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Takayama Autumn Festival

12 Days  |  Starts/Ends: Tokyo  |  from USD $6,099  |   Guaranteed Departure 

Escorted Group Tour: Autumn in Japan is simply spectacular, as the country transforms into stunning hues of yellow, orange and red. Take in the highlights of Japan during this beautiful season and witness the festivities of the colourful Takayama Autumn Festival on this special departure.

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Day 1

Upon arrival you will be met at Tokyo Narita Airport by your local tour guide and transferred to your hotel by shuttle bus. You will also be supplied with an IC Card, with 3000 yen worth of credit, which will allow you to travel on buses, subways and over-ground railways in Tokyo and around the country.
Overnight: Tokyo

Day 2

Today enjoy a full day of guided sightseeing in Japan’s buzzing capital city. We will start the day at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building; rising up above the city we will be able to admire views from the tower's lofty heights. Next we will visit Meiji shrine, one of Tokyo’s most formal shrines, followed by a tour of the Harajuku shopping area. In the afternoon we will explore the Hamarikyu gardens where we will enjoy a break in a local tea house. Later we will take a Sumida River Bus to the historic Asakusa area, where we will visit the Sensoji temple and explore Nakamise dori.
Overnight: Tokyo  |  Breakfast

Day 3
Nikko Day Trip

Breakfast – Tokyo – Nikko – Tokyo. We take a day trip to Nikko today, a small town that has long found itself as a centre for Buddhist and Shinto worship. Here we will visit the World Heritage sights of Tosho-gu - Japan's most lavishly decorated shrine, and also see the Shonkyo bridge. Set amidst beautiful natural scenery, Nikko is always a favourite day trip from Tokyo.
Overnight: Tokyo  |  Breakfast

Day 4

Breakfast – Tokyo – Matsumoto. Today a direct express train will take us to Matsumoto, from Tokyo’s Shinjuku Station, with a journey time of around two and a half hours. The train will take us through the suburbs of Tokyo before reaching the open countryside with paddy fields, rivers, lakes and the Japanese Alps (so remember to keep your eye out for Mount Fuji!). Upon arrival in Matsumoto we will head to its historic castle. Enjoy the rest of the day at your own leisure.
Overnight: Matsumoto  |  Breakfast

Day 5
Takayama Autumn Festival

Breakfast – Matsumoto – Takayama. This morning a private coach will take us on a two hour journey through the picturesque Japanese Alps to Takayama, a delightful town in the heart of the Hida Mountains. It just so happens that our tour perfectly coincides with the revelry of the Takayama Autumn Festival, which sees the streets of this small town burst into a kaleidoscope of colour every year. Lucky us!

Here we will witness a huge procession of festival floats pass through the streets, accompanied by hundreds of locals in colourful traditional dress. These ornately decorated floats will feature intricate mechanical dolls, which move and dance to the rhythm of music under the control of skilled puppeteers hidden within the floats. This popular autumn festival sees locals and travellers alike flock to this procession, creating a exciting festive atmosphere throughout the town.
Overnight: Takayama  |  Breakfast

Day 6
Hida Folk Village

Today we will head to the outskirts of town to the fascinating Hida folk village, where old farm houses from across the region have been brought together and rebuilt on a hillside overlooking the town. This is a wonderful time to relax, explore and check out some local craft displays. We will head back into town later.
Overnight: Takayama   |  Breakfast

Day 7
Takayama to Kyoto

Breakfast – Takayama – Kyoto. Leaving Takayama behind, this morning we will travel on to Kyoto, Japan's ancient capital and the cultural centre of the nation. Upon arrival in Kyoto we will enjoy a tasty evening meal in a local restaurant.
Overnight: Kyoto  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8
Sightseeing & Afternoon Tea

Today enjoy a full day of sightseeing in Kyoto, and no need to worry about getting tired – we will have a private coach at our disposal to drive us from place to place! There is no fixed itinerary for the morning, so we are free to explore the city as we wish. Some key highlights of Kyoto include Kinkakuji - the city's famous Golden Pavilion zen temple which is decorated with gold leaf and stands over a tranquil pond. And from Kikakuji, there is Kiyomizu Dera Temple in the east – an impressive wooden structure perched on a hillside surrounded by woodland and looks out across the city.

