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Forgotten Japan

Upon arrival into the metropolitan city of Tokyo, you may find it difficult to imagine the old Japan, once associated with samurai and geisha. A Forgotten Japan tour captures the Japan everybody wants to see; the ancient postal routes linking villages to towns from Tsumago to Magome; the four-hundred year old thatched-roof farm houses in the UNESCO Gokayama in Toyama prefecture; the tea houses and geisha streets in Kanazawa and Kyoto; the castle towns and samurai houses of Matsumoto; and not neglecting the city that never sleeps: Tokyo. This tour of Japan is sure to remind you of the Japan that once was.

Categories: ,
Duration: 14 Nights / 15 Days
Route: Tokyo - Nagano/Jigokudani - Matsumoto - Takayama - Kyoto - (Optional day trips to Hiroshima/Nara) - Tsumago & Magome - Tokyo

Details


Dates: Available all year round
Duration: 14 Nights / 15 Days
Starts: Tokyo
Ends: Tokyo
Route: Tokyo - Nagano/Jigokudani - Matsumoto - Takayama - Kyoto - (Optional day trips to Hiroshima/Nara) - Tsumago & Magome - Tokyo
Tour Type: Self Guided ­­­­­­with local guides in places and Essential Travel Pack
Prices from: From €3,450 / £2,975 / USD3,850 / AUD5,585 per person
Accommodation Category: Standard & Superior Hotels - Prices vary accordingly. Deluxe Plans are quoted on a request basis.

Experiences

Private Tokyo Guide on Day 2!

After you spend your first day settling in, our local guide in Tokyo will meet you on your second day for a private tour. Whatever your interest, our bubbly guides will show you the best places according to your interests. If you are not sure, then don’t worry. We will give you recommendations with a list of places you shouldn’t miss!

Bullet Trains & Rural ryokan in Kiso Valley

Escape from the big city and start your Forgotten Japan adventure on the super speedy bullet train ‘shinkansen’ heading west to Nagoya.  From here you’ll veer north into the Kiso valley for your first introduction to the ‘real’ Japan! Overnight in a ­traditional Japanese ryokan, feast on a delicious multi-course kaiseki dinner, and soak in the magnificent onsen baths.

Walk Where Samurai Once Stepped!

Once a stopping post on the old Nakasendo Highway linking Edo (Tokyo) to Kyoto, Tsumago has maintained much of its old Edo Period charm. You will feel transported back to ancient Japan whilst exploring this village and the 8km hike through the mountain trail of Magome is well worth the effort on your free day.Whether you walk this route or take the local bus, your visit here will be a memorable one. Perfectly preserved streets selling local foods and crafts with stunning views of the Kiso Valley. You can choose to stay in a well-known ryokan with a top class onsen or a traditional minshiku – depending on your budget. Two nights at either one will guarantee that you’ll experience the most amazing introduction to rural Japan.

Matsumoto: Samurai Swords & Sake Distilleries

From Tsumago you will continue on the Edo trail and make your way to Matsumoto, an alpine city surrounded on all sides by the towering peaks of the Japanese Alps. This small city is most famous for its castle, one of the few remaining original structures in Japan. Capture a sense of how the samurai used to live and fight as you tour Matsumoto’s “Crow Castle”.

Sake Tasting in Takayama

Travel to the picturesque Takayama famous for its narrow streets containing well-preserved inns, tea houses, merchant houses, and sake distilleries. Take a tour in a sake distillery with a chance to taste the sake at the end!

Gokayama: Where the Past is Still the Present

Nestled away in the deep gorge of the Sho River Valley, thirty-three gassho zukuri (thatched farm houses) are protected as national treasures in the historic village of Gokayama. Blanketed in snow during winter and beautifully coloured by cherry blossom trees in spring, these villages have maintained all of their four hundred year old charm. With our local guide to accompany you, you will go on a cultural journey like no other. Spend the morning making soba noodles – a local specialty – to be tried and tested over lunch. Stop off at a local washi paper making factory and try your hand at this ancient craft. All of this, plus a private dance by a local Toyama farmer, whilst you drink hot tea and listen to tales of a time gone by.

