Mar 2017 - Dec 2017

9 Day Splendours of Japan

Trafalgar Small Group Tour starting in Tokyo and finishing in Osaka

Small Groups Japan Tours Trafalgar Asia Tours
Read 3 reviews and enjoy exclusive savings on Trafalgar's 9 Day Splendours of Japan. Eclectic cities, traditional villages, snow-capped mountains and coastal beauty combine. Discover the splendours of Japan on a journey of discovery, from iconic Tokyo to Kanazawa and Kyoto....read more


Operator: Trafalgar
Type: Small Group Tour (Premium)
Style: Country Explorer
Duration: 9 Days
From: Tokyo to Osaka
Tour Code: JPNL
Visits: Japan
Our Price From:
$ 5,390
Per Person ($AU)
Save This Month:
$ 300
Per Person ($AU)

Day By Day


Arrive Tokyo (3 Nights)

Welcome to Japan. Upon arrival at Tokyo Narita or Haneda International Airport, transfer by airport shuttle service to your centrally located hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception drink and local appetisers. (WR) Stay: New Otani

Tokyo Sightseeing

This morning your City Tour begins with an orientation drive. See the Tokyo Skytree, the world's highest free-standing broadcasting tower. Continue to Asakusa and visit the Sensoji Buddhist temple. It is one of Tokyo's most colourful and popular temples and has been rebuilt countless times since it was founded in 628, making it Tokyo's oldest temple site. Visit Nakamise, a shopping street over 200 metres long that stretches from the outer gate to the temple's second interior gate. Next head to the famous Ginza district for a hands-on cooking class. Learn how to make sushi with a Local Specialist and then enjoy your sushi creations for lunch. Later choose to either return to the hotel, remain in Ginza at leisure or take part in an Optional Experience. (BB/L)

Tokyo Sightseeing

Today continue your City Tour with a visit to the Edo-Tokyo Museum. This fascinating museum displays artifacts and architecture that tell a tale of Tokyo's history and culture during the Edo period. Next drive to Akihabara which began its evolution into 'Electric Town' post WWII when the area became a black market for radio parts. It now houses numerous electronics shops selling a wide range of computer goods and video games. Enjoy some free time here before heading to the Imperial Palace Plaza, a large park area in the centre of Tokyo from where the two bridges that form the entrance to the inner grounds of the Imperial Palace can be viewed. It is the primary residence of the Emperor of Japan and built on the former site of Edo Castle. Take a stroll around the Imperial Palace East Gardens before returning to your hotel. (BB)

Tokyo - Mt. Fuji - Matsumoto - Nagano

After breakfast depart Tokyo for the Five Lakes District, dominated by majestic UNESCO listed Mt. Fuji. At 3,776 metres it is Japan's highest mountain and most recognisable icon. Ascend by road to 2,300 metres at the 5th Station before taking a ride on the Kachikachiyama Ropeway, (both weather permitting) a cable car ride offering spectacular views on a clear day of Mt. Fuji and Lake Kawaguchi. Later drive north to visit Matsumoto Castle, one of the most beautiful and complete original Japanese castles with its unique timber and stone structure. It is also a great Cherry Blossom viewing spot in the springtime. Continue to Nagano for your overnight stay with dinner at the hotel. (BB/D) Stay: Shinshu-Matsushiro Royal

Nagano - Takayama - Gokayama - Kanazawa (2 Nights)

This morning travel through the breath-taking Japanese Alps to the beautiful hillside town of Takayama. Located in the Hida Region, the town has retained a traditional touch like few other Japanese cities, especially in its beautifully preserved old town. Begin your walking tour of Takayama, known as 'Little Kyoto', and discover its Edo style streets filled with amazing attractions. Explore the Old Town, stopping en route to sample Japanese sake, a Cultural Insight. Lunch today is a Regional Meal of Japanese Hida beef at a local restaurant. Hida beef (Hida-gyu) is the specific name given to beef from a black-haired Japanese cattle breed, it is known as one of the finest quality varieties of beef. This afternoon take a step back in time during a visit to the peaceful mountain village and UNESCO designated site of Gokayama. See the unique Gassho-zukuri wooden houses; the steeply sloped thatched roofs resemble two hands together in prayer. Visit one of the houses and meet the family. Later observe local artisans making washi paper and try your hand at making your own, a Cultural Insight before continuing on to the historic castle town of Kanazawa. (BB/RM) Stay: Kanazawa Tokyu

Kanazawa Sightseeing

This morning discover the secrets of gold leaf painting during a visit with a Local Specialist. The production of gold leaf started in Kanazawa at the end of the 16th century and now 99% of Japan's high quality gold leaf is produced in the area. Next visit the gardens of Kenrokuen, rated as one of the top three most beautiful gardens in Japan and a great place to see Cherry Blossom in the springtime. Take your time to relax and explore the ornate landscapes, temples and ponds. Afterwards take a short walk through the Omicho market to see the local fish catch and enjoy an insiders view of everyday life in a busy coastal town. Later visit the Nagamachi District with its old and beautifully preserved samurai houses. Visit the Nomura house, an elegant samurai mansion with beautiful small gardens belonging to a high-ranked samurai family. (BB)

Kanazawa - Kyoto (2 Nights)

