Tours to Japan which inlude a visit to Fushimi Inari Taisha in Kyoto
FROM: USD $5,235 pp
South Korea & Japan Discovery - 14 Days map

Combine the best of South Korea and Japan. Starting in South Korea's vibrant capital of Seoul, visit the Demilitarized Zone and embrace the historic sights of Andong and Gyeonju. Then, fly to Japan where you'll embrace the modern metropolis of Tokyo, explore temples in Kyoto, bamboo forests in Kamakura, and see the breathtaking Mt Fuji.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Hotels

Trip Highlights

Seoul - Explore the nations captivating capital; Gyeongbokgung Palace, Jogyesa Temple, Insadong Antique Alley, Cheonggycheon Stream and Seoul Tower on Mt. Namsan
Andong - Discover UNESCO World Heritage listed Hahoe Folk Village and Andong Folk Museum
UNESCO Listed Seokguram Grotto - Marvel at one of Asia's finest Buddhist shrines and Bulguksa Temple
Lake Kawaguchi in Fuji Hakone Izu National Park - Marvel at the spectacular mountain scenery and views of Mt Fuji
Kamakura - Visit Big Buddha Statue, Hokokuji Zen Temple and the Bamboo Forest with a delightful village atmosphere. Opt to take part in a traditional tea ceremony
Kyoto - Join a walking tour of the famed Geisha District (Gion), with its ancient cobbled streets, streams, bridges and quaint teahouses and the opportunity to see Geisha and Maiko en route to their next engagement
The DMZ - Visit one of the most heavily militarized borders in the world, Imjingak Park built to honour the displaced from both the North and the South of Korea, Dora Observatory
Gyeongju - Uncover the former capital of the Silla Kingdom and historic heart of the nation; Gyeongju National Museum, Tumuli Park and the Sill royal tombs, Anapji Pond, the ancient Cheomseongdae Observatory
Tokyo - Explore Sensoji Temple district and temple, Harajuku, Takeshita Street, Meiji Shrine and Shibuya Crossing
Kyoto - See the UNESCO Listed Nijo Castle, Sanjusagen-do Temple with its 1000 life-like statues and Kinkakuji Temple (Golden Temple)
Stay in a ryokan - Sample Japanese hospitality, bathing in natural hot springs, wearing a Yukata (casual Kimono) and sleep on a futon

Included

13 nights 3 - 4 star hotels (inclusive of 1 night in a traditional Japanese Inn)
Escorted by a qualified English-speaking local tour guide (separate driver and tour guide for groups of 5 or more in South Korea)
South Korea: All transfers and transportation in private air-conditioned vehicles
Touring of Seoul, Andong and Gyeongju in South Korea
Guided sightseeing and walking tours in Tokyo, Kamakura, Lake Kawaguchi and Kyoto in Japan
Baggage forwarding service from Tokyo to Kyoto (one bag per person)
9 breakfasts and 1 Japanese dinner at Lake Kawaguchi
Airport arrival and departure transfer on days 1 and 7 in South Korea
Private excursion to the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone)
Japan: Airport arrival transfer to tour hotel (by train) from Narita or Haneda International Airport on day 7
Japan: All transportation and transfers - buses, trains and bullet trains including Suica swipe card
Lake Kawaguchi and Mt Fuji - Kachikachi-yama Ropeway and observatory. For tours staying at Lake Kawaguchi between 14 Apr – 28 May each year we'll visit to the Fuji Shibazakura (Moss Phlox) Festival with Mt Fuji as the backdrop

Not Included

Airport departure transfer
International flight between Seoul and Tokyo is not included and needs to be booked seperately by the traveller - refer to the Trip Notes on day 7 for details
Tipping - an entirely personal gesture. For your tour guide and driver, we suggest you allow USD8 - 10 per traveller per day.
International flights and visa
If you are opting to pay the single supplement, allowing you the privacy of your own room on this tour, a single room will be provided for all nights with the exception of day 5 (at Lake Kawaguchi), where single rooms are not available. For this night you will be matched up with a fellow tour member of the same gender
Entrance Fees: USD$50-70pp, paid locally in local currency

Itinerary

Day 1

Seoul

Sunday. Welcome to Seoul! Upon arrival you will be met at Incheon Airport and transferred to our hotel in the center of Seoul.

