Team Travel Kuramoto


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8 Days
Escape near the Seto Inland Sea and Kansai area

Itinerary Summary

    Day 1 – Arrival in Osaka

    After being welcomed by your Private  guide/driver, you will travel to your accommodation in Osaka by private vehicle. Settle in, adjust to your new environment and get ready for your upcoming adventures.

    Night in Osaka
    Inclusions: Accommodation, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 2 – Osaka Sightseeing

    Today is your first full day visiting Osaka. Osaka is the second largest metropolitan area after Tokyo and is regarded as the “food capital of Japan.” First, visit the Osaka Castle and learn the history of the city before heading to the Kuromon food market and glitzy Dotonbori  area for a street food tour. Then explore Namba, the city’s most famous entertainment district which offers abundant casual dining venues (izakayas) and Shinsaibashi Street noted for being the best shopping street in Osaka.

    Night in Osaka
    Inclusions: Accommodation, Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 3 – Transfer from Osaka to Naoshima

    This morning, head to Shin-Osaka Station to take your first Shinkansen (Bullet train) ride to Okayama. Then take the ferry to Naoshima. Much of Naoshima’s art was installed by the Benesse Corporation, which oversees art museums, installations and sculptures both on Naoshima and on neighboring islands. You can visit Chichu Art Museum, Lee Ufan Museum and all the buildings of the Benesse House.

    Night in Naoshima
    Inclusions: Accommodation, Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 4 – Transfer from Naoshima to Hiroshima

    After breakfast, head back to Okayama by ferry and then travel to Hiroshima from Okayama station by Bullet train. Check-in at your accommodation and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.

    A must-see while in Hiroshima is the Atomic Bomb Dome and Peace Park. Even though it seems quite depressing, Hiroshima Peace is actually very well done and a good way to learn (and never forget) about the past. Walk through the 120,000 square meters of the Peace Park and see the A-bomb dome, and the archive center to see the remains and artefacts of survivors.

    Not far from the park, the Shukkei-en garden is also a must-see. Through careful cultivation of the land and vegetation, this garden mimics a variety of natural formations and scenic views.

    In the evening, head to “Okonomiyaki Village” and enjoy this Hiroshima most beloved dish: Okonomiyaki.

    Night in Hiroshima
    Inclusions: Accommodation, Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 5 – Miyajima Island Day trip

    About 45-mins from Hiroshima, Miyajima Island is probably one the most famous images foreigners have of Japan. The floating red torii gate is a symbol of Japan and one of the “must-see, 3 views” of Japan.

    Heading to the Main shrine, you will walk the Omotesando Shotengai Street. Shotengai are shopping streets in Japan. Here in Miyajima, Omotesando Shotengai stretches for about 350m and leads to the Itsukushima Shrine with 70 unique shops and local restaurants along the way.

    The centuries-old Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima is the source of both the island’s fame and its name. Formally named Itsukushima, the island is more popularly known as “Miyajima”, literally “shrine island” in Japanese, thanks to its star attraction. The shrine and its torii gate are unique for being built over water, seemingly floating in the sea during high tide. The shrine complex consists of multiple buildings, including a prayer hall, the main hall, and a Noh theatre stage, which are connected by boardwalks and supported by pillars above the sea.

    Take the Misen Gondola and arrive on top of Mt Misen. The panoramic view of Miyajima below and Hiroshima are stunning. There are different smaller shrines on top of Mt Misen, but of particular interest are the Misen Hondo (Misen Main Hall) and the Reikado (Hall of the Spiritual Flame). The latter protects a flame, which Kobo Daishi is said to have lit when he began worshipping on the mountain. It has been burning ever since and was also used to light the Flame of Peace in Hiroshima’s Peace Park.

    At the end of the day, take the ferry and train back to central Hiroshima.

    Night in Hiroshima
    Inclusions: Accommodation and Breakfast.

    Day 6 – Transfer from Hiroshima to Kyoto

    After breakfast, head back to the station and board the Shinkansen (Bullet train) and arrive at Japan’s cultural capital, Kyoto. Your private, English-speaking guide will welcome you at the station and take you directly to the Arashiyama District.

    Located in the northern part of Kyoto, here you can see the Togetsukyo Bridge as well as the famous Bamboo Forest. You will also visit two World Heritage sites: The Tenryu-ji temple and the Golden Pavilion before heading to your accommodation in central Kyoto.

    Night in Kyoto
    Inclusions: Accommodation, Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 7 – Kyoto Highlights

    For this full-day tour of Kyoto, a private guide and driver will take you to the must-see spots of the ancient capital.

    Start early in the morning with a tour of Fushimi Inari Grand shrine. Probably one of the most photographed shrines in Japan, Fushimi Shrine brings fortune/wealth to your business. The torii gates along the entire trail are donations by individuals and companies, and you will find the donator’s name and the date of the donation of each gate inscribed on the back.

    Following Fushimi Inari shrine, you will visit the Sanjusangendo Temple. The building is 121 meters in length and completely made of wood. An art form in itself, but once you are inside, you can see 1,001 Buddhist statues that are lined in 10 rows and are incredibly symmetrical but no two Statues have the same pose or expression, and the front 12 statues are Japanese national treasures.

    Next stop of the day, Kiyomizudera is best known for its wooden stage that juts out from its main hall, 13 meters above the hillside below. The main hall, which together with the stage was built without the use of nails. Another attraction inside the Temple’s grounds is the Otowa Waterfall located at the base of Kiyomizudera’s main hall. Its waters are divided into three separate streams, and visitors use cups attached to long poles to drink from them. Each stream’s water is said to have a different benefit, namely to cause longevity, success at school and a fortunate love life.

    Exiting the Kiyomizudera Temple, you will find the Ninenzaka and Sannenzaka slopes.  Both form one of the city’s best-preserved historic districts. It is a great place to experience traditional old Kyoto. The streets are lined by small shops, cafes and restaurants which have been catering to tourists and pilgrims for centuries. These businesses retain their traditional design, and they continue to serve customers today, selling local specialties such as Kiyomizu-yaki.

    Finally, you will find yourself at Gion. 

    Gion is Kyoto’s most famous geisha district. It is filled with shops, restaurants and ochaya (teahouses), where geiko (Kyoto dialect for geisha) and maiko (geiko apprentices) entertain.

    The tour will end at Gion district, but you should continue along the Kamo River and enjoy an evening walk before (or after dinner) in the area.

    Night in Kyoto
    Inclusions: Accommodation, Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

    Day 8 – Departure

    You’ll be free until departure. Depending on your flight, you may have time for some last-minute explorations – shopping or eating. You’ll be picked up at your accommodation for the comfortable private transfer to your departure airport.

    Inclusions: Breakfast, Private Guide, Transportation and Fees.

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