Off the Beaten Track in Japan - Handpicked Itineraries
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12 nights

Off the Beaten Track in Japan

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Grab your camera - you're about to embark on the Japan holiday of your wildest dreams! This journey takes you off the beaten track to some of the most beautiful destinations outside of Tokyo. Discover the best things to do in Japan and tick off your bucket-list with this amazing 12 night itinerary.

See the future in the neon lights and robotic culture of Tokyo, step back in time and explore the mysterious temples in the ancient cities of Kyoto and Kamakura, and explore the naturally beautiful forests of Nikko and the ones surrounding Mount Fuji. Your dream Japan holiday can't get any better than this!

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Itinerary includes:
  • Return flights from the UK
  • Transfers between the hotel and airport
  • 5 nights at the 4.5 star Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo
  • Full day private tour of Tokyo
  • Evening at the robot restaurant
  • Full day private tour of Kamakura
  • Full day private tour of Nikko
  • 2 nights at the 4 star Hakone Kowakien Ten-Yu
  • Full day sightseeing at Hakone and Mt. Fuji
  • 5 nights at the 4 star Kyoto Brighton Hotel
  • Full day private tour of Kyoto
  • Full day private tour of Nara
  • Full day private tour of Arishayama Bamboo Forest and Sagano Temples
Day 1-2
Fly from Tokyo to UK

Welcome to Japan! For the next 12 nights, you'll be exploring one of the most beautiful and culturally rich countries in the world - this is the start of an adventure of a lifetime! Once you land in Tokyo, you'll be met by your private chauffeur who will escort you to your home for the first five nights of your trip, the incredibly stylish Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo. 

The Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo is the ideal place to beat that jet-lag, and is the perfect touch-down point for exploring Japan's futuristic capital with its location in the very heart of Tokyo, just five minutes from the red-light district of Shinjuku. You'll love the views your room provides of Tokyo at night, its brightly coloured lights winking at you and bouncing off of the glass buildings. Your Japan holiday is going to be this magical throughout!

Day 3
Private Tour of Tokyo

Now you've caught up on sleep, it's time to start discovering the amazing sights that Japan has to offer! Your exclusive itinerary includes a private tour of Tokyo. Your first stop is the renowned Tokyo Tower - head to the top for breathtaking views of the capital as it wakes up in the morning. Can you make out the profile of Mount Fuji peering through the clouds? Visit the beautiful Meiji-Jingu Shrine, a tranquil haven hidden in the midst of the city. Immerse yourself in Japanese culture and buy a charm!

The next stop on your tour will be Asakusa Kannnon Temple - you'll be stunned by the beautiful scarlet gates with their huge lantern. Picking out a fortune is a must when visiting this temple, shake the box and hope to receive good luck! Enjoy a warm melon pan (a sweet bread and a Japanese favourite) and explore Nakamise Shopping Arcade. Your tour will finish in the up-market shopping district of Ginza. Explore the department stores before finding a place to eat dinner - perhaps a delicious serving of tempura?

Day 4
Exploring the City & Robot Restaurant

Spend the day at your own leisure until the evening! If you can manage an early morning, then head to the Toyusu Market to watch a tuna auction - this fish is fresh, you won't believe the sheer size of it! Enjoy a sushi breakfast at nearby Tsukiji Outer Market, there's nothing better when the fish is this good! After your delicious breakfast, head to Harajuku to for Japan's cutest shops and cafe's! Takeshita Street is famous for vibrant stores, find shops selling sweet crepes and rainbow candy-floss the size of your head.

A visit to Shibuya is a must - you can't visit Japan without crossing the famous Scramble Crossing for yourself. If you've seen the heart-wrenching film Hachi: A Dog's Tale, then you'll love getting the opportunity to pat the statue of the world's most loyal dog. Find him just outside the train station. Head to Shinjuku, Tokyo's glowing red-light district, and indulge in the shopping spree of a lifetime before heading to the Robot Restaurant for the most unique dining experience of your life!

