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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: info@alljapantours.com

Majestic Japan - Snow Festivals, Snow Monkeys & Kawazu Cherry Blossoms

See majestic Japan in the pretty winter season, finding wonderful views bursting with white color.

Tour Code: GTE3315754

Tour Information

Land cost: from USD $6898.00 (Limit to 24 guests)

Single supplement: USD $1360.00

Tour duration: 14 days 13 nights

Destination:
Sapporo / Otaru / Yoichi / Yudanaka / Matsumoto / Takayama / Shirakawa-go / Kanazawa / Nara / Katsuragi / Kyoto / Kawazu / Hakone / Tokyo

Tour cost includes:
• 11 nights Western style, 1 night Japanese style and 1 night overnight ferry accommodation
• Meet and greet upon arrival at Sapporo New Chitose Airport
• Airport transfers on arrival and departure
• Private coach transfers between destinations in Japan
• Comprehensive escorted with AJT professional English speaking tour guide
• Gratuities
Meals
• Breakfast everyday
• 7 lunches and 6 dinners
Admission fees and activities
• All entry fees to sites, activities listed in the itinerary

Dates & Price
2023
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Status
Mon. Feb 6, 2023 Sun. Feb 19, 2023 USD $6898.00 Sapporo Tokyo View Tour
2024
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Status
Mon. Feb 5, 2024 Sun. Feb 18, 2024 USD $6898.00 Sapporo Tokyo View Tour

Please Note:
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.

Itinerary

Day 1

Sapporo New Chitose Airport

Welcome to Sapporo! You will be met at the arrival gate by an AJT representative holding an "All Japan Tours" sign.

Hotel Okura Sapporo or similar class

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.

Day 2

Sapporo (Sapporo Snow Festival - Odori Site & Susukino Site)

In the morning, you will be met by your guide, who will take you to explore the snow and ice creations of the Sapporo Snow Festival. The Odori Site features larger-than-life displays with various characters and massive landmarks built entirely of snow. Past snow festival creations have included Himeji Castle, the Taj Mahal, Star Wars, Disney, and various anime. Continuing over to the Susukino Site, we can observe a variety of ice sculptures which have been entered into the annual Ice Sculpture Contest. These exquisite sculptures are brightly illuminated, making for a warm and exciting atmosphere throughout Sapporo's entertainment district. After, we return to the hotel for a relaxing and comfortable evening.

Breakfast

Hotel Okura Sapporo or similar class

Day 3

Sapporo (Nijo Market / Shiroi Koibito Park / Live Crab Lunch / Asahi Beer Hokkaido Brewery / Historic Village of Hokkaido), Otaru (Otaru Canal - Otaru Snow Light Path Festival)

After breakfast, continue your tour of Sapporo with a trip to Nijo Market, where locals go to buy fresh seafood and produce. Next, we travel to Shiroi Koibito Park - a "chocolate entertainment park" famed for their Shiroi Koibito cookie - a delicious, buttery cookie covered in white chocolate. For lunch, the group will be treated to a Hokkaido specialty - succulent live crab! After, we will visit the Asahi Beer Hokkaido Brewery. As Sapporo's largest brewery, and the brewer of the incredibly popular Asahi Super Dry, the Asahi Beer Hokkaido Brewery offers tours of the production facility, including beer-tasting. The tour continues on to the Historic Village of Hokkaido, an outdoor museum where many preserved buildings from the Showa, Taisho and Meiji eras have been transplanted from across Hokkaido. A visit to this historic village gives visitors a good sense of what life was like in Hokkaido during it's colonial period. It even includes exhibits on the indigenous Ainu culture and regional wildlife. From there, we travel to Otaru, a historic port city that developed a series of canals near the shipyard to assist the delivery of cargo. Over time, these canals mostly filled in - save one, now simply called the Otaru Canal. This canal has been beautifully transformed into a picturesque promenade with former warehouses remodeled into cafes and restaurants lining its sides. Every winter, the Otaru Canal is at its most charming, as it hosts the Otaru Snow Light Path Festival. Millions of lights line the canal, hidden in little snow figures, and some are even floating over the water, a sight that transforms the area into a romantic winter fantasy.

Breakfast / Lunch

Grand Park Hotel Otaru or similar class

Day 4

Yoichi (Nikka Whisky Yoichi Distillery), Otaru (Otaru Sushi District / Sakaimachi Street - Kitaichi Glass Shop & Music Box Museum)

After breakfast, we drive to the small town of Yoichi, home to the Nikka Whisky Yoichi Distillery. The Nikka Whisky label was established by Masataka Taketsuru - the father of Japan whisky - who sold the first local Japanese whiskey ever made. His company, Nikka, is still considered a leader in Japan whisky production, and a tour of the factory shows off their homegrown distillation process. Then we take the afternoon to explore more of Otaru, where you can find a lunch to suit your taste at the Otaru Sushi District. After, take a stroll down Sakaimichi Street, which preserves much of the city's rich heritage as a prosperous fishing port. In particular, we will explore the evolution of Otaru's glass-blowing industry, which went from making simple glass fishing buoys to producing fine glassware. At the end of the street sits the Music Box Museum, with about 25,000 music boxes of various sizes and shapes. Once we finish our sightseeing for the day, we embark on an overnight ferry departing Otaru for Niigata.

