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Ancient & Modern Japan

From £3999 for 14 days
Trip Overview
Ancient wooden temples, raked-pebble Zen gardens and chanting Buddhist monks juxtaposed with space-age towers, neon lights and bullet trains; Japan’s captivating blend of old and new is legendary. As we explore the southern and western stretches of Honshu, Japan's largest island, we discover the country's unique culture amongst the serene shrines and gardens of Nara and Kyoto and the rarely visited mountainous heartland of castles and spas. Our last stop is the vast and futuristic capital city of Tokyo: sprawling, inimitably busy, welcoming and extraordinary.
Essential Info
Starts: Start Kyoto
Ends: End Tokyo
Ages: Min 16
Theme: Discovery
Trip Code: EAOP
Activity Level:     
Countries visited: Japan
What's Included


3 breakfasts and 3 dinners are included


10 nights hotels and 3 nights ryokans/minshukus (traditional Japanese guesthouses)  14 days land only / 16 days flight inclusive


Trip Highlights

•    Spot mysterious geishas in Kyoto's Gion district

•    Experience cherry blossom season or beautiful autumn colours

•    Watch the famous snow monkeys bathing in hot springs

•    Take the incredible high speed 'bullet train'

•    Explore temples in Kyoto and discover futuristic Tokyo

Dates & Availability
Start date
End date
Departing: 14th Mar 2021
Returning: 27th Mar 2021
Availability: Good
Departing: 18th Mar 2021
Returning: 31st Mar 2021
Availability: Good
Departing: 21st Mar 2021
Returning: 3rd Apr 2021
Availability: Good
Departing: 25th Mar 2021
Returning: 7th Apr 2021
Limited Availability
3 spaces
Departing: 28th Mar 2021
Returning: 10th Apr 2021
Limited Availability
2 spaces
Departing: 29th Mar 2021
Returning: 11th Apr 2021
Availability: Good
Departing: 1st Apr 2021
Returning: 14th Apr 2021
Availability: Good
Departing: 4th Apr 2021
Returning: 17th Apr 2021
Availability: Good
Departing: 5th Apr 2021
Returning: 18th Apr 2021
Availability: Good
Show more dates
Itinerary & Notes
The trip starts in Kyoto, an atmospheric city set amidst beautiful hills. 
   Print Trip Notes
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GROUP TOUR from £3305 for 12 days


- Discover Tokyo, where dazzling neon lights are only the beginning. Feast on market-fresh sushi, try your hand at calligraphy, and cook your own okonomiyaki on a Tokyo Bay boat cruise
- Fast, fun and futuristic, a bullet train ride (Tokyo to Hakone) is an essential Japanese experience, sure to be a thrill for the whole family
- Bask in the soothing waters of an onsen in Hakone. These Japanese hot-spring baths are the perfect antidote to a couple of days of walking around the big city


GROUP TOUR from £3835 for 12 days


- A seven-day rail pass is included in the price of this trip, so there's no need to worry about the logistics or costs of transport between cities. All you need to worry about is whether to choose ramen or yakitori for dinner
- Spend the night in a traditional Japanese ryokan, sleeping on an authentic tatami mat. These Edo period inns are a true travel experience
- Surrounded by monks and tranquil scenery, an overnight temple stay in Koya-san is as peaceful and unique as it sounds


GROUP TOUR from £1620 for 9 days


- Experience a mix of Japan's most famous sites along with some great off the beaten track gems
- If you're the independent type, this is the trip for you. While we'll get you from A to B and show you around, you'll have plenty of free time to do exactly what you like
- Stay in a traditional Japanese ryokan, sleeping on the floor beside a cosy hearth after a nightly soak in shared baths
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A superb trip, exploring a wide variety of destinations and experiences. Very stimulating. Wonderful to travel on public transport. I never expected to see and do so much. I loved the traditional wooden buildings / hotels we stayed in in the mountain areas. All the accommodation was excellent.
This trip exceeded expectations in many ways - incredibly well-organised with a good balance between group activities and private exploration. The breadth of Japanese culture, both ancient and modern, was well covered, the accommodations were excellent, the food was extraordinary and the transport system very impressive. And the Japanese we met were always polite, respectful, friendly and calm. We came home with the feeling that the UK has a lot to learn!
You really couldn’t pack any more into 2 weeks! We walked round cities (lot of walking), visited temples, shrines, markets, gardens and castles and saw beautiful scenery from the trains. Our guide was very helpful and knowledgeable and always available for advice on what to do, where to go and where to eat in our free time.
This was a bucket list trip for me and I was really pleased with the pace and the amount we covered in two weeks. The travel dates that I chose were specifically to see the blossoms and although they were late this year, we were lucky to see them and experience their serenity in Tokyo. The trip has lots of other amazing things in it too.
It was great touring using public transport including bullet trains but it meant deadlines to catch trains. Because of this we sometimes felt rushed with not enough time to fully enjoy the sights we were visiting. But we certainly saw a slice of Japanese life.
A trip that enabled an effective, varied view of key parts of Japan
Wild deers, snow monkeys, cherry blossoms, temple cats, bullet trains, metros, lovely and friendly Japans in clean Japan.
Good holiday with an excellent guide called Keigo Ninomiya. He was always available and provided some fantastic optional trips such as the temple of a thousand budhas in Kyoto called Sanjusangen-do. I do not understand why this was not in the itinerary.
Japan is a must in regards to countries you should see in your lifetime. This itinerary covers a lot and you will get a comprehensive outlook on Japanese culture through it. Every single day was an experience of it's own. There is a lot to say about Japan: transport system is excellent, streets are spotlessly clean. The best costumer service you will get and one of the kindest/most efficient people you will have a pleasure to meet. The diversity between new and old that you can see so clearly just by visiting Kyoto and Tokio is so interesting to witness. I will definitely come back to Japan after this trip!
I have been on many trips, all over the world, during the past decade or so, including many with Exodus. This Exodus trip I would rank as one of the very best. From start to finish, it was a wonderful experience, with a great group of fellow travelers. Each day was filled with new delights. The Japanese people were consistently kind, friendly, welcoming, and polite. The transport system is absolutely superb. The spotlessness of every location - even side streets in huge cities - has to be experienced to be believed. I am absolutely adamant that I will return to Japan in the near future because I was so enthralled by my experience during this trip.
I really enjoyed the trip. Japan was everything I expected and more. So much so that I want to return in the next couple of years. I loved the fact that quite a few of the train journeys were made by bullet train. We were fortunate to be in Tokyo whilst the Cherry Blossom was in flower. Big tick on the bucket list.
We had booked this trip to mark our 40th wedding anniversary and it did not disappoint. The travel arrangements all worked very well and our accommodation was of a very good standard. We had a brilliant guide, who introduced us to a series of memorable experiences, including our first taste of authentic Japanese cooking. The trip lived up to our expectations and was very much in line with what had been set out in the Trip Notes.
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