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 $6298.00
Single supplement: USD $1320.00
Tour duration: 18 days 17 nights
China (Beijing / Xian / Shanghai), Japan (Osaka / Himeji / Kurashiki / Hiroshima / Shimanami Kaido / Obokekyo Gorge / Kotohira / Takamatsu / Kobe / Nara / Kyoto / Kanazawa / Shirakawa-go / Takayama / Matsumoto / Mt Fuji / Hakone / Tokyo)
Tour cost includes:
• 16 nights Western style and 1 night Japanese style accommodation
• Meet and greet upon arrival at Beijing Capital Airport & Osaka Kansai Airport
• High Speed Rail from Beijing to Xian
• Domestic flight from Xian to Shanghai
• Airport transfers on arrival and departure
• Private coach transfers between destinations in China & Japan
• Comprehensive escorted with AJT professional English speaking tour guide
• Breakfast everyday
• 9 lunches and 5 dinners
Admission fees and activities
• All entry fees to sites, activities listed in the itinerary
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 Beijing! 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. If you plan to stay extra nights before the start of the tour, please contact us for the transfer if needed.
NOTE 2: If you wish to stay extra nights before the tour starts, please contact us to book hotel accommodations.
On your first day sightseeing in Beijing, start with the capital's central landmark: Tiananmen Square, situated just outside the famed Gate of Heavenly Peace. Wander around one of the largest public squares, amid hundreds of flowering planters, and don't forget to look for the Monument to the People's Heroes in the center of the Square. Then make your way around to the Meridian Gate to enter the Forbidden City. As the exclusive abode of China's imperial family for about five centuries, no one could enter the city except by the emperor's express permission. Now the ancient and beautiful buildings are now open to the viewing public, so visitors may explore many places with such glorious names as the Hall of Supreme Harmony or the Gate of Divine Prowess. Finally, walk one of most Beijing's most impressive commercial districts, Wangfujing Street. This long thoroughfare aims to be the equal of Paris' Champs Elysees, and is studded with name brand shops, including the Beijing Department Store and the Xinhua Bookstore Store. For lunch, enjoy one of the most delectable and well-known Chinese delicacies - Peking roast duck, prized for its crispy texture over the tender meat, carefully marinated in sweet seasoning.
After breakfast, take a trip to China's most famous national monument - the Great Wall. Nearest to Beijing is the section of the Wall located at Juyongguan, which is a narrow mountain pass. Called one of the three Impregnable Passes, the Juyong section of the Wall has been fortified as a military stronghold since the early Ming Dynasty. This pass is popular because it is one of the easiest to climb, and even has many wheelchair- accessible areas, so as many people can enjoy the exquisitly mantained buildings and carvings. Next, head over to another of China's UNESCO Heritage Sites - the Tombs of the Ming Emperors. This enormous necropolis holds 13 different Ming tombs, each built like large temples, which offer unique insight into Ming life and culture. Only 3 of the current Ming Tombs are open to the public.
The morning will be free for leisure time. At the designated time, we will transfer to the railway station for our trip to Xian by High Speed Rail to Xian. Upon arrival, meet your local guide and enjoy a delicious dinner before transferring to your hotel.
Begin the day in Xian at the Museum of Terracotta Warriors. Built in the 2nd century BC to protect the tomb of Emperor Qin Shi Huang, thousands of clay infantry, cavalry, and horses stand at attention in ready battle formation, each incredibly detailed, even to the point of having distinct facial features. After exploring the astoundingly detailed statues, move on to the Pool and Palace of Huaquing. Also referred to as the Huaqing Hot Springs, these bath houses were favored by numerous emperors, including the Tang Emperor Xuanzong and his consort, one of China's Four Great Beauties - Yang Guifei. A marble statue of Yang, with delicate form seeming to rise from the water, commemorating one of Chinese literature's most famous - and tragic - love stories. In the evening return to the city's historic center to see the Xian Bell Tower - a classically constructed symbol of old Xian. Two stories high, though with three golden sets of eaves, it worked in tandem with the nearby Drum Tower to maintain Chinese dominance in the area and warn of the coming of invaders. While in the area, enjoy a delicious lunch of Chinese dumplings - another cultural favorite.
