These tours are great for first time visitors to Japan looking for comfortable accommodation with all entrance fees and most meals included. Our Japan Deluxe Tours are accomodated with professional tour guides, fluent in both Japanese and English, to ensure an educational and valuable visit. Air-conditoned, private coaches are also included, so you can enjoy a comfortable and hassle-free time in Japan. Our tours range from 7 to 21 days, to various regions of Japan.
These tours combine enrichment, enjoyment, and education with time to truly absorb and appreciate your surroundings. Our Deluxe-Plus small group tours are created to cater to those who are interested in having a deeper understanding of Japan's culture. You will have the opportunity to participate in culturally rich activities and visit destinations only locals may know. Experience luxurious hotels and travel at a leisurely pace when you book a Deluxe-Plus small group tour.
Explore the must-see sights and enjoy the hassle-free trip to Japan at an affordable price. Our most cost-effective way to see the highlights of Japan while staying in budget-friendly accommodations. If you would like to have a quick stop to sample the must-see sights of Japan, or plan to explore Japan on your own but would like to take a short trip to learn about Japan before your self-guided journeys. These are the tours for you.
Explore Japan off the beaten path via Japanese public transportation, walking, hiking, cycling and more. Take more time to enjoy local experiences and picturesque landscape. Our Active Small Group Tours combine the best of cultural destinations with off-the-beaten-path via Japanese public transportation, Discover the country of Japan the way the locals do and see Japan from a different angle. A focus on getting away from the crowds and into the real Japan, see the diversity of Japan’s countryside unfold before your eyes.
The price is per person, based on twin or triple room occupancy
For single travelers, this tour has a single supplement. This guarantees a single room throughout the tour
Prices are excluding international flights
Single room types are rooms for
single room occupants.
One person will be occupying the hotel room throughout the tour.
Twin room types are rooms set for two people who will occupy one room, but will have two separate beds.
A double room is a room that has one bed for two people to share.
A triple room is one room where three people may share the same room. It has three separate beds.
Japanese Style Room
A Japanese-style room traditionally does not have a western-style bed, it is a tatami floor room with futon bedding. However, if you prefer a western-style bed, you may request one though we cannot guarantee it.
Please note: If you would like to request neighboring rooms next to your traveling companions, you and your traveling companions must have the same room types in order to be next to each other. For example, if you have requested a double room, but your traveling companions have requested a twin, or triple room, then neighboring rooms cannot be accommodated. However, if both you and your traveling companions match in room type, then neighboring rooms will likely be arranged for your convenience.
This 15-day itinerary combines our Charms of Hokkaido:
Autumn Leaves and Salmon Run Tour with our very
popular Golden Route Japan Autumn Tour. Join this tour
to immerse yourself in the wonderful nature and wildlife
of a Hokkaido bright with fall colors, followed by an
introduction to the most popular destinations in Honshu
in an unforgettable autumn tour!
Start with a trip from Chitose to Shiraoi to watch the annual fall salmon run. Every year, the salmon of Hokkaido swim upstream... View More
This 15-day itinerary combines our Charms of Hokkaido:
Autumn Leaves and Salmon Run Tour with our very
popular Golden Route Japan Autumn Tour. Join this tour
to immerse yourself in the wonderful nature and wildlife
of a Hokkaido bright with fall colors, followed by an
introduction to the most popular destinations in Honshu
in an unforgettable autumn tour!
Start with a trip from Chitose to Shiraoi to watch the annual fall salmon run. Every year, the salmon of Hokkaido swim upstream many rivers of Hokkaido, and you can see the entire life cycle of Japan’s salmon at the Salmon Hometown Chitose Aquarium. Witness Hokkaido’s most enchanting season in Sounkyo as you view two spectacular waterfalls, then enjoy a nature cruise around the Shiretoko Peninsula, bursting with fall colors! Observe some of the local wildlife of Hokkaido, including the Ezo red fox at the Kitakitsune Farm in Kitami and the Tancho “red-crowned” crane at the Akan International Crane Center in Kushiro.
Continue your tour with a flight to Osaka, where your group will begin their exploration of mainland Japan. Beginning with Nara, where you will be inspired by the intricate architecture and towering monuments, including the Great Buddha statue, and you'll understand why this city is considered the birthplace of Buddhism in Japan. Spend two days in the ancient city of Kyoto, where you will have exclusive access to the city’s gardens, temples, shrine, castle and specialty shops. On our Autumn itinerary, we will also visit Arashiyama for its famous Togetsu Bridge, bamboo groves, and Tenryuji Temple where you can have a glimpse of traditional Zen landscape garden design. You will also have the opportunity to enjoy a green tea ceremony with an apprentice geisha (maiko). Take a day in Koka to uncover the multicultural artifact collection at the Miho Museum. On the way to Tokyo, we will take the Hakone Ropeway to see the boiling pools of Owakudani and, weather permitting, enjoy breathtaking views of Mount Fuji. Finally, enjoy a sightseeing tour of all of Tokyo’s most top sightseeing spots, including Shibuya Crossing, Asakusa Sensoji Temple, and the Tokyo Skytree.
Please browse our detailed itinerary below for more information.
|Start Date||End Date||Twin/Triple||Start City||End City||Style||Compare||Status|
|Start Date||End Date||Twin/Triple||Start City||End City||Style||Compare||Status|
All prices are per person, based on twin (double on request) or triple occupancy.
International flights are not included on our tours - this allows you the flexibility to choose your own departure and get the best value for your money!
We can arrange international flights for US customers if needed, please ask for details.
We require US$200 deposit per person to hold the space at time of booking and the final payment is due 2 month prior to departure.
Travel by private coach between destinations, hassle free baggage handling.
Vegetarian or special meals can be arranged.
Please note that the meet and greet and airport transfer to the first hotel is ONLY available on the first day of the tour after 11 AM. If you plan to stay extra nights before the start of the tour, we will provide full instructions in advance for you to transfer to your hotel on your own.
Welcome to Sapporo! You will be met at the arrival gate by an AJT representative holding an "All Japan Tours" sign.
NOTE 1: The meet and greet and airport transfer to the first hotel is ONLY available on the first day of the tour after 11 AM. If you plan to stay extra nights before the start of the tour, we will provide full instructions in advance for you to transfer to your hotel on your own.
We begin the day in Chitose, where we will make a stop at the Salmon Hometown Chitose Aquarium. You can learn about all about the life of salmon and observe them through a variety of exhibit rooms including an underwater room where you can view the Salmon Run in the river Chitose and an aquarium that reproduces the bottom of Lake Shikotsu. From there, we continue to Shiraoi and the Upopoy National Ainu Museum and Park, home to hundreds of different artifacts related to the indigenous Ainu people. In the park, you can freely observe different aspects of Ainu culture, explore a replica Ainu village, and try your hand at some of their traditional handicrafts.
Today, we go into the Historic Village of Hokkaido where horse-drawn carriages and trolleys are still seen and used. The village offers insight on its history and an open-air museum as well as through their buildings, which exemplify architectural evolution from the Meiji and Taisho eras into the modern age. Then we take a trip to Hokkaido Shrine - one of the city's most beautiful locations, surrounded by natural beauty and protected by four Shinto kami (deities), including the soul of Emperor Meiji. Enjoy a lunch before heading to the Shiroi Koibito Park - a sweet theme park started by a local chocolate company, and featuring the Shiroi Koibito cookie, a buttery cookie with a white-chocolate filling. Next, we make our way to Odori Park - a long stretch of green, covered in bushes and trees in the center of the city. On one side is the Sapporo Clock Tower, with a museum inside the old colonial-style architecture which tells the history of the city, and a clock brought over from Boston, USA. In the evening, we explore Susukino - Sapporo's bustling entertainment district packed end-to-end with eye- catching storefront signs.
