Japan’s Cultural Treasures

Exciting Journey | Main Land

Cherry blossom Dreams

Springtime in Japan is synonymous with hanami – cherry-blossom viewing – celebrated by locals and visitors alike. For around two weeks between May and March, the country’s sakura trees explode into frothy displays of pink and white petals, which eventually cascade like snow flurries on to the scenic avenues below. At night, lanterns add to the atmosphere, and people drink and picnic beneath the fragrant blossoms. It’s a popular time to visit, and many of the best-positioned hotels are booked early, so be sure to plan well ahead.

This tour perfectly encompasses Cherry Blossom season together with a journey of discovery. Experience the cultural heritage of Japan as you travel through the country’ main island of Honshu. Begin with an exploration of Tokyo and the nearby Hakone National Park, visit the tranquil Kenroku-en garden and the castle of Kanazawa before exploring the imperial city of Kyoto, with its many temples and shrines. Experience the sombre modern history of Hiroshima, then visit the picturesque island of Miyajima with its celebrated torii gate. Finish with a visit to Himeji, famed for its castle and Japanese gardens, before flying home from Tokyo.

All the things you need to know

  • Cherry-blossom viewing (between April – May)
  • Traditional tea ceremony experience & cooking class in Kyoto
  • Visit Shirakawago to see the Unesco-listed gassho-zukuri houses
  • Tour the Nomura Samurai House historic home & garden
  • Try your hand at gold-leaf making in Kanazawa

Overnight flight from London (regional connections available) to Tokyo Haneda airport with British Airways.

Arrive and transfer to the Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa (or similar) for 3 nights. 

Full-day excursion to the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park for views of Mount Fuji, a cruise on Lake Ashi and a ride on the Mount Komagatake Ropeway (cable car).

Full-day tour visiting Asakusa Kannon temple, Tokyo National Museum, the Imperial East Garden and the peaceful Meiji shrine. Lunch will be a kushiage meal of fried meat and vegetables.

Morning departure by shinkansen (bullet train) to Kanazawa. Visit Kanazawa castle park and the Kenroku-en garden. Stay 2 nights at the Crowne Plaza ANA Kanazawa.

Early morning stroll in the Higashi-Chayamachi district, home to various traditional buildings, then visit the busy Omi fresh food market. Afternoon excursion to Shirakawago to see the Unesco-listed gassho-zukuri houses and their unique architectural style.

Travel by express train to Kyoto. Visits include Nijo castle, a walking tour of Nishiki market to tour the numerous food stalls, and the WAK cultural centre, housed in a wooden townhouse known as a machiya, for a cooking class and a traditional tea ceremony experience. The following day is at leisure to explore Kyoto at your own pace. Stay 2 nights at the New Miyako Hotel.

Morning visit to Kinkakuji temple (Golden Pavilion), then Ryoanji temple, famous for its Zen rock garden. Afternoon tour of the historic city of Nara, then continue to Osaka to catch the bullet train south to Hiroshima. Stay two nights at the Granvia Hiroshima / Sheraton Hiroshima.

Take the ferry to Miyajima island to visit the Itsukushima shrine and see the Torii gate. Return to the mainland and take the train back to the city to visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and the Memorial Museum. 

Board a bullet train for the journey north to Himeji city. Take a tour of Himeji castle, which, unlike most castles in Japan, is still in its original form and is arguably the finest example of medieval castle architecture in the country. Afterwards, take a stroll in the Koko-en gardens, which consist of nine separate, walled gardens with ponds, waterfalls and a tea ceremony house. Travel by train on to Tokyo, and stay at the Royal Park Haneda (or similar) for 1 night.

Transfer to the airport and board a British Airways flight back to London, arriving later the same day.

  • Experienced local tour manager
  • Guided sightseeing & entrance fees
  • Bullet train travel
  • Cherry blossom season departures
  • Excursions on days 3 and 4 may be switched, subject to local conditions.
  • Average group size – 15 people (max 24)
  • Meals
    10 breakfasts & 4 lunches

  • 4* Accommodation
    Hotel Okura Kyoto, Kyoto
    Haneda Royal Park Hotel
    Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa 
    ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Kanazawa

  • Transport
    International flights, Transports


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We are here to help. Our travel experts will organise and book your dream holiday.
call us today or complete our online enquiry form to start your next adventure.

Let's Chat

We are here to help. Our travel experts will organise and book your dream holiday.
call us today or complete our online enquiry form to start your next adventure.