Classic Japan Explorer: A Luxury Introduction to Japan
Discover a fusion of modern and ancient on a tour of Tokyo, Kyoto and Kanazawa
Personalised journeys from start to finish
Save an acre of rainforest each time you travel
Every detail taken care of
- Completely private tours of Tokyo, Kanazawa and Kyoto
- Luxury accommodation throughout
- Bullet Train journeys
- Meet and greet airport service
- Full support from your Travel Concierge before, during and after your trip
At a glance
Discover the Land of the Rising Sun with a luxury eight-day trip. Your introduction to this fascinating volcanic archipelago takes you to the main island of Honshu with visits to three of Japan‘s most important cultural centres. You’ll stay at luxury accommodation at every step of the way with expert guides on hand and our insider recommendations to ensure that you get the most out of each destination.
We begin in Tokyo, Japan‘s bright, exciting capital, to explore one of the most modern cities in the world with an exclusive private tour and a stay in an exceptional hotel.
Next we travel to the historical centre of Kanazawa by high-speed bullet train. Kanazawa survives as a beautifully preserved example of medieval Japan and you’ll explore it with private tours to ancient samurai and geisha districts and the spectacular Kenroku-en Garden. You’ll stay in a traditional hot spring ryokan, relaxing in mineral-rich waters before feasting on delicious kaiseki dinners of up to 13 elaborate dishes.
It’s then on to our final stop, Kyoto, the City of Ten Thousand Shrines. Here we discover imperial Japan, catching sight of kimono-clad geisha on their way to engagements and visiting ancient palaces and temples on private, in-depth tours.
Example Trip Itinerary
Upon arrival into Tokyo's Narita airport, you will be met by an english speaking Jacada representative and assisted through immigration. You'll then be transferred in a private vehicle to your chosen hotel in Tokyo.
Accommodation in Tokyo
- 84 rooms and suites
- Restaurant and bar
- Pool and fitness centre
Embracing the minimalism of traditional Japanese architecture, this retreat is the epitome of the luxury found in the very heart of Tokyo. Aman is a stylish, bespoke hotel that will offer you an array of amenities and easy accessibility to the city’s sights. Each of the 84 guest rooms and suites have unique layouts with uncompromising city views and every contemporary convenience. You’ll find the design inspiration evident throughout the hotel, from traditional Japanese residential structures to the use of classical materials such as camphor wood, washi paper and stone alongside modern luxurious fabrics. The hotel also offers an exquisite dining experience in their elegant mediterranean fine dining restaurant on the 33rd floor with views of the Imperial Palace Gardens and Mount Fuji. Take a dip in the infinity pool on the 34th floor, high above the hustle and bustle of the city or head to the spa to relax after a long day of exploring the city. You’ll also enjoy Ginza, the upmarket shopping area just a pleasant 15 minute walk away.
- 314 guest rooms and suites
- Pool and fitness centre
- 3 restaurants
Built of amber Namibian granite, The Peninsula Tokyo is a construction of sheer opulence occupying a covetable position opposite the Imperial palace and Hibiya Park in the business district of Marunouchi. The hotels offers you commanding city views, elegant design, luxurious comfort, sophisticated facilities and extraordinary dining. With 314 spacious guest rooms, this hotel is as large as it is luxurious. Designed by the renowned interior designer Yukio Hashimoto, the hotel intertwines rich earth tones, woods, stone and lacquers with modern design and functionality to create a stunning luxurious living environment. Customise your space with the use of the bedside panels allowing you to tweak the room’s ambience from the comfort of your bed. Taste the delicious European Cuisine at Peter with stunning views from the hotel’s 24th floor over the Imperial Palace, or visit the Hei Fung Terrace for a sophisticated Cantonese dining experience. Make sure you don’t miss out on the sensational Japanese cuisine at Kyoto Tsuruya where you can watch the skilled chefs prepare Japan’s oldest and most loved culinary delights.
- 200 rooms and suites
- 3 restaurants and bars
- Free Wi-Fi
- CHI Spa
- Heated indoor swimming pool
- 24-hour gym
- Jacuzzi and sauna
- Collection of 2,000 artworks
After a smooth and speedy trip on the world-famous bullet train, you’ll find yourself at the elegant Shangri-La Tokyo, a haven of refinement set amid the relentlessly buzz of Tokyo, just opposite Tokyo Station. With some of the largest rooms in the capital, the Shangri-La is a calming, sleek retreat from the 24-hour energy of Tokyo. There’s one lobby bar and two restaurants, including the Japanese restaurant Nadaman, located on the level 29, where you can sample Chef Takehiro Yoshida’s sautéed eggplant wrapped in thin slices of Wagyu beef. The palette of dark wood, chocolate brown and burnt orange is complimented by low, amber lighting, exuding a sense of elegance and sophistication. Many of the spacious rooms have views across Tokyo, a scene that is best viewed at night. That’s ideal, because you’ll be spending your days out and about exploring the endless fascinations of Tokyo. Within walking distance of the hotel, you’ll find the Ginza shopping district and the Imperial Palace in its park surroundings, and a 20-minute train ride will deliver you to the Buddhist Asakusa Senso-ji Temple, Tokyo’s oldest temple.
