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Wonders of the West

Jump of the beaten track with both feet on this tour to the ancient West. Let us take you where tourists rarely have the chance to go and where history hides around every corner waiting to be discovered. Wonders of the West will take you to the island of Kyushu, the furthest western island of the great four major islands in Japan. Hot Springs, historical tales, Unesco World heritage at its best, country scenic drives and fresh air, away from the major cities and towns on the mainland.

Category:
Duration: 18 nights / 19 days (Pre or Post Nights available on request)
Route: Kyoto - Fukuyama - Hiroshima - Fukuoka - Nagasaki - Kumamoto - Yakushima Island - Tokyo / Osaka

Details


Dates: Available all year round
Duration: 18 nights / 19 days (Pre or Post Nights available on request)
Starts: Kyoto
Ends: Tokyo or Osaka
Route: Kyoto - Fukuyama - Hiroshima - Fukuoka - Nagasaki - Kumamoto - Yakushima Island - Tokyo / Osaka
Tour Type: Self Guided ­­­­­with local guides
Prices from: From €6,850 per person sharing (See Prices Below)
Accommodation Category: 3*standard /4*superior /5*deluxe

Experiences

Private Kyoto Guide on Day 2

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

Exploring Kyoto with our expert guides, you can’t help but be taken in by the charm of the traditional wooden merchant houses or machiya (traditional townhouses) that form the façade of the street-front. As part of your tour you will have the rare and amazing chance to take part in an authentic tea ceremony in a local machiya, and walking tour of Gion with a geisha or maiko (Superior/Deluxe plans).

Afternoon tea with a Geisha – great insight into a mysterios 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 Golden Route will incur a supplement for this service. Contact us for details.)

Super Speedy Shinkansen using your 14-day Japan Rail Pass

Japan is renowned for its excellent public transport infrastructure. Nothing better exemplifies this high standard than the famous shinkansen or bullet train. These trains travel at incredible speeds to deliver passengers to far-away destinations in no time at all. Ride in comfort aboard the shinkansen to Fukuyama, Hiroshima, and even as far south as Fukuoka and Kumamoto!

If you book a superior or deluxe package, your rail pass will be upgraded to first class GREEN cabins! All trains can be pre-booked at the start, which your guide will assist with.

Private Guide in Fukuyama

Fukuyama is a city full of ancient wonders. Be amazed by the 5-story pagoda in Myōō-in Temple built 1300s and the Fukuyama Castle with its stunning gardens. Going south to the port of Tomonoura, you can see examples of Edo-era buildings and the famous stone lighthouse of Jōyatō. If you arrive in May, you will also find out why Fukuyama is called ‘City of Roses’ by the locals, as 280 varieties bloom in the free central park.

Private Guide in Hiroshima & Miyajima Island

Hiroshima’s past is indelibly linked to the tragedy that befell it on August 6, 1945, when the first atomic bomb was dropped over the city. The legacy of this disaster is powerfully and poignantly kept in the Peace Memorial Park which is home to the A-Bomb Dome and Peace Memorial Museum. Hiroshima is also home to Miyajima Island and Itsukushima Shrine. This small island lies less than an hour away and is particularly famous for its giant torii gate which seems to float on the water at high tide. Take a boat across the water whilst enjoying this beautiful sight and explore the shrine and the island befriending its many deer.

Explore Fukuoka

Picked as one of the most liveable cities in the world by Monocle magazine, Fukuoka is famous for its local Hakata ramen  which you can find in stalls dotted around the city! Discover and explore the grounds of Japan’s first Zen Buddhist temple, the ruins of Fukuoka’s castle and the many beautiful parks near the coast.

Nagasaki - a port town steeped in history

Everyone visiting Nagasaki should take the chance to visit the beautiful Peace Park and the buildings that were reconstructed after the Pacific War, but did you know that Nagasaki was an incredibly important location in Japanese history long before this?

When Japan isolated itself against the West and Christianity, the man-made island of Dejima just outside Nagasaki was the only place in Japan that the Dutch trading ships could land. You can still visit the island, and there are a few former residences of foreign traders have been preserved open to the public on the Dutch Slope.

And, of course, if you are a fan of the James Bond film Skyfall, you can go on boat tours around Hashima where the long shots of the abandoned island were taken. The island itself used to be the most populated place on earth because of its coal mines, and it became so built up that the island is now called ‘Gunkanjima’ or ‘battleship island’.

Decompress at Unzen Onsen

Originally a temple town like Koyasan, Unzen became a hot spring resort in the Meiji period, taking advantage of the hot spring fields heated by the Unzen volcano. The naturally heated water is rich in sulfur and is said to be particularly good for beautifying the skin as well as helping with fatigue, diabetes, and a number of other ailments.

Ancient Japan, Irish Literature and Volcanoes Side by Side

Kumamoto is most famous for its castle, which despite being a modern reconstruction of the original, is one of the most awe inspiring castles in Japan. In addition to the two main towers of the castle, there is a number of turrets and storehouses that can be entered and explored.

Also in Kumamoto is Suizenji Garden, a landscaped garden designed to replicate the Tokaido, which was the main road connecting Kyoto to ancient Edo (Tokyo) in the Edo period. The garden even contains a miniature recreation of Mt Fuji!

For those of you interested in literature, there is a small museum dedicated to the author Lufcadio Hearn, located in his former residence. Hearn was an Irish author who settled in Japan, and was the first Western author to write books about Japan, including Japanese ghost stories!

Just a short hop from Kumamoto is Mt Aso, where you can see the mountain’s gigantic volcanic caldera.

