8 Day Essential Japan

From

$1199

Land Only

$2149*

Air & Land


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Featured Hotels

8 Day Essential Japan
Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Ikebukuro Tokyo
Laforet Shuzenji & Country Club Izu, Shizuoka
Numazu Riverside Hotel Numazu, Shizuoka
Oiso Prince Hotel Naka District, Kanagawa
RIHGA Royal Hotel Kyoto Kyoto

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Dates

*Not Included:
Optional tours and gratuities.


Additional Information:
Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.

Passengers should select flights that arrive between 7:00 am and 4:00 pm; and depart hotel between 10:00 am and 8:00 pm due to scheduled bus transfer times. Passengers arriving or departing outside of these times will be required to either purchase a private transfer or take a taxi locally.


Accommodation Details:
Hotel rooms in Japan cannot comfortably accommodate 3 adults; therefore, a double, plus a single room configuration should be purchased


Entry Requirements:
Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary. For visa information, check our Visas page.



Is This Trip Right for You?

In many ways Japan, the most "western" of Asian nations, has clear cultural differences. It is not our wish to generalize, but rather point out traits you may notice, and prepare your expectations. The English language can be challenging for the Japanese. It may take some time for your ear to adjust to the accent. As a nation, the Japanese are very formal and polite. Easily embarrassed by behavior to the contrary, their response can be silence, sometimes mistakenly interpreted as being "cold". Few have traveled outside of Japan, and therefore their understanding of other behavior patterns and languages is limited. We believe that a little understanding goes a long way, and hope that this explanation will help make your experience more pleasant.

This value program provides the comfort of an escorted tour, with the freedom to explore on your own. Minimal inclusions plus a variety of optional excursions allow maximum customization. This program is minimally active, unless all optional tours are selected. If so, this moderately active program covers a good amount of ground each day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. Some tours require walking in the open air with no shade. Due to specific driving regulations, the set drop off and pick up points, may result in extra walking to and from the sights. Please be aware that Japan is an expensive destination. This is an Value program. For more information, click here.

Flight Details


Accommodation Details

  • Requests are not guaranteed and are subject to each hotel's discretion and availability

Escorted Package Includes

  • Flights Los Angeles-Tokyo, Osaka-Los Angeles
    Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • 6 nights accommodations
    • 3 nights Tokyo
    • 1 night Hakone Area
    • 2 nights Kyoto
  • Hotel taxes, fees & service charges
  • Hotel porterage
  • All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
  • High-Speed Bullet Train: Mishima-Kyoto
  • 8 meals: 6 breakfasts, 2 dinners
  • Services of English-speaking tour manager throughout
  • Entrance fees per itinerary

Special Features

  • Explore the Hakone Open-Air Museum's vast array of sculptures
  • Discover Owakudani Valley’s extraordinary volcanic zone
  • Embark on a cruise on Lake Ashi and admire the stunning scenery
  • Board the famous Shinkansen, or “bullet train” that whisks you to Kyoto

†Transfers are available for purchase for land only or on alternative flight dates

Is This Trip Right for You?

In many ways Japan, the most "western" of Asian nations, has clear cultural differences. It is not our wish to generalize, but rather point out traits you may notice, and prepare your expectations. The English language can be challenging for the Japanese. It may take some time for your ear to adjust to the accent. As a nation, the Japanese are very formal and polite. Easily embarrassed by behavior to the contrary, their response can be silence, sometimes mistakenly interpreted as being "cold". Few have traveled outside of Japan, and therefore their understanding of other behavior patterns and languages is limited. We believe that a little understanding goes a long way, and hope that this explanation will help make your experience more pleasant.

This value program provides the comfort of an escorted tour, with the freedom to explore on your own. Minimal inclusions plus a variety of optional excursions allow maximum customization. This program is minimally active, unless all optional tours are selected. If so, this moderately active program covers a good amount of ground each day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. Some tours require walking in the open air with no shade. Due to specific driving regulations, the set drop off and pick up points, may result in extra walking to and from the sights. Please be aware that Japan is an expensive destination. This is an Value program. For more information, click here.

Watch our Video!
Note: your itinerary will change depending upon the day of the week you depart. Click a day above to see what is included.

