Grade

Easy Garden Tours

Accommodation

Luxury Hotels

Land Transportation

Luxury Coach

Cost

6125

Flights

Excluded

Single Supplement

1200

Group

15-20

Tour Booklet

On Arrival

Dates

5-17 November 2020

Breakfasts

12

Welcome Drinks

1

Dinners

11

05 Nov 2020 - 17 Nov 2020

6,1257,235

Download Brochure

Tour Summary – What’s Included

  • 13 day luxury escorted small group tour of Japan to view autumn colors in some of the most famous Japanese temple gardens
  • Luxury accommodation in Osaka, Kyoto, Kanazawa, Takayama and Tokyo
  • Transportation by luxury air conditioned private coach accompanied by experienced tour guide with botanical knowledge
  • Travel by Bullet Train from Nagoya to Tokyo
  • Complimentary welcome drinks on arrival
  • 12 Breakfasts and 11 dinners
  • Entrance fees for all gardens and venues visited
  • 24 hr Emergency Service

Luxury Accommodation:

Tour Itinerary:

Day 1 –  Thursday 5 November 2020 – ARRIVAL – OSAKA / WELCOME DRINKS

  • Arrive at Kansai International Airport (OSAKA) and make your own way to our airport hotel and rest after your flight to Japan. Meet your tour guide and fellow garden visitors over complimentary drinks between 1800-1900.  Make you own arrangements for Dinner.

Accommodation:  Hotel Nikko Kansai Airport Hotel

Day 2 –  Friday 6 November 2020 – OSAKA – KYOTO / HASHIMOTO KANSETSU MEMORIAL, SAIHOJI TEMPLE, KYOTO BOTANICAL GARDENS – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • Following breakfast this morning we check out and depart for Kyoto by chartered coach.
  • Our first visit is to Hakusa Sonso Hashimoto Kansetsu Memorial & Museum, the former home, studio and garden of Hashimoto Kansetsu (1883-1945), a distinguished painter.  Being planted with pine, plum, cherry and maple trees along with bushes of azalea and hydrangea the garden here is perfect for strolling in all seasons.  Have lunch here in one of the Japanese or Western Style restaurants (not included).
  • This afternoon, we visit Saiho-ji temple. Also known as the Moss Temple, it is considered as Japan’s first dry garden and was built as an aid to meditation. The garden was designed in 1339 and entering it is a remarkable experience; like walking into an enchanted dream forest.  With more than 100 different types of moss as well as groves of maples, we have secured the special permission necessary for you to visit this unmissable garden.
  • Our last visit of the day will be to Kyoto Botanical Gardens where we’ll see extensive beds of planted flowers and a greenhouse that contains a huge variety of tropical plants.
  • Our welcoming hotel, Kyoto Hotel Okura is charming and well located.  After check-in and some time to rest, we meet in the evening as a group for dinner at a local restaurant. The rest of the evening is at leisure.  Return to our hotel with the rest of the group or explore Kyoto on your own.

