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October 2 - 14, 2015  (13 days and 11 nights)

** Guaranteed Departure **

Tours are operated by Aloha World, a tour division of Kobayashi Travel Service

Narita, Fukuoka/Hakata (2 nights), Hakata Machiya Furusato-kan, Canal City Hakata, Dazaifu Tenman-gu, Karatsu, Niji-no-Matsubara, Sasebo, Kujukushima, Nagasaki (1 night), Glover Garden, Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum, Nagasaki International Peace Memorial Hall, Nagsaki Heiwa-koen, Unzen, Shimabara,Mizunashi-Honjin Fukae Michi no Eki, Kumamoto (1 night), Kumamoto Castle, Suizenji-koen, JR Express Train to Kagoshima, Shiroyama Park, Sengan-en Garden, Shokoshuseikan, Sakurajima, Kagoshima (1 night), Naha, Okinawa (4 nights), Shuri-jo, Shikina-en Garden, Okinawa World, Gyokusen-do, Kingdom Village, Mabuni-no-Oka, Himeyuri-no-to, Underground Imperial Navy Headquarters, Naha Matsuri (2 days), Motobu (1 night), Ryukyu Mura, Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, Naha (1 night), Nakijin Castle Ruins, Nakijin Village, Haneda

$ 4,550 per person
$ 450 per person
$ 3,250 per person
(Individual arrangements to meet group are not included)

Friday, October 2 (Day 01)
Our tour to Japan commences this morning when we assemble at the airport for baggage check-in procedures for our flight to Narita International Airport. Lunch and a snack will be served on board the flight.

Saturday, October 3 (Day 02)
We'll arrive Narita Airport in the afternoon and after completing entry and customs formalities, we'll transfer to check-in for our domestic flight to Fukuoka International
Airport on Kyushu, the third-largest and southernmost island of Japan. On arrival at the Fukuoka Airport, we'll transfer to spend two nights in the twin cities of Fukuoka/Hakata.

Accommodations at NISHITETSU GRAND HOTEL or similar

Sunday, October 4 (Day 03)
Hakata is one of the oldest cities in Japan and has served as the gateway to Korea and China in ancient and modern times. One place to visit where the past is still kept alive is the Hakata Machiya Furusato-kan, a folk museum featuring beautiful artwork and local crafts from the Meiji and Taisho periods. The most famous of Hakata's traditional arts and crafts are Hakata Ori (woven textile) and Hakata Ningyo (clay dolls). Enjoy a stroll through Canal City Hakata, a large entertainment and shopping complex featuring shops, restaurants, and a canal that runs through the complex. We'll drive by Fukuoka Tower - the tallest seaside tower in Japan located in the city's modern waterfront area. We'll continue on to the cultural city of Dazaifu, visiting Dazaifu Tenman-gu, an important shrine dedicated to the spirit of Sugawara no Michizane, a scholar and politician of the Heian period. His rise to power during his political career resulted in a rivalry with the Fujiwara clan and he was later exiled to Dazaifu. Michizane passed away in Dazaifu and the main shrine was built on his grave site. The approach-way to the shrine is lined with many shops offering a wide selection of local products. Dinner will be provided for you this evening at a local restaurant.

Accommodations at NISHITETSU GRAND HOTEL or similar

Monday, October 5 (Day 04)
We'll travel west to enjoy a scenic view of Karatsu Bay and the two-mile long Niji-no-Matsubara, a grove of black pine trees extending along a sandy beach. The forest was originally planted by the feudal Lord Terasawa as a counter-measure against the strong wind and tide in Karatsu Bay. This scene is now noted as one of the most picturesque landscapes in Japan. We'll travel to Sasebo, gateway city to the Saikai National Park in Nagasaki Prefecture. We'll board a sightseeing boat from Kashimae Pier to enjoy a relaxing and scenic cruise around Kujukushima (99 pine-studded islets) in the inland sea. Enjoy some of the most breathtaking natural scenery in Japan as you cruise through the islands. On arrival in the city, we'll visit Glover Garden - the former residence of British merchant Thomas Blake Glover. The mansion and other 19th century buildings are preserved on this spacious hillside garden with a breathtaking view overlooking Nagasaki Harbor. The story for Puccini's opera "Madame Butterfly" was allegedly set here and the main character was based on Tsuru, Glover's Japanese wife. Nagasaki became the second city to experience a nuclear attack on August 9, 1945. We'll visit the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum featuring displays, photos, relics, and documents related to the bombing of the city. We'll also stroll through the Nagasaki International Peace Memorial Hall, built in memory of those who perished in the atomic bombing. The Nagasaki Heiwa-koen (Peace Park) was established near the hypocenter of the explosion and remnants of a concrete wall of Urakami Cathedral is still visible. At the park's north end stands a 10-meter tall Peace Statue and the south end features a Fountain of Peace. We'll spend the night in Nagasaki. Dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel.