This morning we continue to enjoy a tour of Sapporo with a visit to Okurayama Ski Jump Observatory for an incredible view of Sapporo. After, we will tour the Asahi Beer Hokkaido Brewery, the largest beer brewery in Sapporo, which produces one of Japan's most popular beers. Then we will travel to Otaru for a leisurely stroll through the port city's heritage district. As you walk up Sakaimachi Street, you can see Otaru's history in old Western-style fisheries, shops and houses. On the way, we'll explore Otaru's reputation for excellent glass craftsmanship at the Kitaichi Garasukan, where glassmakers transitioned from making simple glass fishing buoys to crafting fine glassware and artwork. At one end of Sakaimachi Street we'll discover the Music Box Museum, a cozy museum and shop selling a large collection of charming music boxes. After, we will take a walk along the Otaru Canal, which had once fallen into disrepair at the introduction of modern docking facilities, and has since been converted into a charming vintage promenade. Finally, we will make our way to the Otaru Sushi District, where you will be free to find your own sushi dinner from among the shops selling various kinds of sushi.
Start off the day with a drive to Asahikawa and a visit to the Otokoyama Sake Brewery, where we can discover the production process behind one of Hokkaido's most popular sake brands, and taste the freshest sake brewed from Hokkaido's clean mineral water. Then we travel to Asahikawa Ramen Village to find some of Hokkaido's best ramen shops. After, we drive down to Sounkyo to see a pair of Hokkaido's most beautiful waterfalls. The Ginga, or "Galaxy" waterfall drapes over the rock like a white curtain, while the Ryusei "Shooting Star" waterfall rushes out from behind the rocks in the cliff face like a natural jetstream.
The morning begins with breakfast at the hotel, followed by a drive to Kitami, a small town in the countryside. We will stop for a visit to the Kitakitsune Farm, which cares for the well being of one of Hokkaido's native treasures - the Ezo red fox. These adorable creatures, noted for their gorgeous and fluffy coats, are considered heavenly messengers in traditional Shinto mythology, with statues of foxes decorating the grounds of many shrines. Next, we drive to the town of Abashiri for a tour of the Abashiri Prison Museum. This prison was notorious in the Meiji period for housing over a thousand political prisoners. At the prison, we can witness the prisoners' daily lives through life-like displays, and tour the various old prison facilities. Then we travel to the Okhotsk Ryu-hyo Museum, which features interactive exhibits about the native environment around the Bay of Okhotsk, where you can see ryu-hyo, or drift ice. We will have a rare opportunity to observe the mysterious sea life known as clione "sea angels".
Today takes us into one of Japan's natural UNESCO World Heritage Sites - the Shiretoko Peninsula. During the Bear Watching Cruise, you can study the nature and habits of the Yezo brown bear, which you can see prowling around the rugged coastline looking for food. Because Shiretoko is a protected habitat, there is a high probability of observing multiple bears throughout the cruise. From there, we proceed to Oshinkoshin Waterfall, a wide waterfall divided in half by a rocky outcropping. This roadside falls is considered one of the loveliest in Japan and is sometimes called "Twin Beauties" Waterfall. The tour continues to Akan-Mashu National Park to see Lake Mashu and Lake Akan - two of the park's captivatingly clear caldera lakes. They are a dazzling sight to view on a sunny day, though the lakes are commonly obscured by a thick fog, lending them a mysterious atmosphere. Near Lake Akan is the Ainu Kotan, a traditional village of the indigenous Ainu. While there, you are invited to observe a Traditional Ainu Dance, which tells time-honored stories of their native gods, or "kamuy", as represented throughout the natural world.
After breakfast, enjoy a cruise around Lake Akan, which is protected as a special natural monument of Japan for its green morimo algae, which form at the bottom of the lake in large, fluffy balls. Then we will drive to Kushiro for a visit to Akan International Crane Center. Kushiro is the home of the rare and beautiful Tancho "red- crowned" crane. The crane is an animal closely tied to Japanese folklore, and you can see many of these delicate birds here year round, and view exhibits about the breeding and ecology of cranes. Then we will explore the Kushiro Marshlands, a region protected by the Japanese as the winter roosting grounds of the red- crowned crane. The marsh feels most alive in this season, verdant and lush with grass and vegetation. Stop by at the Kushiro Marsh Observatory to enjoy a panoramic view of the marshland, the city of Kushiro, and the mountains of Akan. The Washo Market in Kushiro, Hokkaido is a market specializing in selling fish produce to the public. It is located close to the Kushiro Station within walking distance of the market. It is considered one of the top three markets to go to in Hokkaido.
After breakfast, free for leisure until transfer to Kushiro Airport for your domestic flight to Osaka. Upon arrival in Osaka, you will be met at the arrival gate by an AJT representative holding an "All Japan Tours" sign.
Today, we will travel to the ancient city of Nara, where we will visit one of Japan’s most famous temples and an icon of the city: Todaiji Temple, which is home to the Great Buddha of Nara – a massive, seated image of Rushana-butsu, known as the “Cosmic Buddha”. Outside the temple, spend some time with the friendly wild deer of Nara Deer Park. We go from there to Kyoto – onetime capital of Japan for over a thousand years, to visit Fushimi Inari Shrine – the chief shrine of the thousands throughout the country dedicated to Inari, the Shinto deity of economic prosperity, rice, and foxes. What sets this shrine apart is the sight of thousands of bright vermillion “torii” gates that form long pathways through the forest covering sacred Mount Inari.
In the morning, we explore Nijo Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site from Japan’s feudal era, and former residence of the Tokugawa shogun. While you walk around the stately Edo-period buildings, listen for the chirping of the “nightingale” floors. The tour continues to Kinkakuji Temple (also called the Golden Pavilion), which is one of Kyoto’s most coveted sights. Shimmering walls wrapped in gold leaf are reflected in the Mirror Pond below; look carefully to see the dainty phoenix sitting on the roof. Next, we travel to the Arashiyama district to see Tenryuji Temple. Tenryuji is most famous for its Zen Garden, which has been carefully maintained for centuries using the technique of “borrowed scenery” to create a breathtaking landscape. We continue from there to the Sagano Bamboo Forest, where towering stalks of bamboo packed close together create an otherworldly feeling of mystery and awe as you walk the path through the center. Then experience a traditional Green Tea Ceremony – an elegant ritual of hospitality once accorded only to the social elite. The experience is made even more special as it is hosted by an elegant Maiko (an apprentice Geisha. We end our day in the Gion Geisha District, a heritage district where stone-paved streets are lined with exclusive ochaya (teahouses). While admiring the old-fashioned buildings, the fortunate visitor may spot Geisha or Maiko (Geisha apprentices) walking between these establishments.
This morning we will visit the famous Kiyomizu Temple, best known for its wooden stage that juts out from its main hall, 13 meters above the hillside below. The stage affords visitors a nice view of the numerous cherry and maple trees below that erupt in a sea of color in spring and fall, as well as of the city of Kyoto in the distance. We will then continue to Miho Museum. The museum has stunning architecture that accentuates the surrounding nature while exhibiting a variety of items from different ancient civilizations. It was designed by the renowned architect, I. M. Pei, and is named after Koyama Mihoko, one of the richest women in Japan and the founder of the museum. This museum is also listed as one of the "1000 Places to See Before You Die". Next, our group will experience a Shinkansen bullet train ride, which can reach speeds of up to 300 km/hr. We will stay at the Onsen Hotel at Hamanako Kanzanji Onsen, where you can soak in the therapeutic waters of a spa bath and feast on a traditional Japanese Kaiseki banquet dinner.