DAY 1, Saturday - Depart for Japan
Depart for Japan

DAY 2, Sunday - Arrive in Tokyo
Arrive in dynamic Tokyo, the ultra high-tech and fascinating metropolis and transfer to your hotel. Balance of the day is at leisure to rest and relax. This evening, attend an orientation meeting at approximately at 7:00 pm with your Tour Manager on the exciting adventure that awaits you in Japan, followed by a Welcome Drink with your fellow travelers. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4 pm on Day 2 of the itinerary, if possible
Overnight: Tokyo

DAY 3, Monday - Full Day in Tokyo
Spend the day at leisure to explore all of the delights of Tokyo on your own, or join the optional Full Day Tokyo Tour. Witness the stark contrasts of this dazzling city of ancient traditions coupled with state-of-the-art technology. Begin, with a visit to the hectic Tsukiji Fish Market, one of the largest wholesale markets in the world, famous for fish and seafood. Afterward, travel to the imposing Asakusa Kannon Temple (Sensoji) enshrining a golden image of Kannon, the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy; its entrance is dominated by a massive paper lantern dramatically painted in vivid red and black colors. Walk along Nakamise, a centuries-old shopping area, where you can find everything from souvenirs to genuine Edo-style crafts. Next, stroll through the Imperial Palace East Garden, located next to the Tokyo Imperial Palace, considered the largest castle in the area. This was the former site of Edo Castle and is now the main residence of the Emperor of Japan. Your tour concludes at the famous Ginza shopping district, Tokyo's most celebrated shopping and amusement area
Optional: Tokyo City Tour
Overnight: Tokyo
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Tuesday - Full Day in Tokyo
The day is free, to further explore the enormous metropolis of Tokyo independently. As a premier global city, Tokyo offers incredible cuisine, and a vast array of art and fashion venues. For a different view of the city, take a stroll in the beautiful Ueno Park and visit the Tokyo National Museum, housing a collection of fascinating artifacts from across Asia. Perhaps, participate in the optional Nikko Tour, a small historical city at the entrance of the Nikko National Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site served as a center for Shinto and Buddhist mountain worship for centuries. Visit Nikko Toshogu shrine and marvel at the splendor of this sanctuary, surrounded by lush forests. Stop for an authentic Japanese-style lunch at a local restaurant. Afterward, view the sacred red lacquered Shinkyo Bridge, that arches elegantly across the Daiya River. Continue with a sake tasting at a local brewery and learn about the process of making sake, before your return drive to Tokyo
Optional: Full Day Nikko Tour with Lunch
Overnight: Tokyo
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5, Wednesday - Travel to Hakone, Owakudari Valley, Lake Ashi Cruise
This morning, depart Tokyo and drive south to Hakone, the most famous National Park in Japan, admiring the breathtaking scenery along the way. Stop for a visit to the Hakone Open-Air Museum, a 200-acre park that is located on a hillside and surrounded by majestic mountains and green valleys. Explore the museum's vast sculpture collection from the 19th and 20th century, including artworks by Japanese and Western artists. After lunch on your own, continue with a gondola ride on the Hakone Ropeway that takes you to the Owakudani Valley’s extraordinary volcanic zone. Here, the bubbling pools cook eggs in the hot waters blackened by sulfur, and are said to prolong one's life by at least seven years. Enjoy a relaxing cruise around placid Lake Ashi. Proceed to your hotel in the Hakone area. Enjoy dinner with your fellow travelers
Overnight: Hakone Area
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 6, Thursday - Bullet Train to Kyoto
After breakfast, transfer to Mishima station for your bullet train to historic Kyoto, a city that once served as the imperial capital of Japan and home of the country’s most treasured remnants of Japanese imperial life. Upon arrival, take a short walking tour and spend free time for lunch on your own, before checking into your hotel. Remainder of the day is at leisure. You may choose to participate in the optional Half Day Kyoto Tour. Begin with a visit to the celebrated gold-gilded Kinkakuji Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, known as the “Golden Pavilion’ surrounded by trees and nestled on a reflective pond. The temple was constructed in the 14th century by the Ashikaga clan. Next, take a walk in Gion, Kyoto's most famous Geisha district; view the shops, restaurants and tea houses where Geisha entertain. Conclude the tour in Kawaramachi, the city's bustling center that is loaded with shops, restaurants, bars and clubs. This evening, discover Kyoto's diverse cuisine
Optional: Kyoto City Tour (PM)
Overnight: Kyoto
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 7, Friday - Full Day in Kyoto
Spend your day at leisure in Kyoto to explore this fascinating city on your own or, join the optional tour to Kyoto & Nara. Visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine located at the base of Inari mountain, that is famous for its thousands of vermilion colored torii gates. Afterward, travel via the Nara Keinawa expressway to the 8th century Imperial capital of Nara, repository of Japan's cultural heritage, with eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a wealth of historic treasures. Arrive at the exquisite Todai-ji Temple, one of the world’s largest wooden structures and home of the impressive Great Buddha bronze statue, rising over 50 feet high. You then continue to Nara Park to see the over 1,000 tame deer roaming freely in the peaceful park. The tour concludes with a visit to the famous and beautiful Kasuga Taisha Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, displaying over 3,000 stone and bronze lanterns. Return to Kyoto and enjoy leisure time this afternoon before a Farewell Drink and light dinner at the hotel
Optional: Kyoto & Nara Tour (AM)
Overnight: Kyoto
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 8, Saturday - Depart Japan
Transfer to the Osaka airport for your departure flight. Please select flights that depart between 10:00 am and 8:00 pm
Meals: Breakfast

