Highlights of Japan 11 Days 2019

$3,499.00 $2,999.00

Osaka, Nara, Kyoto, Nagoya, Hakone, Mt. Fuji, Tokyo

This tour offers a great way to take in the cultural heritage of Japan. Starting in Osaka, you'll visit Himeji, Miyajima, Nara and Kyoto – famous for their well-preserved ancient castles, temples, and monuments. You'll also stop in Hiroshima and feel the echoes of the atomic end of Japan's militaristic past. Japan's stunning natural endowments are on the itinerary too, in sacred Mount Fuji and the surrounding region. Your trip wraps up with plenty of time free at leisure in Tokyo, for sightseeing, shopping, or your choice of a diverse range of optional activities.


  • Explore Himeji Castle, the largest surviving Japanese castle, known as ‘Shirasagi-jō’ – White Heron Castle
  • In Hiroshima, visit the Atomic Bomb Dome and Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
  • Visit Miyajima – ‘Shrine Island’ – the home of Itsukushima Shrine
  • In Nara, visit the Great Eastern Temple with its Great Buddha Hall – the world’s largest wooden building
  • Feed the gentle sika deer at Nara Park
  • Drink from clear springs at the foothills of Mount Fuji
  • Enjoy optional activities or free time in Tokyo

From June to August, it is the best time to view fresh spring greens and enjoy the warm climate.
The end of Oct through early Nov is the best time to see crimson leaves in Autumn.
Late March to early April is historically the best time to view cherry blossoms, but we can't guarantee that they will flower on these dates as they are highly seasonal and subject to climatic conditions.

In stock

Book NOW Download Itinerary

Guaranteed Departure Dates

2019 Price Per Person Single Supplement
26 Mar** 18 Jun 10 Sep From $3,499
02 Apr** 16 Jul* 24 Sep*
16 Apr* 30 Jul 15 Oct
07 May 13 Aug* 29 Oct
28 May 20 Aug 05 Nov*
04 Jun 27 Aug 12 Nov*
* = Peak Season Surcharge: $300
** = Cherry Blossom Season Surcharge: $500

Package Inclusions:

  • Economy class international airfares, taxes and fuel surcharges departing Sydney or Melbourne flying with China Eastern/Southern or China Airlines
  • 7 nights 4 star hotel accommodation
  • Meals as indicated
  • Bullet train from Kyoto to Mishima
  • Coach transportation & transfers
  • Admissions to scenic attractions
  • English speaking tour guide(s)

Package Exclusions:

  • Travel insurance (strongly recommended)
  • Tipping prepaid in Australia: AUD$140
  • Personal expenses

Hotel Accommodation

Osaka FP Hotels South Namba or similar
Hiroshima Oriental Hotel Hiroshima or similar
Kyoto Hearton Hotel Kyoto or similar
Mishima Tominoko Hotel or similar
Tokyo Hotel Rose Garden Shinjuku or similar

Optional Pre-Tour Extension

Enchanting South Korea 6 Nights

From $1,499 pp. twin share

Seoul, Andong, Daegu, Gyeongju, Busan

Asia’s third-largest economy and the country which brought the world ‘Gangnam Style’, South Korea is a high-tech, trend-setting nation with a reverent, old soul. With tranquil national parks boasting picturesque landscapes, a rich cultural history, delicious local cuisine, a bounty of the latest technological advances, fashions and more, a visit to ‘the Land of Morning Calm’ should be on every traveller’s list. The capital, Seoul, is a fast-paced cosmopolitan centre with an appetite for fashion, pop culture, and the latest in high-tech gadgets. Yet just an hour away from the cityscape, travellers can find themselves enjoying the peace and tranquillity of various national parks, encompassing gorgeous hiking trails and dense mountain landscapes. With ancient cultural traditions also retaining a strong presence throughout the country, travellers seeking a cultural experience are sure to be satisfied. Friendly people, delicious food, and delightful contrasts between the modern and the traditional ensure that the indomitable spirit of South Korea will encapsulate and inspire travellers from all walks.