This morning leave Kanazawa for Kyoto by Express train. On arrival enjoy a special Be My Guest lunch at a traditional ryokan nestled in the peace and quiet of Mt. Yoshida. The ryokan was built in 1932 by master craftsmen to serve as the second residence of the uncle of the current Japanese Emperor, Akihito. Learn more about local Japanese customs as your hosts welcome you into their beautiful home. Enjoy the pleasures of a truly flavourful and unique dining experience of Kaiseki cuisine, crafted from the very freshest of seasonal delicacies. After lunch visit Kinkakuji Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage site famous for its Golden Pavilion. The Kinkakuji history dates back to 1397, when the villa was purchased by Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. When Yoshimitsu died, the building was converted into a Zen temple by his son. Later check in to your hotel for a relaxing evening. (BB/BMGD) Stay: Nikko Princess Kyoto

Kyoto Sightseeing

This morning visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine and see the tunnel of thousands of bright orange torii gates that snake through the forest up into the mountains. Then head to the Sanjusangen-do Hall, a temple famous for its 1001 statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy and afterwards enjoy a walking tour of the Gion area. Choose to remain in Gion to explore further or return to the hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow guests for a Farewell Dinner at the Ninja Kyoto restaurant. Venture into the mysterious labyrinth and secret fortress of the Ninjas, the traditional Japanese heroes and enjoy the creative Ninja-style food, a perfect ending to your holiday in Japan. (BB/FD)

Depart Kyoto - Osaka

Transfer by airport shuttle service to Kansai International Airport or Osaka Itami Airport for your onward flight. Alternatively, continue to Hiroshima by choosing the 13 day itinerary, Splendours of Japan with Hiroshima. (BB)

Trip Inclusions

Insider Experiences with Trafalgar

  • Enjoy Insider moments feeling awestruck by majestic Mt. Fuji as you alight at 2,300 metres. And learning the art of making delicate washi paper with a local family, before trying your hand at this traditional craft for yourself.
  • Be My Guest Lunch at a traditional Japanese ryokan.
  • Cultural Insight Sample Japanese Sake, learn about the production of Japanese washi paper.
  • Local Specialist in Tokyo and Kanazawa.
  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City Tour of Tokyo and Kyoto, walking tour of Takayama
  • See the traditional Gassho-zukuri houses in Gokayama and the beautiful gardens of Kenrokuen in Kanazawa
  • View Mt. Fuji
  • Visit the Edo Tokyo Museum and Sensoji Temple in Tokyo, the Kinkakuji Temple, Sanjyusangen-do Hall and Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto

Included Dining

  • 8 buffet breakfasts.
  • 3 dinners.
  • 3 lunches (including Be My Guest).

Touring Inclusions

  • Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
  • Luxury air-conditioned coach or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
  • Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
  • Porterage and local charges included
  • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
  • An expert Travel Director and separate Driver
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday

Trip Notes

  • Itinerary and inclusions are subject to change
  • Cherry Blossom season varies between different regions of Japan and is dependent on weather conditions, so it can also vary slightly each year. Late March to mid April are the most likely times to experience it, but this is not guaranteed.
  • Prices are for land/cruise only. Flights not included

Operator Details

Region: Asia
Style: Country Explorer
Accommodation: 4-5 Star
Location: Central - Generally
Guided: Tour Host & Local Guides
Transport: Luxury Coach
Age Range: Open (min 5 years)
Flights: Internal Flights Included
Airport Transfers: Included in Price
Gratuities: Customary on Tour
Max Group Size: 26 (Avg. 22)
Free WiFi: No
* Source: Trafalgar for trips in Asia. Some variances may occur on individual tours and information is provided as a guide only. Refer to Trip Inclusions section for more details.

Reviews (3)


Trip Date: 11/12/2016

“Excellent trip”

The trip had an overall excellent itinerary, especially for those who enjoy both the scenery of large cities as well as the countryside of Japan. The booking made through Global Journeys was initially somewhat disjointed when my agent left and was replaced with another. However, once the trip was underway, everything sailed smoothly.

Overall Rating
Value For Money
Coach Quality
Global Journeys
Tour Guide
Included Excursions
Optional Excursions
Tour Pace

Trip Date: 20/03/2016

“Relaxing trip”

Overall, it was a good experience. We met some interesting people on the trip. Tour director Coco was amazing. She was extremely patient (even when there was a particularly annoying/ difficult co-passenger). The places we visited had a good mix of temples, castles, art, local activity/cuisine etc. We got tired of the castles towards the end of the trip. The cherry blossoms were not in full bloom as expected. The pace of the trip was good. Some of us decided to explore more places outside of the tour times (took local trains, went to Tokyo tower, Shibuya station and Harajuku - not covered in the trip). What was really disappointing was the false information about bullet train journey and another visit to a particular place on day 2. Trafalgar kept the incorrect information in the itinerary for an entire year! There is no point keep misleading information. Most of the meals were catered to, the rest we bought on our own. If you happen to be someone who does not enjoy authentic Japanese food, does not like exploring new foods or plain dislike carbs, I would suggest you pre purchase meals. This is meant to be an overall cultural experience but we had some people on the tour craving western food every day. We were keen to try different foods and tried to soak up the entire experience. Learning basic phrases in Japanese came in very handy.

Overall Rating
Value For Money
Coach Quality
Global Journeys
Tour Guide
Included Excursions
Optional Excursions
Tour Pace

Trip Date: 05/04/2015

“The cost was very good for what was supplied”

We really enjoyed this tour. Our guide was excellent and went above and beyond what was expected - we would like this feedback to be passed onto her. The cost was very good for what was supplied. We would recommend Global Journeys too.

Overall Rating
Value For Money
Coach Quality
Global Journeys
Tour Guide
Included Excursions
Optional Excursions
Tour Pace


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Mar 2017 - Dec 2017

Prices & Dates ($AU)

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Tour Notes
Trip prices are per person, and reflect applicable discounts. Discounts are subject to availability, exclusive to Global Journeys and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change by Trafalgar. Full terms & conditions are available here.

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