get booking!
Explore the exciting city of Tokyo
Take a day trip to the stunning Mount Fiji
Spend a night in a traditional Japanese Ryokan
Discover the endless UNESCO temples & shrines in Kyoto
Visit the Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima
Day 1 – Arrive Tokyo
When you arrive in Tokyo, make your way to the hotel for check-in, which will be from 3pm onwards. Today is an arrival day so there are no planned activities. If you arrive in time, you can join your guide and the rest of the group for dinner to get to know your fellow travellers! Overnight in Tokyo. (Please note, you won’t be able to check-in to the hotel until 1500, so if your flight arrives earlier there is the option to book an extra night at the hotel to ensure your room is ready when you arrive).
Day 2 – Tokyo
After breakfast at the hotel, we will start a full day’s tour of Tokyo. We will start at The Imperial Palace where Japan’s Imperial family have lived since 1888. We will then go up to the main deck of the Tokyo Tower to see the stunning views of Tokyo and afterwards we will stop for lunch at the world-famous seafood market of Tsukiji. After lunch we will continue with our sightseeing and visit the famous Senso-Ji Temple in Asakusa, one of the most popular sights in traditional Tokyo, and finally we’ll visit the Edo Tokyo Museum where you will see exhibits from Edo Tokyo history. Overnight in Tokyo.
Day 3 – Tokyo / Mount Fuji
After breakfast at the hotel, you will embark upon a full day tour to see the incredible World Heritage listed Mount Fuji, Japan’s tallest peak. En-route we will visit Kawaguchi-ko Lake and stop for a lovely Japanese lunch. Afterwards we will continue up-to the 5th Station of Mount Fuji for amazing views. Overnight in Tokyo.
Day 4 – Tokyo Free Day
After breakfast you will have the day at leisure. Optional things to do and see would be the Meiji Shrine, which is located in Shibuya, meaning you could visit the world’s busiest intersection, the Shibuya Crossing before or afterwards. You could also do a walking tour around the traditional district of Yanaka, one of the only areas that avoided bombing during WWII. A great way to finish your day would be to head to the Tokyo Sky Tree for sunset. Overnight in Tokyo.
Day 5 – Nikko / Tokyo
After breakfast, you will be travelling to Nikko, a small but beautiful city in Japan’s Tochigi region surrounded by breath-taking scenery and access to the famous Nikko National Park. Here you will be given a private guided tour of the area to learn about the Edo Period, and you’ll also visit the famous Tosho-gu Shrine. Overnight in Tokyo.
Day 6 – Tokyo / Takayama
After breakfast at the hotel, you will catch a bullet train to Takayama, a small town with a stunning mountainous backdrop; the Japanese Alps. Upon arrival in Takayama, you will be transferred to your Ryokan, a traditional Japanese inn, where you will spend the night. After check-in you will be given a walking orientation tour of the area and visit one of the Sake Breweries. Overnight in Takayama.
Day 7 - Takayama / Kyoto
This morning you will have free to visit the local market, where you will find local produce and souvenirs. In the afternoon, you will be transferred to the train station to catch the bullet train to Kyoto, formerly the Imperial capital of Japan and home to many classical Buddhist temples. After you have checked-in to your new hotel, you will head to the Gion District, a place well-known for spotting Maiko (apprentice Geisha), and learn more about this area and its history. Overnight in Kyoto.
Day 8 – Kyoto
After breakfast, you will be given a full day’s guided tour of Kyoto by public transport. The tour will include the Buddhist temple of Sanjyusangen-do, the UNESCO Kiyomizu Temple, Nishiki Market also known as the ‘kitchen of Kyoto’, Tenryuji Temple with its beautiful garden, and finally the Kinkakuji Temple Japan’s second most famous site. Overnight in Kyoto.
Day 9 – Kyoto
After breakfast you will be given a course in the art of sushi making and an insight into Japanese tea. The rest of the afternoon will be free for more sightseeing. Overnight in Kyoto.
Day 10 – Kyoto / Hiroshima
After breakfast at the hotel, you will make your way to Kyoto’s train station to catch another bullet train to Hiroshima. Upon arrival in Hiroshima, you will make your way to the hotel for check-in. Then you will begin your tour of the Peace Park and museum and in the afternoon you will take the ferry across to Miyajima, a small island also known as ‘Shrine Island’ and home to lots of friendly deer. Overnight in Hiroshima.
Day 11 – Hiroshima / Osaka
After breakfast, you will take the train to Osaka where you will spend the final night of your tour. After you’ve checked-in you will be given a short orientation tour of this vibrant area. Overnight in Osaka.
Day 12 – Depart Osaka
After breakfast, you will make your way to Kansai International Airport for flights home.
WHAT'S INCLUDED IN THE JAPAN TOUR
- Sharing a twin room at 3-star hotels with breakfast
- Full day tours of Tokyo & Nikko
- Half-day tour of Hiroshima
- 7-day JR train pass
- Entrance fees on sightseeing tours
- 2x Lunches
- Baggage transfer service between hotels
WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED IN THE JAPAN TOUR
- International flights
- Airport transfers
- Optional tours and excursions on days of leisure
- Meals not mentioned
- Tips & personal expenses
- Up to eight weeks before departure, a place can be reserved on the Japan Tour on payment of a deposit of £250.00, after this date it would be the full amount of the trip.
