JAPAN Group May 2019 Itinerary and tour payment information

A TAILOR-MADE
JOURNEY

Japan
Land of Living Traditions

Travel with your Travel Advisor & Escort
Marie Anne Diamond

Travel dates:
May 13th – May 24th, 2019

CREATED BY
DESTINATION ASIA

Day 1 13-May Mon Tokyo Arrival
Day 2 14-May Tue Tokyo
Day 3 15-May Wed Tokyo
Day 4 16-May Thu Tokyo – Kamakura – Hakone
Day 5 17-May Fri Hakone
Day 6 18-May Sat Hakone – Takayama
Day 7 19-May Sun Takayama – Shirakawago – Kanazawa
Day 8 20-May Mon Kanazawa
Day 9 21-May Tue Kanazawa – Kyoto
Day 10 22-May Wed Kyoto – Nara – Kyoto
Day 11 23-May Thu Kyoto
Day 12 24-May Fri Kyoto – Osaka Departure

Day 1: Monday 13 May 2019. Tokyo Arrival


Arrival at Narita/Haneda flight XXXX

Meeting with your guide in the arrival hall and transfer to your hotel by private coach. (90/60 minutes).

The remainder of your day is at leisure.

Overnight in Tokyo

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach

Day 2: Tuesday 14 May 2019. Tokyo

Breakfast at hotel

Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

In the evening, meet with your guide in the lobby and head for Tokyo Bay by private coach for a private cruise dinner in a Japanese-style boat.

Enjoy a dinner cruise in Tokyo Bay.

Return to your hotel by private coach.

End at hotel
09:00 After breakfast, meet with your guide in the hotel lobby for a departure to Asakusa by private coach.

Also, meet with columnist, photographer, and poet, Kit Nagamura, an established artist who has made several appearances on the TV show “Journeys in Japan” and has photographed some of the rarest areas in Japan.

Asakusa is Tokyo’s old town where you can soak up the atmosphere of what Tokyo must have been like hundreds of years ago. Visit Sensoji, also known as Asakusa Kannon and Tokyo’s oldest temple. The Broadway leading up to the Temple is called Nakamise and this shopping street has been providing temple visitors with a variety of traditional, local snacks and souvenirs for centuries.

Experience a hands-on dyeing activity in the Edo Komon style. Edo Komon refers to a traditional Japanese dying technique. Nowadays, it is recognized mainly as patterns for kimono, but in fact it is a highly artisanal dying technique.

Head to Nuno by private coach.

Dealing in everything from traditionally dyed fabric to the latest in textile technology and offering a nice selection of clothing and accessories, Nuno is virtually synonymous with superb craftsmanship.

17:00
21:30

Overnight in Tokyo

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Private guiding by Kit Nagamura
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Activities: Edo Komon dyeing experience

Day 3: Wednesday 15 May 2019. Tokyo

Breakfast at hotel

09:00 After breakfast, meet with your guide in the hotel lobby for a departure to Meiji shrine by private coach.

Begin your exploration of Tokyo with a visit to Meiji Shrine, a shrine dedicated to the deified spirit of Emperor Meiji and a popular place for traditional Japanese weddings.

Enjoy a private Taiko Lesson and performance. You will learn basic taiko techniques, simple traditional songs, as well as the history and structure of taiko.
Lunch on own.

After lunch, your private coach will take you to the Suntory Museum of Art.

The Suntory Museum of Art includes the personal collection of the Suntory family, who amassed their considerable fortune from first whisky and later beer production beginning at the end of the 19th century. The museum is a series of changing exhibitions showcasing the core collection of exquisite paintings, glass, fabrics, accessories, scrolls, screens and ceramics.

Lastly you will head to the venue for the calligraphy lesson.

Calligraphy is said to reflect the writer’s mind as well as their writing skill. During this calligraphy lesson, you will learn how to create your own calligraphy in a traditional Japanese setting and be able to bring your creations with you.

17:30 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

End at hotel

Overnight in Tokyo

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Meals: Dinner cruise in Tokyo Bay
Activities: Taiko Drumming and Calligraphy lesson

Day 4: Thursday 16 May 2019. Tokyo – Kamakura – Hakone

Breakfast at hotel and check out.

09:00 After breakfast, meet with your guide in the hotel lobby for a departure to Kamakura by private coach.