Note: If Miho Museum is close, we will visit Kyoto National Museum or Sagawa Art Museum instead.
After enjoying Japanese breakfast at the hotel, we will travel to Hakone and take a 20 minute ropeway from Togendai to Owakundani. Much of the area here is considered an active volcanic zone since its creation from the eruption of Mount Hakone some 3,000 years ago. There, you can experience hot springs and hot rivers, where sulfurous fumes still linger. Owakundani also has splendid views of Mount Fuji in good weather. From Hakone we will proceed to Mt. Fuji on our private coach. Along the way, enjoy the changing scenery, from thick vegetation to lowlands and rolling clouds. We will stop at Mt. Fuji 5th station (depending on weather) to admire the world famous peak. In the afternoon we will travel to Tokyo. Our last visit for this day is Shibuya. We will be able to see the famed Shibuya Crossing in action and cross the street with the crowd. We will then take photos with the Hachiko Statue at the crossing, which is a monument dedicated to a loyal dog that waited even after his master passed away.
Today, you will visit Tsukiji Outer Market – a bustling
outdoor street market known for its fresh and delicious
seafood, produce, and kitchenware. From there, we
drive by the Imperial Palace, which offers splendid views
of the meticulously maintained front lawn and garden
areas, the moat, and the old stone walls. Next, enjoy a
fun and simple Sushi-Making Experience, where you
can enjoy creating your own sushi, and eating it
afterwards! Then, we visit Tokyo’s oldest temple
complex – Asakusa Sensoji Temple, featuring the
Kaminarimon Gate, in which hangs an enormous red
lantern. Leading up to the temple is Nakamise Street,
which is lined with shops selling all manner of Japanese
souvenirs. At the end of the day, we ascend Tokyo
Skytree to the observation deck, which offers a
panoramic 360-degree view of the Tokyo cityscape.
Note: For Sushi Making Experience, if you are vegetarian, on gluten-free diets, have seafood allergy, or don't eat raw fish, please contact us for other ingredient options.
NOTE 2: If you wish to stay in the center of Tokyo for the last night instead of Hotel Mystays Premier Narita, we can arrange for you to stay at Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Ikebukuro (or similar class). In this case, airport transfer is not included. We will provide full instructions for you to get to the airport in advance, or we can arrange shared shuttle service for you at US$65.00 per person per way.
NOTE 3: If you will be flying out from Haneda Airport (HND) instead of Narita Airport (NRT), we can arrange for you to stay at Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Ikebukuro (or similar class) instead of Hotel Mystays Premier Narita. In this case, airport transfer is not include. We will provide full instructions for you to get to the airport in advance, or we can arrange shared shuttle service for you at US$60.00 per person per way.
After breakfast, our tour officially ends. Checkout time is 11 am and Narita Airport can be reached by hotel shuttle bus.
NOTE 4: If you would like to stay longer in Japan, please contact us to book hotel accommodations.
Chitose is a city in southern Hokkaido. As the main point of arrival into Hokkaido, Chitose is home to New Chitose Airport, the largest international airport of Hokkaido and the most convenient to the capital of Sapporo. New Chitose is the fifth busiest airport in Japan, and the route between Chitose and Tokyo is one of the most traveled in the country. The city is also known for nearby Lake Shikotsu, a picturesque caldera lake within the Shikotsu- Toya National Park. It is also known for having a Peace Pagoda, presented to the city by the Japanese Buddhist organization Nipponzan Myohoji after World War 2. Chitose used to be called “shikot” by the Ainu, and Lake Shikotsu retains the name, but the town was changed to “Chitose” to avoid the similarity to the Japanese word for “dead bones”.
The Salmon Hometown Chitose Aquarium is a facility in Hokkaido dedicated to preserving the wildlife living along the Chitose River, and is a wonderful place to watch the annual Salmon Run.
The Salmon Hometown Chitose Aquarium is a river life preservation facility located on the banks of the Chitose River in Hokkaido. Despite the name, Salmon Hometown is a preserve for all sorts of fish, amphibians, reptiles, and birds. Their collection includes creatures not only from the Chitose River, but from nearby Lake Shikotsu as well, and there is even a small assortment of life that is not native to Japan, such as red piranhas, electric eels, and veiled chameleons. The chief attraction of the aquarium is the large underwater observation area that allows visitors to see the fish of the Chitose River in their native habitat. By far the best time to come to the aquarium is during the autumn Salmon Run, when thousands of salmon swim in from the ocean, upstream to their spawning ground in fresher waters. It is a time of celebration for the native Ainu people to see the salmon return, and given how far these salmon have come and the hazards they have endured, you can understand why. At times the river is so packed with salmon you will see them pressed against the window!
Shiraoi is a small town in Hokkaido Prefecture. Though officially established in the mid-1800s by the lords of Sendai during the feudal era, this coastal town’s history goes back even further as a former settlement of the native Ainu. In recognition of this dual heritage, the town has constructed the Ainu Museum, which celebrates the language, history, culture, and legacy of the Ainu, through various exhibits and demonstrations for nearly every aspect of daily Ainu life. The museum apparently has collected over five thousand various folk items related to the Ainu people. Shiraoi is also noted for its beautiful nature, especially Lake Kuttara, which, according to Japan’s Ministry of the Environment, is one of Japan’s clearest lakes. Shiraoi wagyu beef is a famous local product, with local farms of black Japanese cattle scattered around the nearby countryside.
A replacement facility for the old “Porotokan” Ainu Museum, this newer exhibit space works to further expand visitors’ understanding of the Ainu People.
Initially opened in 1990, the Porotokan Ainu Museum was dedicated to cataloging, preserving, and teaching the history and culture of the original native peoples of Hokkaido: the Ainu people. In 2018, however, the Porotokan closed down in order to clear the way for the new and expanded National Ainu Museum. This newer museum’s philosophy is based on the ideals of multicultural coexistence and presents various exhibits divided into six separate Ainu-centered themes: history, language, lifestyle, livelihood, worldview, and trade with other peoples. The museum is one building in a larger facility called Upopoy (“singing in a large group” in Ainu language). This facility includes, in addition to the museum, a National Park near Lake Poroto, and a Memorial Site for deceased Ainu.
Located in Hokkaido Prefecture, Sapporo was once a dense forest with wildlife that included bears, deer, and wolves until its construction started in 1871. A man named Shima Yoshitake began the city’s development which eventually led to the current North American form it has as a grid-like system layout. Consequently, the northern and southern parts of the city are divided by the main boulevard called O-dori, which runs through the center of the city. Sapporo is known mostly for its beer, beer museum, dairy products, and its annual snow festival every February. One of the oldest standing structures established is the Sapporo Clock Tower, introduced by the North Americans, is now employed as a history museum. Dr. William Clark, a scholar from America, became one of the founders that established educational policies at the Sapporo Agricultural College. Later, this same college became the University of Hokkaido.
Open air museum about Hokkaido.
The Historic Village of Hokkaido is a restored area based of what remained from the Meiji era and Taisho era. It is now an open-air museum with shops, households, and horse-drawn trams that run through the village. It displays various buildings and shops that were once constructed during Hokkaido’s growing development, including 60 different buildings from all over this northern island. It is also a place where many who lost their positions in the Edo Shogunate went to start their lives anew, especially samurai. It is located in the suburbs of Sapporo. It consists residential, mountainous, fishing, and agricultural zones.
