Tokyo – Mt. Fuji – Nagoya – Ise – Nara
Kyoto (bullet train) – Kobe – Osaka
Tour: June 22 – July 01, 2020 Tour Price: $3,895 + Tax
Inclusive of International airfares & daily meals
The price applies to reservations before Dec 02, 2019
A family & kid-friendly tour with visits to Akihabara District, the Digital Art Museum,
Tokyo Kaikan Museum & a Ninja show
Check in at Los Angeles Airport (LAX) to Tokyo. An AV Travel tour leader will assist and escort travelers throughout the trip.
Arrive in the afternoon. Welcome to Tokyo, one of the busiest cities in the world day and night. It is bursting with contemporary urban cultures mixed with traditional ones. You’ll soon find this city mind-blowing.
We will begin our trip by visiting the famous Akihabara Shopping District. Akihabara is one of the most lively and vibrant districts in Tokyo. It’s also considered the center of many electronic, game and anime stores which are great attractions for children. Digital Art Museum: TeamLab Borderless is a world of art without boundaries, a museum without a map. Immerse your body in borderless art in this vast, complex, three-dimensional 10,000-square-meter world. Wander, explore with intention discover, and create a new world with others.
Visit Sensō-ji and Asakusa Shrine, which welcomes around 700,000 visitors every day. Japanese shrines’ custom requires you to purify your hands and mouth at a water pavilion before standing in front of the deity. You will scoop up water in a ladle with your right hand and pour water over your left hand. Next, hold the ladle with your left hand and pour water over your right hand. In your left hand, take some water that you have scooped with the ladle and rinse your mouth. Never touch the ladle directly to your mouth. You can only scoop up water one time, at the very first step of the process.
Your hotel is located near Shinjuku district. When people say that Tokyo is a city that never sleeps, they must be referring to this particular neighborhood – Shinjuku. No other places in Tokyo can match its everlasting state of wakefulness. When night time comes, its bright lights and maze of streets beckon crowds to enjoy its company. You will experience the craziest part of Tokyo nightlife. (B/L/D)
Leave Tokyo for Mount Fuji. We’ll be staying at a ryokan (a traditional Japanese inn). After dinner, you can enjoy bathing in the onsens (thermal hotsprings) that Mount Fuji has to offer, and have all of your tiredness after a long day rinsed out. (B/L/D)
This morning, we’ll take you to Mount Fuji and to Camp 5 (depends on weather conditions), up on the mountain, to enjoy breathtaking views and the beauty that has inspired so many artists and poets. Mt. Fuji, with its 3,776-meter height, is listed as a UNESCO heritage and known as the symbol of Japan. We’ll continue on to visit Owakudani valley and the Peace Garden.
Depart to Nagoya, as the castle town of the Owari, one of the three branches of the ruling Tokugawa family during the Edo Period. On the way, stop to visit Magome Samurai Village. A walk though Magome-juku will transport you back to the Edo period, some 300 years ago. The area is known internationally as a place that retains the particular atmosphere of old Japanese posting stations. Visitors can hike a portion of the Nakasendo from Magome to Tsumago. This scenic trail is especially popular among overseas visitors who seek an authentic experience of traditional life. Visit Toyota Kaikan Museum exhibits Toyota’s latest technology on environment, safety, and manufacturing, as well as new Toyota and Lexus models.
Depart for Ise Peninsula. Ise is home to Ise Grand Shrine, the most sacred Shintō shrine in Japan. The city has a long-standing title: “The Holy City”. During the Edo period, Ise Grand Shrine was a popular destination for pilgrimages. Purportedly the home of the Sacred Mirror, the shrine is one of Shinto’s holiest and most important sites. What makes it special is that the shrine’s buildings are made of Japanese cypress wood. Every 20 years, the old shrines are torn down and new ones, which look exactly the same as the old, are built nearby so that the buildings will be forever new and forever ancient and original. On our journey in Ise Bay, we will take you to the world-famous Mikimoto Pear Island, where you’ll be watching women divers demonstrate the traditional method of diving for pearls.
You will get to know the Ninja martial art by visiting the Ninja museum and watch a Ninja performance. Mr. Minh Do or Mr. Giang Tran will tell you the stories of the ninja in the ancient times, about how they disguised themselves and excellently hid their weapons at ordinary places.
We’ll move on to Nara, Japan’s first capital city. Pay a visit to Todaiji Temple, once one of the powerful Seven Great Temples and still houses the world’s largest bronze statue of the Buddha Vairocana. We will also stop by Nara Deer Park before continuing on to Kyoto.
Your guide will also introduce you to Kyoto’s most popular temple, Kinkakuji, home of the world’s most authentic and exquisite Japanese garden as well as the celebrated Golden Pavilion (Kinkaku-ji) is one of Kyoto’s leading temples. It was built at the end of the 14th century originally as a villa for Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, the shogun at the time. The shining Golden Pavilion is a symbol of Kyoto. This temple has been burnt down many times in the flames of war and other conflagrations, and more recently by arson, which incident has been made famous by Yukio Mishima’s novel, Kinkakuji (The Temple of the Golden Pavilion). However, it was restored in 1955, with major improvement work being done on it in 1987, so that all of the gold leaf has been replaced. Recognized by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage, Golden Pavilion is one of the historical buildings most representative of Japan.
We’ll visit Kiyomizu Temple. The temple is part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto UNESCO World Heritage site, and is known for Otowa-no-taki water fall, where visitors drink sacred waters that is believed to bestow health and longevity. Food vendors are available along the road that leads to the temple. You’ll find these foods Kyoto-authentic, from cinannmon rolls to mochis.
Enjoy a kimono fashion show – in which a series are superb kimono are modeled by some extremely lovely models (perhaps this explains the male visitors’ deep seemingly overwhelming interest in kimono design).
At the heart of Kyoto lies Gion, the center of the city’s art. Gion is the most charming in the early evening, when the lanterns are lit and Geishas and Maikos flit about the back streets on their way to their appointments.
Depart from Kyoto for Kobe by high-speed bullet train with a velocity of 320 kph. We’ll stop at Kobe Port and hear the story of how this city was thriving after the 1995 earthquake.
Also, a Japan’s famous Sake brewery is not to be missed. You’ll be touring the brewery and tasting three different kinds of Sake. What is also special is you will be tasting the world-renown Kobe beef – a delicious treat!
Enjoy another day in Kobe. We will pay a visit to the old town Osaka. Perhaps spend the rest of your day in Shinsaibashi – the largest shopping area in Osaka where many boutiques and specialty shops are gathered, attracting local people and visitors. Depart Osaka for Los Angeles.