Princess Mononoke Island

Your next stop will be the subtropical Yakushima Island – the inspiration for Studio Ghibli’s Princess Mononoke! Covered by one of the most ancient cedar forests in Japan, some of which are believed to be 7000 years old, this place is truly magical. Spend time hiking through the forest or relaxing on the white sand beaches, where ever you will be surrounded by the beauty of this magical island.

Tokyo or Osaka

Finish your trip with a bang! Fly to Tokyo or Osaka to spend your final days in this amazing country surrounded by modern sights and sounds. Whichever city you decide to go to, we know you will love the energy and excitement!

Accommodation

Kyoto

Standard: Daiwa Royal Hotel Kyoto
Superior: The Kyoto Century Hotel
Deluxe: The Thousand or The Okura Hotel
Super Deluxe: Ritz Carlton Kyoto, Four Seasons, or Hoshinoya

[Includes breakfast, taxes and charges]

Fukuyama

Standard: Anchor Hotel Fukuyama

Superior: Fukuyama New Castle Hotel

Deluxe: Migiwatei Ochi Kochi

Miyajima

Standard: Miyajima Seaside Hotel

Superior: Arimoto Miyajima

Deluxe/Super Deluxe: Kuroyado Ryokan

[Includes breakfast & Japanese style dinner]

Fukuoka

Standard: Dormy Inn Hotel Hakata

Superior: JR Kyushu Hotel Blossom Fukuoka

Deluxe: Grand Hyatt Fukuoka

Unzen Onsen

All Categories: Unzen Miyazaki Ryokan

Different rooms will be booked according to accommodation standard desired.

Kumamoto

Standard: Mitsui Garden Hotel

Superior and Deluxe: Sankara Hotel & Spa Yakushima

 

Yakushima Island

Standard: Yakushima Green Hotel

Superior and Deluxe: Kumamoto Castle Hotel

Tokyo

Standard: Centurion Hotel Akasaka
Superior: Akasaka or Shibuya Excel Hotel
Deluxe: Okura Prestige or Hoshinoya
Super Deluxe: Okura Heritage

[Includes breakfast daily / if you prefer to stay in a different area inside Tokyo, just ask!]

Whats included

 

ServiceStandardSuperiorDeluxe
Airport Transfers (Arrival & departure)Shared Transfers (Door-to-door)Shared Transfers (Door-to-door)Private Transfers (Door-to-door)
18 Nights Accommodation3* Western (11) +  Standard Ryokan (4) + Beach Front (3)4* Western (11)  +  Superior Ryokan (4)  +  Beach Front (3)5* Western (11)  +  Deluxe Ryokan (4)  +   Beach Front (3)
Meals18 breakfasts + 6 dinners18 breakfasts + 6 dinners18 breakfasts + 6 dinners
Experiences
  • Private Full Day Guide in Kyoto, Fukuyama, Kumamoto incl. Mt Aso, Tokyo/ Osaka, Hiroshima incl. Miyajima, and Yakushima Island
  • Authentic Tea Ceremony at local Kyoto tea house
  • Seaside ryokan at Tomonoura
  • Fukuoka Street Food and lively entertainment by night
  • Bubbling hot spring at Unzen Onsen
  • Stay on Yakushima Island which inspired Princess Mononoke
  • Active Volcano at Mt Aso and regional Castle in Kumamoto
  • Private Full Day Guide in Kyoto, Fukuyama, Kumamoto incl. Mt Aso, Tokyo/ Osaka, Hiroshima incl. Miyajima, and Yakushima Island
  • Private Tea Ceremony + Geisha Meet & Greet at local Kyoto Tea House
  • Seaside ryokan at Tomonoura
  • Fukuoka Street Food and lively entertainment by night
  • Bubbling hot spring at Unzen Onsen
  • Stay on Yakushima Island which inspired Princess Mononoke
  • Active Volcano at Mt Aso and regional Castle in Kumamoto
  • Private Full Day Guide in Kyoto, Fukuyama, Kumamoto incl. Mt Aso, Tokyo/ Osaka, Hiroshima incl. Miyajima, and Yakushima Island
  • Private Tea Ceremony + Geisha Meet & Greet at local Kyoto Tea House
  • Seaside ryokan at Tomonoura
  • Fukuoka Street Food and lively entertainment by night
  • Bubbling hot spring at Unzen Onsen
  • Stay on Yakushima Island which inspired Princess Mononoke
  • Active Volcano at Mt Aso and regional Castle in Kumamoto
Transport
  • Japan Rail Pass (14 day Ordinary)
  • Reserved seats on bullet train journey’s
  •  Train Ticket
  • Tokyo City Transport Card
  • Kyoto City Transport Card
  • Return Ferry to Yakushima Island
  • One Domestic Internal Flight
  • Japan Rail Pass (14 day Green)
  • Reserved seats on bullet train journey’s
  • Tokyo City Transport Card
  • Kyoto City Transport Card
  • Local taxi’s in Kyoto and Tokyo on private day tours
  • Return Ferry to Yakushima Island
  • One Domestic Internal Flight
  • Japan Rail Pass (14 day Green)
  • 1st Class Reserved seats on all bullet trains
  • Private Car with driver & guide around Tokyo (one day)
  • Private Car with driver & guide around Kyoto
  • Local Taxi’s in Hiroshima
  • Return Ferry to Yakushima Island
  • One Domestic Internal Flight
UJT’s Essential Travel PackReceived 2 weeks prior to departureReceived 2 weeks prior to departure Received 2 weeks prior to departure

2020 Per Person Prices from:

Tour CategoryEURGBPUSDAUD
Standard (3*)€6,850~£5,900~$7,750~$11,200~
Superior (4*)On Request
Deluxe (5*)On Request
Prices are per person and based on two people sharing a Twin or Double Room. Single room supplements apply. 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 it is always our aim to keep prices as advertised. To avoid supplements, early booking is recommended.

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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