|Departure: 12th April 2019 – 21st April 2019|
|Places Covered: TOKYO, NARA, KYOTO, MIYAJIMA, HIROSHIMA, OSAKA|
Beautiful Japan: 09 Days with Cherry Blossom April 2019
From the shiny bright lights of Tokyo’s Akihabara District to the serene temples and gardens in Kyoto, Japan is a country where the past and the future collide more than you initially realize. If you can visit during cherry blossom season, you’re in for a real treat – the streets will be lined with the most beautiful bunches of white and pale pink flowers, which in turn makes the country smell absolutely phenomenal.
This Japan itinerary starts in Tokyo, making a day trip to Nikko and Hakone and then venture to Osaka and make day trips to Kyoto, Nara and Hiroshima and Miyajima Island.
DAY 1: ARRIVE IN TOKYO!
You’ll be flying into Narita Airport and will need a little over an hour to
get into the city center via the Narita Express.
Today’s all about modern Tokyo! You’ll be exploring the western
districts of the city, including Shibuya, Harajuku, and Shinjuku
Shibuya is Tokyo’s version of Times Square, and with all the bright
lights and massive amounts of people, it’s easy to see why. Check out
the world-famous Shibuya Crossing, where 100’s of people scramble
across the street at once.
Also say “Hello” – or Konichiwa — to Hachiko (the most loyal dog in the
world statue) at Shibuya Crossing and do some shopping at Tokyu
Meiji Shrine is the Shinto shrine that is dedicated to the deified spirits
of Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shōken. You’ll be seeing lots of
shrines and temples during your time in Japan, and Meiji is a great one
to start with! If you’re lucky, you may even witness a traditional
Japanese wedding ceremony!
Get a taste for Japanese street style at Harajuku. On Sundays, you can
see traditional Harajuku Girls dressed in elaborate costumes and
anime – so fun!
Walk down the famous shopping street of Takeshita Dori, where you’ll
find a whole mess of fun stores and fun cafes.
Shinjuku is the largest neighbourhood in Tokyo (dubbed the crazy
entertainment district), and you’ll find thousands of restaurants, shops,
entertainment, and other attractions that you could easily spend all day
Consider the free observation deck on the 45th floor of the Tokyo
Metropolitan Government Building, visit Shinjuku Gyoen (a large
public park near Shinjuku Station being a perfect cherry blossom spot.
DAY 2: FULL DAY IN TOKYO: EAST SIDE
Now it’s time to experience the more traditional side of Tokyo, including
Sensoji Temple and Ueno Gardens. Another bird’s eye view can be
seen at nearby Tokyo Skytree.
Asakusa is the spiritual heart of Tokyo and a good place to start your
day! Sensoji Temple is the main attraction here, and you’ll start your
morning journey at the Kaminarimon Gate. As you walk toward the
temple buildings, check out the historic Nakamise Dori shopping street,
pick out some souvenirs and grab a Japanese snack (or two!) before
exploring Sensoji Temple. Consider drawing Omikuji (written fortunes)
while here. If you’re up for it and are interested, check out the
surrounding old-fashioned neighbourhoods around Asakusa.
Sumida Park during cherry blossom is a must visit. It is a wonderful spot to see the flowers in bloom!
Next up – Tokyo SkyTree, the tallest tower in not only Japan, but the
entire world! At 634m (2,080 feet), the complex has two observation
decks with great views over the city. There’s even a glass floor for any
of you brave souls!
End the afternoon at Ueno Park, another large public space located
in central Tokyo and another lively cherry blossom spot. There are
more than 1000 cherry trees of multiple varieties lining its central
pathway and lots of temples and shrines here to check out.
Spend the evening perusing the many electronic shops,
including Yodobashi Akiba – the world’s largest with nine stories
stuffed with hi tech equipment – for geeks with money. You’ll also find
Japan’s diehard fan anime culture here, with stores devoted to anime
DAY 3: DAY TRIP FROM TOKYO
Literally sick of the city and need to get some nature into your life?