Accommodations at ANA CROWNE PLAZA NAGASAKI GLOVER HILL or similar

Tuesday, October 6 (Day 05)
We'll continue our journey to Shimabara Peninsula with a view of Mount Unzen, an active volcano that has had several major eruptions. The volcano's most recent eruption occurred in 1990, sending clouds of volcanic gas and ash down toward the town below, burying some houses. At the Mizunashi-Honjin Fukae Michi no Eki (Avalanche Stricken Homes Preservation Roadside Park), you will see some after-effects of the devastation caused by the 1990 eruption. We'll continue on to Shimabara Port and board a ferry, crossing the Ariake Sea to spend the night in Kumamoto, the capital city of Kumamoto prefecture. Its most famous landmark is Kumamoto-jo, a large and well fortified hill-top Japanese castle - considered one of the three premier castles in Japan. Architect Kato Kiyomasa designed and built this castle with ingenious engineering and its size and numerous interesting exhibits make it visit-worthy. The city is also home to Suizen-ji-koen, a beautiful Japanese-style landscape garden designed with an impression of views seen when traveling along the Tokaido - the old highway between Kyoto and Edo (present-day Tokyo). You'll have a magnificent feeling of nature with its small ponds and lakes as you stroll through the park. The main feature at the east end of the park is Horaitsukiyama, a beautiful representation of a miniature Mt. Fuji. Dinner will be on your own this evening to try some of the local specialties of this prefecture at one of the restaurants located nearby our hotel.

Accommodations at KUMAMOTO NIKKO HOTEL or similar

Wednesday, October 7 (Day 06)
Iso Garden KagoshimaKUMAMOTO * KAGOSHIMA (B)(L)(D)
After breakfast, we'll proceed to the Kumamoto Station to board the JR Super Express train to Kagoshima, the southernmost major city in Kyushu. On arrival in Kagoshima, we'll enjoy sightseeing of the city on board our chartered motorcoach, visiting Shiroyama Park in downtown Kagoshima. The park is famous for its Shiroyama Observatory, offering spectacular views over downtown Kagoshima, Kagoshima Bay, and Sakurajima. Shiroyama Park was the site of the final battle of the Satsuma Rebellion and the local hero Saigo Takamori is said to have made his last stand at Saigo Cave. Enjoy a stroll through Sengan-en Garden (Iso-teien), a beautiful Japanese-style landscaped garden located along the coast offering a spectacular view of Kinko Bay in the foreground and the towering peak of Sakurajima in the background. The garden was constructed by the wealthy Shimazu clan, one of the most powerful feudal clans during the Edo Period. They ruled the Satsuma domain (present-day Kagoshima) until the end of the feudal age and continued to be influential into the modern era. The main garden area houses the Shokoshuseikan, a museum closely associated with the Shimazu clan and the history of Satsuma province. We'll visit the main hall of the museum featuring exhibits about the culture and maritime activities of the Shimazu Clan. We'll transfer by ferry to Sakurajima (Sakura Island), an active volcano with its southern peak often erupting small stones and ashes. Yunohira Observatory is the highest observatory on Sakurajima and commands a panoramic view of its grey lava fields, the port of Sakurajima, the city of Kagoshima, and the mountains of Kyushu. We'll return by ferry back to Kagoshima to check-in for the night. Dinner will be provided for you this evening at a local restaurant.

Accommodations at JR KYUSHU HOTEL KAGOSHIMA or similar

Thursday, October 8 (Day 07)
Okinawa Shurijo Castle ParkKAGOSHIMA * NAHA, OKINAWA (B)(L)
This morning, we'll transfer to the Kagoshima Airport for our flight to Naha, capital city of Okinawa. We'll spend the next six nights in Okinawa. After checking-in, we'll enjoy lunch at the hotel, then embark on a half-day sightseeing tour of central Okinawa, visiting Shuri-jo, the reconstructed residence of the Okinawan royal family, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Due to its role in Ryukyuan political and religious life, the castle is surrounded by various sites of historical interest, including Shureimon - the main gate to the castle, Tamaudun Mauseoleum - the royal tombs, and the stone gate of Sonohyan-utaki - designated an important national cultural property. The Okinawa Prefectural Museum consists of two separate museums - a history museum and an art museum. Enjoy a visit of both to learn more about Okinawa's unique history and culture. We'll stroll through Shikina-en Garden, constructed as the second residence of the Ryukyu kings. The garden features beautiful and simple wooden palace buildings with Okinawan-style red tile roofs, and a spacious Japanese style landscape garden with a pond. Dinner will be on your own this evening.

