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Classic Japan with Matsue and Osaka

14 Days 1 Country 6 Cities

Ancient capitals, modern cityscapes and feudal castles take centre stage on this in-depth exploration of Japan, including a visit to the City of Water that has inspired countless legends.

Your Itinerary
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14 Days 1 Country 6 Cities

Classic Japan with Matsue and Osaka

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    iNotes
    • Cherry Blossom season varies between different regions of Japan and is dependant on weather conditions so can also vary slightly each year. Late March to mid April are the most likely times to experience it on this trip but this is not guaranteed.
    • Visas are generally not required for Japan for many nationalities. Please contact the consulate/embassy for further information.
    • Trip prices are per person, land only, based on double occupancy and reflect applicable discount. Discounts are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice.
    • Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change - please confirm all details at time of booking.
    • For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Website Terms of Use page.
    • Twin-share option not available for trips to South America, Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey. It's also not available on Small Group trips.  Guided Vacations included in this restriction are Newfoundland and Labrador (DNLA) as well as Panama, the Canal & Beyond (LPAN).  
    • For trips that are part of our Guaranteed Room Share, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 

    This departure of Classic Japan with Matsue and Osaka is sold out. However, we have an alternative trip with a similar itinerary - take a look...

    X Days X Countries X Cities

    Please select a date

    Departure date

    Tokyo, Japan

    Return date

    Osaka, Japan

    Book and Pay By:

    i Flights available

    Hurry almost full

    Early payment discount

    Was: PP

    Save: PP

    Code: XXXXX

      Extensions available for this trip

      Secure your trip with a deposit today

      Please read our Trip Notes before booking

      iNotes
      • Cherry Blossom season varies between different regions of Japan and is dependant on weather conditions so can also vary slightly each year. Late March to mid April are the most likely times to experience it on this trip but this is not guaranteed.
      • Visas are generally not required for Japan for many nationalities. Please contact the consulate/embassy for further information.
      • Trip prices are per person, land only, based on double occupancy and reflect applicable discount. Discounts are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice.
      • Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change - please confirm all details at time of booking.
      • For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Website Terms of Use page.
      • Twin-share option not available for trips to South America, Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey. It's also not available on Small Group trips.  Guided Vacations included in this restriction are Newfoundland and Labrador (DNLA) as well as Panama, the Canal & Beyond (LPAN).  
      • For trips that are part of our Guaranteed Room Share, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 

      About this trip

      Ancient capitals, modern cityscapes and feudal castles take centre stage on this in-depth exploration of Japan, including a visit to the City of Water that has inspired countless legends.


      Trip type: Country Explorer i

      Trip code: JPCM

      13 Nights

      accommodation

      21 Meals
      • 13 buffet breakfasts

      • 5 lunches (Including Connect with Locals)

      • 3 dinners

      On-trip Transport

      All transport shown.

      Highlights

      What's Included

      Sightseeing Highlights

      Japan Discovery 924294282
        • CITY TOUR of Tokyo, Kamakura, Matsue and Osaka

        • CRUISE along the Sumida River in Tokyo, Lake Shinjiko in Matsue and on the Okawa River in Osaka

        • SEE the multiple orange coloured torii gates in Kamakura, the Togetsukyo Bridge in Arashiyama and Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka

        • VISIT Sensoji Temple in Tokyo, Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine and Kotokuin Temple in Kamakura, Mt. Fuji 5th Station, Gion District, Arashiyama and Kinkakuji Temple in Kyoto, Todaiji Temple and Nara Park in Nara, Peace Memorial Park and Museum in Hiroshima, Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima Island, Matsue Castle, Tusyunoten Shrine and Umeda Sky Building in Osaka


      What's Included

      Dining

        • 13 buffet breakfasts

        • 5 lunches
          (Including Connect with Locals)

        • 3 dinners


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      What's Included

      Travel Highlights

      $name
        • Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing

        • Daily breakfast and an average of 50% of evening meals

        • Luxury air-conditioned coach or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)

        • Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted

        • Hand-picked Insider Experiences

        • Optional Experiences and free time

        • Porterage and local charges included

        • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras

        • An expert Travel Director and separate Driver

        • All hotel tips, charges and local taxes

        • Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday


        Airport Transfers

      • Specific transfer information can be found on the airport transfers page


       

      Classic Japan with Matsue and Osaka

      Your Itinerary

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      Day 1

      ARRIVE TOKYO (4 NIGHTS)

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      Day 2

      TOKYO SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 3

      KAMAKURA SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 4

      MT. FUJI AND OWAKUDANI

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      Day 5

      TOKYO - KYOTO (3 NIGHTS)