Book Now!
Gate 1 Travel itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.
Book your Optional Tours before you travel. See more, save time, save money.
  • Tours purchased while travelling may cost an extra 10% or more
  • Tours often sell out. Avoid disappointment
  • Save your cash. Credit card processing may not be possible locally
  • Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure
  • Book Online or call to book these tours up to 1 week before your departure
  • The day the optionals operate varies by the day of the week
Tokyo City Tour

Embark on a tour of Tokyo that begins with a visit to the hectic Tsukiji Fish Market, one of the largest markets in the world, famous for fish and seafood. Afterward, travel to the imposing Asakusa Kannon Temple (Sensoji) enshrining a golden image of Kannon, the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy; its entrance is dominated by a massive paper lantern dramatically painted in vivid red and black colors. Walk along Nakamise, a centuries-old shopping area, where you can find everything from souvenirs to genuine Edo-style crafts. Next, stroll through the Imperial Palace East Garden, located next to the Tokyo Imperial Palace, considered the largest castle in the area. This was the former site of Edo Castle and is now the main residence of the Emperor of Japan. Your tour concludes at the famous Ginza shopping district, Tokyo's most celebrated shopping and amusement area.

Pick up details to be advised locally. Drop-off at the hotel. Approximate tour duration is 7 hours.

Day #3 01 Dec 2019 - 31 Dec 2020 $79.00
Tokyo City Tour Thumbnail
Full Day Nikko Tour with lunch

Today, travel to Nikko, a small historical city at the entrance of the Nikko National Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site served as a center for Shinto and Buddhist mountain worship for centuries. Visit Nikko Toshogu shrine and marvel at the splendor of this sanctuary, surrounded by lush forests. Stop for an authentic Japanese-style lunch at a local restaurant. Afterward, view the sacred red lacquered Shinkyo Bridge, that arches elegantly across the Daiya River. Continue with a sake tasting at a local brewery and learn about the process of making sake, before your return drive to Tokyo.

Pick up details to be advised locally. Drop-off at the hotel. Approximate tour duration is 11 hours.

Day #4 01 Dec 2019 - 31 Dec 2020 $169.00
Full Day Nikko Tour with lunch Thumbnail
Kyoto City Tour

Begin with a visit to the celebrated gold-gilded Kinkakuji Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, known as the "Golden Pavilion" surrounded by trees and nestled on a reflective pond. The temple was constructed in the 14th century by the Ashikaga clan. Next, take a walk in Gion, Kyoto's most famous Geisha district; view the shops, restaurants and tea houses where Geisha entertain. Conclude the tour in Kawaramachi, the city's bustling center that is loaded with shops, restaurants, bars and clubs.

Pick up details to be advised locally. Drop-off at the hotel. Approximate tour duration is 5 hours.