Tour Highlights:

  • Stroll through Changdeokgung Palace grounds
  • Gaze into North Korean territory at the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ)
  • Immerse yourself in the bustling crowds of Myeongdong
  • Explore the ancient capital of the Silla Kingdom, Gyeongju
  • Experience the serenity of Seokguram Grotto
  • Encounter South Korea’s picturesque port city and the site of brave resistance during the Korean War – Busan

For details, please click here.

Japan Tour Optional Programs

Kobe & Sake Brewery Walking Day Tour

Kobe & Sake Brewery Walking Day Tour

Kobe is one of the biggest cities in Japan, with a beautiful port tha first opened to foreign trade in 1868. This tour will take you to Kitano-Ijinkan district to see the elegant European-style mansions where traders once lived. Also visit Meriken Park and relax at the waterfront park beside Kobe Port. The last stop is Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum. Hakutsuru has a long history of brewing sake since 1743. Explore and get a feel of how sake is made and its importance to Japanese tradition and culture today. Lunch and return train tickets between Osaka Station and Sannomiya Station are included (your tour guide will meet you and send you off at Sannomiya Station, you will need to make your own way to/from Osaka station.) Note: Contact us to check availability prior to departure.

Himeji Castle and Akashi Kaikyo Bridge
Walking Day Tour

Himeji Castle

Himeji Castle is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site and is well-known for its elegant white decorations and magnificent appearance. Unlike many other Japanese castles, this early 17th century castle is an original; never damaged by war, earthquakes or fires. Its complex structure was designed as an advanced defence mechanism and continues to draw in many visitors today. After lunch, walk on the world’s longest suspension bridge – Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, which is almost 4 kilometres long. Walk along the Maiko Marine Promenade underneath the bridge, which is 50m above the water.*Lunch and return train tickets between Osaka Station and Sannomiya Station are included (your guide will meet you and send you off at Himeji Station, you will need to make your own way to/from Osaka station). Note: Only available for 9 May, 20 Jun, 18 Jul, 10 Sep and 8 Oct departures.
Nikko Day Tour with Japanese-style Lunch

Nikko Toshugu

Nikko is a major centre for Buddhism and the Shinto religion. It is located in a valley and surrounded by beautiful deciduous forests and majestic waterfalls. This optional tour will take you to the UNESCO World Heritage Site Nikko Toshogu. This area is well known for its distinctive architecture made up of a large number of wood carvings and gold leaf decorations on the buildings. This design is unique and not seen elsewhere in Japan. You will also visit Kegon Waterfall (around 100m high) which is the main natural attraction in Nikko. This is the best spot to view maple leaves during autumn.

Note: Contact us to check availability prior to departure.
Tokyo Disneyland Day Ticket

Tokyo Disneyland

Tokyo Disneyland is a 115-acre (47 ha) theme park at the Tokyo Disney Resort in Urayasu, Chiba, Japan, near Tokyo. Its main gate is directly adjacent to both Maihama Station and Tokyo Disneyland Station. It was the first Disney park to be built outside the United States, and it opened on 15 April 1983. The park has seven themed areas: the World Bazaar; the four classic Disneylands: Adventureland, Westernland, Fantasyland and Tomorrowland; and two mini-lands: Critter Country and Mickey’s Toontown. Many of the games and rides in these areas mirror those in the original Disneyland as they are based on American Disney films and fantasies. Fantasyland includes Peter Pan’s Flight, Snow White’s Scary Adventures, Dumbo the Flying Elephant and more based on classic Disney films and characters.
Tokyo DisneySea Day Ticket

Tokyo DisneySea

Tokyo DisneySea is a 176-acre (71.22 ha) theme park at the Tokyo Disney Resort located in Urayasu, Chiba, Japan, just outside Tokyo. It opened on September 4, 2001. Tokyo DisneySea attracted an estimated 14 million visitors in 2013, making it the fourth-most-visited theme park in the world. In 2002 Tokyo DisneySea won a Thea Award from the Themed Entertainment Association for the concept, design, and construction of the theme park. Tokyo DisneySea also won the 2012-2015 Theme Park Insider Awards “Best theme park”. There are seven uniquely themed areas or “ports of call”. The entrance to the park is Mediterranean Harbour, which opens up to six additional nautically-themed ports: American Waterfront, Lost River Delta, Port Discovery, Mermaid Lagoon, Arabian Coast, and Mysterious Island.
Sumo Wrestling