Accommodations at HOTEL JAL CITY NAHA or similar

Friday, October 9 (Day 08)
We'll enjoy a full-day of sightseeing in southern Okinawa. Share the pride of Ryukyuan culture at Okinawa World, a theme park promoting Okinawan history and culture with its main attractions, a massive natural cave, a craft village, and a snake museum. Gyokusen-do, the second longest cave in the country is well maintained and features spectacular stalactite and stalagmite formations. Stroll through old Okinawa at the Kingdom Village - a nice replica of a traditional Ryukyu village with workshops introducing various traditional Okinawan crafts, such as weaving, dyeing, paper making, glass blowing, and more are featured for your viewing. Enjoy an eisa dance performance in the pavilion at the Traditional Performance Plaza. Mabuni-no-Oka is the memorial site where the final battle in Okinawa took place during World War II. Wartime photographs and objects are displayed at the Peace Memorial Museum in the park, including the names of those who perished during the Battle of Okinawa inscribed on the Cornerstone of Peace Monument. We'll visit Himeyuri Peace Museum, built on the grounds of Himeyuri-no-to, a memorial site to commemorate the hundreds of high-school students and their teachers who committed mass suicide rather than submit to the approaching American Army. Visitors to the museum are greeted by a large stone monument at the entrance. Wandering through the maze of corridors at the Underground Imperial Navy Headquarters, visible shrapnel damage can be seen on the walls from the grenade blasts that took the lives of many men during the Battle of Okinawa in 1945. Dinner will be on your own this evening.

Accommodations at HOTEL JAL CITY NAHA or similar

Saturday, October 10 (Day 09)
The morning is free at your leisure to do some shopping or meet with friends and relatives. Enjoy the activities of the first day of the Naha Matsuri beginning with a parade in the front of our hotel. In the evening, enjoy the fireworks, free markets, and other activities offered at Onoyama Park.

Accommodations at HOTEL JAL CITY NAHA or similar

Sunday, October 11 (Day 10)
Okinawa Naha MatsuriNAHA MATSURI Day 2 (B)
Enjoy the morning at your leisure to do more shopping or to meet your friends and relatives. In the mid-morning, the Hatagashira Parade will be parading in front of our hotel. In the afternoon, participate in the activities of the second day of the Naha Matsuri. A flag header procession and the Tsunahiki contest (tug-of-war) will begin on Highway 58, within walking distance of our hotel. In the evening, spectacular fireworks, free markets and other activities will be offered at Onoyama Park.

Accommodations at HOTEL JAL CITY NAHA or similar

Monday, October 12 (Day 11)
We'll proceed to the town of Motobu, located in the Kunigami district to spend the night. En route to Motobu, we will visit Ryukyu Village, a small theme park providing traditional Okinawan culture in the form of a recreated village from the times of the Ryukyu Kingdom. The village includes a traditional residence with a red-tiled roof, a shrine, and various workshops. A wide range of performances are held in the village, including eisa taiko drumming, dances, and reenacted historical ceremonies. You'll have the opportunity to try some popular Okinawan dishes and shop for a wide range of local souvenirs. The Oceanic Cultural Museum, Okinawa's wealth of nature, history and culture can be experienced here located at the Ocean Expo Park in northern Okinawa - the site where the International Ocean Exposition was held in 1975. Enjoy a delicious buffet lunch at the Expo Park. Enjoy an intriguing world of marine life found in Okinawa spread-out in the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, Japan's largest aquarium located at the Ocean Expo Park. The largest fish in the world - the whale shark and the world's first successfully bred-in-captivity manta swim with ease in Kuroshio Sea, the main tank which reproduces the environment of coral reefs below the water's surface. In the Dolphin Theater, enjoy some exciting shows performed by trained dolphins and manatees. Dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel.

Accommodations at HOTEL ORION MOTOBU or similar

Tuesday, October 13 (Day 12)
Enjoy a half-day sightseeing tour of Motobu visiting the Nakijin Castle Ruins, a UNESCO World Heritage designated Castle of the Ryukyu Kingdom. Standing alongside the castle ruins is Nakijin Village History and Culture Center featuring a small museum displaying items unearthed on the castle grounds, such as Chinese pottery, coins, and documents. The rest of the day is free at your leisure for your own activities. In the afternoon, we'll travel back to Naha city to spend our last night. Dinner will be on your own this evening.

Accommodations at HOTEL JAL CITY NAHA or similar

Wednesday, October 14 (Day 13)
This will be your last chance to meet friends, relatives or shop for omiyage to bring home. We'll transfer to the Naha Airport in the early afternoon to check-in for our domestic flight to Haneda International Airport. On arrival at Haneda, we'll transfer by shuttle bus to the international Terminal to board our flight to Honolulu, arriving in the morning on the same day due to the crossing of the International Date Line. A late meal will be served to you on board the flight.

Map of Tour Itinerary

The tour price is based on double occupancy and a minimum group size of 20 passengers. Fare adjustment may apply for groups of 20 or under. The rate is based on tariffs and exchange rates effective 1/1/2015. Tour fare is subject to change according to any airfare increase, fuel surcharge increase and fluctuation of the rate of exchange between U.S. and foreign currency. In the event of revaluation, the land portion of the tour price may be adjusted prior to your final statement.

Land portion based on 115 Yen = $1.00 U.S.