Accommodation:  Kyoto Hotel Okura

Day 3 –  Saturday 7 November 2020 – KYOTO / GINKAKU TEMPLE, KINKAKUJI TEMPLE, RYOANJI TEMPLE, RIVER CRUISE, SAGANO BAMBOO PATH – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • After breakfast we board our coach to visit some incredible Kyoto gardens.
  • We start by visiting the Ginkaku-ji Temple and its pure land garden. Also known as the Silver Pavilion the temple dates from 1482 and holds World Heritage Site status. Entrance to the garden is through a formal corridor of tall hedges, then through a series of gates after which you find a combination of an abstract dry garden and a lushly planted pond garden.
  • Next we visit the world famous Kinkakuji Temple, also known as the Golden Pavilion. We’ll have plenty of time here for you to take that iconic picture of the reflection of the temple shimmering in the pond stretched out before it!  The garden is said to be deeply influenced by the Moss Garden that we visited yesterday.  With carefully composed views from and towards the pavilion of rocks and plantings, the garden has many elements typical of a Zen meditation garden.
  • The Abbot’s Garden of Ryoanji Temple is known as the supreme example of an abstract Zen garden. With a rectangle of raked gravel and 15 rocks carefully arranged, its origins are equally as mysterious as its meaning.
  • Lunch today will be on your own. Afterwards we meet up to have a cruise together on Hozugawa River.  The cruise utilizes traditional flat bottomed boats piloted by boatmen who guide the craft with oars and bamboo poles.  It’s a relaxing way to see the natural scenery of the largely undeveloped ravine and a perfect way to view the autumn colors of the trees growing on its slopes.
  • As you will by now have noticed, bamboo plays an extremely important role in Japanese gardens and daily life. This afternoon we will walk along the Sagano Path which is bordered by an astounding bamboo forest to reach the local restaurant where we will have dinner before returning to our hotel for the rest of the evening.  Return to the hotel with the rest of the group or explore Kyoto on your own.

Accommodation:  Kyoto Hotel Okura

Day 4 –  Sunday 8 November 2020 – KYOTO-OMI HACHIMAN-KYOTO / ISHIYAMA TEMPLE, NISHIKAWA RESIDENCE  – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • After breakfast we depart for Ishiyama Temple. Founded in the 8th Century, this beautiful mountain temple holds the oldest stupa of its type in Japan.
  • We depart Ishiyama Temple for Hachiman-bori. The town prospered as a business hub in part due to its location along two of the most important trade routes of the era: the Nakasendo Highway which connected Kyoto with Tokyo (then Edo) and the shipping route that connected the Sea of Japan coast via Lake Biwa with Kyoto.
  • Here we will have a boat ride along the canal and admire the traditional Japanese architecture.
  • After lunch on your own, we visit the Nishikawa Residence. The Nishikawa family were among the most prominent Omi merchants during the Edo Period. Today, the building that served as the family’s home for generations is open for the public to explore. It’s a well preserved example of a wealthy Omi merchant family dwelling and boasts opulent traditional Japanese rooms and a great garden.
  • After our visit we return to our Kyoto hotel. After taking some time to rest, we’ll have dinner this evening as a group.   The rest of the evening is at leisure.  Return to our hotel with the rest of the group or explore Kyoto on your own.

Accommodation:  Kyoto Hotel Okura

Day 5  –  Monday 9 November 2020 – KYOTO-NARA-KYOTO / TODAIJI TEMPLE, NARA DEER PARK, KASUGA SHRINE, KODAIJI TEMPLE  – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • After breakfast we travel a short distance by coach to Nara, once the capital of Japan.
  • Our first visit will be to see the Great Buddha at Todaiji Temple.  Completed in AD 742, the temple has been destroyed and rebuilt over the centuries.   Today, a handful of original structures and objects survive and these rank among some of the most precious treasures of Japanese culture in existence.
  • We then travel a short distance to Nara Deer Park.  Considered as messengers of the Gods, thousands of deer roam freely around this park in search of biscuits given to them by admiring tourists. Watch out for your fingers !!
  • Lunch will be on your own before we visit the last garden of the day at Kasuga Shrine.  While the interior of the temple is famous for its many bronze lanterns, as well as the many stone lanterns at the side of the paths that lead up to it, we are here to view the Kasugayama Primeval Forest which, like the temple, is a World Heritage site.
  • We return to our hotel in Kyoto where you will have some time to rest before we meet up again for a night tour of Kodaiji Temple.  The gardens here are impressive and include a rock garden, as well as a tsukiyama style garden featuring a pond, manmade hills, decorative rocks and beautiful pine and maple trees which we will all see illuminated.
  • After returning to our hotel on foot, we will have dinner together at a local restaurant.
  • The rest of the evening is at leisure. Return to our hotel with the rest of the group or explore Kyoto on your own.

