May 10, 2025 - May 20, 2025


Sat. May 10th Arrive in Tokyo

Arrival at Narita airport and transfer to hotel

Welcome Dinner

Overnight at The Okura Tokyo

Sun. May 11th Asakusa

Breakfast at hotel

This morning, we will have a panoramic view of Tokyo city from the tallest tower in Earth, and 2nd tallest structure in the world: Tokyo Skytree. Reaching a full height of 634.0 metres (2,080 ft), this amazing feat of modern architecture is located at the historical center of the city and draws on traditional building techniques more than 1400 years old.

Then, we will visit Asakusa, the oldest Geisha district in the city. Here you will find the iconic Kaminarimon, the main gate of Senso-ji Temple, with its huge red lantern guarded by the god of wind and the god of thunder. As you head towards the main hall and Asakusa Shrine, you will pass through Nakamise-dori Street, a commercial alley filled with small shops that sell local sweets, handmade figurines, and colorful souvenirs.

After lunch, you will be taken to Meiji Shrine. Tokyo`s most famous shrine is dedicated to the spirit of the late Emperor Meiji while the park that surrounds the shrine is a forest of some 120,000 trees of 365 different species, making you forget that you are in the world`s largest city. Outside of Meiji Shrine you will find Harajuku, the shopping haven for all fashionistas and the popular meeting place for teenagers who are usually in eccentric clothing. The landmark of Harajuku is Takeshita Street, a 400-meter long alley filled with boutiques, shops, and cafes. Neighboring Harajuku is Omotesando, commonly referred to as Tokyo’s Champs-Elysee. This broad, tree-lined avenue features a number of fashion flagship stores designed by internationally renowned architects like TOD’s Omotesando, designed by Toyo Ito.

Enjoy then the opportunity to do Kintsugi. ITis a traditional Japanese art form that involves repairing broken pottery or ceramics with lacquer mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. The philosophy behind kintsugi emphasizes embracing imperfections and recognizing the beauty in the process of repair.

Dinner at Leisure

Meals - B,L

Overnight at The Okura Tokyo

Mon. May 12th Tsukiji Market, Kokugikan stadium, Kaiseki Dinner

Breakfast at hotel

CE Lecture (2hrs)

Tsukiji Outer Market is Japan’s “Food Town,” where one can encounter all kinds of traditional Japanese foods. A mixture of wholesale and retail shops, along with numerous restaurants, line the streets, and new culinary trends are born here.

Lunch at Tsuki sur la Mer

n the middle of the afternoon, we will be transferred to Ryogoku area’s Kokugikan stadium, where you will watch the annual Sumo Tournament. The guide will give you all the explanation about the history of this traditional Japanese martial art and sport, besides the life of the ‘Rikishi’, the Sumo wrestler, which involves strict rules on their daily lives and lifelong dedication.

Japanese cuisine is among the most highly regarded in the world, and nowhere is Japan’s culinary prowess better demonstrated than in kaiseki elegantly presented dishes. It started as a simple meal meant to accompany Japanese cuisine. Kaiseki is a traditional Japanese tasting course comprised of many small, tea ceremonies, but over the centuries this culinary tradition has become the pinnacle of Japanese haute cuisine.

Meals - B,L,D

Overnight at The Okura Tokyo

Tues. May 13th Kanazawa

Breakfast at the hotel

Transfer to Tokyo Station to catch a train to Kanazawa by Shinkansen (Bullet Train)!

Running at speeds of up to 320 km/h, the shinkansen is known for punctuality (most trains depart on time to the second), comfort (relatively silent cars with spacious, always forward facing seats), safety (no fatal accidents in its history) and efficiency.

Lunch: Luxury bento (Japanese take-out homemade meal) to enjoy during your travel.

The central part of Kanazawa was once dotted with a number of geisha houses, but in 1820, these were moved to three specific districts away from the city centre. The largest one of these – and arguably the most famous – is the Higashi Chaya district.The district includes facilities where you can see the interior of a geisha house that was built almost 200 years ago, as well as quite a few old buildings have been refurbished into restaurants, cafes, and souvenir shops.

Built in the late 16th century by the Maeda clan in Ishikawa Prefecture, Kanazawa Castle served as the seat for the influential Maeda family during the Edo period. Undergoing reconstructions, the latest in 2001 using traditional methods, the castle complex features turrets, gates, walls, and is surrounded by a moat and Kenrokuen Garden. Today, it stands as a favored historical and cultural site, providing a glimpse into Japan's feudal history and the architecture of the Edo period.

Dinner: Sushi for those interested

Meals - B,L
Overnight at Hyatt Centric

Wed. May 14th Shirakawago

Breakfast at hotel

CE- Lecture (3 hrs)

After lunch we will visit Kenroku-en, one of the third most beautiful garden in Japan, and its Kanazawa Castle. Kenroku-en, located in Kanazawa, Ishikawa, Japan, is a strolling style garden constructed during the Edo period by the Maeda clan. Along with Kairaku-en and K?raku-en, Kenroku-en is considered one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan and is noted for its beauty across all seasons.