Sumo Wrestling

Sumo is a traditional Japanese style of wrestling and Japan’s national sport. The rules of the game are simple. Two wrestlers compete to force one another outside of the circular ring or to touch the floor with any part of the body other than the soles of the feet. The art of sumo wrestling dates back to ancient times as form of entertainment for Shinto deities. Ceremonial rituals in accordance with Shinto beliefs are still practiced today before a match, such as purifying the ring with salt and extravagant stomps made by the sumo wrestlers to drive away evil spirits. There is no weight classifiation in sumo wrestling and the sheer size of many of the wrestlers is a sight to behold. *Only available on 9 May and 12 Sep. Please contact us for detailed information.
Robot Restaurant

Robot Restaurant Japan

Not just any restaurant and bar, Tokyo’s Robot Restaurant is most famous for its late night robot-themed dancing and battle shows. Behold an outrageous and electrifying live spectacle featuring Japanese taiko drum performances as well as mock battles between bikini-clad dancing girls, giant robotic dinosaurs, cyborgs, ninjas and a host of other bizarre characters, staged in a theatrical LED-fitted room bursting with kaleidoscopic neon-lit laser beams, virtual fieworks, explosions and energetic techno music. This sensory overload is Japanese pop culture at its wackiest and is exclusive to Japan. Please choose from the times below: 17:55, 19:50 or 21:45~ $100/person for show tickets. Please enquire if you wish to add a meal package. (* Please be there at least 30 minutes before the show)
Tea Ceremony (30 minutes)

Tea Ceremony

The Japanese tea ceremony is a traditional ritual influenced by the principles of Zen Buddhism, in which powdered green tea, or matcha, is prepared and served to a small group in a quiet setting. Traditional Japanese confectionary is often served to balance out the bitter taste of the green tea.

  • Learn the process of the Japanese tea ceremony from a qualified tea instructor
  • Learn which utensils to use to prepare green tea in a traditional Japanese room (tatami)
  • Discover the customs, culture and hospitality of the Japanese people

Physical considerations: The tea ceremony is performed in a kneeling position (seiza) on the floor. This puts pressure on your knees and ankles. Please be cautious of joining this optional program if you have a condition that prevents you from kneeling on the floor for a short period of time.

Optional: Wear traditional Japanese garment (kimono) and experience a tea ceremony
Pottery Making Experience (60 minutes)

Pottery Making

Pottery is the oldest art form in Japan, and earthenware traditions in Japan are believed to have started around 12,000 years ago. Today, there are thousands of potters who make a living out of producing pottery-wares across the country. The pottery produced in each region varies in design because of the type of clay found there.


  • Try your hand at making your own cup or bowl by using a spinning wheel and clay.
  • Receive a pre-made sake cup made by the instructors as a souvenir.
Golden Joinery (60 minutes)

Golden Joinery

Learn the art of golden joinery (kintsugi or kintsukuroi), a technique of repairing broken cups, bowls, or plates using lacquer resin laced with gold powder. As a philosophy the mended flaws become part of the object’s design. The result is that the object looks more beautiful than the original after being broken and repaired.


  • Mend broken cups, bowls or plates using powdered gold.
  • Take home the object you repaired as a unique souvenir.
Kimono Photo Shoot (60 minutes)

Kimono Photo Shoot

The kimono is the traditional dress of Japan and is representative of its culture and heritage. The dress consists of a long robe with wide sleeves and is usually made of various materials and patterns. Today the kimono is only worn sparingly, on formal occasions such as weddings, funerals, tea ceremonies or other special events. Take part in a memorable photo shoot at a studio where you can dress up in a kimono of your choice. You can take photos with your own camera or you may choose to purchase a photo package plan from the photographers.


  • Dress up in a kimono of your choice for the photo shoot.
  • Have your photos taken for free with your own camera or purchase the photos from the professional photographers.
Cooking Class (120-180 minutes)

Cooking Class
$129 Popular!