- 179 guest rooms and suites
- Eight restaurants
- Two bars
- Tea lounge
- Fitness centre
Relax in contemporary luxury at the Mandarin Oriental. Located in the heart of Tokyo, this hotel offers serenity above a ever-growing metropolis. When you arrive in the 38th floor lobby, you’ll find yourself stunned by the dramatic views over the city’s skyline. The 157 guest rooms and 21 suites are heavily inspired by the Japanese aesthetic, blending futuristic luxury with a typical Japanese understanding of sense of space, aesthetically capturing the country’s rich culture within the modern luxury that Mandarin Oriental are renowned for. Step out of your hotel and you’ll be in the middle of Tokyo’s metropolis, just a five minute walk from Ginza shopping district. After a busy day enjoying the buzz of Tokyo, relax in the Sense Tea Room or head to the Mandarin Bar and enjoy a signature cocktail by their award-winning chief bartender whilst listening to live jazz.
- 164 guest rooms and suites
- Three dining options
- Rooftop bar
- Complimentary soft drinks and snacks
An innovative collaboration between award-winning designers Tony Chi and Shinichiro Ogata, the Andaz Tokyo is a hotel that reflects Japan’s cultural emphasis on beauty and purity of form. Found in the heart of the metropolis that is Tokyo, this hotel sets the standard for design and luxury. With 164 spacious guest rooms and suites located between the 47th and 50th floor, find yourself awestruck at the unparalleled panoramic views of Tokyo’s skyline. The decor emphasises the Japanese love for natural materials such as washi paper and wood and the bespoke design also includes partitions, allowing you to customise the space based on personal style. When you are ready to dine, head to the Andaz Tavern for refined European provincial cuisine prepared with indigenous Japanese ingredients or enjoy sushi in the Rooftop Bar. For those wanting something more relaxed head to Bebu for their signature burger, tapas and grill menu. With historic landmarks such as the Atago Shrine, Zojoji Temple and Hamarikyu Gardens on your doorstep and some of Tokyo’s best shopping just a stones throw away, discover the charm and uniqueness of this eclectic city.
Tokyo, Japan’s bustling capital, mixes the ultramodern and the traditional, from neon-lit skyscrapers to cherry trees and temples. Enjoy the stunning views of Mount Fuji and the city's infectious energy with our recommendations for the best things to see and do.
This morning, your private guide will meet at your hotel at 9 a.m. and drive you in a spacious private vehicle to Tsukiji morning market. Tsukiji is one of the largest wholesale fish markets in the world, importing a diversity of seafood from 60 countries on six continents. Stroll around the outer-market before entering the actual wholesale market, where you will see fish and seafood being prepared and sold. Sample some fresh sushi at a nearby restaurant.
Next, we'll take a pleasant and peaceful stroll in Hamarikyu Garden, a vast landscaped park in the middle of Tokyo characterised by its tranquility. When we reach the reach the pier we'll board a cruise boat and sail down the Sumida River to Asakusa, discovering Tokyo’s skyline and bridges from a different perspective. Asakusa is one of Tokyo oldest and best-preserved districts and on arrival we'll walk along the Nakamise Dori merchant street to reach the Sensoji Temple, marked by its huge lantern. The Nakamise Dori merchant street dates back to the Edo period when the temple’s neighbours were given special permission to open their shops in the approach to the temple. Your guide will lead you to small streets where you can still feel the presence of Ancient Japan.
You then have the choice of participating in one of two private traditional ceremonies, a Japanese tea ceremony or a calligraphy class. We finish the day with a visit to the Ginza district, known for having the most expensive real estate on earth and home to some of the country’s most prestigious companies, numerous brand shops, department stores, boutiques, bars and restaurants. Here, architects rival in imagination with fashion designers from all over the world, including the Swatch and the Hermes buildings. Also take some time to visit some of Ginza’s famous department stores, especially their basement floors and high-end food courts, where Tokyoites buy their delicacies.
Today is free to explore Tokyo at your own pace. Top attractions include the Harajuku area where you'll see some of Japan's most extreme fashion styles, the important Meiji Jingu Shrine and the Mari Art Museum. Your travel designer can help you to experience the city at its best with private guided tours and excursions.
