Team Travel Kuramoto


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5 Days
Historical and Nostalgic “Yukiguni” Winter Land
Exploring Sendai-Yamagata from Tokyo
*This itinerary can be combined with any area in Japan such as Akita and Aomori

Itinerary Summary

    Day 1 – Arrival in Sendai station – Historical Tour – Kirin Beer Brewery Tour

    Today, you will take a Bullet train to Sendai city, Miyagi prefecture, the largest city in the Tōhoku region, and the second largest city north of Tokyo.

    You will visit Matsushima Bay, which has been celebrated as one of Japan’s three most scenic views alongside Miyajima and Amanohashidate. While enjoying a cruise on the lake, discover over 200 small islands covered by pine trees along the coast. You will then visit Zuiganji Temple, which is surrounded by shallow caves and a grove of towering cedar trees. For centuries, believers made pilgrimages to Matsushima in order to meditate or even live in these caves. 

    After lunch, you will continue to Entsū-in, which is a Buddhist temple and it’s considered to be the first temple of the Sanriku (Tohoku 3 lands) 33 Kannon Pilgrimage. Before returning to the city of Sendai, you’ll make a stop at the Sendai Kirin Beer Brewery for a factory tour and then enjoy a refreshing beer tasting. After the tasting, you will go to the city of Sendai and rest a bit at your hotel before your true local bar-hopping tonight. You will explore the main street and its shopping arcade (Shotengai) along with many local restaurants. And be sure to try the local delicacy, cow tongue here.

    Night in Sendai

    Inclusions: Accommodation, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees

    Day 2 – Sendai Castle – Akiu Brewery – Yamaga Prefecture

    After breakfast, you will visit Zuihoden, which is the mausoleum of Date Masamune, one of the most powerful feudal lords of the Edo Period. A Virtual Reality (VR) display shows you a 360-degree view of Sendai Castle built by Date Masamune about 400 years ago. Date Masamune’s armor and Katana sword are highlighted in the exhibit.

    Next, continue to Rairai Gorge to enjoy the varied scenery of the canyon and stop at Akiu Winery for a wine tasting or Nikka Whiskey Brewery in Sendai. Then continue to Akiu Great Falls, a waterfall that is nationally designated as a ‘Place of Scenic Beauty.’ By now, you will have entered the nostalgic winter land of Yukiguni prefecture (one of the snowiest places on the planet).

    End the day at your hotel and rest for the next day’s adventure.

    Night in Sendai

    Inclusions: Accommodation, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees

    Day 3 – Nostalgic Yamagata tour – Ginzan Onsen

    Today, there is a full-day tour in Yamagata prefecture.

    Start by visiting Yama-dera temple which has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries and is designated as both a ‘Place of Scenic Beauty’ and as a ‘National Historic Site.’ After climbing the 1,015 stone steps to worship at Oku-no-in, enjoy the spectacular view at the Godaido Palace and then descend the mountain. You will continue to Lake Tokura, which was created in the Taisho era, (early 20th century) making it a place of relaxation not only for tourists but also for locals. In winter, swans fly in and you can observe them throughout the lake area.

    After driving on the snowy road, a different nostalgic world will open for you. Ginzan Onsen is surrounded by mountains and this small town prospered as a silver mining site in the 17th century. The winter snow scene, with its retro cityscape dyed in silver, has a nostalgic atmosphere. The area has many traditionally styled ryokan that occupy beautiful three and four-story wooden buildings lined up along the river. Their exposed woodwork and white plaster walls evoke feelings of a bygone era. Enjoy this most nostalgic scene in Ginzan Onsen town as snow falls gently on your head.

    Night in Sendai

    Inclusions: Accommodation, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees

    Day 4 – Mogami River Nostalgic Boat Ride

    After your breakfast, you will go back to the city in Yamagata prefecture by your private car. Then join a boat ride on the Mogami River, which is conducted on a kotatsu boat during the winter time. A kotatsu is a low, wooden table frame covered by a futon, or heavy blanket, upon which a tabletop sits. Underneath is a heat source, formerly a charcoal brazier but now electric, often built into the table itself. Compared to the green season, the hues of the snow-covered scenery are centered around blue, white, and black, making it look like an ink painting. After the boat ride, you will take a bullet train and end at your hotel in Tokyo.

    Night in Tokyo

    Inclusions: Accommodation, Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 5 – Departure

    You will check out and transfer to Narita International Airport by private car with your private guide.

    Inclusions: Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

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