Day 5
Private Tour of Kamakura

It's time to discover Kamakura! Your fabulous itinerary includes a tour of this mystifying coastal town - you'll start with it's most iconic attraction, the Great Buddha (said to be the most handsome in Japan). This statue is beautiful with its natural hilly backdrop, a truly serene image. Next, you'll visit the Hase Kannon Temple, dedicated to the goddess of compassion and decorated with finesse and delicate accents. You'll love the bright colours of the gardens that surround this temple!

While you're in Kamakura, you have to try Shojin Ryori, a vegetarian meal popular with monks. You'll find many restaurants that offer this delicious food due to Kamakura's abundance of temples. Afterwards, follow your nose to Komachi-Dori shopping street to treat your tastebuds to some Kamakura street food - savour the crunch of crispy golden croquettes!

Day 6
Private Tour of Nikko

After another blissful night's rest at the Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo, it's time for your exclusive itinerary to continue. Your guide will meet you for your tour of Nikko, a stunning city in the mountains. You'll be spellbound by the patchwork quilt of colours that blankets the landscape, a true representation of Japan's natural beauty. Visit Toshogu Shrine, beautiful with its glimmering gold accents. After praying at the shrine, your next stop will be a little closer to the mountains...

Welcome to Lake Chuzenji, a sparkling lake that lies at the foot of Nikko's sacred volcano, Mount Nantai. This secluded spot is mostly untouched, save for a luxurious onsen (hot spring) town - definitely worth a visit for a relax in the soothing waters. This town is also home to Kegon Waterfall, awe-inspiring if you visit in the autumn months, when the tumbling waters are surrounded by deep auburns and golden leaves. Nikko is straight out of a fairy tale - clear your camera, you'll definitely want to share this on Instagram!

Day 7
Sightseeing at Hakone and Mt. Fuji

It's time to say goodbye to Tokyo and its many neon colours, and say hello to the peace and serenity of Hakone! Hop on the shinkansen (bullet train) and speed past small towns and emerald rice fields. Your itinerary includes an incredible tour of Hakone and Mount Fuji. You'll begin your adventure at the Fujisan World Heritage Center, before heading to Lake Ashi for an unforgettable boat trip. You'll love floating across these gentle, sparkling waters - what you are about to see will be unforgettable...

Your heart will stop as your boat comes into view of the majestic Mount Fuji. You are bobbing beneath an iconic silhouette that only the luckiest of people can see up close. This is an experience of a lifetime, a beautiful moment to share with your loved one. Enjoy panoramic views from the Komagatake Ropeway, each glance as breath-taking as the last. After a beautiful day, Hakone Kowakien Ten-Yu will be waiting to welcome you to your traditional Japanese-style room. You won't be able to resist the open air bathtub!

Day 8
Hakone

How you spend this day is completely down to you! A trip to Hakone would be incomplete without checking out the mystifying Hakone Shrine. Hidden within a dense forest, this mysterious shrine is signposted by ruby torri gates - follow a pathway lined with lanterns before you stumble across the shrine itself, standing proudly amongst the trees. The ambience of Hakone Shrine is magical, a magnificent sight when the mists of the mountains blanket it.

After the excitement of yesterday, this is the perfect opportunity for you to relax in the presence of nature. Hakone is home to an array of onsens, and you don't need to stray far to find one! Hakone Kowakien Ten-Yu is home to an amazing infinity onsen - think infinity pool, but warmer and more soul-soothing - as well as a gorgeous onsen surrounded by luscious forestry. Enjoy the comforting sounds of nature, from the gentle wind rustling through the leaves to the tumbling waterfall beside you... this is paradise.

Day 9
Road transfer from Tokyo to Kyoto

It's time to board the Shinkansen (Bullet Train) and leave Hakone. We know it's sad to part from such a blissful place, but don't let it get you down - you're about to step back in time to the incredible ancient city of Kyoto! This was once Japan's capital, and boasts many beautiful temples and shrines, including the famous Fushimi Inari Shrine (seen in Memoirs of a Geisha). Once arriving in Kyoto, you'll be greeted by the smiling staff at your home for the next five nights, the Kyoto Brighton Hotel.

After a day of travelling, you'll love stretching your limbs in the bathtub in your room at the Kyoto Brighton Hotel. Enjoy delicious teppanyaki grilled right before your very eyes at the hotel's Himorogi restaurant before settling down for a peaceful night's sleep. You'll be snug as a bug in a rug in your plush bed!