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      Day 6

      KYOTO SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 7

      NARA SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 8

      KYOTO - HIROSHIMA (2 NIGHTS)

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      Day 9

      HIROSHIMA SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 10

      HIROSHIMA - MATSUE (2 NIGHTS)

      Japan Matsue 520984703

      Day 11

      MATSUE SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 12

      MATSUE - TSUYAMA - OSAKA (2 NIGHTS)

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      Day 13

      OSAKA SIGHTSEEING

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      Day 14

      DEPART OSAKA

      Day 1

      ARRIVE TOKYO (4 NIGHTS) Day 1 - ARRIVE TOKYO (4 NIGHTS)

      Tokyo's futuristic cityscape launches your journey through Japan's modern centres and ancient capitals. On arrival at Tokyo Narita or Haneda Airport, you'll be transferred by airport shuttle to your hotel. This evening, meet your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception drink with appetisers.

      Hotel

      Keio Plaza

      Meals

      • Welcome Reception

      Hotel

      Keio Plaza

      Meals

      • Welcome Reception

      Day 1

      Day 2

      TOKYO SIGHTSEEING Day 2 - TOKYO SIGHTSEEING

      Rub shoulders with the locals this morning as you 'Dive into Culture' and wander through Ameyoko Street Market, once a black market selling American goods after World War II. Continue to the old-time entertainment centre of Asakusa to visit the Sensoji Buddhist Temple, which has been rebuilt countless times since its founding in 628, making it Tokyo's oldest temple site. Take a stroll down Nakamise shopping street with some free time for lunch, then join a 'Local Specialist' and learn the mesmerising rhythmic art of Taiko drumming, one of Japan's most popular cultural icons. Board a cruise along the Sumida River to admire Tokyo's modern skyline, the traditional neighbourhoods of old Edo and beautiful Hamarikyu Garden. Later, return to your hotel for time at leisure and dinner at a Sumo-themed izakaya restaurant.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Dinner

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Dinner

      Day 2

      Day 3

      KAMAKURA SIGHTSEEING Day 3 - KAMAKURA SIGHTSEEING

      We journey to Kamakura today. A former political capital, its glory days under the Kamakura shogunate spanned from the 12th to 14th centuries, coinciding with the spread of Buddhism in Japan which is reflected in the city's numerous temples. The most important of these is the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu shrine, which we'll have an opportunity to visit this morning, passing multiple torii gates that line the wide approach from Kamakura's waterfront. We head to Komachi-dori street for some free time to admire the old western-style houses lining narrow alleys that branch off this popular market street. Later, we'll travel to Kotokuin Temple to see its Great Buddha which weighs 121 tons. Returning to Tokyo, enjoy an evening at leisure or an opportunity to join one of Trafalgar's Optional Experiences.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Day 3

      Day 4

      MT. FUJI AND OWAKUDANI Day 4 - MT. FUJI AND OWAKUDANI

      The towering slopes of snow-capped Mt. Fuji loom in the distance as we journey from Tokyo to this celebrated UNESCO-listed site. Admire spectacular views of the surrounding countryside from its 5th station, a magnificent vantage point at 2,300 metres. After lunch at a local restaurant, we'll continue to Owakudani to see the volcanic activity. Consider sampling the local black eggs boiled in geysers, then head back to the hotel for an evening at leisure.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Day 4

      Day 5

      TOKYO - KYOTO (3 NIGHTS) Day 5 - TOKYO - KYOTO (3 NIGHTS)

      We leave Tokyo, travelling by high-speed bullet train to Kyoto, another former capital of Japan and the centre of Japanese culture for centuries. On arrival, we'll embark on a walking tour of the Gion District, embracing the energy of Kawaramachi street. Enjoy some free time before we head to the UNESCO-listed Kinkakuji Temple, whose glittering golden pavilion is widely regarded as the symbol of Kyoto. Enjoy the rest of the evening at leisure and perhaps some karaoke or a visit to a local Geisha teahouse.