Accommodation:  Kyoto Hotel Okura

Day 6 –  Tuesday 10 November 2020 – KYOTO-KANAZAWA / HEIANJINGU SHRINE, NANZENJI TEMPLE – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • Today we move to our next destination, Kanazawa.  We have arranged for your luggage (1 item per person) to be transferred by courier to our next hotel (next day delivery).  Please prepare an overnight bag for 1 night.
  • Before we leave Kyoto, we visit two more must-see gardens.  Our first stop is Heianjingu Shrine to visit its inner garden.  Created over a 20-year period by the renowned gardener Ogawa Jihei VII, it makes lavish use of flowering plants.
  • Next we visit the celebrated Zen temple Nanzenji.   Dating from 1291, the head priest’s residence here is most famous for its rock garden.  The rocks used in this garden are said to resemble tigers and cubs crossing through water.  This garden is particularly attractive in autumn.
  • Afterwards, we travel by coach to Kyoto station where we transfer by Limited Express Train to Kanazawa Station.
  • Our hotel is conveniently located next to the train station.  After check-in you will have some time to rest before we walk a short distance to a local restaurant for dinner together.
  • The rest of the evening is at leisure. Return to our hotel with the rest of the group or explore Kanazawa on your own.

Accommodation:  Hotel Nikko Kanazawa

Day 7 –  Wednesday 11 November 2020 – KANAZAWA-TAKAYAMA / KENROKUEN GARDEN, NOMURA HOUSE, SHIRAKAWAGO VILLAGE – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • After breakfast and check-out we travel to Takayama by coach.   En-route we stop off at Kenrokuen Garden, known as one of the three great gardens of Japan.  Kenroku-en means ‘garden combining six desirable garden qualities’ as specified in an ancient Chinese garden manual:  spaciousness, seclusion, human artifice, antique appearance, flowing water and extensive views.  The garden was developed between 1620 and 1840 with no expense being spared.
  • Next, we visit Nomura House a typical Samurai Residence filled with heirloom antiques and artifacts of the past. The house looks much like it did in the Edo era and will give us a glimpse of traditional samurai home life.  Although small, the garden here was ranked by the Journal of Japanese Gardening as being one of the top gardens in Japan.
  • After Lunch (on your own) we’ll travel into the mountains to Shirakawago Village, a World Cultural Heritage site.  We explore Wada House together after which you will have plenty of time to stroll around the settlement and experience the culture and traditions that live on here today.
  • We continue on to Takayama and check-into our hotel before having dinner together at a local restaurant.
  • The rest of the evening is at leisure. Return to our hotel with the rest of the group or explore Takayama on your own.

Accommodation:  Hotel Associa Takayama Resort

Day 8 –  Thursday 12 November 2020 TAKAYAMA / MIYAGAWA OPEN AIR MARKET, YATAI KAIKAN, KAMI SANNOMACHI STREET, TAKAYAMA JINYA / BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • After breakfast, we start the day with a stroll around Miyagawa Open Air Market, one of the largest open air markets in Japan.
  • Twice a year in Spring and Autumn, Takayama city holds a festival in which Yatai (floats) are paraded around the town.  The floats, registered as a UNESCO intangible cultural heritage, are housed in the Yatai Kaikan, the Festival Float Museum which we visit next. The museum, is located at Sakurayama Hachiman shrine which is also a great place to view autumn leaves.
  • Next, we stroll along Kami Sannomachi street before having lunch and some free time.
  • Before returning to the hotel we visit Takayama Jinya, a group of large whitewashed buildings which are the only extant example of a provincial government office from the Edo shogunate era.  Look out for the ornamental nail covers which are in the shape of floppy-eared rabbits and which are said to symbolize the far reaching ears of the shogunate !
  • Dinner this evening has been arranged for you.   Return to the hotel with the rest of the group or explore Takayama on your own.