A Japanese mountain settlement in what was once considered a wild and unexplored region. Because of the area’s natural environment, with high mountains and heavy snowfall, interaction with neighboring regions was limited. However, this also created the conditions for the development of unique cultural practices and lifestyles. Now registered as a World Cultural Heritage site, we hope that you will enjoy experiencing the culture and traditions that live on in Shirakawa-go today. You will be able to see Gasho Style Houses built in 1800 and visit the biggest one : Wada House

Meals - B.L.D
Dinner and Overnight Takayama

Thurs. May 15th Takayma

Breakfast at hotel

Sakurayama Hachimangu Shrine pays tribute to Hachiman, the Shinto god of war. Nestled in the charming Takayama Old Town, the shrine is renowned for its picturesque location surrounded by cherry blossom trees. Each April, it becomes the focal point of the Takayama Spring Festival, showcasing adorned floats and traditional performances. As a site of worship and cultural significance, the shrine draws both locals and tourists who appreciate its architecture, natural beauty, and participation in traditional ceremonies, solidifying its role as a significant cultural and religious landmark in the region.

Lunch at Aji No Yohei

Visit Takayama and have a walk in the old town and try sake in one of the multiple Sake Breweries of this Area!

Dinner at Funatsuru

Meals - B.L.D

Overnight at The Mitsui Kyoto

Fri. May 16th Kyoto

Breakfast at hotel

CE Lecture (3 hrs)

Lunch at Hyoto

Nijo Castle, an ornamental castle that was originally built to serve as the private villa of a powerful feudal lord. The main building was completed in the early 1600s and has since then been known for its Momoyama-style architecture, decorated sliding doors, and “chirping nightingale” floors.

A festival of colors and smells awaits you at the Nishiki market. This is the meeting place for all gourmets and chefs, more commonly known as Kyoto cuisine. Its origins date back 700 years, when fish trading was its main activity. Some stores have been run by several generations, and are the pride of the city.

Dinner at Leisure

Meals - B.L

Overnight at The Mitsui Kyoto

Sat. May 17th Kyoto

Breakfast at the hotel

CE Lecture (3 hrs)

Also known as the “Golden Pavilion.” The temple grounds are relatively smaller than those in most temples and shrines in Kyoto but what is undoubtedly impressive is the main temple building that is completely covered in handmade gold leaves.

After that, explore the more scenic spots in Kyoto, Arashiyama. The district is famous for the vast bamboo grove and the majestic Hozugawa River. Enjoy a morning stroll in the bamboo groves.

Lunch at Tenryuji Shigetsu
Restaurant in a temple offering zen vegetarian cuisine

The city's great landmark and one of Kyoto's most beautiful buildings. Located on the slopes of Mount Ottawa, overlooking Kyoto, this 1,200-year-old temple's centerpiece is the Main Hall, supported by 18 400-year-old wooden beams, whose structure is highly resistant to earthquakes. At a height of 13m, the veranda jutting out from the Main Hall offers an astonishing view of Kyoto, whatever the season, as the temple adapts perfectly to each color of the landscape. There, you will have the unique experience to assist to a tea ceremony.

Traditional Tea Ceremony

Dinner at Sodoh

Meals B,L,D

Overnight at The Mitsui Kyoto

Sun. May 18th Kyoto

Breakfast at the hotel

Our first visit will be the Todai-ji Temple, the landmark of Nara that was built in the 8th century to serve as the head Buddhist temple in Japan. The most notable part of the temple is the Daibutsu-den, the largest wooden building in the world where you can find a 15-metre tall bronze Buddha. You will also see a number of deer strolling outside the temple or in the nearby Nara Park.

Next we will go to Kasuga Taisha, the most celebrated Shinto shrine in Nara, famous for its bronze and stone lanterns. The bronze ones, which can be seen hanging from the buildings, have been donated to the shrine by its worshippers. Both the stone and the bronze lanterns are only lit twice in a year during the Lantern Festival in February and in August. From Todai-ji, the best route to the shrine is via the backstreets, passing by some local shops and houses and walking through a small forest

Lunch at Musoan
Traditional Hot Pot

One of the most unusual Shinto shrines in Japan, composed by thousands of vermilion Torii gates following trails inside the forests of Mt Inari. The Shrine, also featured in “Memoirs of a Geisha”, is very famous for the impressive contrast and mystical atmosphere created by the colors of the Torii and those of the surrounding nature. The hike up to the top of the mountain and back will take up to 3 hours and will grant the visitors numerous picture opportunities in this quite unique place. From the top, a beautiful view of the city of Kyoto and the hills surrounding it can be enjoyed.

Dinner at Saami (Kaiseki)

Evening with Geisha

Meals - B,L,D

Overnight at The Mitsui Kyoto

Mon. May 19th Osaka

Breakfast at hotel

CE Lecture (hrs)

Food tour lunch in Dotonbori

It is Osaka's best known sight and the symbol of the city. The construction started in 1583 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s order, however the castle suffered several destructions throughout its history. It was not until 1931 that the present ferro-concrete construction of the castle tower was built. During the war it miraculously survived the city wide air raids. The castle tower is surrounded by secondary citadels, gates, turrets, impressive stone walls and moats.

After the visit, stroll through Dotonbori, a restaurant mecca which has long-been referred to as Osaka’s entertainment district and former “pleasure district”. It can be found in downtown Osaka, accessible via subway lines going to Namba Station. If you would want to see, hear, and taste the authentic Osaka lifestyle, Dotonbori is one of the recommended places to go to. It is famous for its bright neon lights, energetic shop owners, and food stalls that are filled with some of the Osaka delights. You will be able to visit from a cruise on the river and taste the street food during a food tour at night!

Farewell Dinner at Geihinkan

Meals - B,L,D

Overnight in Intercontinental Hotel Osaka

Tues. May 20th Depart for the U.S.

Breakfast at the hotel

Transfer to the airport


$11750 Per Person

Based on Double Occupancy

Contact Jodi Murphy
610 420-9364

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