      Hotel

      Nikko Princess

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Hotel

      Nikko Princess

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Day 5

      Day 6

      KYOTO SIGHTSEEING Day 6 - KYOTO SIGHTSEEING

      After a late start this morning, we'll visit one of Kyoto's highlights - the historic and scenic district of Arashiyama, renowned for its cherry blossom trees which bloom in the springtime and its beautiful landscapes that change dramatically from season to season. Enjoy a leisurely walk through the towering Bamboo groves and see its iconic Togetsukyo Bridge. Connect with nature in the Zen gardens of Tenryuji Temple, then return to Kyoto for some free time at Nishiki market, a traditional food market known by locals as "Kyoto's Pantry". Return to your hotel or consider joining an Optional Experience.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Day 6

      Day 7

      NARA SIGHTSEEING Day 7 - NARA SIGHTSEEING

      Delve into the ancient history of Nara, the first permanent capital city of Japan. Here you'll visit the landmark Todaiji Temple, one of the powerful Seven Great Temples and home to one of Japan's largest bronze statues of Buddha. Take a stroll around Nara Park, home to hundreds of freely roaming tame deer, then 'Connect with Locals' over a Be My Guest lunch with a local farmer at his tea plantation. Gain insights into the life of his family while sampling fresh tea and indulging in a delicious home-made meal. Return to Kyoto later, for an evening at leisure.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Day 7

      Day 8

      KYOTO - HIROSHIMA (2 NIGHTS) Day 8 - KYOTO - HIROSHIMA (2 NIGHTS)

      This morning, we board a high-speed bullet train to Hiroshima, a lively city that celebrates peace in the shadow of the previous century's devastation. Our first stop is to a local restaurant where we'll join our 'Local Specialist' for an Okonomiyaki Making experience. Mix your ingredients to make your own savoury pancake and cook it on a hot plate before enjoying your creation for lunch. This afternoon, we head to the Peace Memorial Park and Museum and see the UNESCO-listed Peace Memorial, the only structure left standing when the first atomic bomb exploded in 1945. Take a moment to contemplate its symbolic expression of hope for world peace, then spend the rest of the evening at leisure.

      Hotel

      Rihga Royal

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Hotel

      Rihga Royal

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Day 8

      Day 9

      HIROSHIMA SIGHTSEEING Day 9 - HIROSHIMA SIGHTSEEING

      Take the ferry to Miyajima Island to visit the famous UNESCO-listed Itsukushima Shrine and elaborate torii gate rising majestically out of the sea. Learn how to make Momiji Manjyu, one of the local specialities, shaping your steamed bun in the shape of a maple leaf and filling it with sweet red bean paste. You'll have an opportunity to sample your work before some free time for lunch. Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure or consider joining an Optional Experience. Later, join your fellow guests and Travel Director for a Farewell Dinner in a local restaurant.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Farewell Dinner

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Farewell Dinner

      Day 9

      Day 10

      HIROSHIMA - MATSUE (2 NIGHTS) Day 10 - HIROSHIMA - MATSUE (2 NIGHTS)

      Depart Hiroshima this morning bound for Matsue, the "City of Water" and home to one of Japan's few remaining original castles, which you'll have an opportunity to explore after lunch at your hotel. Located on the shores of Shinji Lake, the "black castle" remains in its original wooden form and features an extensive collection of Japanese samurai armour and swords. The heritage of the samurai is further explored during a visit to a local residence which once belonged to a middle-ranking samurai family who worked for the Matsue clan. Here you will gain insights into how the samurais lived surrounded by the charm and character of old Japan, before strolling down scenic Shiomi Nawate which lines the castle moat. This evening is at leisure.

      Hotel

      Matsue Excel Tokyu

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Hotel

      Matsue Excel Tokyu

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Day 10

      Day 11

      MATSUE SIGHTSEEING Day 11 - MATSUE SIGHTSEEING

      Celebrate Japanese art and garden design during this morning's visit to the Adachi Museum of Art in Yasugi. Famous for its award-winning Japanese garden, ranked first for 15 consecutive years by the US magazine 'Journal of Japanese Gardening', the museum houses a large collection of 20th century paintings and artworks which are rotated seasonally. Return to Matsue and enjoy some free time for lunch before joining a 'Local Specialist' who will teach you how to make waga-shi, traditional Japanese sweets made in a variety of shapes and consistencies. Today, Matsue is one of the three most famous producers of waga-shi. This evening, enjoy a relaxing cruise on Lake Shinjiko, admiring the sun's reflection on the lake's still waters, signalling the end of a busy day of sightseeing.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Day 11

      Day 12

      MATSUE - TSUYAMA - OSAKA (2 NIGHTS) Day 12 - MATSUE - TSUYAMA - OSAKA (2 NIGHTS)

      Take a step back in time during this morning's visit to Tsuyama, a former castle town which enjoyed its heyday as a merchant city between the 17th and 19th centuries. Today, all that remains of this time are the 45-metre-tall stone walls and beautiful cherry blossoms that dot the city's Kakuzan-koen park in the springtime. Join your 'Local Specialist' for a walk around the Joto district, with its many machiya (traditional townhouses) revealing the city's former trading heritage. Afterwards, enjoy lunch in a local restaurant before continuing to the pulsating cityscape that is Osaka. On arrival, embark on an orientation drive through the city before checking in to your hotel for an evening at leisure.