Hokkaido Shrine is the most prominent shrine of Sapporo, established by Emperor Meiji in 1971. The shrine is attractive to visit in every season, and is Hokkaido’s guardian shrine.
Hokkaido Shrine, once known as Sapporo Shrine, is located in the city of Sapporo and is one of the most important Shinto shrines in the city. By order of Emperor Meiji, three Shinto kami (deities) were enshrined there– three spirits of protection to guard the island of Hokkaido. After the emperor’s passing, his soul was also enshrined there, adding a fourth protector to the shrine, and it was renamed Hokkaido Shrine. The shrine achieves especial importance and popularity during three important times of the year – spring, for its lovely cherry blossoms; summer, as the heart of the Sapporo Festival; and the New Year, when Japanese attend their yearly hatsumoude – the annual first shrine visit.
Chocolate factory, shop, and museum.
Located in Sapporo, Shiroi Koibito Park is a factory for confectionaries and a theme park. It is known for its white chocolate and its famous souvenir cookies in Hokkaido. There are various indoor and outdoor activities and places to visit. Guests can enter the factory and see how cookies and candy are made by the Shiroi Koibito employees. The factory tours also include a hands-on experience for guests to create and design their own cookies. The park is opened year-round, including its seasonal rose garden, which is said to be at its best during summer seasons.
The symbol of Sapporo.
The Sapporo Clock Tower is a museum and a symbol of Sapporo’s city. Once used as a drill house for physical education and military training for the students in the Agricultural College, it now holds small displays of the origins of Sapporo’s development and local history. The clock itself was bought in 1881 from Boston, Massachusetts. Its appearance now consists of red roofs and white walls that stand out to people passing by this historical monument. It was once the tallest building when it was constructed, but is now overshadowed by the taller business buildings around it.
Pleasant public park in the city center.
Located in the center of Sapporo, running from east to west is Odori Park. It was supposed to be the main street separating Sapporo north from south as a fire break, but now represents the area holding the annual Snow Festival events. It has 92 types of trees and many flowerbeds, enough to attract tourists and locals for a relaxing time in its vicinity. For guests wishing for good views and photographs, there is the Sapporo TV Tower’s observation deck available to the public for a fee. The deck is especially popular during the Snow Festival’s events held every February.
Sapporo's entertainment district.
Nightlife plans for guests in Sapporo might include activities like hitting the pachinko machines, nightclubs, bars, karaoke, and restaurants. If that is the case, it will probably lead them to Sapporo’s biggest entertainment neighborhood, Susukino, which is similar to Shinjuku’s Kabukicho red light district. As such, it should not come as a surprise that expenses might run a little higher here than in other parts of the city. Susukino is one of the sites that hosts the annual Snow Festival held every February in Sapporo. Genghis Khan nabe, or Susukino’s Ramen Yokocho are local foods recommended to all.
Former olympic ski jump stadium.
Home of the Sapporo 1972 Winter Olympics, the Okurayama Ski Jump is a 90 meter high skiing structure that is still used today. Since it is an all- weather structure, it’s still used not only during winter seasons, but summer as well. However, it is not open to the public when there are special events in progress. The public can enter the museum at the bottom of the Okurayama Ski Jump structure. There are also exhibits, documents, and general Olympic Winter Sports information displayed in the museum for guests to enjoy.
Asahi Breweries is one of Japan’s top beer labels, with breweries across Japan.
Asahi Breweries is one of Japan’s largest and most successful beer brands, known for their flagship product, “Asahi Super Dry”; a lager beer that is hugely popular in Japan. The Hokkaido Brewery opened as the largest beer production facility in Sapporo, as well as one of the most memorable, with large silvery beer canisters rising above the production building. The factory churns out over 50,000 kiloliters of beer per year, offering a guided factory tour which includes tasting its signature “Asahi Super Dry”. The restaurants at the brewery serve, in addition to Asahi beer, some of Hokkaido’s signature dishes, including “Genghis Khan” (pronounced Jingisukan), a type of Mongolian barbeque with vegetable and mutton.
Otaru is a small harbor city in Hokkaido near Sapporo. There are various activities in Otaru, including food (especially seafood), sightseeing and shopping. There are many hills, including the very steep slope called Jigoku-Zaka, thus is a popular location for skiing and other sports. Otaru beer is also well known in Hokkaido, places like the Otaru Soko No. 1 Brewery is a popular place for beer lovers. The Otaru Canal is a very popular place for tourist to gather. The Otaru Canal is also one of the locations of the Snow Light Path Festival held every February, where the area is decorated in lights and small snow statues. Tourist can visit the various glass workshops and shop for famous Otaru glassware or even make their glassware. The Music Box Museum is one of the most popular destinations in Otaru, guests can explore the sea of music boxes in this Museum.
Otaru's famous blown glass factory.
The glass made in Otaru is refined and is made in many workshops that also offer hands-on experience for guests who take interest in making their own glassware for a fee. Otaru is located in the prefecture of Hokkaido, neighboring the city of Sapporo. Aside from glass workshops, there are also many cafés, restaurants, and other shops that also allow guests to admire and purchase their artistic glass.
A unique museum about Music Box.
Among the many shops found on Sakaimichi Street is the Otaru Music Box Museum. It not only displays various objects, but also sells a wide range of music boxes, some of which are more elaborate than others; some move and others light up along with their melody. Midst the various types of music boxes are some made from glass, wood, or even traditional Japanese fabric, some are fashioned after sushi or Western-themed concepts. These music boxes also carry different songs according to a collection that the establishment has at their disposable.
Beautiful canal lined by old warehouses.
The Otaru Canal was employed by businesses to transport their merchandise to warehouses with smaller ships since the bigger ships could not directly unload their goods to their destinations. However, eventually there was no use for the smaller vessels when the facilities were modernized, making the use of canals less necessary. Now the area is a tourist attraction, during the day people take leisurely walks about the scenic route where there are museums, restaurants, and shops. Furthermore, Otaru Canal is the main site of the Snow Light Path Festival which is celebrated annually during February as a winter festival.
Otaru is a port city known for fresh sushi, a natural complement to its thriving fishing industry. The Sushi District lines up some of the city’s top restaurants.
Otaru has been a thriving fishing town since the Edo period, when its network of canals allowed for easy unloading of fishing boats. Years later, though the canals are now a local promenade and tourist hotspot, the fishing industry survives, finding fresh appeal by supporting the city’s top sushi restaurants now lining the Otaru Sushi District. A couple of these restaurants have earned Michelin Stars, and some require a reservation in advance. Some of these restaurants are native to Otaru, but many are more widely established, with branch restaurants all over the world. Otaru has over a hundred sushi restaurants scattered throughout the city, offering a broad variety of sushi dishes to choose from. Select sushi, including the shrimp and sea urchin, are praised as Otaru’s finest offerings.
Asahikawa is located north of Sapporo and it is the second largest city in Hokkaido. Asahikawa is mainly used as a transition point for Wakkanai in the north, Biei and Furano to the south and Daisetsuzan National Park to the southeast. The sake from Asahikawa has won many prizes for using the superior Hokkaido rice in the brewing process. Although Asahikawa is not known for being a tourist place, there is still the Asahikawa Zoo, which is one of the best zoos in Japan to visit and is second to Ueno Zoo in Tokyo for visitor attendance. The innovative design of the facility allows visitors to see the animals from numerous angles at a close proximity. There are also places within the city where artisans use the lumber to create a variety of crafts.