In the afternoon we will visit Ochaya Tomikku, a traditional tea house in the Gion Geisha district. Here we will enjoy Green tea and a Japanese cake or a drink and snacks in the company of a Geisha or Maiko (young Geisha). The Geisha will demonstrate a traditional dance and we will be given an introduction of the life of a Geisha in Kyoto. You will then be able to take photographs and pose questions to the Geisha as well, for a brief glimpse into this usually hidden world.
Overnight: Kyoto  |  Breakfast

Day 9
Day trip from Kyoto

You are free to spend today doing whatever takes your fancy. Why not use your included Japan Rail Pass to make a day trip to Hiroshima, Nara or perhaps Osaka – Japan’s second city. Alternatively, stay in Kyoto and discover all this fascinating city has to offer.

Day 10
Kyoto to Hakone

Breakfast – Kyoto – Hakone. Today a bullet train will take us to Hakone National Park, in the foothills of the iconic Mount Fuji, where we will spend the day exploring the local area. Here you will have access to unlimited travel on nearly all the local modes of transport here – from mountain buses and railway to cable cars and funicular railways, thanks to your Hakone Free Pass card. We will also pay a visit to the Hakone Open Air Museum, an impressive outdoor sculpture garden.

Day 11
Hakone to Tokyo

Breakfast – Hakone – Tokyo. We will start today with a visit to Owakudani volcanic valley - home to active sulphur vents and hot springs, and a cruise across Lake Ashi – if the weather permits we may even get a clear view of Mt Fuji.

Later we will begin our train journey back to Tokyo, where we will be staying in Shinjuku, one of the most modern districts in the city. Today is a great opportunity to do any last minute shopping or sightseeing before our tour comes to an end tomorrow.
Overnight: Tokyo  |  Breakfast

Day 12
Goodbye Japan!

Today our tour comes to an end! Transfer to Narita International Airport by shared shuttle bus for onward travel.

Trip Highlights

Tokyo - Explore the famous Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, cruise the Sumida River, stroll through the Hamarikyu gardens, go shopping in the Harajuku area, and pay a visit to the Meiji shrine
Nikko - Take a day trip to this small town and see the UNESCO-listed Tosho-gu Shrine and Shonkyo bridge
Matsumoto - Visit Matsumoto castle, one of the only original castles in Japan, giving a real sense of ancient Japan and how the samurai used to live and fight
Hida Folk Village - See a collection of old farm houses from across the region that have been brought together and rebuilt on a hillside overlooking Takayama
Takamaya Autumn Festival - See a huge procession of festival floats pass through the streets, accompanied by hundreds of locals in colourful traditional dress, and join in the exciting festive atmosphere across the town
Kyoto - Explore the ancient and cultural capital of Japan on board a private coach, and enjoy afternoon tea with a Geisha or Maiko (young Geisha) where you will see a traditional dance and can ask questions about this usually hidden way of life
Hakone - Visit Hakone National Park and marvel at views of the iconic Mount Fuji, plus visit the Hakone Open Air Museum of sculptures, explore Owakudani volcanic valley - home to active sulphur vents and hot springs, and enjoy a cruise across Lake Ashi


11 nights' 3 - 4 star accommodation (including 2 nights in a traditional Japanese Inn in Takayama and 1 night at one of Japan's most famous hotels the Fujiya in Hakone)
Meet and greet airport arrival and departure transfers by shared shuttle bus
Train from Shinjuku to Matsumoto, Takayama to Kyoto, Kyoto to Odawara and Hakone Yumoto to Tokyo
Private coach for sightseeing in Kyoto
Services of an English speaking local tour guide
Nikko Day trip by Ltd Express Train
Afternoon tea with a Geisha
Maximum group size: 18 persons
11 breakfasts and 1 dinner
7 day Japan Rail Pass
Private coach to Takayama
Hakone Free Pass
Sumida River Bus and Hamarikyu Gardens in Tokyo
Entry to Matsumoto Castle in Matsumoto, Hido Folk Village in Tayamara and the Hakone Open Air Museum
Luggage forwarding from Tokyo to Takayama, and Kyoto to Tokyo

Not Included

International flights and visas
Entrance Fees: USD $40 - $50
Laundry, drinks, items of a personal nature

Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers who require their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price. If you are happy to be paired up with another single traveller of the same sex on your tour, this can be arranged, (if another solo traveller of the same sex is already booked upon the tour), thus avoiding the single person supplement.

Single Supp.
USD $6099
USD $799
Single Supp.
USD $6099
USD $799
Tour Details
04 Oct 2015/16
Hotel Rating
3 & 4 star
Local Payment
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Breakfast: 11, Dinner: 1
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Guaranteed Departures
This tour is 100% guaranteed to depart with 4 travellers.