6 Nights (from US $2,218)
Start: Tokyo - End: Tokyo | Standard Class
As of the winter of 2017 I have had to temporarily discontinue my prearranged and economical Small Group Tours & Day Trips because of the popularity of my Private Custom Tours. In the future I may offer the prearranged Small Group Tours & Day Trips but for now I can offer only Private Custom Tours. If you would like to start a conversation about a Private Custom Tour to Japan please submit my Inquiry Form. Feel free to inquire about any desires you may have and want to experience in Japan.
Tokyo - Kyoto - Osaka - Tokyo
- Visit some of Tokyo's most exciting places including historical temples & shrines, fashion playgrounds and the nostalgic Tokyo Tower.
- Walk the "old city" of Tokyo, visit one of Tokyo's best museums and then stroll through Ginza.
- Ride the famous Bullet Train (more commonly known as the "Shinkansen") and whisk by magnificent Mt. Fuji.
- Stay at a traditional Japanese Inn, eat traditional Japanese Inn dinner and morning meals while enjoying a long hot dip in their hot springs and tubs.
- Visit the "Golden Temple" in Kyoto along with other incredible and historical temples.
- Explore one of Japan's most famous castles, "Osaka Castle", one of the largest and most formidable castles in Japan.
The "Golden Route" tour visits the three big tourist destination cities in Japan, Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka. You will see some of the most popular and famous sights Japan has to offer which includes temples, areas and castles. This tour is about a week long so you can take five days off work, see the Golden Route destinations of Japan and be back to work the next week!
From USD Per Person, Double Occupancy.
From USD $2,974 Single.
Please read our important page on "Japanese Accommodations"
The displayed "Price" is a close estimate of the actual tour cost. We update our currency exchange rates and tour costs on a regular bases but the displayed price may vary (up or down) from what is shown. Final pricing for the tour will be calculated based on the exchange rate and tour costs at the time of tour booking.
Singles: Single rooms are available at Western-style hotels, but at Japanese Inns they do not have "single" rooms and you will either need to share with a member of the same sex (if possible) or pay for a "Double" room.
Standard - Click here for detailed information.
Min/Max Group Size
Min Group Size: 2
This number is the Minimum amount of people that are required to book this Japan Tour.
Max Group Size: 12
Superior - Upper class accommodations with large "American Size" rooms and all the amenities.
Note: Accommodations listed in the itinerary below can, in the case of unavailability, be substituted by an equivalent class hotel.
No matter what the "Accommodation Class" all accommodations in Japan are very clean. Shoestring, Budget & Standard class accommodation rooms tend to be smaller than a comparable American class hotel's room. Superior & Luxury 5 Star accommodation rooms are large and tend to be the same size as any high class room around the world.
- All costs for transportation, accommodation, meals, activities and entrance fees for items listed in the itinerary below (including taxes); Except those items which have the sign in front of them (explanation of why some items not included).
- Native English Speaking or Licensed English Speaking Guide.
- Please review inclusions/exclusions depending on the Tour Class also. This tour is a "Standard Class" package.
What's NOT Included
Simply stated: whatever is not shown in the itinerary below is not included in the tour's price.
- Airfare (To and From Japan) is NOT included.
- Extra drinks, deserts, etc. that are not included with the meals in the itinerary. Some meals may provide a drink and or a desert but some may not.
- Any additional meals, drinks, snacks, entrance tickets, etc. outside the ones shown in the itinerary.
- Any additional transport (subways, taxis, buses, etc.) outside the itinerary below unless covered by an included pass.
- Any Personal expenses.
- Baggage handling, depends on the Tour Class; This tour is a "Standard Class" package.
- Any "Free Travel" ("Breaking Free" of the group or "Doing you own thing"), detailed information here.
- Travel insurance.
Welcome to Japan! You arrive at Narita Airport (the International Airport near Tokyo) and after exiting customs a guide will be waiting for you. The guide will either A.) escort you to your train/bus and upon arrival in Tokyo and another guide will pick you up or B.) the guide that meets you at the airport will escort you all the way to the hotel. You will ride a Limited Express Train into Tokyo then change to a local line OR ride a limousine bus to your hotel.
Travel by Train
Narita Airport Terminal 1 > Tokyo
Limited Express (Reserved)
On your first full day in Japan you may either join your tour leader and be escorted around Tokyo to the listed destinations as per the itinerary, or you are of course free to do your own thing (read more about "Free to do own thing"). If you will be joining the tour leader, you will meet in the morning after breakfast and head out on a walking and public transport system tour to see Asakusa, Harajuku and Meiji Shrine, three highly popular attractions. You will experience the hustle and bustle and be amazed out how efficient and clean the public transportation system is and enjoy viewing some very beautiful old shrines and temples in the heart of Tokyo.
Asakusa (Area): The Asakusa area is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Tokyo. The area has famous temples and shrines as well as a huge souvenir shopping street and delicious food stalls.
Harajuku (Area): Harajuku is extremely popular with teenagers and Harajuku Girls (those girls that dress up cute and pretty).
Meiji Shrine (Shrine): The most visited and probably most famous shrine in Japan. Meiji Shrine is a shrine dedicated to the spirits of Emperor Meiji (1852-1912) and his wife Empress Shoken (1849-1914).