Breakfast / Dinner

Shin Nihonkai Ferry

Day 5

Yudanaka (Snow Monkey Park)

Today, we arrive in Niigata, and make our way to Yudanaka, in Nagano prefecture, where we will enjoy exploring the Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park. Jigokudani is a word that means "Hell Valley", and the volcanic hot springs are this area's most memorable feature. It is well known as the bathing grounds of the Japanese macaque, which troops down from the mountains to clean themselves and each other in the water. Though most monkeys are thought to be disgusting and dirty, these primates are the cleanest creatures around, combing through each other's hair until it becomes fluffy and soft. After we finish exploring the snow monkey park, we continue on to Matsumoto for a relaxing evening at the hotel.

Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner

Hotel Shoho Matsumoto or similar class

Day 6

Matsumoto (Matsumoto Castle), Takayama (Matsuri no Mori / Old Town)

After breakfast, we explore Matsumoto Castle - a flatplain castle, and one of the oldest in the country. Nicknamed the "Black Crow Castle", the inky black- colored keep, mounted on a great stone basin, is one of Japan's most impressive castles. Then we continue the tour in Takayama, known for its preservation of cultural traditions. One of the most important of those traditions is the Takayama Spring Festival, which features a number of ancient floats that are carried through town in celebratory procession. We will see duplicates of these floats, as well as listen to traditional festival music. After, we head over to Takayama Old Town to explore the Sanmachi Suji, filled with vintage houses, shops, and even a few sake breweries.

Breakfast / Dinner

Hotel Associa Takayama Resort or similar class

Day 7

Takayama (Morning Market), Shirakawa-go (Shiroyama Viewpoint / Gassho-zukuri Minkaen), Kanazawa (Kenrokuen), Express Train to Kyoto

After breakfast, we take the morning to explore a Takayama Morning Market, which sells local produce and handicraft, and can be a good place to find a unique souvenir! Then we drive to the UNESCO- protected village of Shirakawa-go, a charming mountain village celebrated for its farmhouses with broad thatched roofs, known locally as gassho-zukuri. At Shiroyama Viewpoint, you will see the entire town spread out before your eyes in an idyllic vista. From there, we head to the Gassho-Zukuri Minkaen, a collection of old buildings in an outdoor museum which showcase the rural architectural style. Then we drive to Kanazawa to see Kenrokuen - one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan. Designed after the "six sublimities" of Chinese landscape garden design, Kenrokuen offers visitors a fantastic winter scene, especially if the park happens to be covered in snow. The trees are usually covered in tall, conical "yukitsuri" hats - bamboo poles and ropes that protect the branches during heavy snowfall. After a refreshing stroll through Kenrokuen, we hop on an express train to Kyoto for a relaxing evening at the hotel.

Breakfast / Lunch

Kyoto Tokyu Hotel or similar class

Day 8

Nara (Todaiji Temple / Nara Deer Park), Katsuragi (Sumo-kan Kehaya-za - Sumo Experience)

In the morning, we travel to Nara to see the city's most famous landmark - Todaiji Temple. The immense temple hall was, until recently, the largest wooden structure in the world, and houses the massive Great Buddha of Todaiji. The temple is located in a corner of Nara Park, which is home to over a thousand free- roaming, adorable Sika deer. These friendly creatures are protected by Nara, even becoming an official symbol of the city. Stalls around the park sell special crackers to feed the deer, and some of the animals have even learned to bow when asking for food. After Nara, we continue to Katsuragi - the birthplace of Japanese sumo, for a visit to the Sumo-kan Kehaya- za. This sumo museum details the history of the Japanese national sport, even offering a unique Sumo Experience.

Breakfast / Lunch

Kyoto Tokyu Hotel or similar class

Day 9

Kyoto (Fushimi Inari Shrine / Gekkeikan Ōkura Sake Museum / Green Tea Ceremony / Kimono Experience / Gion Geisha District - Kyoto Cuisine with Maiko Dinner)

Today, spend a day sightseeing in the former imperial capital of Kyoto. Start with a visit to Fushimi Inari Shrine, widely famed for its thousands of vermillion torii gates. Dedicated to Inari, a Shinto deity of agriculture and prosperity, the shrine is guarded by a number of fierce-looking fox statues, who represent her heavenly messengers. Then we visit the Gekkeikan Okura Sake Museum, run by the Gekkeikan Sake Company, one of Japan's most prominent sake labels. Once a busy sake brewery in the early 1900s, the museum offers visitors a rare inside look into the history of Japanese sake, also housing around 400 sake production implements. Next, we take you to experience a more traditional Kyoto as we sit down for a Japanese green tea ceremony. Also known as "sado", the green tea ceremony is a unique custom which invites guests to slow down and enjoy authentic Japanese hospitality. Then we will go for a local Kimono Experience, which gives you the chance to try on a colorful kimono and take pictures. After, we take a walk through Gion, Kyoto's famous Geisha district, where you can see classical Japanese shops, restaurants, and teahouses. In the evening, have a taste of old Kyoto as you eat traditional kaiseki cuisine.