      Hotel

      Sheraton Miyako

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Hotel

      Sheraton Miyako

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast
      • Lunch

      Day 12

      Day 13

      OSAKA SIGHTSEEING Day 13 - OSAKA SIGHTSEEING

      Gain a different perspective of Osaka's landmark city sights, starting your day with a cruise on the 'aqua-bus' along Okawa River. Sail past the Japan Mint, City Hall, Nakanoshima and Osaka Castle, one of Japan's most famous landmarks. Visit the downtown district of Shinsekai to see the Tsutenkaku Tower, then continue to the Dotonbori Street area for some time at leisure. Delve into the star-crossed love story of Ohatsu and Tokubei during your visit to the Tusyunoten Shrine in Umeda, associated with the Edo-period play 'The Love Suicides of Sonezaki, which tells of the tragic double suicide that took place at the shrine in 1703. To this day, visitors write their prayers for success in love on special wooden plaques called ema, many of which bear the image of Ohatsu and Tokubei. Admire the panoramic views of Osaka from the Floating Garden Observatory - an open-air viewing platform that straddles the two towers of the Umeda Sky Building. Then, return to your hotel or consider joining an Optional Experience for your final evening in Japan.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Day 13

      Day 14

      DEPART OSAKA Day 14 - DEPART OSAKA

      Say a fond sayonara to Japan and take a transfer by airport shuttle service to Kansai International Airport or Osaka Itami Airport for your onward flight.

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Meals

      • Buffet Breakfast

      Day 14

      Available Departures

      Please see http://www.trafalgar.com:80/en-za/tours/classic-japan-with-matsue-and-osaka?tripcode=jpcm for the latest discounts & departure information.

      The Trafalgar Difference

      • CONNECT WITH LOCALS
        Lunch with a local farmer's family who run a traditional tea plantation in Nara. (Day 7)

      • DIVE INTO CULTURE
        Visit Ameyoko Street Market, take a Taiko Drumming lesson, dine in a izakaya restaurant (Day 2). Learn how to make Okonomiyaki (Day 8) and Momiji Manjyu (Day 9). Learn how to make waga-shi, traditional Japanese sweets (Day 11).

      • LOCAL SPECIALISTS
        Taiko drumming lesson (Day 2) and Okonomiyaki making experience (Day 8) in Matsue (Day 11) and Tsuyama (Day 12).

      Find out what makes Trafalgar different.

      Highlights

      What's Included

      Sightseeing Highlights

      Japan Discovery 924294282
        • CITY TOUR of Tokyo, Kamakura, Matsue and Osaka

        • CRUISE along the Sumida River in Tokyo, Lake Shinjiko in Matsue and on the Okawa River in Osaka

        • SEE the multiple orange coloured torii gates in Kamakura, the Togetsukyo Bridge in Arashiyama and Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka

        • VISIT Sensoji Temple in Tokyo, Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine and Kotokuin Temple in Kamakura, Mt. Fuji 5th Station, Gion District, Arashiyama and Kinkakuji Temple in Kyoto, Todaiji Temple and Nara Park in Nara, Peace Memorial Park and Museum in Hiroshima, Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima Island, Matsue Castle, Tusyunoten Shrine and Umeda Sky Building in Osaka


      What's Included

      Dining

        • 13 buffet breakfasts

        • 5 lunches
          (Including Connect with Locals)

        • 3 dinners


      $name

      What's Included

      Travel Highlights

      $name
        • Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing

        • Daily breakfast and an average of 50% of evening meals

        • Luxury air-conditioned coach or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)

        • Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted

        • Hand-picked Insider Experiences

        • Optional Experiences and free time

        • Porterage and local charges included

        • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras

        • An expert Travel Director and separate Driver

        • All hotel tips, charges and local taxes

        • Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday


        Airport Transfers

      • Specific transfer information can be found on the airport transfers page


      Why Trafalgar?

      The Trafalgar Experience

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      Enjoy

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      Meet

      Meet warm-hearted locals and like-minded travellers. Along your journey of discovery, stop to share stories and flavours with local farmers, chefs and winemakers. Pause to admire the handicrafts and rich traditions of amazing artisans. Explore the essence of Europe through captivating accounts shared by expert historians and savvy local guides.


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      Classic Japan with Matsue and Osaka

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