Japanese cuisine (washoku) is well known for its refined taste and elegant presentation. Take part in a Japanese cooking experience and learn from one of Tokyo’s most popular cooking instructors, whose book has been published in English. Bring home with you a set of new cooking skills and culinary techniques that will leave your friends and family impressed.


  • Learn to cook different types of Japanese food, such as sushi, soup, and various side dishes.
  • Learn the ingredients, culinary techniques and methods used in creating home-made Japanese dishes.
  • Enjoy your own cooked dish for lunch.


  • Transportation is not included. However, optional program venues are located in the easily accessible Tokyo CBD.
  • You may join up to 2 programs per day (exception: Nikko Day Tour).
  • Optional programs are subject to availability and must be booked more than 1 month before departure.
Take an international flight from Australia to Osaka via a connecting city.
Arrive in Osaka. Your friendly tour guide will be waiting at the airport to transfer you to the airport hotel.
Osaka City
This morning, travel to Himeji, and visit the largest surviving example of a traditional Japanese castle. Comprising 83 buildings, the white roof of this UNESCO-registered complex is said to evoke the wings of a heron taking flight – hence the popular name for Himeji Castle; ‘Shirasagi-jō’ – White Heron Castle. In 1945 an American firebomb was dropped into the top floor of the keep, but didn’t ignite, and the castle was renovated in 1956. Himeji Castle is the most visited in Japan, and the site offers some wonderful views of surrounding Himeji city. After lunch, transfer to Hiroshima, where we will visit the Atomic Bomb Dome – at the epicentre of the thermonuclear explosion that devastated the city and killed 90,000–146,000 people – half of these on the day of the bombing. Then, visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, which documents the human and material cost of the event.
Himeji Castle
Transfer to Miyajima – ‘Shrine Island’ – and visit Itsukushima Shrine, established in 1168. This beautiful Shinto shrine is famed for its ‘floating’ torii gate in the bay facing the shrine. Then, transfer to Osaka and to your hotel for the evening at leisure.
Itsukushima Shrine
Today we explore Osaka, starting with a visit to Osaka Castle, which played a major role in the unification of Japan in the sixteenth century. The castle is elaborately fortified, and decorated in an attractive white and green colour scheme. After exploring the extensive castle and grounds, we move on to Shinsaibashi – the largest shopping district in Osaka. A mercantile district for over 400 years, Shinsaibashi hosts outlets for many world-famous designer brands.
Osaka Castle
This morning, travel to Nara, and visit Todaiji (Great Eastern Temple), with its Great Buddha Hall – the world’s largest wooden building. This impressive building houses the world’s largest (15m) bronze statue of the Buddha Vairocana. Wander through Nara Park, where over 1,200 tame sika deer roam free. After lunch, your coach will take you to Kyoto, to visit Kinkakuji: Golden Pavilion, a Zen temple and World Heritage site with two floors covered entirely in thin layers of pure gold and detailed architecture incorporating three distinct styles of Shinden, Samurai, and Zen. Next, visit Fushimi Inari, head shrine of the god Inari, divinity of rice and of business. This shrine is famous for the approximately 10,000 torii gates on the main path, and the kitsune (foxes) who symbolically guard the rice.
Kinkakuji Temple
Take the bullet train from Kyoto to Mishima. Then it’s on to Mount Fuji’s 5th Station (weather permitting), where you can view the summit of this most sacred of Japan’s mountains. Next, transfer to Oshino Hakkai. Known as the springs of Mount Fuji, the eight ponds are fed by melting snow filtering down from the slopes of nearby Mount Fuji, through porous layers of lava, resulting in very clear spring water that is revered by locals. End the day with dinner at your traditional onsen hot spring hotel, and relax in the ancient Japanese manner.
Oshino Hakkai
Transfer to Tokyo, and spend the rest of the day free at leisure.
Tokyo Sunset
Spend today free at leisure. You may wish to visit Tokyo Disneyland or DisneySea (admission $120) or join the Nikko Day Tour ($250). Alternatively, you can join our wide range of optional programs; tea ceremony, pottery-making experience, ‘golden joinery’, kimono photo shoot, cooking class. NOTE: All activities are not guided and transportation is self-arranged.
Disney Sea Tokyo
Spend today free at leisure, before transferring to Tokyo’s Haneda airport in the evening for your flight home.
Arrive home this morning.