- Click the book now button and fill in the details and tick the box confirming you accept booking conditions.
- The outstanding balance is due 8 weeks before travel.
- Please ensure you have checked visa requirements. Get in touch if you are unsure.
- Ensure you have purchased travel insurance, as this is mandatory for all trips.
- International flights into and out of Japan are not included and will need to be booked separately. Get in touch if you need help with booking.
ESSENTIAL TRIP NOTES
You will need to make sure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months from date of entry and that you have a couple of blank pages. Please ensure the name on your booking and flight match your passport.
It is the responsibility of the traveller to ensure they have the correct visa for travel. British passport holders are visa exempt for stays of up to 90 days. If you hold any other nationality passport or originate from another country, please check your relevant embassy website. Information can be found for British nationals on the FCO website.
You may want to take a copy of your passport and flight confirmations with you – if you lose the originals it is easier to get replacements if you have copies.
FLIGHT TICKETS AND ACCOMMODATION
Please ensure you have proof of return travel tickets and hotel accommodation to hand for arrival as you may need to present details of this.
Travel insurance is mandatory for all trips and you will need to carry a copy of your certificate with you. If you haven’t purchased It already, we have partnered up with Columbus Travel Insurance and you can buy your policy through us.
MONEY & COSTS
The currency in Japan is the Japanese Yen (JPY). Whenever possible, we recommend purchasing some local currency in advance of travel. Alternatively, you can take cash out of ATM’s which are widely available throughout Japan. Credit cards are also accepted at larger stores, hotels and restaurants, but it’s a good idea to have some cash with you as well.
We recommend budgeting £25 – £35 a day for meals, water, drinks (not including alcohol) etc. however this is just an indicative amount and can vary from local restaurants to more western style, so you may end up spending less or more. Any souvenir shopping you wish to do would be on top of this. You will have a better idea of how much you usually spend when on holiday, so please plan accordingly.
Tipping is not customary in Japan and can be considered rude or insulting in certain situations. If you leave a tip at a restaurant, this can cause confusion and they may try to give you back your tip. However, you will be able to tip your local guides and we recommend between £2 – £3 per person, per day.
If you would prefer to have your own room on this trip, the additional cost would be £399. Please let us know at the time of booking as it cannot be guaranteed closer to the time.
To get from city to city, you will be travelling on Japan’s famous Bullet Trains, known as Shinkansen, as well as the odd regular train. The rail system in Japan is incredibly efficient and the trains are always on time. Taking large luggage on these trains would be a nightmare, so we have organised for your bags to be transferred to your next hotel, leaving you to worry only about yourself. There will be a couple of occasions where you will stay in a town for only one night; in Takayama on Day 6, and in Hiroshima on Day 10. On these days you will be required to pack an overnight bag, and your large luggage will be transported and waiting for you upon arrival at your next destination. We recommend packing light for your one-night stays, as you will need to carry your own bag, and ensure you disembark the trains quickly with the rest of your group.
WHAT TO PACK
- Comfortable walking shoes or trainers as there will be a lot of walking involved!
- Temperatures can be quite cool during Spring (MAR-MAY) and Autumn (SEP-NOV) so we recommend warm layers, and thermals for when you visit Mount Fuji. You an enjoy some hot weather whilst in Tokyo during this period, but is not guaranteed, so pack some lightweight clothing just in case. During the summer (JUN-AUG), temperatures will be very warm, so we recommend lightweight clothing. We recommend thermal layers during the Winter period (Dec-FEB) as temperatures will drop below zero degrees.
- Adequate sun protection – hats, sunglasses, sunscreen
- Waterproof jacket (just in case!)
- Insect repellent
- Re-fillable water bottle if it has built in filters
- Camera with spare batteries and memory cards – you’re going to want to take some photos!
- Power bank
- Plug adaptors – these can be viewed via the link: https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/japan/
We never recommend taking more luggage than you can personally carry as there might not always be someone on hand to help you. One suitcase ideally that can be wheeled, and a small day pack – which you can also use as your overnight bag for stays in Takayama & Hiroshima – will be more than enough.
Whilst Japan is an incredibly safe country to visit and crime rates are low, we recommend you don’t bring anything you won’t really need – expensive jewellery and watches are not necessary, you can leave them at home. Be vigilant always and avoid carrying large amounts of money around with you. You could invest in a money belt to go under your clothes to keep cards, money or air tickets in for extra safety.
HEALTH & MEDICAL
You should visit your doctor or travel nurse a minimum of 8 weeks before your departure date to make sure your vaccinations are all up to date. Please check the government website if you need more information.
It is safe to drink the tap water in Japan.
If you take medication for anything or think you may need something whilst you are away, it’s better to take it with you from the UK as items may not be as readily available as they are here, and you will no doubt struggle with the language barrier.