Seoul, the capital of South Korea, is a captivating blend of tradition and modernity. This bustling city boasts a rich history reflected in its ancient palaces and shrines, while also showcasing futuristic skyscrapers and innovative architecture. Here, you can explore Korea's royal palaces and serene parks, shop at dynamic markets, enjoy diverse Korean cuisine, and immerse yourself in the city's vibrant nightlife.

The remainder of the day is free for you to relax or explore Seoul at your own pace. The subway station is within walking distance of the hotel, giving you easy access to all areas of the city.
Overnight: Seoul

Day 2

Seoul Sightseeing

Today, we explore Seoul, the enchanting capital of South Korea. Our first destination is the magnificent Gyeongbokgung Palace, a historic gem that served as the primary royal residence during the Joseon Dynasty. Within the palace's picturesque grounds, we delve into Korean culture and history at the National Folk Museum, gaining insights into the nation's rich heritage.

Next, we journey to Jogyesa Temple - the center of Zen Buddhism in Korea. The serene atmosphere and beautiful architecture make it a truly captivating place to visit. Nearby, we explore Insadong, a lively antique alley bustling with art galleries, antique shops, craft stores, pottery boutiques, traditional eateries, and cozy teahouses.

Our adventure continues with a leisurely stroll along the picturesque Cheonggycheon Stream, which peacefully winds its way through the heart of the city, surrounded by gleaming skyscrapers. We'll end the day with a visit to the towering Seoul Tower on Mt. Namsan. Here, you'll be treated to breathtaking panoramic views of the sprawling cityscape from the observatory.
Overnight: Seoul  |  Breakfast

Day 3

The DMZ

Seoul - DMZ - Seoul. This morning, we depart for an exhilarating excursion to the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), a historically significant area located just 45 kilometers north of Seoul. The DMZ, acting as a buffer zone and the border between North and South Korea, holds a unique place in world history.

Our first stop is Imjingak Park, a poignant memorial built to honor those who tragically lost their homes and families during the tumultuous separation of Korea. We'll then delve deep into the mysteries of the 3rd North Korean Infiltration Tunnel, a subterranean passage stretching 1.5 kilometers in length and plunging 150 meters below the ground. This tunnel serves as a chilling reminder of North Korea's intentions for a surprise invasion.

For those eager to catch a glimpse into the North, we've got you covered. Our next destination is the Dora Observatory, perched on Mount Dora. From this vantage point, you can peer across the border and get a rare view of the secretive northern territory.

On our way back to Seoul, we'll make a stop at either an amethyst or ginseng shop.
Overnight: Seoul  |  Breakfast

Day 4

Scenic Andong

Seoul - Andong. This morning, we leave Seoul and head southward to Andong, a place steeped in the traditions of Korean Confucianism.

In the afternoon, we explore the ancient UNESCO-listed Hahoe Village. Nestled among the serene landscapes, approximately 130 traditional houses, each bearing its unique charm, have been lovingly preserved by the same families for generations. As you wander through, you'll be transported back in time, experiencing the timeless beauty of Korean culture.

Our exploration continues with visits to the Andong Folk Museum and the historic Dosansewon Confucian School, which was established back in 1574. This educational institution offers a fascinating glimpse into the Confucian values that have shaped Korean society and continue to resonate today.

Please Note: If travelling in 2025 you will visit the Byeongsansewon Confucian School instead and continue to Gyeongju where you will spend the night.
Overnight: Andong  |  Breakfast

Day 5

Gyeongju - Capital of Silla Kingdom

Andong - Gyeongju. Continuing our journey southward, we arrive in the city of Gyeongju, often referred to as the 'museum without walls.' This enchanting city served as the capital of the Silla Kingdom from 57 BC to 935 AD, and it's a treasure trove of ancient Korean history and culture.

