One of the most popular times to visit Japan is in spring, when the famous cherry trees come into bloom all over the country. The first buds generally appear in the last week of March or so and last until the first or second week of April when the final flowers come into blossom. While the end of March and beginning of April is a relatively safe rule of thumb, it is not guaranteed! This spectacular annual sight attracts Japanese and foreigners alike, who flock to witness the streets as they are transformed with delicate hues of pale pink and white. The peak blossom period lasts for approximately two weeks only, so to ensure you make the most of it, we have created this this itinerary to cover some of the most scenic places in Japan to admire this short but sweet event. Book now for any time from the end of March until mid-April.
Please note that all the guided tours listed in this itinerary will be done with public transport, which is tremendously efficient, convenient and economical in Japan. If you prefer to use private transport, please let us know when you enquire and we can arrange it for you at an additional cost.
Please remember this is a sample itinerary to inspire you and we are happy to modify it to suit your plans. We can add or remove days, experiences or activities, include additional destinations or remove any that you do not wish to visit on this trip. To start planning your holiday, give us a call on (UK) 020 7112 0019 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
DAY 1 - WELCOME TO TOKYO
You will be met on the arrival hall of the airport by your personal agent who will give you a warm welcome to Japan and will assist you with the included shared transfer to your artistic hotel Park Hotel (City queen room). After check in, the rest of the day is at your leisure, resting and relaxing after your flight or, if you prefer, you can already start exploring this lively city.Accommodation
DAY 2 - EXPLORING THE TRADITIONAL SIDE OF TOKYO WITH YOUR LOCAL GUIDE
Explore with your private guide the most traditional areas of Tokyo with some of the best blooms in the city: the beautiful Meiji Shrine, Imperial Palace gardens to enjoy the beautiful blossoms across the lawn and Yanaka cementery, one of the top cherry blossom viewing spots in Tokyo.
DAY 4 - TRADITIONAL WOODEN HOUSES AND SAKE
Enjoy one of the most scenic train journeys in Japan, winding your way through tall mountains and stunning gorges, green valleys and beautiful rivers to Takayama.
Check in to your luxurious ryokan Hanaougi, an authentic Japanese style accommodation with hot spring baths where you will have included a yummy handmade Japanese dinner tonight and breakfast. Bon appétit!Accommodation
DAY 6 - SHIRAKAWA-GO VILLAGE
On your way by bus from Takayama to Kanazawa with the included tickets you will stop in the lovely rural village of Shirakawago which was declared a UNESCO world heritage site. It is famous for their traditional the farmhouses’s steep thatched roofs and beautiful mountain scenery. Enjoy its authentic and beautiful countryside atmosphere.
Continue your trip to Kanazawa by bus (guided option for this tour available).
The rest of the day is at leisure after you check in to Sainoniwa Hotel, a stylish hotel with a nice and charming traditional ambiance, hot spring baths and three beautiful on site Japanese gardens.Accommodation
DAY 7 - GOLD & GARDENS
Discover the gold city of Kanazawa on your own with the help of the information pack we will include for you. The efficient and well organised sightseeing tourist buses are easy to use and perfect for visiting the main attractions in the city: the famous Kenrokuen garden – one of the top three most beautiful gardens in the county- with its beautiful blooming cherry trees, Kanazawa Castle and the samurai neighbourhood (do not miss the visit of a -real- samurai home!).
DAY 8 - KYOTO: ZEN GARDENS, GEISHAS, SHINTO SHRINES AND ANCIENT TEMPLES
Head to Kyoto by train using your included Japan Rail Pass train tickets. With 2,000 religious buildings, including 1,600 Buddhist temples and 400 Shinto shrines, as well as palaces, gardens and associated architecture, it is one of the best-preserved cities in Japan and has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status.
Check-in to Noku, your lovely boutique hotel in Kyoto and spend the rest of the day at leisure.
Suggested afternoon activity:Accommodation
DAY 9 - CHERRY BLOSSOMS AND TEMPLES
Follow your guide to the Philosopher’s path and enjoy a stroll at the side of the canal next to hundreds of Cherry Blossom trees and discover many temples and shrines along the walk. 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.
DAY 10 - THE BLOSSOM CARPET
Go on a special tour with your local guide to Mount Yoshino to view the Cherry Blossom in one of the most concentrated sites of cherry trees across the whole country. With more than 30.000 cherry trees, this UNESCO World Heritage site has been an inspiration for artists and poets for centuries.
- Meet and greet airport service upon arrival
- Transfers from airport to hotel on arrival and from your hotel to airport on your departure day
- Accommodation on B&B basis
- All excursions, activities and meals mentioned in the itinerary
- All entrance fees with service of English speaking guides for excursions
- Transport as described
- A PASMO subway card recharged with 2500 JPY
- Local taxes
- All trips are ATOL protected or ABTA bonded to ensure you are fully covered
- Optional suggested day trips/experiences
- International flights