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All Japan Tours       337 N.Vineyard Ave Suite 215, Ontario, CA 91764
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Discover Kyushu - Karatsu Kunchi Festival & Autumn Leaves

Book one of AJT's Discover Kyushu tours for a 12-day experiential journey through Kyushu Island, with one day set aside to attend the thrilling Karatsu Kunchi Festival.

Tour Code: GTW607419

Tour Information

Land cost: from USD $5998.00 (Limit to 24 guests)

Single supplement: USD $1180.00

Tour duration: 12 days 11 nights

Destination:
Fukuoka / Karatsu / Ureshino Onsen / Kashima / Nagasaki / Kumamoto / Kagoshima / Chiran / Ibusuki / Yakushima / Takachiho / Beppu / Usa / Fukuoka

Tour cost includes:
• 9 nights Western style and 2 nights Japanese style accommodation
• Meet and greet upon arrival at Fukuoka Airport
• Airport transfers on arrival and departure
• Private coach transfers between destinations in Japan
• Comprehensive escorted with AJT professional English speaking tour guide
Meals
• Breakfast everyday
• 7 lunches and 5 dinners
Admission fees and activities
• All entry fees to sites, activities listed in the itinerary

Dates & Price
2024
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Status
Sat. Nov 2, 2024 Wed. Nov 13, 2024 USD $5998.00 Fukuoka Fukuoka Deluxe View Tour
2025
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Status
Sun. Nov 2, 2025 Thu. Nov 13, 2025 USD $5998.00 Fukuoka Fukuoka Deluxe View Tour
2026
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Status
Mon. Nov 2, 2026 Fri. Nov 13, 2026 USD $5998.00 Fukuoka Fukuoka Deluxe 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

Fukuoka Airport

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

Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk Hotel 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

Karatsu (Karatsu Kunchi Festival)

Today, discover the excitement of the Karatsu Kunchi Festival as you attend Day 2 of the event. Karatsu Kunchi is the festival for Karatsu Shrine, which has been held for around 400 years. It involves a group of colorful "Hikiyama" floats that are pulled through the streets. Each of the Hikiyama are larger than life and brightly colored, depicting stylized lions, samurai helmets, a dragon, a sea bream, Ureshima Taro, and others. Day 2 is the most exciting day of the festival, where the floats are pulled over the sand at nearby Nishinohama Beach, while the surrounding crowd shouts "Yoi-sa! Yoi-sa!" and "En-ya! En-ya!" The raw energy of this event is thrilling to watch! After we enjoy the day at the festival, we proceed to Ureshino Onsen and a relaxing evening at our Japanese- style accommodation.

Breakfast / Dinner

Taishoya or similar class

Day 3

Kashima (Yutoku Inari Shrine / Hizenya Sake Tasting & Brewery Visit), Nagasaki (Nagasaki Peace Park / Atomic Bomb Museum)

In the morning, we go from Ureshino Onsen to Kashima to visit Yutoku Inari Shrine, which is one of the most beautiful shrines dedicated to Inari, the Shinto deity of economic prosperity, rice, and foxes. Climb rough stone steps up to the shrine's main hall, passing through many vermillion torii shrine gates along the way. We then visit the Hizenya Sake Brewery to tour portions of the facility and taste some of their delicious sake. From there, we go to Nagasaki and take a walk through Nagasaki Peace Park, which marks the site where the atomic bomb was dropped on the city in 1945. It contains a museum and a number of emotionally moving monuments to the victims - some donated by governments from around the world. Then visit the Atomic Bomb Museum, which uses displays about the tragic event to educate visitors on the horrors of nuclear warfare.

Breakfast / Lunch

Luke Plaza Hotel or similar class

Day 4

Nagasaki (Twenty Six Martyrs Museum / Sofukuji Temple / Dejima / Glover Garden / Oura Church)

After breakfast, visit the 26 Martyrs Museum and Monument, which commemorates the sacrifice of 26 Christian saints who were killed for their beliefs by Toyotomi Hideyoshi. Then go to Sofukuji Temple, a Zen Buddhist Temple constructed in Chinese style, with a Buddha Hall that is one of the oldest buildings in Nagasaki. Next, we tour Dejima, which was originally built during the Edo period to house Dutch merchants and contains houses decorated in European fashion. We go from there to Glover Garden, a magnificent flower garden built outside the house of Scottish former industrialist and arms merchant Thomas Glover. After, we visit Oura Church, considered the oldest Christian church in Japan. The original building was partially destroyed when the atomic bomb fell, and parts of the old building are preserved there.

Breakfast / Lunch

Luke Plaza Hotel or similar class

Day 5

Transfer to Shimabara and board the ferry to Kumamoto, Kumamoto (Kumamoto Castle / Suizenji Garden)

Today, we transfer to Shimabara and take a ferry to Kumamoto. Upon arrival, we visit Kumamoto Castle, which is one of Japan's most impressive castles. The imposing black fortress stands tall over the city, and although the central tower is a reconstruction of what it once was, some of the buildings remain in tact since the Edo period. Next, we take a relaxing stroll around Suizenji Garden, an incredible landscape garden that replicates the 53 stations of the old Tokaido Road in miniature. There is even a tiny Mount Fuji. After enjoying the beautiful garden, we continue to Kagoshima by bullet train.