Breakfast / Dinner

Kyoto Tokyu Hotel or similar class

Day 10

Kyoto (Kiyomizu Temple / Golden Pavilion / Arashiyama - Tenryuji Temple Zen Garden - Bamboo Grove - Togetsukyo Bridge - Rickshaw Ride)

After breakfast, we continue our sightseeing in Kyoto with a visit to Kiyomizu Temple, one of the old capital city's most iconic and magnificent temples. Kiyomizu features a dramatic wooden veranda offering incredible views of trees and cityscape. Then we enjoy the glittering shine of the Golden Pavilion, a three story Buddhist temple originally constructed in the late 1300s, featuring a golden phoenix perched on top. Then, in the Arashiyama district, we will visit several of the city's famous landmarks starting with Tenryuji Temple, the largest temple in the district, and a UNESCO world heritage site. On the temple grounds is Sogen Pond, an especially beautiful garden. Then we take a walk on a path through a dense grove of towering bamboo, an experience that feels like stepping into a hidden world. After, we will take a walk along Togestukyo Bridge, a popular place to admire the natural beauty of the old city, known for its gorgeous seasonal scenery. Finally, we finish our day with a ride on a rickshaw through the charming streets of Kyoto for one last look at the beauty of the ancient city.

Breakfast / Lunch

Kyoto Tokyu Hotel or similar class

Day 11

Bullet Train to Mishima, Kawazu (Kawazu Cherry Blossom Festival)

In the morning, we will enjoy a ride on a Shinkansen "bullet train" to Mishima, and transfer from there to the town of Kawazu. At this time of year, Kawazu hosts the annual Kawazu Cherry Blossom Festival, which celebrates the blooming of the local Kawazu cherry tree. These particular cherry blossoms bloom a full month earlier than other cherry trees in Japan, boasting especially bright pink petals. Take time to enjoy the festival, featuring local events and special sakura cherry-flavored sweets. After, we will make our way to Hakone for a restful evening at the hotel.

Breakfast / Dinner

Laforet Club Hakone Gora Yunosumika or similar class

Day 12

Hakone (Open Air Museum / Hakone Ropeway / Owakudani), Tokyo (Shibuya - Shibuya Crossing - Hachiko Statue)

After breakfast, we will visit the Hakone Open Air Museum. Many of the sculptures and artsy structures use "borrowed scenery", integrating the surrounding landscape into each overall exhibit. The grounds also include a Picasso Exhibition Hall which feature various works by the famous artist. Then we take the Hakone Ropeway which, on clear days, offers spectacular views of Mount Fuji, before arriving at Owakudani. Explore this rocky primordial landscape, which is constantly wreathed in steam and sulfurous fumes from the boiling pools and volcanic hot springs. Then we will continue to Tokyo, one of the biggest cities in the world, where we will visit Shibuya, especially well-known for its popular crossing. Enjoy the bright neon lights as street traffic in every direction comes to a stop, allowing a flood of pedestrians to cross the intersection. After scrambling through the intersection, we will visit the nearby Hachiko Statue, learning about the tale of the faithful Akita dog.

Breakfast / Lunch

New Otani Tokyo or similar class

Day 13

Tokyo (Tsukiji Outer Market / Sushi Making Experience / Asakusa Sensoji Temple & Nakamise District / Tokyo SkyTree / Farewell Dinner at Izakaya)

Today we will spend time exploring Tokyo, starting with a morning trip to the Tsukiji Outer Market. Visitors to the market will find various shops selling fresh seafood and delicious fruit. After walking through the market, we will enjoy lunch together, where a professional sushi chef will guide you in preparing your very own sushi! Vegetarian options are available for those with dietary restrictions. We will visit the Asakusa district for a visit to Sensoji Temple. It is Tokyo's oldest temple and features the Kaminarimon Gate hung with a massive paper lantern. Beside the temple is the colorful Nakamise street, filled with rows of shops that sell all manner of traditional souvenirs. From there, we travel to Tokyo Skytree, one of the tallest towers in the world, for an awe-inspiring view of the Tokyo cityscape. Finally, we will meet for a farewell dinner at a local izakaya - a special type of relaxed dining establishment unique to Japan, before returning to the hotel.
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.

Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner

New Otani Tokyo or similar class

Day 14

Tour Ends

After breakfast, our tour officially ends.
Checkout time is 11 am.
Transfer to Tokyo Narita Airport or Haneda Airport by airport shared shuttle.

Breakfast

NOTE 3: The departure airport transfer is ONLY available on the last day of the tour. If you plan to stay extra nights after the tour, please contact us for the transfer if needed.

NOTE 4: If you would like to stay longer in Japan, please contact us to book hotel accommodations.