Kamakura is the former de facto capital of Japan as the seat of the Shogunate during the Kamakura Period (1185 – 1333). At that time Kamakura was the largest city in the world, however the Kamakura of today is a small seaside town with numerous temples, shrines and other attractions.

With your guide, you will visit Kotokuin Temple, home to the Daibutsu, a giant bronze Buddha that stands (or rather, sits) 13.35m high.

Hasedera Temple is a temple of the Jodo sect, which is most famous for its statue of Kannon, the goddess of mercy. The statue shows Kannon with eleven heads, each representing a characteristic of the goddess. The 9.18-meter-tall, gilded wooden statue is regarded as one of the largest wooden sculptures in Japan.

Head to Tsurugaoka Hachimangu by private coach.

Dating from the 12th century, Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine is the spiritual heart of Kamakura and one of its most popular attractions. The shrine was originally founded by Minamoto Yoriyoshi in 1063, then enlarged and moved to its present site by Minamoto Yoritomo, the first shogun of the Kamakura government, in 1180. The shrine was dedicated to Hachiman, the Shinto god of war and patron of the Minamoto family.

End with shopping for local souvenirs and delicacies on nearby Komachi Street.

17:00 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

In the evening, meet with your guide in the lobby for dinner in the hotel.

Enjoy dinner at the hotel.

Overnight in Hakone

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Meals: Dinner

Day 5: Friday 17 May 2019. Hakone

Breakfast at hotel.

09:00 Meet with your guide at the hotel for a departure to Hakone Shrine by private coach.

Hakone Shrine is a shinto shrine that was very popular among Samurai during the twelfth century and is hidden away in a dense forest. In fact the shrine is so well hidden that it would be easy to miss were it not for its maginificant torii gates.

Head to Narukawa Museum of Art by private coach.

The Narukawa Museum of Art is a contemporary art museum dedicated to a style of painting known as nihonga. Literally meaning “Japanese-style painting”, nihonga are paintings that adhere to traditional Japanese artistic conventions, techniques, tools and materials.

Next stop will be Hakonemachi where you will board a Pirate Boat (first class cabin) taking you to Togendai. Both are ports on the shores of Lake Ashi, which is in fact an enormous volcanic crater created by an eruption 3,000 years ago. Enjoy the trip from a special cabin. *In case of bad weather, Pirate Boat departure may be subjected to rescheduling or cancellation.

After arriving in Togendai we will continue your journey via Rope Way heading towards Owakudani.

The first thing you will notice when arriving in Owakudani is the smell of sulfur coming from this active volcano. There are walking trails around Owakudani that lead to steam vents and bubbling pools. The eggs they sell in Owakudani are boiled in the volcano’s natural hot springs and are said to prolong life by seven years! *Owakudani is generally accessible by ropeway, however as this area is an active volcanic zone, hiking trails may be closed due to volcanic gasses. People with respiratory problems should consult their physician before visiting the area.

Then, take a ride on the Hakone Tozan Cable Car. This cable car links Gora Station to Sounzan Station, a distance of 1.2 kilometers, in 10 minutes. The cable car races effortlessly up the steep slope where even the station platform at the top is sloping.

18:00 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

In the evening, meet with your guide in the lobby for dinner in the hotel.

Enjoy dinner at the hotel.

Overnight in Hakone

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Meals: Dinner

Day 6: Saturday 18 May 2019. Hakone – Takayama

**Luggage will be transferred to the hotel in Kanazawa separately**
*Please prepare an overnight bag for 1 night in Takayama*

Breakfast and check-out at hotel.

09:00 Depart for Odawara Station by private coach.
10:08 Afterwards, you will board the famous Shinkansen bullet train, which reaches speeds of up to 300 km/h. taking us to the city of Nagoya. There you will change onto the Limited Express Hida Wideview for the one of the most scenic train journeys in Japan, winding your way through tall mountains and stunning gorges to Takayama.
14:18 After arriving in Takayama, a private coach will take you to the Festival Floats Museum.

The Festival Floats museum displays the ornamental floats from the famous Takayama festival. The elaborately decorated floats are several hundred years old and are beautiful examples of Takayama’s legendary craftsmanship.

16:30 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

In the evening meet with your guide in the hotel for dinner.

Enjoy dinner at the hotel.

Overnight in Takayama

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Bullet Train and JR Limited Express (Odawara-Takayama/First class)
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Luggage: Transfer (Hakone – Kanazawa)
Meals: Dinner

Day 7: Sunday 19 May 2019. Takayama – Shirakawago – Kanazawa

Breakfast and check-out at hotel.