Nikko may just be your answer. Full of ancient moss, stone lanterns,
vermillion gates, and towering cedars, there’s a reason why this area is
one of Japan’s most visited areas.
Located about two hours north of Tokyo, Nikko is the site of the
famous Toshogu Shrine, the mausoleum of Tokugawa Ieyasu (VIP in
Japan), and numerous other temples and shrines. Visit the
famous Shinkyo bridge, the beautiful Nikko National Park (on a sunny
day), Kanman-ga-Fuchi Abyss, and Kegon Falls.
DAY 4: DAY TRIP FROM TOKYO
Get spectacular views of Mt. Fuji and its surrounding mountains on a
day trip from Tokyo. Cruise across Lake Ashi by boat and take the
ropeway up Mt. Komagatake. Relax in the hot springs resort of Hakone,
and then catch the bullet train back to Tokyo.
Late evening train to Osaka
DAY 5: DAY TRIP TO NARA
Head to Nara from Osaka
Get ready to interact with some deer in Nara Park, which can be found
all throughout the area and are literally impossible to miss! And oh yea,
those crackers you see being sold on the street? Those are for the
deer, not us hungry humans!
A few temples to see: Todaiji (must visit Unesco World Heritage Site
with super tall Buddha), Kasaguga Taisha Shrine (the most important
shrine in Nara), Kofukuiji Temple, and Gangou-ji Temple.
DAY 6: DAY TRIP TO KYOTO
Take a train to Kyoto from Osaka
Visit the beautiful Tenyru-Ji Shrine and its accompanying zen garden.
Once you exit the garden, you’ll come across the Arashiyama Bamboo
Grove/Forest. Walking through the Bamboo Grove is definitely one of
the essential experiences to have in Kyoto
Golden Pavilion or Kinkakuji, is super impressive and made entirely of
gold! Reflected in the lake, it’s no wonder this is one of the top things to do in Kyoto.
Fushimi Inari Shrine (Taisha): The shrine is comprised of over 10,000
beautiful orange-y red tori gates arching over a scenic, possible 2-hour-
long walking trail.
Kyomizu-dera Temple, a listed UNESCO site is quite busy, but the view
out over a sea of trees is hard to beat – just imagine this during cherry
blossom season (absolutely to die for!)
Thereafter walk on over to Gion, Kyotos famous geisha district. If you’re
lucky you may spot a real true-life geisha, although they tend to walk
fast to their destination and don’t like to show their face.
DAY 7: DAY TRIP TO MIYAJIMA AND HIROSHIMA
Take an early morning bullet train to Hiroshima and ferry to Miyajima.
Head straight to the tori gate (after some deer interaction of course, yes there’s deer here and they’re SUPER friendly, just watch your food).
You’ll want to snap a million photos because this place is just so damn
beautiful. Also visit the floating shrine
Take the Miyajima Ropeway for better-than-great views of the whole
area from the top of Mt. Misen.
Post lunch do the Hiroshima Sightseeing on Hop-On, Hop-Off Loop Bus
“Meipuru-pu” and visit the Hiroshima Castle, A-Bomb Dome, Children’s Peace Monument, and Peace Memorial Museum and Park.
Back to Osaka late evening
DAY 8: OSAKA
Start the day with a visit to the ever-so-beautiful Osaka Castle, one of
Japan’s most famous landmarks!
Next up, Dotonbori Street! It’s an absolute madhouse full of people,
shops, and eateries, and an absolute must-do while in Osaka. Be sure
to look up and admire the moving animal billboards found on the
Osaka is the food capitol not just of Japan, but of the entire world.
Then whole of afternoon can be spent for shopping at Shinsaibashi, the
city’s premier shopping district.
Take the evening train back to Tokyo and night stay in Tokyo
DAY 9: BACK TO DELHI
- Accommodation in good hotels
- Private Sightseeing tours *
- All entrance tickets*
- English-speaking guide
- All travel within Japan
- All meals*
- All airport transfers
- Visa charges and assistance
- Round-trip international airfare
- Expenses of personal nature
- Tips and gratuities
- Taxes wherever applicable