A full day in Tokyo where you will visit a fabulous museum, the famous "Ginza" and Yurakucho areas and finally a stop at Tokyo Tower where you can ride up to an observation deck and view the night skyline of Tokyo. On this day you will see a feel a wide range of "Tokyo Culture" from "Old Districts" to "Super Modern" type structures and atmosphere.
Edo-Tokyo Museum (Museum): The Edo-Tokyo Museum was established in 1993 as a museum that celebrates the "Edo Era" of Tokyo. There are a few "main" features in the museum such as a life size replica of Nihonbashi and many scale models that demonstrate life was during the Edo times.
Ryogoku (Area): Ryogoku is famous for its sumo stadium, chanko restaurants, many sumo stables and ther sumo related attractions. The biggest Sumo stadium in Japan is also found here along with some nice temples, shrines and Japanese gardens sprinkled throughout the town.
Ginza (Area): World Famous "Ginza"! Some non-Japanese people call it "The Ginza" but the Japanese themselves just call it "Ginza". Ginza today is basically an upscale shopping district filled with high-end department stores, boutiques and resturaunts.
Tokyo Tower (Scenic Ride): Tokyo Tower was the "Modern Symbol" of Tokyo since Tokyo was rebuilt after WW2 until just recently when Tokyo Skytree was completed. Tokyo Tower is still "Romaticized" and looked upon with great nostalgia to this day.
After a ride on the Shinkansen (Bullet Train) from Tokyo To Kyoto we have about a 3/4 day in Kyoto, one of the top destination cities in the world! On this full day in Kyoto you will visit one of the most famous places in Japan and most well known historical structures in the world, Kinkaku-ji "The Golden Temple". Then we will walk a bit through Kyoto and arrive at Ryoan-ji which is well known for it's beautiful Japanese Garden. Finally we will head over to the western side of town to walk through a bamboo forest and then visit Tenryu-ji which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Breakfast | Dinner
Travel by Train
Tokyo > Kyoto
Kinkaku-ji (Temple): Kinkakuji (Golden Pavilion) is one of the most well known places about Japan around the world. It is a UN World Heritage Site, putting it up there with the Pyramids of Giza, the Statue of Liberty, and the Cathedral of Notre-Dame.
Ryoan-ji (Temple): Ryoanji, which means "The Temple of the Dragon at Peace" in English, is "The" most famous Rock Garden in Japan... and therefore the world as Japan is "The" Rock Garden king. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Tenryu-ji (Temple): Tenryu-ji ranked #1 among the Kyoto's five Zen Buddhist temples (these five temples are called the so-called "Five Mountains") and is a "UNESCO World Heritage Site". Tenryu Ji is the "head temple" of the Tenryu school (or branch) of Rinzai Zen Buddhism.
Today we will jump on the Shinkansen and take a quick ride to Osaka, Japan's 2nd largest city. After arriving at our hotel we will proceed to Osaka Castle where we will explore the castle before heading off to the "port" area of Osaka where the aquarium is. Osaka Aquarium is quite a magnificent structure and world renown. We may even catch a glimpse of street performers (even some ex-pat Westerners) in the large open space in front of the Aquarium.
Travel by Train
Kyoto > Osaka
Osaka Castle (Castle): Not only is Osaka Castle the symbol of Osaka, it is one of Japan's most famous landmarks and played a major role in the history of Japan.
Osaka Aquarium (Theme Park): The Osaka Aquarium is located at the Tempozan Harbor Village at the Osaka's Bay Area and is hailed as one of Japan's most spectacular aquariums. It is Walk Through aquarium with 27 tanks in 16 main exhibits containing fish, a whale shark and manta rays.
Lodging: Hotel ( Superior ) "Hilton Osaka Hotel"
Hilton Osaka Hotel is located in the commercial, entertainment and shopping district of Osaka. Ideally situated for both business and leisure travelers, the Hilton Osaka Hotel is a "Top Class" hotel where you can expect great service and excellent rooms.
After breakfast your guide will escort you back Osaka station and board the Bullet Train back to Tokyo, perhaps catching a glimpse of Mount Fuji on your way past (depending on weather conditions of course). After checking in (or leaving bags... depending on arrival time) at the hotel your guide will say goodbye and you are free to do some last-minute souvenir shopping or visit any sites may have missed the first time around. The final night of your tour you will have the option to spend in time in Shinjuku, the high-rise district in Tokyo known for its glaring neon, vibrant nightlife and thousands of restaurants.
Travel by Train
Osaka > Tokyo
Shinjuku (Area): Shinjuku is the biggest city in Tokyo. This is where most the tall sky-scrapers are and Shinjuku Station see's more than 3 million people pass through it in one day. People, Neon, Eating, Shopping and Drinking are just some of the wild sights to see.
Lodging: Hotel ( Superior ) "Odakyu Hotel Century Southern Tower"
Odakyu Hotel Century (or Odakyu Hotel Century Southern Tower) is a 4 star hotel next to JR Shinjuku Station. Immaculate western style rooms offer an electric kettle, private bathroom (hairdryer and free toiletries), a desk and a safety deposit box.
Today its time to go home... it was wonderful having you! Once again you will board train(s) and make your way back to the International Airport. We hope you have a nice flight home and hope to see you again!
Travel by Train
Tokyo > Narita
Limited Express (Reserved)