Otokoyama, or “Man Mountain” Sake is made at a brewery in Asahikawa, touting the local natural environment as the foundation of its successful label.
The Otokoyama Sake Brewery and Museum provides a variety of information and displays for its guests. Mount Taisetsu produces the water used by Otokoyama to produce sake; it is said that the water from Mount Taisetsu will bring longevity to whomever drinks from its spring waters. Sake tastings are also offered as part of the experiences that this sake brewery can offer to guests. Otokoyama’s sake is not only known throughout all of Japan, but also internationally known; it won its first gold medal in 1977 at the International Wine and Spirits Competition, and has won several awards throughout the years.
Village with eight famous ramen restaurants.
Asahikawa is famous for its ramen. Whereas Sapporo is known for its miso based broth and Hakodate for its salt based broth, Asahikawa is known for its shoyu (soya sauce) based broths. Shops serving shoyu based ramen can be found throughout the city. The broth of Asahikawa Ramen is also known for being quite oily, and there is often a thin layer of oil on top of the soup. Another characteristic of the local ramen is the generally thin, hard and wavy noodles. The range of toppings is quite typical and includes green onions, pork, bamboo shoots and eggs. On the outskirts of the city there is an interesting collection of ramen shops called the Asahikawa Ramen Village. Eight famous ramen restaurants from Asahikawa have opened small branch stores besides one another in the complex alongside a gift shop and a small ramen shrine.
Sounkyo Onsen is located in the northern part of Daisetsuzan National Park. It is the largest hot spring resort in central Hokkaido. The Sounkyo Onsen is the starting point for various mountaineering routes. The resort area has the Sounkyo Ropeway that leads to Kurodake’s, a popular traveling route, midpoint. In addition to that the Sounkyo Onsen resort area is built near the Sounkyo Gorge, which is one of the main attractions in the area. The most beautiful valleys in the gorge are Obako and Kobako. In Obako the rock formations seem to resemble “byobu”, folding screens. Kobako has amazing steep rugged masses of rock that creates beautiful scenery. Within the gorge are two waterfalls that have made it into the top 100 waterfalls in Japan and they are known as Ginga no Taki and Ryusei no Taki.
Two beautiful waterfalls.
Among the various waterfalls found in the Sounkyo region, but the most notable ones are the Ginga and Ryusei Waterfall. Apart from sightseeing, tourists and other visitors usually climb the frozen waterfalls during winter to make their way to the peak atop the then frozen columns of ice. They both flow opposite opposite each other at different angles and appear to fall differently from one another; the Ginga Waterfall produces a more elegant fall with a gentler touch than the Ryusei Waterfall, which produces a more jet-like rush of water crashing down along the side of the cliff.
Kitami is a city in eastern Hokkaido. Travelers come to Kitami to enjoy the drift ice off the coast. The area is also popular with an especially adorable wild animal – the Ezo red fox, or “Kitakitsune”. Kitami is home to the Kitakitsune Farm, which cares for over 50 of these foxes, providing them an open space for them to freely enjoy. Other attractions of Kitami include a large cuckoo clock tower and a few relaxing onsen resorts. Kitami was once a major producer of the Japanese variety of mint, known locally as “hakka”. In fact, over 70% of the world’s supply of this mint used to be supplied by Kitami, before World War 2 converted all the mint farms to produce farms. The city’s mascot is a cute character called “Mint-kun”.
Kitakitsune Farm is a nature preserve which shelters the native Ezo red fox, giving visitors a safe place to come view these adorable creatures.
The Ezo red fox, or “Kitakitsune”, is an animal that is endemic to Hokkaido, an island which was once known to the mainland as “Ezo”. Nature-loving travelers on tour in Hokkaido hope for a glimpse of these adorable foxes, popular for their cute faces and fluffy winter coats. In the city of Kitami, the Kitakitsune Farm cares for around 50 foxes, giving them a safe place for them to roam free. Visitors to the farm can watch them wander without fear of disturbing them, since these foxes are especially comfortable around human guests. The fox is an inseparable part of Shinto mythology, appearing in folklore as spirit tricksters, guides, and even romantic partners. They are especially connected to Inari – the Shinto deity of rice and agriculture – as heavenly messengers, and are represented as stone statues to guard Inari’s shrines.
Abashiri is located on the northeastern coast of Hokkaido. The Sea of Okhotsk, boasts to have one of the three largest fisheries in the world. Abashiri is not only known for its infamous prison, but as an archaeological site of the Okhotsk people also known as Moyoro. There are some food in Abashiri that is a must try specialty. The blue king crab, which can only be caught in Abashiri, is best eaten when the drift ice is gone. The Abashiri Zangi Don is deep fried salmon on a bowl of rice and Abashiri Chanpon is a noodle dish that is a specialty of the area. There is also a variety of seafood you can try that was caught in the surrounding lakes.
Open air museum of the old prison.
The Abashiri Prison Museum opened as an open air museum in 1985. The cold, harsh conditions in Abashiri Prison only made conditions worse for the prisoners as food became scarce while still doing hard labor. There are plenty of displays all over the prison of life-size dummies in uniform to exhibit a tangible understanding of previous work and prison conditions in Abashiri Prison.
Hands-on science center where visitors learn the nature, culture and life of the area.
The Okhotsk Ryuhyo Museum is located at the top of Mount Tento and exhibits materials related to the drift ice that comes to Abashiri. One of the exhibits provides a drift ice experience where you can actually touch the frozen clumps that came from the Sea of Okhotsk. The room is consistently set at -15° Celsius, which is 5° Fahrenheit. There are creatures that appear when the drift ice comes and one of the most popular species is the Cliones. The Cliones are transparent sea slugs that are more known by their nickname sea angels.
Shiretoko is located in the northeastern part of Hokkaido and is designated a Natural World Heritage Site under UNESCO. The Shiretoko National Park is considered one of Japan’s most beautiful and natural national parks. The volcanic mountain range of Shiretoko that runs down the center of the peninsula has the active volcano, Mt. Iou, which erupts great amounts of pure molten sulfur. In Shiretoko there are 4 distinctive seasons that a visitor can see and soak in the pristine wilderness. For example in the fall you can see the mountains adorned in red and yellow leaves with schools of salmon and trout swimming up the river. Then in winter you can witness the Sea of Okhotsk turn into a snowfield with the drifting ice and watch the migration of various birds. At night you can experience a starlit sky while watching animal wildlife.
Enjoy a cruise around the Shiretoko Peninsula, including a rare chance to see Ussuri brown bears in their natural habitat.
The Shiretoko Peninsula is one of the most majestic regions on earth, featuring a long chain of rugged volcanoes, verdant green forests, pristine lakes, and waterfalls, with drift ice off the coast in winter. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is also inhabited by an impressive variety of animals, some of which can only be seen in this untouched wilderness. Shiretoko National Park boasts an exceptionally high population of Ussuri brown bears, and those who travel in the area stand a good chance of seeing one. However, an encounter with a bear on land can be dangerous, as bears can be overcurious and fiercely protective of their cubs. On a Shiretoko Bear-Watching Cruise, visitors can observe this Shiretoko native in safety as they prowl the woodlands and coastline looking for food. The Ussuri brown bear (or Ezo brown bear) is considered a brown bear by zoologists despite some of their fur appearing nearly black in color, leading to the nickname “black grizzly”. These bears can grow to be far larger than the small Asian black bear, nearly reaching the size of the Alaskan Kodiak bear.