09:00 Meet with your guide at the hotel for a departure to the Miyagawa morning market by private coach.
The Miyagawa morning market is one of Japan’s biggest morning markets with stalls selling various local crafts and produce. This is a great opportunity to try some of the region’s delicious fruit and vegetables as the only people allowed to set up a stall are independent farmers and craftsmen.

Then head over to Takayama Jinya, also known as the Historical Government House by private coach. For almost two centuries this building served as a local government office and it is the only surviving government office building from Edo period. Takayama Jinya now serves as a museum where you will find well-preserved conference and interrogation rooms with old tatami floors and some century-old artefacts.

Leave Takayama by private coach and head for Shirakawago.

Visit the village of Shirakawago located midway between Takayama and Kanazawa. The area lines Shogawa River Valley in the remote mountains that stretch from Gifu all the way to Toyama prefecture. It is famous for its traditional gassho-zukuri farmhouses, some of which are more than 250 years old and were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.

Check out the Wada house where you can see what the traditional farmhouses look like from the inside.

Then head to Ogimachi Castle ruins by private coach.

During the Nambokucho period (1336-1392), aristocrats from the Nancho Southern Dynasty lived hidden in the Ogimachi-jo Castle. Today, there are hardly any remains of the castle. Currently, it is an observatory overlooking the World Heritage Site of Shirakawa-go.

18:30 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

End at hotel

Overnight in Kanazawa

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters

Day 8: Monday 20 May 2019. Kanazawa

Breakfast at hotel

09:00 After breakfast meet with your guide in the hotel lobby for a departure by private coach.

First stop of the day is the Kutani Pottery Kiln.

Opened in 1870, the Kutani Pottery Kiln is the only Kutani kiln in Kanazawa where you can see the entire process of handmade ceramics-from the forming of potter’s lathe to the paintings drawn on the potteries. This is a kiln known for its long tradition and genuine ceramic works and handmade articles with handwork paintings.

You can also test your skills with a hands-on pottery and painting experience.

Then, head to the Kenroku-en Garden by private coach.

Kenroku-en Garden is classified as one of Japan’s three most beautiful gardens and because blooming times were carefully considered during its creation, the garden remains interesting all year round. Kenroku-en literally translates to “Garden of the six sublimities”. According to ancient east-Asian landscape theory, the garden possesses all six essential attributes that make a perfect garden.

After visiting the garden, you will head to the Nagamachi Samurai District.

In the Nagamachi district you will visit the Nomura Samurai House, a traditional Japanese home with tea-ceremony room, an interior courtyard garden and artifacts from the Edo period.

Head to the Higashi Chaya District by private coach.

Kanazawa has three, well preserved chaya districts, of which the Higashi Chaya District is the largest and by far the most interesting. Several tea houses are open to the public and other buildings along the central street now house cafes and shops.

17:00 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

End at Hotel

Overnight in Kanazawa

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Activities: Hands-on pottery experience

Day 9: Tuesday 21 May 2019. Kanazawa – Kyoto

**Luggage will be transferred to the hotel in Kyoto separately**
*Please prepare an overnight bag for 1 night in Kyoto*

*Please note that you need to leave the hotel early in the morning*

Breakfast at hotel and check-out

08:15 Meet with your guide at the hotel for a departure to Kanazawa station by private coach.
09:04 At Kanazawa station board, a JR Limited express train bound for the city of Kyoto.
11:09 Upon arriving at Kyoto station, a private coach will be waiting to take you to Nara.

During the eighth century Nara was Japan’s capital for 74 years and many of the temples and shrines built at that time still stand today.

Visit Todaiji temple, one of the world’s largest wooden structures and home to Japan’s largest Buddha. The park surrounding the temple is called Nara Park, but is referred to by many as “Deer Park” due to the large population of more than one thousand tame deer who freely roam the streets and will bow their heads in exchange for a treat.

Next stop is Nara’s most celebrated shrine, Kasuga Taisha. Established in 768 AD the shrine is dedicated to the deity tasked with the protection of the city and is famous for its hundreds of bronze and stone lanterns which have been donated by worshipers over the years.

After visiting Nara, your private coach will take you back to Kyoto.

You will attend a local Japanese saké brewery and receive a private saké tasting and tour. You will have a chance to ask the brew master questions about the creation process and discover the charm of saké.