Kanazawa's Contemporary Art, Grand Gardens & Sublime Sushi + Half Day Private Guide

Kanazawa, also know by many as “little Kyoto”, is a jewel by the sea that can boastsome of the finest seafood options in all of Japan (meaning all of the world). In this lovely town you will be met by a private guide who will help you discover the well-preserved Geisha District (called Higashi-chaya) with original tea and samurai houses on display, as well as the famous Kenrokuen Garden. This is the perfect place to spend an afternoon strolling among the pretty ponds and beautiful bonsai.  Located next to the garden is the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, also a major attraction if seeking a bit of quirkiness on your trip!

Full Day Private Guide in Beguiling Kyoto

Kyoto has an astonishing wealth of culturally significant sites with no less than 16 UNESCO World Heritate Sites. We recommend staying at least three nights to get a real sense of Kyoto’s true charm, which you will soon discover by walking the narrow back streets of Gion and visiting the many impressive temples and shrines. You will be assisted by a local guide who will take you around Kyoto and teach you the history of this ancient city. No trip to Kyoto is complete unless you get to meet a real Geisha, up close and personal. This is one of our many treats for you along the way!

Afternoon tea with a Geisha – great insight into a mysterious Japanese culture

While in Gion, home of Geisha culture in Japan, you will have the rare opportunity to meet and chat with a Kyoto Maiko (young geisha). The story behind the Life of Geisha remains a mystery both inside Japan and out. Hear the tales of their daily life; why they decided to choose this path, what makes their world so different to the norm, and what their future might become. This one hour session with lovely cup of green tea and Japanese sweets, will be one of the most alluring moments of your trip. Unforgettable unimaginable beauty.

(Standard Package Forgotten Japan will incur a supplement for this service. Contact us for details.)

The Eclectic Treasures of Tokyo

After ten incredible days traveling through Forgotten Japan you will be ready to return to the bright lights of Tokyo for two final nights before making your way home. Our Essential Travel Pack will make sure you make the most of your time as you visit the fashion capital Ginza, the Imperial Palace gardens, ultra-modern Roppongi Hills (Observatory Tower & museum), parks, busy street crossing at Shibuya and more. If you wish, you will have time to escape the hustle and bustle for one more day trip into a selection of destinations just beyond the city limits.

Accommodation

Tokyo (Two Nights)

Standard: Shinjuku Granbell
Superior: Keio Plaza Hotel
Deluxe: Hyatt Regency Hotel
Super Deluxe: Park Hyatt Tokyo
[Including breakfast, taxes and service charges. Similar standard will be used if above hotels are not available at your time of booking]

Kanabayashi (One Night)

All Categories: Senjugaku Ryokan (Japanese experience)

Takayama (Two Nights)

Standard: Best Western Takayama

Superior: Hoshokaku Ryokan or Hotel Associa (or similar)

Deluxe: Hanaougi Ryokan (or similar)

Kanazawa (One Night)

Standard: Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kanazawa (or similar)

Superior:  ANA Crowne Plaza (or similar)

Deluxe: Chaya Ryokan (or similar)

Kyoto (Three Nights)

Standard & Superior: Kyoto Machiya (Converted Traditional Townhouse (self-catering)

Deluxe: Hotel Granvia (or similar)

Tsumago (Two Nights)

Standard, Superior & Deluxe: Hotel Kisoji

[Room categories in hotel will differ depending on your tour category]

Tokyo (Three Nights)

Standard: Shiba Park Hotel (or similar)

Superior: Park Hotel (or similar)

Deluxe: Imperial Hotel (or similar)

Whats included

 