At the designated time, transfer to the local Airport for your domestic flight to Shanghai. Then meet your local guide in the arrival hall and transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to explore Shanghai at your leisure.
Begin the day's journey through Shanghai by exploring The Bund - a large quay which abuts the Huangpu River. Standing along the shores of the Bund are a variety of buildings which feature different styles of European design. This architectural exhibition has given this area the nickname "The Museum of Buildings". Then head to the Old City of Shanghai, past traditional teahouses and curio shops, to explore the tranquil and prestigious Yu Garden. Built over 400 years ago by an imperial court official, this large garden features classical gardening techniques, as well as several old buildings including Huxinting Teahouse, which is still in use. Other features include a Great Rockery and a large pond full of koi fish. Then travel to the Observation Deck of the Shanghai World Financial Center Tower. It features a trapezoidal aperture near the top which gives the building a very futuristic appearance, and offers magnificent views of the city from the observation deck at the top of the aperture. Finally, take a walk down Nanjing Road - a huge shopping district in Shanghai roughly a century old, home to upscale fashion brands, electronics, books, or toys, with the addition of more traditional crafts like jade, embroidery, and silk.
After breakfast, free for leisure until your transfer to Shanghai Pudong or Hongqiao International Airport for your flight to Japan. Upon arrival Osaka, an AJT representative will meet you at the arrival gate holding an "All Japan Tours" sign.
NOTE 3: The meet and greet is ONLY available for flights arriving in Terminal 1 after 11:00 AM. For guests arriving in Terminal 2, airport pickup is not included, but and we will provide you with directions to get to your hotel in advance.
NOTE 4: If you wish to stay in the center of Osaka instead of Hotel Nikko Kansai Airport, we can arrange for you to stay at Hotel Elsereine Osaka (or similar class). In this case, airport transfer is not included, but we will provide you directions to get to your hotel in advance.
Today we take a 2-hour ride by private coach to Himeji to visit the Himeji Castle. It is known as "White Egret Castle" and "White Heron Castle" because of its brilliant white exterior, resembling a bird taking flight. Himeji Castle is the largest and most visited castle in Japan, and is one of the few remaining original castles in Japan. This splendid example of traditional architecture was declared one of the first UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Japan. Next is a visit to Kurashiki. In merchant days, this scenic town thrived as a port for rice shipments. Several old rice granaries and examples of historic architecture still remain, in addition to the stone lined canal. In the afternoon, we will continue our journey to Hiroshima.
Today we will visit the Peace Memorial Park and Atomic Bomb Museum. After lunch, we will take a short ferry ride to the island of Miyajima. At high tide, the famed vermilion torii gate of the Itsukushima Shrine looks like it's floating in the middle of the sea. The shrine complex is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Miyajima has been selected as one of Japan's three most scenic places (nihon sankei). In the afternoon, we will drive through the Shimanami Kaido to Shikoku Island. The Shimanami Kaido is a 60 kilometer long toll road that connects Japan's main island of Honshu to the island of Shikoku, passing over six small islands in the Seto Inland Sea. It is also known as the Nishiseto Expressway.