Private transfer from your hotel to Tokyo Station
Take Japan's unbelievably fast "Bullet Train" from Tokyo Station, reaching Kanazawa in under two hours and 30 minutes.
Accommodation in Kanazawa
- 10 guest rooms and suites
- Hot springs
- Dinner and breakfast included
This luxury ryokan is located in the small hot springs village of Yamanaka, which is untouched by time. Surrounded by thick forested hills and stunning natural beauty, find yourself immersed in rich Japanese culture whilst you unwind at this tranquil inn. The 10 guest rooms and suites are arranged in the traditional sukiya style of a tea ceremony pavilion. The decor is discreet and elegant from the tatami walkways to the original painted screens, the luxury and exclusive ambience of this ryokan is undeniable. During your stay relax in the natural hot springs renowned for their soothing and curative properties. The piece de resistance of this ryokan is the cuisine. During your stay you will be served in your room, feasting on the delicious true Japanese kaiseki cuisine. Taste the exquisite local ingredients you are in for a true culinary delight.
- 18 guest rooms and suites
- Breakfast and dinner included
- Lounge bar
- Hot springs
Dating back over 800 years, this ryokan is immersed in Japanese history. Relax in the hotel’s onsen which have won international acclaim. In authentic Japanese Sukita style, the 18 luxury guest rooms face the tranquil zen-designed garden. The natural beauty of the garden is echoed in the rooms, where the traditional Japanese use of light and space is evident, from the washi-paper sliding doors and tatami-mat flooring, you’ll find yourself emerged in this rich culture. During your stay you will dine in on an abundance of local cuisine, tasting delicacies from the nearby sea and the bountiful land that surrounds the area. Find yourself totally emerged in local culture, even down to your clothing, this will be an experience you will never forget.
- 17 guest rooms and suites
- Tea house
- Hot spring
Unwind in the calmness of this luxury Japanese ryokan, and it wont take you long to feel like you’re immersed in tranquility. You can start your day with yoga, take part in a traditional tea ceremony and finish it the hotel’s hot springs. Combining Japanese and western decor, the 17 guest rooms and suites are all decorated uniquely. Comprising of solely Japanese-style rooms, Western-style rooms and some of which are a hybrid between the two, this ryokan is like no other. The hotel’s architecture elegantly emphasises contrast between light, shade and neutral colours creating a peaceful atmosphere for total relaxation. During your stay taste the phenomenal Kaiseki cuisine in the inclusive 10-course meal. With a strong cultural emphasis on fresh, local produce enjoy the exquisite flavours of this region.
Spend your time in the historical centre of Kanazawa discovering the Nagamachi samurai district and the Chaya geisha entertainment quarter. There's also the 17th century castle to explore alongside a horde of other cultural attractions such as the Ishikawa Gate and the Sanjikken Longhouse. At night, you'll be driven to a ryokan in neighbouring Yamashiro and Yamanaka, just outside of Kanazawa. Your travel designer can help you to experience the city at its best with private guided tours and excursions.
Visit Omchi Market, regarded as the "Kitchen of Kanazwa" the vibrant market showcases a diversity of fresh fish and shellfish caught in the Sea of Japan afterwards enjoy a sushi lunch. Explore the Nagamachi Samurai District, lined with beautiful wooden homes hidden behind gold-coloured mud walls, the streets are bordered by canals, used as defence in the Edo period. Visit the fascinating Nomura-ke, a restored samurai residence displaying the artefacts from this ancient era. Next spend time in the Kenroku-en Garden. Reputedly the most beautiful of the three important landscape gardens in Japan, Kenroku-en Garden was originally built as the outer garden on the city's castle as a private garden of the powerful Maeda family during the Edo period. It stands for the six attributes of the perfect garden: extensiveness, quiet seclusion, artifice, antique elegance, abundant waterways and spaciousness. You private driver will then transfer you your chosen ryokan just outside of Kanazawa in Yamashiro and Yamanaka.
Spend the remainder of the day relaxing in your ryokan's onsen, soaking up the benefits of the mineral-rich waters. Once you've built up an appetite, you'll be served a traditional kaiseki dinner consisting of between 12 and 15 dishes made with fresh seasonal ingredients and carefully presented on beautiful plates.
Your guide and driver will pick you up from your ryokan in the morning. The day will start with a visit to the Higashiyama Geisha District and its craft shops. Established in 1820 by the Maeda government, the district features stunning wooden lattice fronts of old geisha houses preserving an ambience of feudal times and transporting visitors to the Japan of antiquity. Next visit the D.T. Suzuki Museum which is dedicate to the ideas and achievements of Suzuki, a prominent Buddhist philosopher. In the afternoon explore the Kanazawa 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art before finally learning the art of sake brewing at one of the city's sake breweries.
