All Japan Tours 337 N.Vineyard Ave Suite 215, Ontario, CA 91764
Toll Free: 1-855-325-2726 (US/CANADA) Tel: 1-909-988-8885
Fax: 1-909-349-1736 E-mail: email@example.com
Land cost: from USD $4560.00 (Limit to 13 guests)
Single supplement: USD $600.00
Tour duration: 12 days 11 nights
Kyoto / Kurashiki / Kojima / Yunotsu Onsen / Iwami Ginzan / Tsuwano / Hagi / Miyajima Island / Tomonoura / Osaka
Tour cost includes:
• 11 nights in hotels and Japanese-style inns (Ryokan and Minshuku)
• All transportation between tour locations
• Forwarding of one item of luggage on 3 occasions
• Comprehensive escorted with AJT professional English speaking tour guide
• Breakfast everyday
• 10 dinners
Admission fees and activities
• All entry fees to sites, activities listed in the itinerary
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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.
Welcome to Kyoto! Meet your tour guide and the rest of the group at your hotel in central Kyoto. Afterwards, we will enjoy a Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.
After breakfast, we make our way to Kurashiki by train. The area is famous for its canal area as it was very important along the distribution route of rice during the Edo period. Today it is a scenic area where visitors can walk along the canal and see the old storage units, along with buildings from the Edo period. You can also enjoy the historic Bikan area. Intersecting this area is Honmachi street where you can see many meticulously maintained store fronts which are meant to resemble their Edo period (1603-1868) selves as closely as possible. There will be some free time in the late afternoon for you to explore this lovely part of town at your leisure. In the evening, we spend night in Kojima along the coast nearby Kurashiki.
Today we spend a full day exploring the port town of Kojima. We will visit a sake and miso paste brewery to learn all about the traditional process of making miso paste. We will also indulge in a little sake tasting as well. From there, we head on over to Washuzan Hill and stroll along the walking trail to reach a viewing spot overlooking the beautiful Seto Inland Sea. Our next stop is Shimotsui Port, established in 1907 as a port and fishing town. During our visit, we will meet with a music artist who will perform a song while playing a traditional Japanese instrument, the Shamisen.
After saying farewell to Kojima, we head to Yunotsu, another port town that used to ship silver from the nearby UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine. The area also doubles as a hot spring town with two famous bath houses “Yakushi-yu” and “Motoyu” While our accommodation for the night has its own hot spring baths, we recommend paying a visit to either of these establishments to get a feel for the old fashioned atmosphere and meet some friendly locals.
In the morning we visit Omori-cho, an area where miners who worked at the aforementioned Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine settled in. The small stretch of land has many historical sites, shops, temples and shrines. The silver mines were the biggest in Japan’s history and during our visit to the town, we will spend some time at one of the last remaining mineshafts that is open to the public. There will be some free-time allotted in the afternoon for you to explore the town on your own.
Today we make for Tsuwano, also known as “Little Kyoto of San-In”. One site that resembles one of Kyoto’s is the Taikodani Inari Shrine with its thousand tori gates that line the path up the mountain side. Tsuwano is also known for its castle town whose ruins are further up the mountain side past the inari shrine. The castle’s keep burned down when it was struck by lightning in the 16th century was never rebuilt. The ruins over look the town 200 meters above the town center.
After breakfast, we make our way by bus to another old castle town, Hagi. The town is located between the forks of Aibagawa River that flow into the sea. Around town, you will find many old fashion samurai houses that have been lucky enough to not fall victim to natural disasters and war. Among the old residences, we visit the Kikuya Residence where the samurai turned merchant Kikuya family lived.
After breakfast, we explore more of Hagi and discover one of the most famous pottery types known as “Hagiyaki”. This type of pottery in particular is raved by tea enthusiasts for the way the pottery changes color over time and use as the tea colors seep into the porous surface of the tea ware. We will also have an exciting opportunity to make our own “Hagiyaki” pottery, a perfect way to commemorate your time spent as well as interact with some other local artists and purchase some of their creations.
Today we travel further west to Miyajima Island where you can find the Itsukushima Shrine, another one of Japan’s beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It is famous for being uniquely built over water, and its large torii gate that appears to “float” over the sea during high tide. Then, we will tour the Daisho-in Temple, one of the most important Buddhist temples of the Shingon sect. It is located at the base of Mount Misen, which is where we will experience a scenic ropeway ride. At the top, you will get spectacular views of the Seto Inland Sea and, on clear days, you may be able to see as far as Hiroshima city. In the evening, we make our way to our hotel in Hiroshima to end the night.
In the morning, you will have some free time to explore Hiroshima where you can visit the Peace Memorial Park and A-Bomb Museum. The Peace Park consists of the Peace Memorial Museum, the A-Bomb Dome, and the Cenotaph for the A-Bomb Victims. The Peace Park is one of the most significant features of the city, devoted to the events that occurred on August 6, 1945. In the afternoon, we make way for Tomonoura, a small fishing town and port. The Ryokan at which we will be spending the night has non gender-segregated baths. We will be provided with bathing cloths and have a rare chance of spending a relaxing evening with our whole tour group overlooking the sea.
We spend our last morning exploring Tomonoura. Stroll through the picturesque alleyways of the fishing townscape. You may also come across some shops that sell the local medicinal liquor known as “Homeishu”. Although the town is small, it has been featured on the big screen in films such has “Wolverine” and “Ponyo on the Cliff”. In the afternoon, we make way to Osaka where you will have some more free time on your own to explore and do last minute shopping. We end the evening with a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant.
After breakfast, our tour officially ends. Your guide will be there with you to help you with advice for traveling to the airport if you are returning home, as well as onward travel in Japan if you are continuing your travels.