Oshinkoshin Waterfall is a gorgeous waterfall on the Shiretoko Peninsula in Hokkaido, and is counted among Japan's most beautiful waterfalls.
Oshinkoshin Falls is located on the UNESCO World Heritage-inscribed Shiretoko Peninsula, which is protected for its breathtaking natural beauty and the depth of its biodiversity. On the northwest side sits the Oshinkoshin Waterfall, beside the coastal road that winds up to the top of the peninsula, making it easy for visitors to access. An easy wooden walkway leads up to the falls, which spread out over a rocky hillside like countless strands of thread in a long silvery-white blanket. Near the top of the falls is a small outcropping of stone and wild green growth that divides the falls neatly in half, leading to the name Oshinkoshin, which in the Ainu language means "beautifully forked". When you take in the surrounding woodland area together with the waterfall, it presents a different profile of beauty in each season. In addition to the picture-perfect spot in front of the waterfall, there are also a set of stairs leading to the top of the hill, presenting a spectacular view of the Sea of Okhotsk. Along the path you can find a sign describing the waterfall in Japanese and English.
The national park was formed long ago by intense volcanic activities, which created the three ancient calderas that we know as Lake Akan, Lake Kussharo and Lake Akan. These lakes are also famous for their crystal clear water, which Lake Mashu ranks as one of the clearest in the world. Akan National Park can be broken into two sections, Akan and Kawayu areas. There are a few observatories people can go to that provide amazing views of the Akan area. Lake Mashu boasts the clearest water in the world even though there is no river or outlet for the liquid. It is said that when the lake is viewed at different times in the year or day, the blue color of water changes to different hues. This can be seen from the multiple observatories surrounding Lake Mashu.
Near Lake Akan, travelers will find the Ainu Kotan – a street lined with buildings suggesting an Ainu settlement, including an Ainu Museum.
The Lake Akan Ainu Kotan is a traditional Ainu village beside Lake Akan in Hokkaido. Kotan means “settlement” in the native language of the Ainu, and this Kotan is Hokkaido’s largest Ainu village. The village reflects ancient Ainu culture and spirituality, which respected much of the natural world, including various animals, as “kamuy” or “powerful spirits”. This belief led to a reverence for nature displayed in art, music, dance, and other elements of Ainu life. A special part of this heritage is a ceremonial dance that is often performed in the community. Additionally, a small museum full of Ainu implements and other native items is a popular attraction among visiting travelers. The Ainu people have lived in Hokkaido since before the Yamato (Japanese) first traveled there, and although they have been largely assimilated into Japanese society, they still some small communities where their way of life lives on.
Beautiful crater lake famous for marimo algae.
Lake Mashu is located in the Akan National Park and is known for having the clearest water in the world. The lake’s water is ranked as one of the clearest in the world. The color of the water in the lake is referred to as Mashu blue. Lake Mashu is covered in fog for a good portion of the year earning the nickname Foggy Lake Mashu. The urban legend claims that the fog is there to conceal the kamui (god) while they swim.
Lake Akan is a beautiful lake in the Akan Mashu National Park, noted for its scenery, local hot springs, and marimo algae.
Lake Akan is one of the most popular lakes in the Akan- Mashu National Park. The lake is the habitat of marimo algae, which grows in large, fluffy green balls. Some of them can grow to be a big as a soccer ball! Visitors come to the lake to stay at a hot spring ryokan in Akanko Onsen, climb to the top of Mount Oakan for an impressive view, and cruise around the lake in a sightseeing boat. Many of these boats stop at an island in the middle of the lake, where they have an informative museum devoted to studying marimo algae. In winter, the surface of the lake freezes over and allows for ice fishing. In March and April, the ice becomes thin enough to allow ice-breaker cruises, with ships cracking through the drifting surface ice. On still nights, when the temperature reaches -15 degrees Celsius, the fog freezes to the surface of the lake, creating delicate “frost flowers”.
A cruise around Lake Akan is the best way to enjoy the tranquil Hokkaido landscape, and maybe spot some local wildlife.
Lake Akan is a clear lake located within the Akan-Mashu National Park in Hokkaido. This lake is one of Hokkaido’s natural treasures, and travelers come at all times of the year to admire the gorgeous scenery. A summer cruise around the lake offers travelers the opportunity to see the natural surroundings of Lake Akan at one of its best times. Surrounding the lake are lush forests of various green trees including fir, spruce, oak, and linden, below tall Mount Oakan. One may be lucky enough to spy Yezo deer or the Ezo red fox peeking out from under the branches. Lake Akan is famous as the protected habitat of marimo algae, which grow in fluffy green balls the size of a volleyball. Some cruises stop at the Marimo Observatory where visitors can observe this rare wonder of nature.
The Akan International Crane Center is a museum, breeding center, and sanctuary where cranes can be seen year round.
The red-crowned crane is so important and rare a fowl that it has its own recognized international center located in the city of Kushiro, Hokkaido. This bird is even said to be a harbinger of good luck in general Japanese beliefs, even the indigenous people of Hokkaido said that they were marsh gods of the land. Within the Akan International Crane Center’s vicinity also holds a museum displaying information about the ecosystem and the crane’s life, a crane sanctuary, a breeding center, and also a feeding ground.
Marshlands populated by Japanese cranes.
The first marshland internationally sanctioned for habitat protection in Japan is the Kushiro Marshlands in 1987, when it was made into a national park. One of the main features of these wetlands is birdwatching where the rare red-crowned crane is among the most favorites to see. This endangered species is unique to Japan and was once thought to have been extinct because of the destruction of the land and due to excess hunting of their kind. Now, the cranes can be seen in every season of the year in the marshlands where they reside.
Where you will see a variety of fresh seafoods and vegetables.
The Kushiro Washo Market (Kushiro Washo Ichiba) opened in 1949 a short distance from Kushiro Station and is one of the three big markets that can be found in Hokkaido. There are about 60 stalls selling fresh seafood, dried products, meat and vegetables. A popular meal at the market is "Kattedon", a donburi dish where diners can personalize their rice bowl with seafood bought from the vendors.
The city of Nara was once known as the first capital established in Japan. Nara is located only less than an hour away from both Kyoto and Osaka. Nara is home to some of Japan’s oldest, largest, and historic temples. The landmark and symbol of Nara is the Todaiji Temple, which was built in the 7th century. One the most popular attractions is Nara Park where visitors come every day to see the wild deer that roam free throughout the park.
One of Japan’s most historic and famous temple (UNESCO World Heritage Site).
Located north of Nara Park is one of Japan’s most historic and famous temple called the Todai-Ji Temple. This temple is listed as one of Japan’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The temple’s main hall named Daibutsuden, is the largest wooden building in the world. It is home to one of Japan’s largest bronze statues of Buddha siting at fifteen meters tall.
Over 1,000 Sika deer roam free.
Located in central Nara is Nara Park, it is one of the most famous and popular parks in Japan. The park is famous and popular because it is home to over one thousand deer. The deer roam freely throughout the park and visitors are able to get up close and feed the deer as well. This park is conveniently located near most of Nara’s main tourist destinations, which include Todai-Ji Temple, Kasuga Taisha Shrine, Kofuku-Ji Temple, and the Nara National Museum.
Kyoto was once the old capital of Japan and is filled with historic temples, shrines, buildings, and other structures. Kyoto is filled with many temples and shrines such as the famous Fushimi Inari Shrine and the Golden Pavilion. It is also home of the Gion Festival, which is the most famous festival in Japan. Kyoto is the number two destination for tourist bound for Japan, and is the number one destination for tourist looking for a full Japanese cultural experience.
