Tour the extremes of Japan
In many ways, Japan is a country of great contrasts, and this trip gives you plenty of opportunity to experience it. A state-of-the-art lifestyle and deep-rooted traditions coexist effortlessly in Japan. However, the balance shifts remarkably as soon as you leave metropolises like Tokyo
and settle down in small, historic cities. In addition, there are the climatic extremes, partly due to height differences. At the foot of Mount Fuji
you are still cooling off in the shade, in the Japanese Alps
you will experience the hot springs as a prosperity. Even more extreme are the differences between Hokkaido
– the far north – and Okinawa
– the subtropical south. From ice festival to coral reefs, there's only one day of travel in between.In a comfortable way, you can travel comfortably from the urban jungle to ancient mountain forests and characterful cities. The pace of your journey constantly changes from fast and efficient, to almost whispering slowly. You have plenty of time to discover the big cities, to experience the tranquility of temples and shrines, and to enjoy very diverse landscapes. A few days you will be accompanied by an expert guide, but you can also regularly go out at your own pace to discover the many faces of Japan.
Tips & tops of Japan, land of extremes:
- Discover the very diverse parts of Tokyo: the trendy fashion avenue Ometesando and the old Geisha district of Asakusa. A cruise across the Sumida River ends with a visit to a teahouse in the gardens of Hama-Rikyu Teien.
- In the beautiful Fuji Hakone National Park there is a lot of thermal activity. Taste the kuro-tamago, an egg cooked in the sulphur-rich, hot springs. It is claimed that eating such an egg extends your life by seven years!
- Matsumoto Castle is one of the most beautiful and complete castles in Japan. It is also called 'Crow Castle', because of the black walls and roofs that resemble wings.
- Enjoy the vistas while strolling through the beautiful nature around Matsumoto. The peaks you see in the west are about 3,000 meters high.
- Travel back in time, higher into the mountains. The village of Takayama was so difficult to reach for centuries that its historical and idiosyncratic character has been wonderfully preserved. A suitable place to stay in a traditional ryokan.
- Do you want to see and hear 'chirping nightingale floors'? Then visit the Nijo Castle in Kyoto. The wooden floors are deliberately constructed in such a way that you cannot walk unnoticed through the hallway. A special security measure that still works very convincingly after more than four centuries.
- From the sacred island of Miyajima you will visit the vermilion-colored Itsukushima shrine,which seems to float on the waters of the Seto inland sea. Every year several festivals take place here. The Kangen-sai festival is truly impressive ritual feast that takes place on boats. The enchanting sounds of flute, drums and stringed instruments sound far across the water, the paper lanterns contribute to the fairytale atmosphere.
- In Osaka, visit the Kamigata Ukiyo-e museum. It is one of the best museums of Japanese printmaking in the world. Refined, caricatured and sensual, the most beautiful woodblock prints can be seen here.
- The full colour palette is represented in the four seasons of Hokkaido: awakening nature with fresh green and pink cherry blossom in spring, seas of flowering lavender in summer, thunderous autumn colours and deep blue skies, steaming onsen overlooking a crystal white snowy landscape.
- Deep in the caverns of the Kin Kannon-do cave on Okinawa is a special treasure trove. Thousands of bottles of Tatsu Awamori (the local sake variant) have been stored here for years, maturing and waiting for the bottle owner to claim it for a special occasion. Each bottle has a name tag and date, sometimes a photo. Do you leave a bottle for your next trip to Japan?
- We can offer this trip in different classes of accommodations.