ServiceStandardSuperiorDeluxe
Airport Transfers (Arrival & departure)Shared Transfers (Door-to-door)Shared Transfers (Door-to-door)Private Transfers (Door-to-door)
14 Nights Accommodation3* Western (8 nights) +  Ryokan (3 nights) + Self-Catering Traditional Townhouse (3 nights)4* Western (8 nights) + Superior Ryokan (3 nights) + Self Catering Traditional Townhouse5* Western (11 nights) + Deluxe Ryokan (3 nights)
Meals14 breakfasts + 3 dinners14 breakfasts + 3 dinners14 breakfasts + 3 dinners
Experiences
  • 2 Private Full Day Guides in Tokyo and Kyoto
  • 1 Private Half Day Guide and Transport in Kanazawa
  •  Tea Ceremony at local Kyoto tea house
  • Old Samurai Trail from Tsumago to Magome
  • Samurai swords at Matsumoto Castle
  • Sake Distilleries in Takayama
  • The undiscovered Gokayama farm house villages
  • Washi paper making
  • Soba noodle cookery class
  • Kanazawa’s contemporary art museum, Kenrokuen and sublime sushi
  • Japan’s must-do onsen
  • 2 Private Full Day Guides in Tokyo and Kyoto
  • 1 Private Half Day Guide and Transport in Kanazawa
  • Private Tea Ceremony + Geisha Meet & Greet at local Kyoto Tea House
  • Old Samurai Trail from Tsumago to Magome
  • Samurai swords at Matsumoto Castle
  • Sake Distilleries in Takayama
  • The undiscovered Gokayama farm house villages
  • Washi paper making
  • Soba noodle cookery class
  • Kanazawa’s contemporary art museum, Kenrokuen and sublime sushi
  • Japan’s must-do onsen
  • 2 Private Full Day Guides in Tokyo and Kyoto
  • 1 Private Half Day Guide and Transport in Kanazawa
  • Private Tea Ceremony + Geisha Meet & Greet at local Kyoto Tea House
  • Old Samurai Trail from Tsumago to Magome
  • Samurai swords at Matsumoto Castle
  • Sake Distilleries in Takayama
  • The undiscovered Gokayama farm house villages
  • Washi paper making
  • Soba noodle cookery class
  • Kanazawa’s contemporary art museum, Kenrokuen and sublime sushi
  • Japan’s must-do onsen
Transport
  • Japan Rail Pass (14 day Ordinary)
  • Reserved seats on bullet train journey’s
  • Matsumoto to Takayama Highway Bus One/Way
  • Tokyo City Transport Card
  • Kyoto City Transport Card
  • Japan Rail Pass (14 day Ordinary)
  • Reserved seats on bullet train journey’s
  • Matsumoto to Takayama Highway Bus One/Way
  • Tokyo City Transport Card
  • Kyoto City Transport Card
  • Local taxi’s in Kyoto and Tokyo on private day tours
  • Japan Rail Pass (14 day Green)
  • 1st Class Reserved seats on all bullet trains
  • Chartered Vehicle from Matsumoto to Takayama
  • Chartered Vehicle in Tokyo (one day)
  • Chartered Vehicle in Kyoto (one day)
  • Local taxi’s in Kanazawa/Tsumago/Magome/Takayama
UJT’s Essential Travel PackReceived 2 weeks prior to departureReceived 2 weeks prior to departure Received 2 weeks prior to departure

Per Person Prices from:

Tour CategoryEURGBPUS$AU$
Standard€3,450£2,975$3,850$5,585
Superior€4,980£4,250$5,550$8,060
Deluxeon request
Prices are per person and based on two people sharing a Twin or Double Room. Single room supplements apply. Triple room discounts available. Exchange rate fluctuations may lead to price changes. Peak Season Supplements may apply during Cherry Blossom Season, Autumn Leaf Season, National Holiday Weekends inside Japan however we always try our best to get you the best price available. Early booking (up to 12 months preferred) during busy seasons is highly recommended (but not essential) to avoid higher supplements.

How to Book

Step 1: Booking Deposit

 

By paying your deposit today, you:

  • Fix the price
  • Allow UJT team book all services
  • Can relax a little ……your job is almost done!

BOOK NOW

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Step 2: Book Your Flight

If you need help, ask our team for a quote. arrow

Step 3: Final Payment Due 8 Weeks Prior

Your Essential UJT Travel pack will be couriered to your home address 2 weeks prior.

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Step 4: See you in Japan!

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