This afternoon, our first stop is the Gyeongju National Museum, a repository of countless treasures that showcase the remarkable legacy of the Silla Dynasty. Among its prized possessions is the 23-ton Emille Bell, cast in AD 771, a testament to the incredible craftsmanship of the era.

Next, we venture to Tumuli Park, a landscape dotted with gigantic grass-covered burial mounds that house the final resting places of Silla's royalty. Our journey continues with a leisurely stroll around the picturesque Anapji Pond, where the Silla royal family once found respite and relaxation.

Last stop of the day is a visit to Cheomseongdae Observatory, one of the world's oldest astronomical observatories. Standing tall as a symbol of ancient scientific inquiry, Cheomseongdae offers a window into the Silla Dynasty's achievements in the realm of astronomy.
Overnight: Gyeongju  |  Breakfast

Day 6

Bulguksa & Seokguram Temple

Gyeongju - Seoul. This morning, our journey takes us to two magnificent UNESCO World Heritage-listed temples. Our first stop is Seokguram Grotto, a masterpiece of Buddhist art and spirituality. Perched dramatically on the slopes of Toham Mountain, this grotto is considered one of Asia's finest Buddhist shrines. Explore its sacred chambers and admire its intricately carved statues.

Our next destination is the beautiful Bulguksa Temple, a testament to the architectural and artistic prowess of the Silla Dynasty, having been constructed in 528 AD. This temple's beauty and historical significance make it a true jewel of Korean culture. Wander through its peaceful courtyards and admire the magnificent craftsmanship of its structures.

In the afternoon, we bid farewell to Gyeongju and journey back to the bustling capital, Seoul. This evening, you have the opportunity to spend your final night in Korea at leisure. Why not check out the city's vibrant nightlife or indulge in 'chimaek' - South Korea's favorite food combination of fried chicken and beer.
Overnight: Seoul  |  Breakfast

Day 7

Flight from Seoul to Tokyo

Seoul - Tokyo. Saturday. An airport transfer will take you to the airport for your onward flight to Tokyo. Upon arrival to Tokyo you will be met at either Narita or Haneda International Airport by your guide. Travel by train into the heart of the city and check into your hotel. The rest of the day is free to spend at your leisure.

We recommend arriving before 3pm on this day, as there will be a Welcome Meeting at 6pm, where you will meet your guide and the rest of the group.

PLEASE NOTE: The international flight from Seoul to Tokyo is not included in the cost of this tour. Travelers need to independently book these flights at a personal cost.
Overnight: Tokyo  |  Breakfast

Day 8

Toyko sightseeing - Sensoji Temple district, Harajuku & Shibuya

Today we explore the capital. Taking the subway to Asakusa we visit the lively Sensoji Temple District, which is home to Tokyo’s first temple and scores of interesting souvenir and craft stalls. In the afternoon we’ll head to Harajuku, which is a magnet for young and fashionable Tokyoites with its hip shops and cafes. Here, we’ll visit the impressive Meiji Shrine where the emperor Meiji and his wife are enshrined. Yoyogi Park, beside the shrine is a popular hangout for locals and there is always a lot going on, especially on Sundays with bands playing, drum circles, dancers and busking.

The last stop of the day is Shibuya Crossing - regarded as one of the busiest intersections in the world. The famed junction has no less than 7 pedestrian crossings and when the traffic lights turn red a wave of pedestrians, up to a 1000, converge onto the intersection from every direction. Known as 'the scramble', it's a well-practiced art to duck and weave with sportsman like agility to avoid collision, which we'll watch from the second floor of Starbucks, located directly opposite the crossing. This evening offers free time, though if travelling in January, May and September you might like spend the evening watching a Sumo tournament (must be booked in advance). See our Trip Notes for more information.
Overnight: Tokyo

