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Japan Tour

offered by supplier M20449 (read about supplier)

Key Information:
Tour Duration: 16 - 21 day(s)
Group Size: 12 - 18 people
Destination(s): Japan  
Specialty Categories: Textile Arts   Shopping Trips  
Season: March - April
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: Yes
Minimum Per Person Price: 4200 US Dollar (USD)
Maximum Per Person Price: 4200 US Dollar (USD)

Many think this tour is only for those who have an interest in textiles. It is not for the tour covers gardens, shopping, signtseeing, photography, castles, museums, markets....a broad brush and to dispel this myth, I provide the following itinerary along with many side comments.

Tour Itinerary with arrival in Japan on 20 MARCH ONLY:

Day 1: Depart USA on 19 March and arrive in Japan on 20 March ONLY.

Day 2: Arrive Osaka International Airport (KIX), travel by train for just over an hour to Kyoto check into hotel that is perfectly located and very comfortable. Moving luggage is minimal.

Days 3-7:
- Two of the best flea markets in the world for textiles, antiques and many other treasures where we share our expertise on the best bargains
- Miho Museum designed by IM Pei that is world class for architecture and contents
- Nijo Castle famous for nightengale floors
- Kiyomizudera (water temple famous for stages and symbol for Kyoto)
- Aizenkobo (indigo dying house) has a 300 year history where we are able to see the interior spaces of this Kyoto “shot gun house.” The architecture and history are awesome. So is the lecture that Mr Utsuki, the owner, usually gives to our guests. No one has ever fallen asleep.
- Nishijin Textile Center has a kimono show and an area where craft people are weaving on looms, making fans, creating shoji screens and more
- Yuzen Textile Center has people painting on silk,a movie on how they do the stenciling and dying of fabric plus a shop where I always find a good deal on something they have on sale.
- Heian Shrine (gorgeous garden)
- Frueaikan (cultural center and museum)
- Geisha district and Gion
- Nara (old imperial capital) including Kasuga Taisha (temple of many lanterns), Todaiji (temple with largest wooden building in world)
- Uji to see Byodoin (temple with oldest wooden building in world and museum)
- Fushimi Inari Shrine (famous for many vermilion tori gates and seen in movie Memoirs of a Geisha).
- Ryoanji (famous for rock garden)
- Kinkakuji (golden pavilion)
- Ninnaji (temple with garden).

Day 8: bullet train to Odawara then a switch-back train to very small town deep in the mountains of Hakone National Park to spend two nights in a hot springs hotel with spectacular garden plus several outstanding musuems that are nearby, tour garden and town (guests hate to leave).

Day 9: Tour Hakone checkpoint (historic), boat ride on “pirate ship”, gondola ride, see fumerolos, tram, spectacular outdoor sculpture garden with Picasso Museum.

Day 10: Travel to Tokyo, check into hotel (spectacular leaving guests absolutely stunned) with afternoon in Harajuku area visiting top designer shops or Meiji Shrine

Day 11 to 16:
- 1 or more outstanding flea markets
- Nikko to visit the famous Toshogu Shrine and other temples
- Hamarikyu Garden
- Tsukiji Fish Market
- Boat trip on scenic Sumida River
- Asakusa to visit massive shopping arcade and temple - an absolutely must see in Tokyo
- Kiyosumi Garden or two world famous textile/fabric shops
- Kamakura (old imperial capital) to visit Zeni-Arai Benten (money washing temple), Great Buddha (symbol of Japan) and Hasedera (temple famous for hydrangea)
- Massive fabric store south of Tokyo...so big it is housed in several tall buildings or the retail fabric distric or department stores in the Ginza or the Imperial Palace or the military museum or the Imperial Palace or Akihabara which is the center of the universe for the latest electronic gadget
- Spectacular Tokyo-Edo Museum
- Walking tour of older area of Tokyo or Museum of Itchiku Kubota or park with many old houses
- Monorail ride through area renown for its architecture

Other Considerations:
- The tour starts in Japan on 20 March and 20 November
- The $4,200 provides a shared hotel room, breakfast each day and full tour each day. An additional $1,200 will be needed for meals other than breakfast, admissions and in-country transportation
- You can arrive earlier and/or stay longer in Japan. If you arrive 4 days early, we have prepared a detailed guide so you can independently visit Hiroshima, Miyajima, Kurashiki, Okayama and Himeji before meeting with rest of guests where cost is what you actually pay for hotels, meals, admissions and a rail pass that covers almost all the transportation costs
- Transfer between hotels does not require dragging heavy luggage
- Other places will be visited that are not listed in the general itinerary above
- On some days there is a lot of walking. However, you can drop out at any time or elect to do something special such as dress as a geisha, learn how to play taiko drums or visit one of the many museums, shrines or gardens
- This is not just a trip for shopping or textiles for it is perfect for people watching, photography, learning the history/culture, architecture, graphic design and more
- For fabri-holics, this tour will have you in overload from the first morning. For those having no interest in textiles, you too will be in overload as you are introduced to the history and culture. People watching, architecture, graphic design, photography will keep all interested. Allow me the opportunity to make this your trip of a lifetime.

- There are only 3 places that focus on textiles. However, all three offer on site alternatives such as a demonstration or the architecuture or shopping
- That this tour departs for Japan on 19 MARCH ONLY and only if there are enough to make the tour economical for all. You can leave earlier or stay longer
- The many alternative "OR's" above which are options to pick and choose from depending on your individual desires. Those fabriholics will revel in the shop south of Tokyo and the retail textile district while others may prefer an additional garden or museum. Previous guests have visited Disneyland, the Ghibili Musuem, set up meeting with pen pal or arranged to visit area where special flowers were grown.

Airfare is not included in the tour price.

- You can use air miles to meet us at the first hotel in Japan where we provide detailed and easy to use directions or you can travel on the same flight with the guide
- You can leave early to visit Hiroshima, Miyajima, Kurashiki, Okayama and Himeji where only additional cost is for hotel rooms, meals, a rail pass and admissions to places visited.

Price Includes:
- Shared hotel room
- Extensive breakfast each day
- Pre-departure information
- Detailed daily itinerary
- Full tour each day.

Price Excludes:
- Air fare
- Meals other than breakfast
- Admissions and transportation in country are not included.

About This Supplier
Photos: Next »
Location: USA
Joined InfoHub: Aug 2010

We lived in Japan for 15 years. Wife is an internationally known quilter and fiber artist. Husband is a retired US Navy Officer. During the time we were in Japan, we had the privilege of being able to take many friends, family and business associates to various places. As a member of the diplomatic community, we had...

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