After a busy day sightseeing, you can look forward to a relaxing soak in your hotel's onsen before an indulgent kaiseki dinner.
Private transfer to Kaga Onsen Station
Accommodation in Kyoto
- 134 guest rooms and suites
- Four dining outlets
- Indoor pool
Exuding Japan’s simple elegance, the Ritz-Carlton combines luxury modern design with traditional Japanese zen accents. With 134 guest rooms, the Ritz-Carlton is Kyoto’s first urban luxury resort. Sitting on the banks Kamogawa river, the hotel boasts astounding views of the famous Higashiyama mountains. The hotel has four restaurants and you can take your pick from traditional Japanese dishes, Italian cuisine or go for the seafood private dining option. Enjoy brunch or sweet treats by the French patisserie Pierre Hermé Paris next to a cascading waterfall in the terrace, or retire to the library where a range of Japanese art and architecture books are available for you to thumb through at your leisure. Situated in close proximity to Kyoto’s popular downtown areas, retail and entertainment districts, this hotel will allow you to enjoy the rich culture of Japan’s ancient capital within modern luxury. Explore the Imperial Palace, Nijo Castle or the atmospheric dining of Pontocho, all of which will be on your doorstep.
- 189 guest rooms and suites
- Spa and fitness centre
- Three restaurants
- Pastry boutique
Located in the heart of Kyoto, the stylish Hyatt Regency offers spacious rooms and excellent hospitality. This hotel is perfect for those looking for a relaxed atmosphere whilst exploring the rich culture of Kyoto. Each of the elegant 189 guest rooms and suites are decorated in light neutral tones combining the aesthetics that Japan is famed for with the style and comfort of western living. During your stay marvel in the culinary excellence offered by the Hyatt, from authentic Italian cuisine to a French grill to flavourful Japanese dishes, there is something for everyone at this luxury hotel. Explore the wonders of Kyoto, with countless temples and shrines and other historical structures, marvel in this city’s fascinating culture. After a busy day of exploring why not visit the hotel’s spa for a relaxing massage or visit The Touzan Bar to taste the hotel’s boutique sake collection.
This afternoon, your English speaking guide will meet you at Kyoto station where you will firstly visit Nijo Castle. Built around 16000 for the warrior Tokugawa Ieyasu, the first shogun of the Edo period. Nijo Castle is particularly famed for its "nightingale floors" which squeak when walked upon as to warn residents on intruders. Next visit Kinkaku-Ji, widely known as the Golden Pavillion. It was built by the third Ashikaya shogun Yoshimitsu in 1397 as his retirement villa. Finally visit Ryoan-Ji Temple, prominent for its zen garden's simplicity, displaying a stark difference from the opulence of Kinkau-Ji. Your driver will now transfer you to your Kyoto based hotel.
Spend your time in Kyoto admiring the impressive imperial beauty of the city, evident in the abundance of prewar buildings such as grand palaces, traditional "machiya" townhouses and ornate shrines. See kimono-clad geisha and make sure to visit the magnificent Silver Pavilion. Your travel designer can help you to experience the city at its best with private guided tours and excursions.
Start off your day by going to the Kiyomizu-dera temple which is popular for its cliff top main hall with a magnificent panoramic view of Kyoto. Stroll downhill to the Sannenzaka Neighbourhood, which has been perfectly restored with small shops and traditional restaurants. Next visit the Kodaji Temple built in memory of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, one of Japan's greatest historical figures, following this visit Yasakajinja, a shrine founded over 1350 years ago before heading to Sanjusangendo Hall famed for its repository of more than 1000 Buddhist statues. During your excursion you will have lunch in the Gion, Kyoto's most famous geisha district. Find yourself mesmerised by the ancient culture that is still so strongly embedded within Kyoto.
Today is yours to spend at your leisure. Relax at your hotel or venture out to the western outskirts of Kyoto to see the natural beauty of the Arashiyama district and its famous bamboo groves. Stroll in the gardens of the Ginkakuji Silver Pavilion temple or visit the Nanzenji Temple. Your travel designer can help you to experience the city at its best with private guided tours and excursions.
Private transfer from your hotel to Osaka Kansai Airport
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Classic Japan Explorer: A Luxury Introduction to Japan
How We Work
We create fully personalised trips from start to finish, working with you to pick locations, accommodation and guides that suit you.
Each time you travel with us, you preserve an acre of precious rainforest through our partnerships.
From in-depth private tours to restaurant reservations, we take care of every detail so you can make the most of your journey.