The roots of the history and culture of Japan can be found in the Kansai region which includes the ancient capital of Kyoto and its third largest city, Osaka, which has prospered as a capital of commerce for centuries. Tranquil shrines and magnificent Buddhist temples stand with understated architectural elegance surrounded by exquisite gardens developed over centuries and unchanged to this day. Revealing refined reproductions of nature’s beauty and splendid pieces of art, this blend of marvellous harmony is complemented by the Japan of today where leading-edge technology and ultra modern urban lifestyles combine.
The city of Hiroshima was deemed uninhabitable after the devastation caused by the atomic bomb in 1945 but great efforts were taken to restore its historical heritage. The Peace Memorial Park houses the Atomic Bomb Dome, which was one of the few buildings that remained standing.
In Kyoto, the 15th-century Zen dry garden of Ryoan-Ji is one of the best known in Japan and the Gion district showcases the Japan of old with its historic stone fenced merchants’ houses and tradition of geisha/maiko entertainment. Advancing rapidly into the 21st century, we visit the high-tech city of Tokyo. However, beyond the roar of traffic, the glitter of neon and smart stores, pockets of Japanese serenity may still be found.
- Overnight flight Dublin to Osaka, Japan, via Dubai, with Emirates
- All Transfers 8 nights accommodation in 4-star hotels (see Itinerary)
- Meals as outlined in itinerary: breakfast daily, 1 lunch and 1 dinner
- All tours outlined in the itinerary
- Return transfer from your hotel to airport
- Flight Tokyo to Dublin via Dubai, with Emirates
- Services of guide and local representatives
- Taxes and charges
- One 20kg check-in baggage per person & hand luggage
Fly with Emirates overnight from Dublin to Osaka (Kansai) via Dubai.
Visit Aerial Garden Observatory. Transfer to the 4-star Sheraton Miyako for an overnight stay in Osaka.
Visit the castle and stroll along Dotonbori Shopping Street. Okonomiyaki lunch. Travel to Kyoto and visit the Gion district. Spend three nights at the 3-star Hotel Monterey Kyoto or similar. (B, L)
Full-day sightseeing of Kyoto. Visit Kinkaku-ji Pavilion, Ryoan-Ji temple and Arashiyama Park, famous for its bamboo groves and stunning scenery, especially during the cherry blossom and autumn periods. (B)
Further exploration of Kyoto using local transport, visits to Kiyomizu-dera Temple and a stroll on Ninenzaka street. Experience a Zen meditation and learn how to make Japanese tea. (B)
Travel by Bullet Train to Hiroshima for overnight at the 3-star Hotel New Hiroden. (B)
Visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park including the Atomic Bomb Dome and the Museum. Take a ferry to Miyajima Island to view Itsukushima Shrine. Travel by Bullet Train to Tokyo for three nights at the 4-star Grand Palace Hotel. (B)
Oct 2017, Mar 24 & 31, Apr 7 2018: Travel to Kamakura by train for the cherry blossom/autumn colours including Hasedera Temple, Great Buddha and Hachimangu Shrine. Sep 2017, Mar 17 & Apr 21 2018: Optional full-day excursion to Hakone, near Mount Fuji, includes Owakudani Valley and a cable car ride to Lake Ashinoko for a cruise and visit to Hakone Onshi Park (£295). (B)
Full-day city tour of Tokyo using local transport (Tokyo Tour ticket included) includes the Shinjuku Metropolitan Observatory, Meiji Shrine, The East Gardens of the Imperial Palace, Ginza district and Senso-ji Temple. (B, D)
Return flight with Emirates from Tokyo Narita via Dubai, arriving the same day. (B)
- B – Breakfast
- L – Lunch
- D – Dinner
On Day 6, your main luggage is transported to Tokyo so an overnight bag is needed for the Hiroshima stay.
Elements of this itinerary use local transport, accompanied by a guide/assistant, which may involve standing and walking for extended periods.
Spring & Autumn Colours in Japan
We have selected three departures that coincide with the anticipated spring flowering of cherry blossom – April 6th. An excursion on Day 8 is included to highlight this. Whilst we have selected the best viewing periods, the full variations of colour are dependent upon the weather patterns in the region.
Grand Palace – Tokyo
A classic 3-star hotel, close to Kudanshita Subway Station. Imperial Palace is a 10 minutes’ walk away. Restaurants, WiFi (free) and 464 rooms with private facilities, safe, tea/coffee making facilities and TV.
New Hiroden – Hiroshima
A modern 3-star hotel in front of Hiroshima Station and 15 minutes’ walk from Hiroshima Castle. Restaurants, WiFi (free) and 256 air-conditioned rooms with private facilities, hairdryer, mini fridge, tea/coffee making facilities and TV.
Sheraton Miyako – Osaka
This contemporary 4-star hotel is close to Osaka Train Station. Restaurants, bar, indoor pool, gym, spa and WiFi (free). 579 air-conditioned rooms with private facilities, hairdryer, mini-bar, tea/coffee making facilities and satellite TV.
Monterey – Kyoto
This modern 3-star hotel is a 15 minutes walk from the Imperial Palace. Restaurants, spa, sauna and WiFi (free). 327 air-conditioned rooms with private facilities, hairdryer, mini-bar and satellite TV.
- Inclusive of taxes as indicated
- Single room supplement from €425
- Non refundable or transferable booking deposit 10% per person
- Full payment due 12 weeks before departure
- 2% surcharge if balance is paid by credit card
- Optional Insurance available (call for details)
- Taxes, fees or compulsory charges introduced after publication are not included in the above price