One of the most famous and visited shrines in Kyoto.
The Fushimi Inari-Taisha Grand Shrine is located in southern Kyoto and is one of the most famous and visited shrines in Kyoto. This shrine is only five minutes away from Kyoto Station by train, and features over a thousand vermillion colored torii gates that brings many tourist to this shrine every year.
Former Kyoto residence of the shogun (UNESCO World Heritage Site).
In the northern part of central Kyoto is Nijo Castle, where it was once the former Kyoto residence of the shogun. This area is also listed as one of Japan’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites. This area was once home to the shogun when he would visit Kyoto. This place serves as the best examples of castle palace architecture from Japan’s feudal era because most of the buildings here survived since they were originally built.
Temple building covered in gold (National Special Historic Site).
The famous Kinkakuji (Golden Pavilion) Temple is located in northern Kyoto and is most known for the building covered in gold leaf. This famous building is the number one most popular destination for tourist visiting Kyoto. The Golden Pavilion sits overlooking a large pond and various small attractions and shops are available for visitors.
Pleasant district at the outskirts of Kyoto.
Arashiyama is located on the western outskirts of Kyoto and is a well-known destination for both the cherry blossoms and fall colors seasons. North of the famous Togetsukyo Bridge is Sagano, and together they make this place a nice little getaway from temples and shrines to enjoy nature. Popular destinations include the Togetsukyo Bridge and the Bamboo Forest of Arashiyama.
Zen Temple in the Arashiyama district (UNESCO World Heritage Site).
Located in the Arashiyama district in Kyoto, the Tenryu- Ji Temple is Arashiyama’s most popular temple. The temple is listed as one of Japan’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The original buildings of Tenryu-Ji Temple was lost many times throughout its history, except for Tenryu-Ji’s garden. The Tenryu-Ji Temple Zen Garden that visitors see today is the original garden and landscape.
One of the most popular and well-known spots for visitors in Arashiyama.
One of the most popular and well-known spots for visitors is the Arashiyama Bamboo Forest. A nice walking path takes visitors through the groves of bamboos. The Arashiyama Bamboo Forest is also one of the most famous and photographed places in all of Kyoto and brings many visitors every year during the autumn color season.
Experience a live interaction with a maiko. Drink tea, asking her questions, take a photo!
Take the chance of interacting with a maiko while drinking tea, ask her about her profession, training, and lifestyle. What is different between her life and other girls in Japan? Drink a cup of tea with her, and fulfill some of your curiosity, and even take a picture with her.
Kyoto's most famous geisha district.
Located only 20 minutes away by bus from Kyoto Station, is the Gion Geisha District. The Gion Geisha District is one of the most famous and popular destinations for tourist visiting Kyoto. This area is filled with restaurants, teahouses, shops, and other attractions to entertain guests. The machiya merchant houses along with river and the occasional geisha walking around, brings visitors from everywhere to experience everything that this area has to offer.
Temple famous for its large wooden terrace (UNESCO World Heritage Site).
The Kiyomizu-Dera Temple is located only 15 minutes away by bus from Kyoto Station to the eastern side of Kyoto. This temple is one of the most popular temples in Kyoto and is listed as one of Japan’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The temple features a large wooden terrace that offers a fantastic view of the cherry blossoms in the spring and autumn colors during the fall season with the city of Kyoto in the background.
The city of Koka is located in the Shiga Prefecture and together with the city of Iga, is known as the home of ninjas. Koka is a nice side trip when visiting Kyoto or Osaka since it is not too far off east of Kyoto. Tourist can visit the Miho Museum to look at art or visit the Ninja Village or Ninja Mansion to learn more about Japanese Ninja.
Unique art museum in the mountains. Listed as one of the "1000 Places To See Before You Die".
The Miho Museum is located in the city of Koka and along with Koka’s ninja attractions, is a fun side trip from Kyoto. This museum has a unique architecture that blends in well with its surroundings and artwork display. This museum features many exhibits of world history and culture.
Japan's main islands of Honshu, Kyushu and Hokkaido are served by a network of high speed train lines that connect Tokyo with most of the country's major cities. Japan's high speed trains (bullet trains) are called shinkansen and are operated by Japan Railways (JR). The shinkansen network consists of multiple lines, among which the Tokaido Shinkansen (Tokyo - Nagoya - Kyoto - Osaka) is the oldest and most popular. All shinkansen lines (except the Akita and Yamagata Shinkansen) run on tracks that are exclusively built for and used by shinkansen trains. Most lines are served by multiple train categories, ranging from the fastest category that stops only at major stations to the slowest category that stops at every station along the way.
High-speed railway at speeds up to 300 km/hr.
The shinkansen (or "bullet train") is a type of high speed train that travels between most of the major cities in Japan. By taking the shinkansen, trips between destinations that might take almost a full day by car can be reached in a few hours. The bullet trains can run up to 320 kilometers per hour (close to 200 miles per hour), and are known to be generally on time, comfortable and safe.
Hakone is located in Kanagawa Prefecture and is only about two hours away from Tokyo. Hakone is park of Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park and is a popular destination for tourist. Hakone is famous in Japan for its hot springs and beautiful natural views. Visitors can go to the many hot spring resorts to relax and unwind or visit the many museums and shrines available. Guests that would appreciate nature more could go to the parks and trails to experience the natural beauty.
An aerial lift that provides nice views of Mount Fuji and Lake Hakone.
One of the most popular ways to get around Hakone is by taking the Hakone Ropeway. The ropeway travels between Sounzan and Togendai. The Hakone Ropeway gives visitors a beautiful view of Hakone and on a clear day, it is possible to get a nice view of Mount Fuji as well.
Sulfurous vapors and warm rivers.
Owakudani is located in Hakone and is an area around a crater where gaseous fumes, hot springs, and hot rivers exist. Just like most of Hakone, on a clear day, it is possible to see Mount Fuji as well. There are hiking trails available for guests, but these trails are difficult for inexperience hikers.
The highest mountain in Japan, Mt. Fuji is 3,776 meters above sea level, and is located more or less in the center of Japan, stretching over Shizuoka and Yamanashi prefectures. Its elegant conical form has frequently been depicted in many paintings and literary works since ancient times. Many artists have been captivated by the diverse expressions shown by this mountain depending on the season, or depending on the time of the day, whether in the morning or early evening. It is widely believed that Mt. Fuji is unparalleled worldwide as a mountain that has so frequently been narrated, sung in verse, and drawn.
Great view of the Fuji Five Lakes area below.
Mt. Fuji is a widely-known symbol of Japan. At 3,773 meters, Mount Fuji is Japan’s tallest mountain. “Station (gome)” is the unit representing one tenth of the length from the trail entrance to the top.The fifth station Mt. Fuji is the fifth point from the base at the height of 2,305 meter. Being the end of the Fuji Subaru Line toll road and the highest point that general cars can reach. From the observatory you can see below Komitake Shrine, an ancient place for prayer that has been visited by worshippers and disciplinant, and Yamanaka-ko, the largest lake among the five Fuji lakes.
Tokyo is the number one destination for tourist bound for Japan. It is the number one most populated, the biggest city, and is the capital of Japan. From shopping to sightseeing, this city offers everything that tourist want to see. There are a number of places to see the entire city, tourist can visit the Tokyo Skytree or Tokyo Tower to get a breathtaking view of the city. For shopping, visitors can head to the most popular areas such as Ginza, Ikebukuro’s Sunshine City, or Shinjuku. There are also many museums available such as the Edo Tokyo Museum or the Tokyo National Museum. This modern city still has many parks, temples, and shines for anyone interested in a cultural experience.
