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2022 Spring Tokaido Odyssey

March 24 - April 5, 2022 (13 Days & 11 Nights)

Featuring Hanhwa Aqua Planet on Jeju Island

A tour division of Kobayashi Travel Service 

Haneda, Tokyo (2 Nights), Asakusa Kannon Temple, Ameyokocho, Hakone, Lake Ashi Cruise, Mt. Fuji World Heritage Center, Shiraito-no-taki, Shizuoka, Greenpia Makinohara Tea Factory, Strawberry Picking, Nagoya, Nagoya Castle, Bullet Train to Kyoto, Kyoto (2 Nights), Kinkaku-ji, Heian-jingu, Nara, Kobe, Hakutsuru Sake Brewery, Awaji Island, Awaji Ningyo Joruri, Shikoku Island, Tokushima, Awa Odori Dance Performance, Takamatsu, Ritsurin-koen, Hands-on-Fan Making, Imabari, Shimanami Kaido, Hiroshima (2 Nights), Iwakuni, Kintai-kyo, Miyajima Island, Hiroshima Peace Park & Museum, KurashikI, Koraku-en, Osaka 

LAND TOUR COST: 
$ 3,695 per person
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT:
$ 775 per person
 
(Individual arrangements to meet group are not included)
 

Thursday, March 24 (Day 01)

HONOLULU TO HANEDA

Our tour commences this morning when we assemble at the airport for baggage check-in procedures for our flight to Haneda International Airport. A  meal and a snack will be served onboard the flight. 

 

Friday, March 25 (Day 02) 

HANEDA - TOKYO (D)

We’ll arrive Haneda Airport in the late afternoon and after completing entry and customs formalities, we’ll transfer to our hotel in downtown Tokyo by chartered motorcoach. A dinner is planned for you this evening at the hotel. 

Accommodations at SUNSHINE CITY PRINCE HOTEL or similar

 

Saturday, March 26 (Day 03) 

TOKYO (B)(L)

Enjoy a full day of sightseeing in this exciting metropolitan city. We’ll travel to  Asakusa, the center of Tokyo’s shitamachi district, where an atmosphere of the Tokyo of the past decades still survives. Asakusa’s main attraction is  Senso-ji (Asakusa Kannon Temple), Tokyo’s oldest Buddhist temple dedicated to the goddess of Kannon. Located between the main hall of the temple and the famous red lantern of Kaminarimon (Thunder Gate), enjoy a stroll through Nakamise-dori, a lively pedestrian street lined with shops offering typical Japanese merchandise, souvenirs, and traditional local snacks. A delicious lunch will be provided for you at a local restaurant. Enjoy a shopping adventure at Ameyokocho, a busy and exciting district with many indoor and outdoor vendors offering a wide selection of snack and food products at discounted prices. This evening, dinner will be on your own to try some of the local specialties at one of the restaurants in the shopping mall located adjacent to our hotel. 

Accommodations at SUNSHINE CITY PRINCE HOTEL or similar

 

Sunday, March 27 (Day 04) 

TOKYO - HAKONE - LAKE YAMANAKA (B)(D)

This morning, we’ll travel to Hakone, one of Japan’s most popular hot spring resorts surrounded by scenic Lake Ashi with Mt. Fuji (a symbol of Japan)  providing a majestic backdrop. Hakone was an important checkpoint for the  Old Tokaido Highway - the old road that linked the ancient capital of Kyoto to  Edo (now known as Tokyo) during the Edo period. Enjoy a relaxing boat cruise on scenic Lake Ashino-ko - a beautiful crater lake formed in the caldera of Mount Hakone. Weather permitting, a breathtaking view of Mt. Fuji can be seen as we cruise on the serene lake. We’ll visit the Mt. Fuji World  Heritage Center located at the entrance of the Subaru Line - the toll road leading up to the slopes of Mt. Fuji. The center provides some interesting history and information about Mt. Fuji as a World Heritage Site and the Fuji  Five Lakes. Relax and enjoy dinner and the hot springs at our elegant hotel this evening.  

Accommodations at FUJI MARRIOTT HOTEL LAKE YAMANAKA or similar 

 

Monday, March 28 (Day 05) 

LAKE YAMANAKA - SHIZUOKA - NAGOYA (B)(D)

Weather permitting, we’ll continue on to visit picturesque Shiraito-no-taki (White Thread Falls), located in the southwestern foothills of Mt. Fuji. Ranked among one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Japan, the falls were recently added to the World Heritage  List as part of the Fujisan Cultural Site. Fed by the volcano’s spring water, the falls flow off the edge of a high cliff in thin streams that resemble hanging threads. The falls are particularly striking at this time of the year as the snows of the mountain melt and strengthen the flow. We’ll continue our drive along the Pacific Coast through Shizuoka prefecture, the largest tea producing region in Japan and once home to the first Tokugawa Shogun Ieyasu. Enjoy an interesting guided tour of Greenpia Makinohara (tea factory) to observe the process of tea production, including a close-up view of tea plants in the fields. The scenery of Shizuo ka prefecture offers a beautiful view of the Southern Japan Alps, a breathtaking view of Mt. Fuji and miles of scenic coastline as we drive along Suruga Bay and the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy an all-you-can-pick & eat fresh strawberry adventure in covered greenhouses at a local orchard. We’ll continue on to the castle town of Nagoya, the capital of Aichi Prefecture to spend the night.  Dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel. 