18:30 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

End at hotel

Overnight in Kyoto

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
JR Limited Express (Kanazawa – Kyoto/First class)
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Activity: Private Sake Tasting and tour
Luggage: Transfer (Kanazawa – Kyoto)

Day 10: Wednesday 22 May 2019. Kyoto – Nara – Kyoto

Breakfast at hotel.

Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

09:00 After breakfast, meet with your guide at the hotel for a departure to Ryoanji Zen Temple by private coach.

Ryoanji Zen Temple is the site of Japan’s most famous rock garden, which attracts hundreds of visitors every day. Originally an aristocrat’s villa during the Heian Period, the site was converted into a Zen temple in 1450. The garden consists of a rectangular plot of pebbles surrounded by low earthen walls, with 15 rocks laid out in small groups on patches of moss. An interesting feature of the garden’s design is that from any vantage point at least one of the rocks is always hidden from the viewer.

After visiting Ryoanji Zen Temple, a private coach will take you to Kinkakuji.

Kinkakuji, also known as the Golden Pavilion, was originally built as a retirement villa for the Shogun. After the death of Shogun Yoshimitsu it became a Buddhist Temple at his request, and is now one of Kyoto’s most famous temples, with its top two floors completely covered in gold-leaf.

Then, it’s off to the nearby town of Arashiyama by private coach.

First stop in Arashiyama is Tenryuji temple. Ranked among Kyoto’s five great Zen temples Tenryuji is the largest and most impressive temple in Arashiyama. Founded in 1339 at the start of the Muromachi Period, the temple is now considered important cultural property and ranked by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. In addition to its temple buildings, there are beautiful gardens with walking paths.

Then, you will be welcomed by a rickshaw ride which will guide you around the Arashiyama area including its amazing bamboo forest and Nonomiya shrine.

On the way to Nonomiya shrine your path will lead you through Arashiyama’s famous bamboo groves, which are unlike any other place in Japan. The bamboo has been used to manufacture various products, such as baskets, cups, boxes and mats at local workshops for centuries. Nonomiya shrine is a Shinto shrine where in ancient times, unmarried imperial princesses stayed for a year or more to purify themselves. The shrine is referenced in numerous works of literature, most notably in the world’s first novel; The Tale of Genji.

17:00

End at hotel

Overnight in Kyoto

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Activities: Rickshaw Ride

Day 11: Thursday 23 May 2019. Kyoto

Breakfast at hotel.

09:00 After breakfast, meet with your guide at the hotel for a departure to Fushimi Inari Shrine by private coach.

You will visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine. Featured in the movie “Memoirs of a Geisha”, this shrine is known for its thousands of red torii gates leading up and through the sacred forest of Mount Inari and has been voted number one must see spot in Kyoto by visitors.

After visiting the Fushimi Inari Shrine, your private coach will take you to Higashiyama District.
The Higashiyama District along the lower slopes of Kyoto’s eastern mountains is one of the city’s best-preserved historic districts. It is a great place to experience traditional old Kyoto, where the narrow lanes, wooden buildings and traditional merchant shops invoke a feeling of the old capital city.

Experience a private traditional Japanese tea ceremony. Your Tea Master will give you a full explanation of Japanese tea as well as the tea ceremony itself, its long history and relationship with Zen Buddhism. The Master will also tell you the meaning behind each movement involved in the making and serving of the tea, as well as the equipment involved.

After lunch on own, meet with ceramics artist and scholar, Robert Yellin for a personally guided tour.

Robert Yellin is one of the leading foreign experts on Japanese pottery. Yellin displays work from a variety of contemporary Japanese ceramic artists and has an eye for the distinctive and the striking.

The first stop with Robert will be The Kondo Yuzo Memorial Museum which exhibits more than 70 works of pottery and porcelain by Kondo Yuzo. Renowned for his Sometsuke technique, he gained the reputation as one of the best-known Japanese potters of the 20th century. The large plate among the collection is said to be the largest in the world.

Then, depart by private coach to Robert Yellin’s ceramic gallery and the Philosopher’s Path.

You can find examples of famous pottery areas like Bizen, but you will also encounter styles that you’ve probably never seen. Robert will be able to discuss all aspects of Japanese ceramics on display.