One of Tokyo's most colorful and busy districts, famous for its Hachiko Statue and Shibuya Crossing.
Shibuya is a popular shopping and entertainment area near Shibuya Station. It is one of the most busiest and popular locations in Tokyo. There are plenty of options when choosing for a place to dine or shop and there are plenty of nightclubs as well. The most famous locations in Shibuya would be both the Shibuya Crossing and the Hachiko Statue.
Visit a famous Japanese market filled with fresh fish and agricultural products, plus delicious dishes.
The outer Tsukiji Fish Market offers a variety of freshly prepared food products and ingredients. Travel in between the different stores and taste a few of their dishes, freshly prepared with some of the best ingredients.
Main residence of the Imperial Family.
The Imperial Palace is located in the center of Tokyo, only a short walk away from Tokyo station. The palace is home to the current Imperial Family. The inner grounds of the palace is not open to the public, except on January 2nd and December 23rd where guests are able to enter and see the current members of the Imperial Family from a balcony. Visitors can view the Nijubashi, two bridges that form an entrance to the inner palace grounds. The stone bridge in front is called Meganebashi (Eyeglass Bridge) for its looks. The bridge in the back was formerly a wooden bridge with two levels, from which the name Nijubashi (Double Bridge) is derived.
Learn how to make and prepare fresh sushi for yourself in Japan.
Take a lesson from an expert and prepare fresh sushi. Experience the difference in the taste of Japanese-grown ingredients. Then, enjoy eating your masterpiece for lunch after completing your sushi lesson.
Buddhist temple with souvenir shopping street, an atmosphere of old Tokyo.
The Sensoji Temple located in Asakusa is one of the most popular Buddhist temples to visit. The temple was built and completed in the year 645 and is Tokyo’s oldest temple. The surrounding area offers shopping for souvenirs and food. The Sanja Festival is one of Tokyo’s biggest festivals and is held every May at Asakusa Temple.
World's tallest stand-alone communication tower.
The Tokyo Skytree is Japan’s tallest structure ever built and the world’s second tallest structure ever built at the time of its completion. Located not too far from Asakusa, this 634 meter tall tower is now one of the most popular destinations for visitors. The main observatory is 350 meters high and the second observation deck is 450 meters high and both offer a breathtaking view of the city.
Chitose (Day 1)
Western Style Accommodation
Located just a five minute walk from JR Chitoise station and a 10 minute drive from the airport, the hotel offers guests comfort and convenience. The in- house restaurant serves up traditional Japanese dishes. However, if you are in the mood for other cuisines, just step out of the hotel and you will find numerous restaurants and bars where you can indulge with your favorite cuisine or drink.
Sapporo (Day 2, Day 3 & Day 4)
Western Style Accommodation
This modern luxury hotel and resort, situated in the northernmost major city of Japan, is a landmark for opulence and leisure. Guests will enjoy a location that is just a short walk from the Sapporo Subway Station and an additional six minutes from the JR Sapporo Station. ANA Crowne Plaza Sapporo is an ideal choice for guests who want a central location close to public transport links and a vast selection of on- site facilities as well as first class professional service.
Sounkyo Onsen (Day 5)
Japanese Style Accommodation
This authentic Japanese style hotel may accomodate up to 1,000 people, with many public spaces for guests to enjoy. The lobby has a stage with a tea house. There is a observatory hot- bath on the top floor. It is an ideal facility for relaxing.
Utoro Onsen (Day 6)
Western Style Accommodation
Shiretoko Grand Hotel "Kita Kobushi" is a large scale Japanese-style hot-springs resort at Shiretoko Utoro Onsen. The hotel is facing the harbor with splendid views of the Sea of Okhotsk. The open-air bath on the top floor provides the beautiful scene of sunset. It is one of the Top Hundred Ryokan (Japanese-style hotel) elected by the Ryoko Shimbun travel newspaper.
Lake Akan (Day 7)
Japanese Style Accommodation
New Akan Hotel is a modern resort hotel facing to the Lake Akan. There are large observatory baths and observatory open-air hot spring bath at the top floor. Guests can see the beautiful Lake Akan and the scenery which is beautiful throughout the year.
Kushiro (Day 8)
Western Style Accommodation
Lying adjacent to the Kushiro's Fisherman's Wharf, the ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Kushiro is the largest hotel in its area and a favorite amongst many who visit the city on the east coast of Hokkaido. A stay promises a memorable experience with the high quality of service and elegance that is synonymous with the ANA chain of hotels.
Kansai (Day 9)
Western Style Accommodation
Located within the Kansai Airport's Aeroplaza a short walk from both passenger terminal and train station, the Hotel Nikko Kansai Airport combines superb convenience with world-class facilities and the famed hospitality of Nikko Hotels International. With its seafront setting and harmonious design, this is a hotel with the ambience of a resort-yet with direct access to Osaka and the entire Kansai region. The local area also offers a number of attractions, including Rinku Park, Rinku Premium Outlets and Nakami Shrine.
Kyoto (Day 10 & Day 11)
Western Style Accommodation
Just 5 minutes from Kyoto Station on the free shuttle, Kyoto Tokyu Hotel features 3 restaurants, a bar and a fitness gym. The modern rooms have Tempur comfort pillows and a satellite LCD TV. Free WiFi is available throughout the property. All rooms are air-conditioned and include a fridge and an electric kettle. Guests are entitled to complimentary access to the on-site fitness centre. All guest rooms are non-smoking, while there is a designated smoking area on site.
Hamanako Kanzanji Onsen (Day 12)
Japanese Style Accommodation
The Hamanako is a resort hotel that's located on the east side of Lake Hamana and you can enjoy the lake view from all rooms. It was boldly renovated mainly around the lobby in 2012, and re-opened with grand renewal including an open-air bath and a large public bath. The onsen (hot spring) at The Hamanako is an original springhead "Yuto Onsen" which gushes out from 500 meters underground.
Tokyo (Day 13 & Day 14)
Western Style Accommodation
Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Ikebukuro is located 3 minutes by foot from Ikebukuro Station, a massive terminal with eight different subway and JR lines. From the station, over 17 round trip buses depart to both Narita and Haneda International Airports each day, assuring convenience for guests arriving by or planning to make a transfer by air. When setting off from the hotel, guests can easily reach popular attractions such as the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre and Ikebukuro Café, a unique space where visitors can play with owls and other animals.
Narita (Day 14)
Western Style Accommodation
The Hotel Mystays Premier Narita is conveniently located ten minutes from Narita Airport and 80 minutes by car from central Tokyo. Guests can relax in the tranquility of the hotel’s traditional Japanese garden or explore nearby places of historical beauty such as the Narita Shrine and Shinshoji Temple. The rooms are functional, well kept and convenient with essential facilities such as direct line telephones and cable TV. There is an excellent choice of sports and recreational activities including indoor and outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts and a fitness club. Guests can be spoiled by the choice of dining options which include restaurants specializing in Western, Chinese and Japanese cuisine in locations with impressive views of the airport.
PLEASE NOTE: These are the hotels All Japan Tours generally uses on the touring styles and regions shown. There is no guarantee that you will stay in the lodgings listed on the website. We encourage you to check your travel documentation for confirmation of the exact accommodation you will be staying in.