Day 9

Kamakura & The Bronze Buddha

Tokyo - Kamakura - Tokyo. This morning we board a train for our day trip to Kamakura, Japan’s first feudal capital, which is just an hour from Tokyo. Kamakura is a popular seaside location with a quaint village life feel and some stunning Zen temples. Here we’ll visit the iconic bronze Big Buddha and the Zen Temple of Hokokuji with its beautiful bamboo garden. Here, you can drink tea and learn about the tea ceremony before walking the cobbled shopping district - adorned with lovely locally made items before returning to Japan’s bustling capital for the night. Tonight, we'll organize a Shabu Shabu (a traditional Japanese hot pot meal) if the majority of the group are interested.
Overnight: Tokyo

Day 10

Tokyo National Museum & Free Time

Today offers a guided tour of the Tokyo National Museum, housing a number of exhibitions from galleries to Japanese archeology. The Tokyo National Museum is located in Ueno Park, a large public park within central Tokyo and famous for a number of museums held within it's grounds. The remainder of the day offers free time to independently explore.
Overnight: Tokyo

Day 11

Mt Fuji & Lake Kawaguchi

Tokyo - Lake Kawaguchi. This morning we travel by highway bus (with luggage forwarding) to Lake Kawaguchi, located at the foot of Mt Fuji in the Fuji Hakone Izu National Park. The scenery is stunning with panoramic views of a snow-capped Fuji most of the year. Upon arrival we’ll travel along the Mount Fuji Panoramic Ropeway and visit the observatory. For tours staying at Lake Kawaguchi between 15 Apr – 28 May each year we'll visit the Springtime Fuji Shibazakura (Phlox Moss) Festival held at Motosu Lake, where the landscape is covered in a vibrant, hot pink moss with Fuji as the backdrop. No trip to Japan would be complete without sampling authentic Japanese hospitality at a traditional ryokan (a Japanese inn), which is where we’ll bed down tonight. At the ryokan, sample tasty local cuisine and take a relaxing dip in the natural hot spring baths.
Overnight: Lake Kawaguchi  |  Dinner

Day 12

Kyoto - 1000 statues of Kannon & the Geisha District

Lake Kawaguchi – Kyoto. The area has some great hiking trails and early this morning you might like to opt for a hike along the foreshores of the lake. We then travel by bus to Mishima, then bullet train to Kyoto - Japan’s ancient and cultural capital.

As one of the most culturally rich cities in Asia, Kyoto is home to an abundance of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. Here we enjoy a guided tour of Sanjusagen-do Temple, famous for its statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy. The one thousand life-size statues of Kannon are made of Japanese cypress clad in gold leaf. They stand in 10 rows of 50, each hand crafted and slightly different from the next. Late this afternoon we head to Gion, for a walking tour of this famous Geisha District. After, you may wish to watch a cultural performance at Gion Corner Theater where you'll have the opportunity to see a Maiko (apprentice Geisha) performing.
Overnight: Kyoto  |  Breakfast

Day 13

Kyoto - Nijo Castle, Golden Pavilion & free time

This morning, we enjoy a guided tour of Nijo Castle, one of the city’s most impressive UNESCO sites. Built by the first Tokugawa shogun in 1603, the exquisite Nijo Castle is a wonderful example of Momoyama architecture. After, we visit Kinkakuji (Golden Pavilion) a stunning Zen Buddhist temple and part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto World Heritage Site. The top two floors of the monument are completely covered in gold leaf. Set upon a small lake with landscaped gardens, the large completely gilt structure is impressive, as it is a beautiful Temple. Kinkakuji Temple continues to be one of Japan's most visited temples.

This afternoon offers free time for you to relax or to further discover the many sights of Kyoto your own way. Consider visiting Fushimi Inari Shrine, famous for its winding path lined by thousands of bright red torii gates. Just a short train ride away from the main Kyoto Station, this must-see sight is free to visit and is open 24 hours a day. You might also wish to hire a Kimono and walk the streets as many Japanese do or take part in a cooking lesson.
Overnight: Kyoto  |  Breakfast

Day 14

Goodbye

Saturday. On day 14 our tour comes to an end after hotel check out.

