SIDE TRIPS: Fuji, Hakone, Nara, Osaka, Himeji Castle


about this trip

Of the numerous famous sites in Japan, Tokyo and Kyoto are the first to come to mind, and for a good reason. As both the former and current capitals of Japan, the two cities have become a dual representation of Japan in both its historical values and its hyper modernity. For those new to Japan, seeing the two is simply a must! Enjoy the fleeting cherry blossoms of spring, the rush of life in the summer, the torrent of color in the fall, and the dazzling illuminations of winter.

why we're obsessed

  • Experience omotenashi for yourself - a combination of great service and top-notch cuisine unique to Japanese culture - at the finest hotels

  • Gain exclusive hands-on experience of crafting Japanese arts including kiriko glass and wagashi sweets

  • Enjoy a customizable balance of traditional aesthetics as well as cutting-edge contemporary fashion and arts

Sample Itinerary to Get you Started

Day 1-3 (tokyo)

After arriving in Tokyo and getting settled into your accommodation, we have prepared a number of different tours around Tokyo to match your preferences. From traditional to the latest of pop culture, Tokyo has it all. Journey across time in Asakusa as you stroll through tradition at the famous Senso-ji temple while gazing at the modernity of Tokyo Skytree. Find yourself at the heart of Tokyo in one of the most prestigious business districts neighboring the grand Imperial Palace itself. Discover art in the theaters of Ginza and decorate yourself with the latest of fashion trends in the youthful bustling streets of Harajuku. There’s just so much to do and much more to see, so buckle up as we zip you around one of the world’s most fast paced cities.

Day 4-5 (kyoto)

Find yourself in the past as you explore through the beloved cultural treasure trove of Japan. With a myriad of world renowned historical relics, Kyoto proves itself as the former glorious capital of Japan. Surround yourself in culture and traditions as you stroll through the simple yet beautifully arranged gardens and gorgeous temples of Kyoto. Embrace mystique as you hike through the thousands of gates at Fushimi Inari Shrine and cross through the bamboo groves of Arashiyama. Witness both glamour and aesthetic austerity in the twin temples of the Golden and Silver Pavilions. Enjoy yourself as you are immersed into traditional culture such as exquisite antiques in Maiko. On a nice summer day, wrap up the evening with luxurious Kaiseki dinner on Kawayuka, a terrace above or by the river.

Day 6 (Side Trip to Nara)

Visit Nara if you want a peek into an even older era than Kyoto. As the first ancient capital of the land, Nara is home to several of Japan’s finest antiquities. Just under an hour from Kyoto, the ancient capital proves itself as one of the most popular sites with its absolutely gorgeous parks and awe inspiring temples. Take a trip to see the world’s largest bronze Buddha statue at the spectacular Todai-ji temple and stop by Horyu-ji temple to see one of the world’s oldest wooden structures. It's not just the antiquities that will amaze you - visit Imaicho to peek into lives of people who still live in traditional lifestyle. Visit their homes and interact with them to feel the spirit of good old Japanese living.  And of course, if you would like, have some fun with the adorable deer in Nara Park.

Day 7 (side trip to osaka)

Head over to Japan’s third largest city Osaka to enjoy the lively atmosphere in the city that has historically been the merchants’ capital. Enjoy Dotonbori, the large-scale downtown area, and some of Japan’s finest savory soul foods: Okonomiyaki pancakes and Octopus puffs. Visit famous attractions from Osaka castle to Universal Studio Japan to Bunraku, a traditional Japanese puppet theater designated as a UNESCO intangible cultural heritage.

Day 8 (tokyo)

Reflect on your long stay and tell us what you have missed and where you would like to revisit. This is the last chance for you to get some last-minute shopping and visits done until next time you visit Japan.