After breakfast, we continue our journey to Oboke Gorge, one of three hidden mountain regions of Japan. Oboke is the valley located upstream of the Yoshino- gawa River. "Boke" means "dangerous to walk along," and Oboke (big "boke") was named for its jagged V- shaped rocks and narrow path which, no matter how carefully or slowly you walk, makes walking dangerous. Enjoy a relaxing boat ride and take in the panoramic view of the valley. Then, climb the 1,368 stone steps to the Kotohira-gu Shrine, a Shinto shrine. If you do not want to climb the stairs, there are many things to enjoy at the lower level: sweets stores, sake shops, places where you can learn to make ice cream or udon, and craft shops. In Takamatsu we will visit Ritsurin Park, a masterpiece of Japanese landscape 100 years in the making. This sprawling park features beautiful ponds and pavilions, with Mt. Shiun as the perfect backdrop. From there, our private coach takes us across Awaji Island through a series of spectacular bridges. In the evening we continue to Kobe, where we will savor the world famous Wagyu beef.
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.
After breakfast, we begin our tour of Kyoto – the center of Japan’s traditional culture. We first go 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. Next, we go 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. 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). The tour continues with a visit to Kiyomizu Temple, also known as the Temple of Pure Water, a celebrated landmark famed for its iconic three-story pagoda, large wooden stage offering a spectacular view, and trio of sacred springs pouring from the base of the main hall. After, we make our way to Maruyama Park, which is one of the top spots in Kyoto to see the beautiful cherry blossoms. One tree is especially famous – the Shidarezakura, or “weeping cherry tree”. 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.
Today, you will get to experience a Shinkansen bullet train ride from Kyoto to Maibara, which can reach speeds of up to 300 km/hr. Afterwards, transfer to Kanazawa to visit Kenrokuen Garden, one of three most beautiful strolling gardens of Japan. Here, you'll find the oldest fountain in Japan and Kotoji-toro, the two-legged stone lantern and iconic symbol of Kanazawa. Then, we will we cross mountains by private coach to the World Heritage site of Shirakawa-go. Shirakawa-go is home to the Gassho-zukuri ("praying hands") farmhouses. We will go to the Shiroyama Viewpoint to see splendid views of the Ogimachi Village. Next, the Gassho-zukuri Minkaen, which is an open air museum of farmhouses and other structures. We will continue to Takayama, a city located amongst the Japanese Alps and sometimes referred as "Little Kyoto" for its preserved historical structures and environment. Due to it's remote position in the mountains, it has maintained a very unique and traditional atmosphere.
After enjoying a Japanese breakfast at the ryokan, we will continue sightseeing in Takayama. Browse through the market stalls at the Morning market for local crafts and fresh produce. Next, visit Takayama Jinya, a former local government office that now serves as a public museum. It features an interesting interrogation room and official documents of past feudal lords. Proceed to Takayama's beautifully preserved Old Town, which highlights many buildings and whole streets of houses dating from the Edo Period (1600- 1868). In the afternoon, our group will visit the Matsumoto Castle, also known as "Crow Castle" because of its black exterior. Inside, we can see the best examples of a wooden constructed, traditional Japanese-style castle. It is classified as a "hirajiro", meaning it is a castle built on plains rather than on a hill or mountain. Tonight, we will stay at an onsen hotel, where you can enjoy a soothing soak in the onsen and try a traditional Japanese Kaiseki banquet dinner.
Today, we will travel to Mt. Fuji on our private luxury coach. If the weather is in our favor, we will stop by the Mt. Fuji 5th Station for a grand view of Japan's famous mountain. Enjoy an extensive tour of Hakone by taking a 20 minute ropeway ride from Togendai to Owakudani. Owakudani is known for its active volcanic zone that was created from the eruption of Mount Hakone some 3,000 years ago. Here, you can experience its hot springs and bubbling pools, where volcanic gases still linger. From there, we will travel to Tokyo and spend time in Shibuya. There, you will get to see the famed Shibuya Crossing in action and cross the street with the crowd. You will also be able to take photos with the Hachiko Statue, a monument dedicated to Japan's most loyal dog, which continued for nine years after his owner's death.
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! Continue to Ueno Park, famous for its 1,000
cherry trees that line the central pathways, making it an
excellent cherry blossom viewing spot. 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
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 5: 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 6: 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 7: If you would like to stay longer in Japan, please contact us to book hotel accommodations.