Prefer to end your tour in Tokyo? On day 14 you can opt to travel by train from Kyoto to Tokyo, where you will spend the night. On day 15 (Sunday) catch the train to Tokyo Airport (breakfast excluded on day 15).

For information about visas, top travel tips and much more, take a look through our travel guide.
Breakfast

End this tour in Tokyo

Prefer to end your tour in Tokyo? On day 14 you can opt to travel by train from Kyoto to Tokyo, where you will spend the night. On day 15 (Sunday) catch the train to Tokyo Airport (breakfast excluded on day 15).
Includes: Train from Kyoto to Tokyo on day 14, train to Tokyo Airport on day 15 and 1 night 3 star hotel in Tokyo.
Supplement applies, please see the "Prices and Dates" tab for details.

Prices & Dates

Departure dates marked with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departures are guaranteed with a minimum of 4 persons. 'Twin Share' prices are per person when there are 2 people sharing a room. 'Single Room' prices are applicable to those who don’t have anyone to share a room with or anyone wanting the privacy of a single room.

Read More
2024
Twin Share
Single Room
USD $5,235
USD $6,475
USD $5,235
USD $6,475
USD $5,235
USD $6,475
USD $5,235
USD $6,475
USD $5,415
USD $6,725
USD $5,315
USD $6,605
USD $5,415
USD $6,725
USD $5,415
USD $6,725
USD $5,415
USD $6,725
2025
Twin Share
Single Room
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,735
USD $7,205
USD $5,735
USD $7,205
USD $5,735
USD $7,205
USD $5,735
USD $7,205
USD $5,595
USD $6,995
USD $5,595
USD $6,995
USD $5,595
USD $6,995
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,435
USD $6,775
USD $5,595
USD $6,995
USD $5,735
USD $7,205
USD $5,735
USD $7,205
USD $5,735
USD $7,205

Extra Prices

Twin Share
Single Room
Pre Tour Accommodation - Seoul
USD $115
USD $195
Post Tour Accommodation - Kyoto
USD $135
USD $195
End in Tokyo (Adult)
USD $235
USD $265
End in Tokyo (Child)
USD $235
USD $265

Hotels

The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard.

Four Points by Sheraton Josun Seoul Myeongdong, Seoul

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

Four Points by Sheraton Josun, Seoul Myeongdong is conveniently located in the centre of Seoul, within walking distance to the Gwangjang Market and the Bangsan Markets. Guest rooms are stylish and comfortable and provide free Wi-Fi. The on-site restaurant, Evolution, features Eastern and Western favorites and serves an incredible buffet breakfast.

Amid Hotel Seoul, Seoul

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

AMID HOTEL SEOUL stands within a 10-minute stroll from both the lively Insadong and bustling Myeongdong, offering fully furnished rooms with complimentary WiFi alongside practical amenities such as a fitness center and versatile meeting spaces. Each air-conditioned guestroom overlooks the city and features modern comforts like a flat-screen TV, fridge, and personal safe, while the en suite bathrooms provide indulgence with amenities including a hairdryer, bathtub, and an electronic bidet-equipped toilet. Culinary experiences are enriched at Kyung Bok Kung and Sapporo restaurants, showcasing Korean and Japanese cuisine respectively, within the hotel's premises.

CM Park Hotel, Andong

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

The CM Park Hotel is situated in the city of Andong in the southeast of South Korea, ideally located just a few km's away from Andong Hahoe Folk Village. Guest rooms are comfortable and equipped with air-conditioning and free wifi. Boasting a bar and terrace with views of the city, this makes for a great stay in Andong.

Commodore Hotel, Gyeongju

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Commodore in Gyeongju has a variety of rooms, from the traditional Korean On-dol to palatial suites. All rooms are air conditioned and equipped with a cable TV. The hotel itself also boasts a seasonal outdoor pool, extensive gardens, restaurant and karaoke facilities. The restaurant serves up a generous range of Korean, Japanese and European dishes, all of which are expertly prepared and utterly delicious. All rooms have mountain views. The Commodore is located in a glorious setting on the banks of the picturesque Bomun Lake.