Optional Pre-Tour Extension

Enchanting South Korea 6 Nights

From $1,499 pp. twin share

Seoul, Mount Seorak, Andong, Gyeongju

Immerse yourself on an incredible journey covering two fascinating countries, Japan and South Korea. Discover South Korea’s capital city, Seoul. Seoul is Korea’s financial, political, commercial, and cultural centre with over 600 years of history. Travellers can explore the many archaeological sites and temples before enjoying the beautiful natural landscapes this country has to offer.

Tour Highlights:

  • Stroll through the Changdeokgung Palace grounds
  • Gaze into North Korean territory at the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ)
  • Immerse yourself in the bustling crowds of Myeongdong
  • Explore the ancient capital of the Silla Kingdom, Gyeongju
  • Experience the serenity of Seokguram Grotto

For details, please click here.

Fly to Seoul via a connecting city.
Arrive in Seoul. You will be warmly greeted at the airport by your tour guide and transferred to your hotel.
Seoul from Namsan Tower
Visit the traditional village, Andong, which features traditional houses of the Joseon Dynasty period (1392-1897). In Daegu, take a stroll in Dongseongno Shopping District, a major fashion retail district. The streets are packed with hundreds of stores full of personality that reflect the city’s fast-paced fashion trends. Enjoy magnificent views by taking a cable car to Palgongsan Natural Park.
Today we explore the many archaeological sites and temples, royal tombs, and monuments of Gyeongju, the capital of the ancient Silla Kingdom (57 BC – 935 AD). Visit Cheomseongdae Astronomical Observatory, Royal Tumuli Park, Gyeongju National Museum, Bulguksa Temple, and Seokguram Grotto Temple.
In Busan, we visit Haedong Yonggungsa Temple, situated on the coast of the north-eastern portion of the city and overlooking the ocean. Afterwards, you will have an opportunity to view the waves while looking down through the transparent floor of the 15 metre high Oryukdo Skywalk, which is set over a 35 meter-high coastal cliff. Travel to Gamcheon Culture Village situated on the foothills of a coastal mountain and nicknamed ‘Machu Picchu of Busan’. You will be thrilled by the many alleys cutting through this village, vibrantly decorated with murals and sculptures created by the local residents. Stop at one of Korea’s largest markets, Nampo Dong Gukje Market for a wide variety of goods at affordable prices. Then visit Nurimaru APEC House, a memorial hall and prestigious international conference hall located near Haeundae Beach, offering visitors spectacular views of the nearby natural landscape.
Haedong Yonggungsa
This morning, visit Changdeokgung Palace, one of the ‘Five Grand Palaces’ built by the Kings of the Jeoson Dynasty, and Insadong, a street full of traditional Korean antique and art shops, restaurants and tea houses. Continue to Cheonggyecheon Stream and admire this urban oasis before visiting Myeongdong, one of Seoul’s main commercial districts.
Changdeokgung Palace
Visit North Korea’s 3rd Infiltration Tunnel, located within the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ), a 44 km drive northwest of Seoul. In the event of an invasion from the North, an entire infantry division could have move through the tunnel in an hour. View North Korean territory, including the Propaganda Village, People’s School, and Gaeseong City – the old capital city of the Goryeo Kingdom – from the Dora Observation Platform. Also visit Freedom Park, dedicated to the 5 million people who left their families and homes in North Korea. North Hall contains displays of North Korean lifestyle, and the Exhibition Hall houses old tanks and planes from the Korean War. Later, try on a hanbok, the traditional attire of the Korean people at Namsan Hanbok Culture Experience Centre before experiencing the city’s best night view at Namsan Tower.
Take a direct flight from Seoul to Osaka. Your friendly tour guide will be waiting at the airport to transfer you to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day at your own leisure. Note: The baggage allowance for this flight is 1 piece max weight 15kg per person.