Day 10
Private Tour of Kyoto

When you've woken up and savoured a cosy traditional breakfast, meet your guide to begin your private tour of Kyoto! The first destination on this fabulous tour is the awesome Kinkakuji Temple. You'll be stunned as you spot this temple as it shines in the sunlight - did we mention that it is covered in real gold leaf? This golden temple is a majestic sight to see as you look over the lake, see it reflected in the rippling waters like something out of a fairy tale. 

Your guide will take you to Heian Jingu Shrine - enter the gardens to see the gorgeous weeping cherry blossom trees that hang over the lake, this is one of the best spots to see the blossoms in Kyoto!

Day 11
Private Tour of Nara

You can't be so close to Nara and not visit - so it's a good job that a private tour of this city is included in your amazing itinerary! Your first stop will be the Todaiji Temple, whose main hall houses another of Japan's largest bronze Buddha statues, the Daibutsu. Walk through the hall surrounded by swirling clouds of aromatic incense, a calming ambience.

Next stop is Nara Park, where you'll be greeted by cute creatures who are very eager to be friends. Meet the deer of Nara, the symbol of the city and messengers of the gods. These adorable beauties will bow at you, a clever trick which should be rewarded with biscuits - buy these at the park and see how many new buddies you can make!

Day 12
Arishayama Bamboo Forest & Sagano Temples

After a relaxing evening at the Kyoto Brighton Hotel, your exciting itinerary will continue with a trip to the magical Arashiyama Bamboo Grove. You'll love walking between the soaring bamboos as they sway gently in the wind - this mystifying forest feels like it doesn't belong in this world, the bamboos a far cry from those skyscrapers you saw in Tokyo! You'll be amazed by the beautiful products that the locals craft from the bamboo, they make everything from mats and baskets to cups, perfect to take home.

Your itinerary will take you to the temples of Sagano; Tenryuji Temple is a world heritage site, and is unmissable. This is the perfect place to find your zen, particularly in the stunning landscaped gardens, centuries old and in their original form. You'll stop at the Nonomiya Shrine, where you can purchase marriage talismans. Touch the mysterious turtle rock and make a wish - legend has it that it will grant this wish within a year!

Day 13
Kyoto

Spend your last full day in Japan doing whatever your heart desires! Since you're still in Kyoto, it would be a sin not to immerse yourself in the rich culture of Japan and rent a beautiful kimono for the day. Sample matcha (green tea) flavoured mochi and sweets in Gion before heading to the iconic Fushimi Inari Shrine. You'll be in another world as you walk through the hundreds of red torri gates. Make sure to pray along the way, a way to respect the culture; clap your hands and ring the shinto bell.

Hop on a train to Nijo Castle - no pictures are allowed inside this grand home, this is an exclusive sight for your eyes and your eyes only! Walking kimono clad around the halls of this splendid building will make you feel like royalty, the perfect way to end your dream Japan holiday.

Day 14-15
Fly from UK to Tokyo

Your dream Japan holiday has come to a close! It's time to pack your bags and leave the Land of the Rising Sun. Your private chauffeur will pick you up at Kyoto Brighton Hotel and drive you to the airport, where you will catch your first flight to Shanghai, and from there back to the UK. It's easy to be overcome by post-holiday blues - but don't let that happen! Spend your comfortable flight home talking about all the amazing memories you've made on your trip and planning your next unique holiday! 

Where will we take you next?

Call us for itinerary price

Itinerary includes:
  • Return flights from the UK
  • Transfers between the hotel and airport
  • 5 nights at the 4.5 star Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo
  • Full day private tour of Tokyo
  • Evening at the robot restaurant
  • Full day private tour of Kamakura
  • Full day private tour of Nikko
  • 2 nights at the 4 star Hakone Kowakien Ten-Yu
  • Full day sightseeing at Hakone and Mt. Fuji
  • 5 nights at the 4 star Kyoto Brighton Hotel
  • Full day private tour of Kyoto
  • Full day private tour of Nara
  • Full day private tour of Arishayama Bamboo Forest and Sagano Temples
Speak to one of our experts to find your perfect trip!
Speak to one of our experts to find your perfect trip!
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