The Philosopher’s Path is a pleasant stone path through the northern part of Kyoto’s Higashiyama district. The path gets its name due to Nishida Kitaro, one of Japan’s most famous philosophers, who was said to practice meditation while walking this route on his daily commute to Kyoto University. There are many small temples and shrines to stop off along the walk.

18:00 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

In the evening meet with your guide for a departure to a local restaurant.

Enjoy an evening with an all you can drink dinner with entertainment provided by maiko.

22:00 Arrive at your hotel by private coach.

End at hotel

Overnight in Kyoto

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Private guiding by Robert Yellin
Transfers: Private coach
Entrances: Mentioned in bold letters
Activities: Tea ceremony
Meals: All you can drink dinner with maiko performance

Day 12: Friday 24 May 2019. Kyoto – Osaka Departure

Breakfast at hotel and check-out

Free until your departure time.

Meet with your guide in the hotel lobby for a transfer to Kansai International Airport by private coach. (90 minutes)

Depart Kansai Airport by XXX

SERVICE INCLUDE:
Guiding: English speaking guide
Transfers: Private coach

~ END OF SERVICE ~

ACCOMMODATION

City Hotel Room Type C/I C/O Status
Tokyo Palace Hotel Tokyo 10 X Deluxe King with balcony (45 sqm) 13-May 16-May Prebooked
Hakone Hakone Kowakien Ten-Yu 10 X Superior Twin Rooms
with open air bath (35 sqm)
16-May 18-May Prebooked
Takayama Hotel Associa Takayama Resort Deluxe Twin Room (46 sqm)
*There is no double rooms
at the hotel.
18-May 19-May Prebooked
Kanazawa Kanazawa Hakuchoro Hotel Sanraku Basic Twin Rooms (30 sqm)
*There is no double rooms
at the hotel.
19-May 21-May Prebooked
Kyoto FourSeasons Kyoto 10 X Deluxe King (49-53sqm) 21-May 24-May Prebooked

** Singe travelers, please call me

JAPAN TOUR QUOTE – NET COST IN JAPANESE YEN

PRICING
Validity: Booking until 14 November 2018

Number of Pax 10 + 14 + 18
Net JPY
per person
1,062,600 JPY 917,400 JPY 886,500 JPY
Single Supplement +348,600 JPY

** Singe travelers, please call me

*NOTE:

– Accommodation subject to availability.

TOUR PRICE INCLUDES:
– Accommodation as per above itinerary in twin share rooms with daily breakfast included
– Tours and transfers as specified including entry fees
– All train tickets including reserved seats in first class
– Return airport transfers
– Service of same English-Speaking guide from start to finish
– Meals as specified in the above itinerary (drinks are not included)

TOUR PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE:
– International and domestic airfares
– Meals other than specified as included
– Travel Insurance or expenses of a personal nature (minibar, phone call, laundry, etc.),
– Drinks or personal expenses or entrance fees for any extra sightseeing or optional activities
– All that is not specifically described in the text is not included

TOUR PAYMENT POLICY
– A 30% non-refundable deposit of total tour fee (including hotels and land services)
– is due by December 3th, 2018.
– Full payment is due 30 days prior to the group’s arrival.
– Should deposits and advance payments be required from contractors, these will be invoiced to the client for payment before Destination Asia makes those deposits on behalf of the clients for the respective movement.
– Pre-payment procedures during peak seasons may vary, depending on the accommodation policy to guarantee the booking. Destination Asia will inform you accordingly about this for each individual case.
– Destination Asia will provide specific bank or credit card details for each individual booking.

CANCELLATION POLICY
Any cancellations should be made in writing. Cancellation fees are according to the policies of hotels, airlines, cruises and other contractors of Destination Asia.

– 31 or more days prior to arrival date – No additional charge
– 16-30 days prior to the arrival date — 20% of tour fee
– 8-15 days prior to the arrival date — 50% of tour fee
– 0-7 days prior to the arrival date — 100% of tour fee

Please note that in addition to the above, hotels may specify additional deposit requirements or cut-off dates and cancellation penalties for bookings.
These will be advised at the time of final booking confirmation.

DIAMOND LUXURY TRAVEL POLICY
A non-refundable deposit of $600 per person is required by Diamond Luxury Travel, your Travel Planner and official Escort for this trip.
$300 due December 11, 2018 and the balance of $300 per person due February 11, 2019.
Travel Insurance is highly recommended for this tour and is not included in the Tour Price.
Please call Marie Anne Diamond 818-360-0804 for more information.