Day #6 01 Dec 2019 - 31 Dec 2020 $69.00
Kyoto City Tour Thumbnail
Kyoto & Nara Tour

This morning, visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine located at the base of Inari mountain, that is famous for its thousands of vermilion colored torii gates. Afterward, travel via the Nara Keinawa expressway to the 8th century Imperial capital of Nara, repository of Japan's cultural heritage, with eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a wealth of historic treasures. Arrive at the exquisite Todai-ji Temple, one of the world’s largest wooden structures and home of the impressive Great Buddha bronze statue, rising over 50 feet high. You then continue to Nara Park to see the over 1,000 tame deer roaming freely in the peaceful park. The tour concludes with a visit to the famous and beautiful Kasuga Taisha Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, displaying over 3,000 stone and bronze lanterns.

Pick up details to be advised locally. Drop-off at the hotel. Approximate tour duration is 6 hours.

Day #7 01 Dec 2019 - 31 Dec 2020 $79.00
Kyoto & Nara Tour Thumbnail

Japan, Then & Now, May 2019
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My trip was wonderful, Shizu made it perfect for us all, she was a fantastic guide incredibly well informed, organized with a lovely warm personality & sense of humor. She went out of her way to take some of us out for a walk around the night spots in Tokyo on our last night. A lovely city! The accommodations were excellent as were the included meals. Such fun dining dressed in the Yukata! I loved all the gardens, the bamboo forest, visits to the fish markets, interesting shops with different merchandise the WADA Village, actually seeing Mt Fuji & the museum with the kimonos, all the temples & shrines. The rickshaw ride, sushi making lunch were all great fun. The group were lovely, no one ran late and good relationships were formed. I consider myself very fortunate to have been able to take advantage of the single supplement & hope to be able to do so again on future Discovery tours. David in the a Melbourne office was very helpful too, all in all my very first experience on a group tour had been fabulous as had Gate 1.

Victoria S. Cammeray, Australia
Japan, Then & Now, May 2019
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We had a wonderful trip in Japan. Our trip leader Makiko was sooo awesome. She was very well organized and filled with knowledge. We enjoyed every aspect of the trip all because of Makiko’s professionalism and organizational skills. The program covered so many aspects of Japan cultures and history provided us with wealth of information!

Sharon L. Laguna Woods, CA
9 Day Classic Japan, April 2019
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We had a wonderful time. Our tour manager Rumi was the best. She is very knowledgeable and she gave us lots of information about Japanese culture and traditions. Took care of everyone’s needs. Rumi has a delightful personality. Overall it was a great trip. I am glad we chose Gate 1. Japan is a great place to visit.

Lovleen S. Bloomington, IL
9 Day Classic Japan, April 2019
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The trip was wonderful, we loved it from the culture to the Japanese people. We took two of our daughters and my niece and nephew along with us and we had a really good family trip together. Thank you Gate 1 for organizing it! This was our 3rd time with Gate 1. We will go with them in the future and I always recommend all of our friends to go with Gate 1. Thanks again Gate 1.

Nancy N. Fountain Valley, CA
9 Day Classic Japan, January 2019
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The Japan tour was so enjoyable, the country is fascinating, the Gate 1 arrangements were excellent. Jaya, and self thank you for facilitating this. We look forward to interact with you for similar future tours.

Gopal S. Naperville, IL
Japan, Then & Now, March 2019
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The trip to Japan was great. We enjoyed the experiences (kimono dressing, rickshaw ride, traditional Japanese inn, public baths, etc.) that were part of the Discovery tour.

Jean K. Naperville, IL
9 Day Classic Japan, January 2019
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The trip was great! This was our first visit to Japan and we enjoyed seeing all the sights in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Nara. Our tour director, Akane, was also wonderful! She was able to keep everyone on schedule while remaining bubbly and funny. She is very knowledgeable about the customs and history and added greatly to our understanding and enjoyment of the sites. She also pointed out several good restaurants and that was very helpful ... One of the main attractions in our tours with Gate 1 are the wonderful buffet breakfasts in the hotels. That always puts a highlight at the beginning of the day!

Johnny C. Union City, CA
9 Day Classic Japan, January 2019
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It was a great trip! Our guide Akena was exceptional. She made it awesome. Hiroshima was the highlight for me. Very sobering. Another fine job Gate 1!