Accommodation:  Hotel Associa Takayama Resort

Day 9 –  Friday 13 November 2020 TAKAYAMA-TOKYO / HAMA RIKYU GARDEN / BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • Today we depart for our next destination, Tokyo. We have arranged for your luggage (1 item per person) to be transferred by courier to you Tokyo hotel (next day delivery).  Please prepare an overnight bag for 1 night.
  • After breakfast we take the Limited Express Train from Takayama to Nagoya where we will take the Bullet Train to Tokyo Station.
  • On our arrival our coach will be waiting to take us to Hama Rikyu Garden, a large landscaped garden in the center of Tokyo. Originally built as a feudal Lord’s Tokyo residence during the Edo Period it later served as a strolling garden before eventually being opened to the public.  Here we will see plenty of maple, ginkgo and other trees showing their beautiful autumn colors
  • We check into our hotel to refresh before having a group dinner at a local restaurant.
  • The rest of the evening is at leisure. Return to the hotel with the rest of the group or explore Tokyo on your own.

Accommodation:  Hotel New Otani

Day 10 –  Saturday 14 November 2020 – TOKYO-KAMAKURA-TOKYO / KOTOKUIN TEMPLE, HASE-DERA TEMPLE, TSURUGAOKA HACHIMAN SHRINE – BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • After breakfast we depart for Kamakura by coach for a full day of garden visiting.
  • Our first visit of the day will be to see the Great Buddha at Kotokuin Temple. Although this it is one of the most famous images in Japan, almost nothing is known about the Great Buddha’s origins. Thought to date from the 12th century, the bronze statue is 11.3 meters tall without its pedestal.
  • After lunch on your own we visit Hase-dera Temple. The temple has been considered an abode of souls of the dead since antiquity.  In the Kannon Hall you will see an 8 meter guilted statue dating from 1538.  Don’t miss the wonderful views out over the valley!
  • Our next stop will be Tsurugaoka Hachiman Shrine, the most important Shinto shrine in Kamakura. Founded in 1063, you will see next to the Hongu (Shrine Hall) what is believed to be a 1000 year old gingko tree. It should be showing its full autumn colors during our visit.
  • At the end of the afternoon, we return to our hotel. After time to rest, we’ll have dinner together at a local restaurant.

Accommodation:  Hotel New Otani

Day 11 – Sunday 15 November 2020 – TOKYO / KYU-FURUKAWA GARDENS, SHUNKAEN BONSAI MUSEUM, IMPERIAL PALACE EAST GARDEN, MEIJI JINGU SHRINE, OMOTESANDO  / BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • Today is another full day of garden visiting. Our first stop will be Kyu-Furukawa Gardens which is set around an old 20th century western-style mansion house.
  • Next, we visit Shunkaen Bonsai Museum. Set up by Bonsai master Kunio Kobayashi, the first thing that strikes you when arriving here is the 1000 year old pine tree at the front of the house.  Inside, you will view master Kobayashi’s outstanding collection of bonsai, probably one of the best in the world!
  • After lunch on your own, we visit Imperial Palace East Garden.  Part of the inner palace area, the East Gardens offer seasonal flowers, ancient Japanese gardens surrounded by original moats, walls, entrance gates and guardhouses which were built by the Tokugawa shoguns.
  • We next visit Meiji Jingu Shrine, an Imperial shrine dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shōken. The shrine is located in an evergreen forest that consists of 120,000 trees of 365 different species, all of which were donated by people from all parts of Japan when the shrine was established.
  • Next, for something quite different. We travel a short distance to Omotesando, and pass through a tree-lined avenue behind which is probably one of the foremost architectural showcase streets in the world.  This is a glimpse of modern Japan.
  • After time to rest at our hotel, we’ll have a buffet dinner together.