Accommodations at NAGOYA TOKYU HOTEL or similar

 

Tuesday, March 29 (Day 06) 

NAGOYA - BULLET TRAIN TO KYOTO (B)(L)

This morning, we’ll visit Nagoya Castle, one of the largest and greatest castles in Japan. It was constructed on the orders of Ie yasu Tokugawa in order to secure an important position on the Tokaido road. One of the main features of the castle are the kin shachi (golden dolphins) adorning the main ridge of the castle roof, signifying prosperity. Honmaru Palace, located on the grounds of the castle is regarded as the finest masterpiece of modern castle architecture in Japan and designated as a National  Treasure. We’ll proceed to the Nagoya Train Station and board the shinkansen (bullet train) to experience a ride on this high-speed train to Kyoto, the former capital of Japan. A delicious obento will be provided for you to enjoy on the train. On arrival at the Kyoto Station, we’ll transfer by foot to our hotel in Kyoto to check-in for two nights. The afternoon is at your leisure to explore some of the shops at the station or at the Aeon Mall located nearby our hotel. Dinner will be on your own this evening.  

Accommodations at MIYAKO HOTEL KYOTO HACHIJO or similar

 

Wednesday, March 30 (Day 07) 

KYOTO - NARA - KYOTO (B)(D)

We’ll travel to the ancient city of Nara located at the northern end of the Yamato Plain - a fertile valley where members of the  Yamato clan rose to power as the original emperors of Japan. On arrival, we’ll visit Todai-ji, a magnificent Buddhist Temple  Complex located in Nara-koen - a park that is home to many sacred deer roaming freely about. The Daibutsu-den (Big Buddha  Hall) is located within the Todai-ji Temple Complex and houses an enormous bronze statue of Buddha (Daibutsu), flanked by two  Bodhisattvas. Within the hall is a large wooden pillar with a hole at its base and local tradition has it that those who pass through the opening will find their way to an afterlife of paradise. Located nearby is Kasuga Taisha Shrine, Nara’s most celebrated shrine, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The shrine is famous for its hundreds of stone lanterns, donated by worshippers, that line the approach-way to the entrance and around the shrine. We’ll return to Kyoto city to visit Kinkaku-ji (Golden  Pavilion), an impressive Zen Buddhist Temple, designated as a National Special Historic Site. Officially named Rokuon-ji, this magnificent golden structure sits serenely on a lake, providing a beautiful reflection in the calm waters. We’ll stroll through the gardens of Heian-jingu, an imperial Shinto shrine listed as an important cultural property of Japan. The scenic garden features a  stepping-stone path across a large pond, a Chinese-inspired bridge and is best known for its shidare-zakura (weeping cherry blossoms). Dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel. 

Accommodations at MIYAKO HOTEL KYOTO HACHIJO or similar

 

Thursday, March 31 (Day 08) 

KYOTO - KOBE - AWAJI ISLAND - SHIKOKU ISLAND - TOKUSHIMA (B)(D)

We’ll continue on to the port city of Kobe, Japan’s top sake producing region due to its high-quality rice, suitable water and favorable weather conditions. We’ll visit the Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum featuring interesting video clips explaining the step-by step process of producing traditional sake. Life-sized replicas of tools, sake containers and machinery used in the production of sake in the past are displayed throughout the museum. Samples of some of their delicious products will be provided for you to enjoy at the end of the tour (subject to confirmation). We’ll continue on to cross the Akashi Kaikyo Ohashi, a bridge connecting  Honshu to Awaji Island - the inland sea’s largest island. On arrival, enjoy a performance of the Awaji Ningyo Joruri (Puppet  Play) at the Awaji Puppet Theatre. The separate arts of puppet manipulation, gidayu narration and shamisen accompaniment blend together to present an emotional performance of a tragic drama. Our travel continues on as we cross the Naruto Channel on the Naruto Ohashi, a bridge connecting Awaji Island to Shikoku Island, home of the 88 Temples Pilgrimage. Tidal currents between the Seto Inland Sea and the Pacific Ocean passing over undersea ridges creates uzushio (whirlpools) of various sizes and we may be able to see some as we drive along the bridge to Shikoku Island. We’ll arrive in Tokushima, capital city of To kushima prefecture to spend the night. Enjoy a lively dance performance of the famous Awa Odori, the pride of Tokushima at the  Awa Odori Kaikan. Learn to dance and participate with the special ‘Awanokaze’ dancers accompanied by the sounds of sham isen (three stringed guitars), taiko (drums) and fue (flutes). A delicious dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel. 