Stephen R. Mogadore, OH
9 Day Classic Japan, November 2018
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Japan was wonderful! I had minimal expectations going in, but the trip was probably my best ever! On top of all the fantastic sights and experiences, our tour guide Rumi was SUPERB! She was so warm, funny, friendly, and never boring. And she took such excellent care of us and led us to so many hidden gems. During our bus rides, she even shared with us her wonderful personal photos. Rumi definitely made this experience one I will always treasure.

Michelle D. Atlanta, GA
7 Day Tokyo Vacation, October 2018
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My trip was the greatest I have ever been on. I had so much fun and I wish I didn’t have to come back. I LOVE your travel company. You guys make traveling so affordable and the accommodations we get for the prices we pay are phenomenal. Plus, you guys are so helpful with any questions and concerns we might have as a customer. I'm definitely booking another trip with you guys and I informed all my coworkers about your company. I have no complaints or regrets. I'm very happy that I booked with Gate 1.

Stacey C. Jamaica, NY
Japan, Then & Now, October 2018
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The trip was excellent ... Our guide, Hiroko, was fantastic - knowledgeable, caring, and funny - with many tips, tricks and stories to help us appreciate the Japanese country and culture.

Jonathan K. Plainsboro, NJ
Japan, Then & Now, July 2018
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It was awesome. This was my first tour with Gate1. I was not disappointed. It was well planned, there were variety of things to do, places to visit. Our dietary need as a vegetarian was taken care of! I loved the tour guide, Yumi. She was great.

Abirami K. Cupertino, CA
Japan, Then & Now, May 2018
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Our Japan trip was excellent & very enjoyable. Tokyo & Kyoto hotels were very centrally located, convenient and excellent. I will give them A+. Our tour guide/ Manager Mr. katsumi was the best ... Wish we had manager like Mr. katsumi on all our tour. Very down to earth person.

Jash P. Indianapolis, IN
Japan, Then & Now, May 2018
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Great! Japan is very clean. I like Kyota best. Tokyo is a so big that it would be very scary if you got separated from your guide. Very interesting country

Fay S. Pittsburgh, PA
Japan, Then & Now, April 2018
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The Japan tour was great! Our tour guide Mitsuko was very nice, friendly and knowledgeable. The hotels were great as well. We are now discussing of where Gate1 will take us next.

Nina M. Los Angeles, CA
Japan, Then & Now, March 2018
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The Discovery Japan tour is one of our top three favorite trips from Gate 1. The enriching cultural history, the food, the Japanese Garden, the unforgettable view of Mt. Fuji, the Cherry blossom festival ,the kimono dressing, the unforgettable bullet train experience and the geisha dance performance. Overall, A wonderful wonder wow vacation.

Josie F. Laguna Niguel, CA
Japan, Then & Now, March 2018
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It was an excellent trip and the tour manager Rumi Yamaguchi was very knowledgable ,helpful in short she was a superior tour guide.

Ayse R. Des Plaines, IL
7 Day Tokyo Vacation , February 2018
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Everything went great! Your company made it super easy, check in process at hotel went smoothly as did the airport shuttle. We had an amazing time. Thank you

Indira A. Burbank, CA
Japan, Then & Now, February 2018
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Generally we were pleased with the tour. It was well organized, transportation from and to airports was reliable, hotels very nice. Our tour director and guide, Shizu, was outstanding-helpful, informative and good sense of humour. It was a bit cool in February, but probably it was less crowded than other times of the year and Shirakawa in the snow was beautiful. We would certainly consider other tours with Gate 1.

Warren B. Ottawa, CA
Japan, Then & Now, February 2018
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It was wonderful!!! We loved Shizu, she really made the tour great. She has a charming personality that made learning interesting. Well done Shizu!!!

Cathleen P. Camillus, NY
9 Day Tokyo & Kyoto, January 2018
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Japan was amazing! My family has taken other tours, but this one was above and beyond the best we have done and far exceeded our expectations. Even the other travelers, which your company cannot necessarily account for, were great company. All the guides were extremely knowledgeable and friendly. Yoshi from Grayline tours for Tokyo and Mount Fuji & Hakone in addition to Marie from Sunrise tours for Nikko city and Hiro from Gate 1 for Nara were all fantastic. In addition, the accommodations were very good and in excellent locations. The staff at all hotels were very friendly to us travelers and helpful as well. Thank you so much for a wonderful trip, and please let me know if I can provide you with any additional information.

Victoria Tarrytown, NY

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