Accommodation:  Hotel New Otani

Day 12 –  Monday 16 November 2020 – TOKYO-KAWAGUCHIKO-TOKYO / ITCHIKU KUBOTA ART MUSEUM, OSHINO HAKKAI, MOUNT FUJI / BREAKFAST & DINNER INCLUDED

  • On our final day of garden visiting, we travel to Kawaguchiko and visit Itchiku Kubota Art Museum. We’re here not just because the museum holds a great collection kimono, almost unparalleled in Japan but also because it has an incredible garden where the contrast of dark green bamboo with fire-red Japanese maple leaves is a quite remarkable sight to behold.
  • After lunch on your own, we visit Oshino Hakkai, a set of eight ponds in Oshino, a small village hamlet between Lake Kawaguchiko and Lake Yamanakako. If the weather is good, then you will have superb views from here out towards Mount Fuji.
  • We travel back to our hotel in Tokyo to rest and later walk to a local restaurant for a farewell dinner together. The rest of the evening is at leisure.

Accommodation:  Hotel New Otani

Day 13 –  Tuesday 17 November 2020 – CHECK-OUT – TOKYO /  BREAKFAST INCLUDED.

  • Following breakfast this morning we check out of the hotel and transfer to Narita International Airport to commence our homeward or onward journeys.   Transfer to Narita International Airport is included.  Why not extend your stay and explore fascinating Tokyo? Additional nights at this hotel are available at a supplement please contact us for more information.

 

  • Location
  • Days
    13
  • Nights
    12
  • Start Date
    05/11/2020
  • End Date
    17/11/2020
  • Accommodation
    Luxury Hotels
  • Land Transportation
    Luxury Coach
  • Cost
    6125
  • Flights
    Excluded
  • Single Supplement
    1200
  • Group
    15-20
  • Tour Booklet
    On Arrival
  • Dates
    5-17 November 2020
  • Breakfasts
    12
  • Welcome Drinks
    1
  • Dinners
    11

Download Brochure

What's Not Included:

  • Flights to and from Japan

For More Information

For practical information concerning this cruise please visit our FAQ and our Bookings Conditions.  Please Contact Us if you have any questions or comments or visit our Home page for more of our superb garden tours.
5 November 2020  6125   6,125

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5 November 2020  7235   7,235

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We offer two easy payment options:

1. Pay a Refundable 20% Deposit Now:

If you want to secure you place on this tour you can choose to pay a 20% refundable deposit now and the remaining balance later.
  • Step 1: Please select the correct amount and departure date above. The higher of the two prices displayed includes the single supplement and should be chosen if you are travelling alone.  If you are a couple or group travelling together select the lower of the two amounts.  You can change the number of people travelling together on the next screen and the price will be recalculated automatically.
  • Step 2:  Choose the Pay Deposit option.
  • Step 3: Click on the BOOK NOW button and follow the instructions.
We accept all major credit cards.  Before you go ahead and book your tour online, please carefully read our Booking Conditions. Once we have the required numbers to run your tour we will send you an invoice for the remaining balance.  We need to receive your final payment at least 6 weeks before the departure date.  In the unlikely event that your tour will not proceed, we will refund your deposit IN FULL.  

2. Pay Now in Full

If you want to secure you place on this tour you can choose to pay now in full.
  • Step 1: Please select the correct amount and departure date above. The higher of the two prices displayed includes the single supplement and should be chosen if you are travelling alone.  If you are a couple or group travelling together select the lower of the two amounts.  You can change the number of people travelling together on the next screen and the price will be recalculated automatically.
  • Step 2 : Select the Pay in Full option above.
  • Step 3: Click on the BOOK NOW button and follow the instructions.
We accept all major credit cards.  Before you go ahead and book your tour online, please carefully read our Booking Conditions. Once we have the required numbers to run your tour you will receive further information from us.  In the unlikely event that your tour will not proceed, we will refund your payment IN FULL.

Any Questions?

We accept bank transfer and all major credit cards via our secure payment platform.  If you need help in booking your tour please call us on one of our Freephone numbers: From UK: 0800-088-5869 From Australia: 1-300-913-271 From USA/Canada: 1-800-653-2853 From New Zealand: 0800-447-806 Or from other countries : +31 (0)88 007 1399
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