Accommodations at AWA KANKO HOTEL or similar

 

Friday, April 1 (Day 09) 

TOKUSHIMA - TAKAMATSU - IMABARI (B)(D)

We’ll travel to the castle town of Takamatsu, capital of Kagawa prefecture, to visit Ritsurin-koen (chestnut grove garden). Known as one of the most famous historical gardens in Japan, this was once the summer retreat for the Lords of the Matsudaira family. This scenic garden follows a classical Japanese design, featuring pine trees winding around a series of ponds, bridges and rock formations, including the ‘borrowed scenery’ of Mount Shiun in the background. Experience making your own fan to take home as a  souvenir at the Uchiwa Minato Museum, a shop specializing in uchiwa (rounded paper fans). The fans are made with a decorated piece of paper attached on a thin bamboo frame. We’ll continue on to spend the night in Imabari, the second-largest city in Ehime prefecture, best known for its shipbuilding and towel industry. Enjoy dinner and relax in the hot springs of our hotel this evening.  

Accommodations at IMABARI KOKUSAI HOTEL or similar

 

Saturday, April 2 (Day 10) 

IMABARI - SHIMANAMI KAIDO - IWAKUNI - HIROSHIMA (B)(D)

We’ll depart Shikoku Island via the scenic Shimanami Kaido - a long toll road linking Shikoku to Japan’s main island of Honshu passing through a series of bridges and six small islands in the Seto Inland Sea. Our scenic drive will take us from Imabari to Onomichi in  Hiroshima prefecture, arriving in the city of Hiroshima to check-in for two nights. En route, we’ll travel to Iwakuni in Yamaguchi prefecture, to visit the city’s major attraction, Kintai-kyo (Brocade Sash Bridge), a historical wooden arch bridge. Its five linked wooden arches are built on massive stone pillars forming a span across the serene Nishiki River located at the foot of Mt. Yokoyama. Dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel.

Accommodations at RIHGA ROYAL HOTEL HIROSHIMA or similar

 

Sunday, April 3 (Day 11) 

HIROSHIMA - MIYAJIMA - HIROSHIMA (B)

We’ll proceed to the pier at Miyajimaguchi to board a ferry to Miyajima Island, famed for its scenic Itsukushima-jinja, a UNESCO  World Heritage Site. With a large torii gate extending into the sea, the shrine, and the island’s Mt. Misen-san as a backdrop, Miyajima  Island is classified as one of Japan’s three most beautiful views. Enjoy strolling through Omotesando - the island’s main shopping street featuring many shops offering a wide selection of souvenirs including momiji manju - Hiroshima’s most popular souvenir. This maple-leaf-shaped cake is filled with a variety of delicious fillings: red bean paste, custard, chocolate and more. We’ll return to the main island by ferry and travel back to the city of Hiroshima to visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and Park, a UNESCO  World Heritage Site. Exhibits and displays within the museum relive the history of the atomic bomb and the destruction it brought on  Hiroshima and its people. One of the most poignant memorial in the Peace Memorial Park is the Children’s Peace Memorial, inspired by leukemia victim Sadako Sasaki. Thousands of colorful paper cranes brought by school children, various clubs and groups are displayed there. Dinner will be on your own this evening. 

Accommodations at RIHGA ROYAL HOTEL HIROSHIMA or similar

 

Monday, April 4 (Day 12) 

HIROSHIMA - KURASHIKI - OKAYAMA - OSAKA (B)(D)

We’ll travel on to visit the quaint city of Kurashiki, located in Okayama prefecture. Enjoy strolling through Bikan Chiku, a historical area featuring many old traditional buildings, museums, cafes, storehouses and souvenir shops lined along the picturesque willow lined canal. We’ll continue on to Okayama city, visiting its most famous attraction - Koraku-en - a beautiful spacious landscaped garden noted as one of Japan’s three best gardens. A large pond, walking paths, pavilions, a crane aviary, and groves of plum and cherry trees are featured in this scenic garden. Weather permitting, the cherry blossoms should be in full bloom at this time of the year.  Okayama city also serves as the locale for the popular Japanese fairy tale - Momotaro (Peach Boy). We’ll continue on to spend the night in the exciting city of Osaka. Dinner will be provided for you this evening at the hotel. 

Accommodations at RIHGA ROYAL HOTEL OSAKA or similar

 

Tuesday, April 5 (Day 13) 

OSAKA - KANSAI TO HONOLULU (B)

The day is at your leisure for your own activities until we transfer to the Kansai International Airport in the afternoon to check-in for our evening flight to Honolulu. We’ll arrive in the morning on the same day due to the crossing of the International Date Line. A late meal will be served onboard the flight. 

Land portion based on 114 Yen = $1.00 U.S.

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 10/31/21. Tour fare is subject to change according to any airfare increase, additional fuel surcharges 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.