Yaesu Terminal Hotel, Tokyo

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

Enjoying an enviable location on a cherry-blossom lined street in the centre of Tokyo, Yaesu Terminal Hotel is just a short jaunt away from the city’s main railroad station giving travellers easy access to locations across the city. A comfortable 3-star hotel with a natural theme, a permanent art exhibit in the hotel lobby and an in-house restaurant serving freshly prepared local cuisine; it is a soothing place to relax after a busy day of sightseeing. Hotel guests can make use of the free Wi-Fi, benefit from complimentary bathrobes and slippers and enjoy entertainment on a flat-screen TV.

Yamagishi Ryokan, Lake Kawaguchi

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: Japanese Ryokan

With stunning views over Lake Kawaguchi, which is located just one minute away, the Yamagishi Ryokan is an excellent base for exploring the area around the lake. Rooms are designed according to traditional Japanese styles with low furniture and lots of natural light. Breakfast and dinner are both included with the room and are served in the hotel's dining room. After dinner, guests can take a dip in one of the hotel's baths or relax with a coffee in the lounge. The hotel is located just an 8 minute walk from Kawaguchiko Station.

Hotel Mifujien, Lake Kawaguchi

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

This Japanese-style hotel boasts stunning views over Lake Kawaguchi and Mount Fuji from each of its guestrooms. Offering traditional low furniture and modern amenities, each room is also equipped with air conditioning and a TV. The views can be enjoyed from the hotel’s lobby, tea lounge and the Japanese restaurant, which uses local ingredients and offers a feast of traditional dishes. On the 7th floor you’ll find both indoor and outdoor hot spring baths with views of Mt. Fuji, perfect for unwinding at the end of the day.

Hotel Elcient Kyoto, Kyoto

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

Boasting a fantastic location in the heart of Kyoto, Hotel Elcient Kyoto is within walking distance of top attractions such as Kyoto Tower and the picturesque Shosei-en Garden. Guestrooms are compact and simply furnished, complete with modern amenities such as air conditioning and ensuite bathrooms. Enjoy more than 30 different dishes at the Western and Japanese buffet-style restaurant, with light lunches and dinner also available. On the second floor you’ll find a large public bath and sauna, offering the perfect spot to relax after some sightseeing.

Dormy Inn Premium Kyoto, Kyoto

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

Located just a short walk from Kyoto Station and the lofty Kyoto Tower, you really cannot get more central than this! Combining convenience with comfort, this contemporary hotel boasts modern guest rooms with flat screen televisions, complimentary WiFi, refrigerators and ensuite bathrooms. Buffet breakfast is available, with a choice of local and western dishes on offer. The hotel is surrounded by a wide choice of shops and restaurants, and there are plenty of cultural landmarks just a short stroll away. After a day of sightseeing guests can relax with a soak in the hotel’s natural hot spring baths or opt for a sauna and massage.

At a Glance

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Seoul
Ends
Kyoto or Tokyo
Departs
Sundays
Group Size
Min 4 / Max 18
Hotel Rating
3 - 4 star
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 9, Dinner: 1
Countries
Minimum Age
15 yrs, accompanied by an adult
Arr. Transfer
Yes
Dep. Transfer
No in Kyoto (If booking end in Tokyo Supp unescorted train dep transfer included)
Lights brightening the beautiful cityscape in Seoul
Lights brightening the beautiful cityscape in Seoul
Andong Maskdance Itinerary
Pagodas lit up at night on the Anapji Pond in Gyeongju
Lights brightening the beautiful cityscape in Seoul
Lights brightening the beautiful cityscape in Seoul
Rainbow Bridge, stretching across the water in Tokyo, lit up at night
Giant Buddha of Kamakura made from bronze
Beautiful lake with a temple in the background in springtime in Kyoto
Beautiful lake with a temple in the background in springtime in Kyoto
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