Breakfast / Lunch

Shiroyama Hotel Kagoshima or similar class

Day 6

Kagoshima (Senganen Garden), Chiran (Chiran Peace Museum for Kamikaze Pilots / Chiran Samurai District), Ibusuki (Sand Bath Experience)

We begin the day's sightseeing with a tour of Senganen Garden in Kagoshima. This stunning garden is on the old residence of the local Shimazu Clan, and uses the Japanese technique of borrowed scenery, creating breathtaking garden scenes with the stunning Sakurajima volcano in the background. Next, we visit the Chiran Peace Museum for Kamikaze Pilots, which preserves the personal stories of the young men who flew away to die in suicide attacks during the Battle of Okinawa. The heartrending exhibits don't focus on their missions, but instead feature letters to home, last wills, final notes and poems before takeoff, and photos that help to humanize the famed Kamikaze. We continue from there to the Chiran Samurai District, where visitors can see the stately residences and gardens of the samurai families who once lived there. Then we go to Ibusuki, famed for their Sand Baths, where guests are buried up to their neck in sand which has been heated by hot spring water. You will be able to experience a Sand Bath for yourself.

Breakfast / Lunch

Shiroyama Hotel Kagoshima or similar class

Day 7

Transfer to Kagoshima Port, then Jetfoil to the World Heritage site of Yakushima Island, Yakushima (Shiratani Unsuikyo - 2 hours trekking)

After breakfast, we transfer to Kagoshima Port and travel by Jetfoil to Yakushima Island. This enchanting island was put on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 1993 for it's rare Sugi cedar trees and unique environment. It also inspired the forest setting for Studio Ghibli's Princess Mononoke. Upon arrival, we take a 2- hour trek of the Shiratani Unsuikyo, a splendid woodland of dense and tangled trees that make you feel like you're walking through an enchanted forest. While there, you will be able to see some of the island's most ancient Sugi cedars, including the Jomonsugi, which has been around for over 2000 years. After the hike, we relax for the evening at a hotel on the island.

Breakfast / Dinner

JR Hotel Yakushima or similar class

Day 8

Yakushima (Yakusugi Land hiking / Kigensugi Cedar / Seibu- rindo Forest Path / Banyan Tree)

Om the morning, we begin our tour of Yakushima with a visit to Yakusugiland, which has some of the island's most impressive Sugi cedar trees, such as the Buddhasugi (Buddha cedar), Futagosugi (Twins Cedar), and Sennensugi (Thousand Year Cedar). We go from there to see the Kigensugi Cedar, which is an especially large specimen containing other smaller plants growing inside it. We then drive the Seibu-rindo Forest Path, which allows travelers to enjoy the unspoiled beauty and wildlife of Yakushima Island from the comfort of the private coach. Then we go to see the Banyan Tree - an impressive tree with large tangled aerial roots that twist together like tangled vines above ground.

Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner

JR Hotel Yakushima or similar class

Day 9

Yakushima (Senbiro Waterfall), Jetfoil to Kagoshima Port

In the morning, we view Senbiro Waterfall - one of the island's most beautiful waterfalls, before taking the jetfoil back to Kagoshima. Upon arrival, we make our way to Takachiho - a part of Japan shrouded in Shinto legend and folklore. This evening you will experience the Kagura Night: a performance of time-honored Shinto legends. The Kagura performance uses elaborate masks, costumes, music, dance, and drama to tell ancient stories of the Shinto pantheon. The most popular story is that of Amaterasu, goddess of the sun, going to hide in a nearby cave and covering the world in darkness, and what the other gods did to draw her out again.

Breakfast / Dinner

Solest Takachiho Hotel or similar class

Day 10

Takachiho (Takachiho Gorge / Amano Iwato Shrine & Amano Yasukawara)

After breakfast, we continue our tour of Takachiho with a visit to Takachiho Gorge – one of Kyushu’s most enchanting nature scenes. This picturesque gorge was cut by the Gokase River, forming a narrow passage lined on both sides by black volcanic basalt. Halfway along the gorge you can see Minainotaki Waterfall, which tumbles down over the black cliffs like the threads of a white curtain, and when taken in view with the dense green foliage surrounding the gorge in an atmosphere of enchantment. Then visit Amano Iwato Shrine and Amano Yasukawara. Two of the most sacred sites to the Shinto religion, Amano Iwato Shrine is a Shinto shrine within a cave where, according to legend, the sun goddess Amaterasu hid her light from the world. The nearby cave Amano Yasukawa is the location where the other deities of the Shinto pantheon are said to have conferred on how to coax her out again. The pathways around these spiritual “power spots” are marked with tiny towers of small stones.

Breakfast / Dinner

Suginoi Hotel or similar class

Day 11

Beppu (Beppu Hells / Steam Cooking Center / Mt. Takasaki Monkey Park), Usa (Usa Shrine)

From there, proceed to a bather's paradise – the celebrated hot spring resort of Beppu. Marvel at one of Beppu's most celebrated attractions, the Jigoku Meguri, or "Boiling Hells" hot springs. These hot springs are ideal for viewing rather than bathing. The springs earned their name because it was said that these mysterious, steamy attractions resembled a scene from hell ("jigoku" means "hell"). Then we visit the Steam Cooking Center where you can cook meat and vegetables in the steam of the hot springs. Then we will go to Mt. Takasaki Monkey Park. Mt. Takasaki is a forested mountain just outside of Beppu that is home to over 1,500 wild Japanese monkeys. Within this natural habitat, the monkeys have been fed regularly in order to keep them living on the mountain and prevent conflicts with local fruit farmers. The monkeys are quite accustomed to human visitors, and it is possible to get very close in order to take their pictures! Finally, we proceed to Usa to visit Usa Shrine, and impressive Shinto shrine dedicated to Hachiman, a Shinto warrior deity.

Breakfast / Lunch

Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk Hotel or similar class

Day 12

Tour Ends

After breakfast, our tour officially ends.
Checkout time is 11 am.
Transfer to Fukuoka Airport for departure.

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.