Day of travel across the International Date Line to Japan.
Tokyo - Okayama
Arrive at Tokyo International Airport, after custom and immigration, you will be transferred to Okayama by domestic flight. Overnight is at Plaza Hotel, buffet dinner is served.
Okayama - Seto Inland Sea - Kotohira
Early departure for Seto Grand Bridge in Yojima Island, exquisitely harmorized with the beautiful Seto Inland Sea. It is bounded by the three main islands of Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu. The world most majestic suspension bridge connecting Honshu and Shikoku Islands with 6 long spans linked by elevated bridges. After a relaxing boat cruise to take command of panoramic view of the bridge and inland sea, tour continues to Shikoku Island's Takamatsu Ritsurin Park, one of three most beautiful gardens in Japan. This 78 ha of skilfully laid garden is in harmony with the mounding pine covered hill. Overnight is at Kotohira Kobeite Resort to enjoy the first hotspring to rejuvenate your travel fatigue.
Kotohira - Dogo Hotspring
Morning tour to Kotohira Shrine, which is one of most revered Shinto Shrines in the country. The approach to the shrine is a long flight of 785 granite steps. Lunch break is at beautiful and colourful Asakura Towel Museum, is featuring the art display of textile design of Atsuoko Matano and Masahiro Naruse's masterpieces plus many chic boutiques for shopping pleasure. Tour continues via scenic Shimanami highway with stop at Kirosan observation point where you will get 360° beautiful panoramic view of Seto Inland Sea and its thousand islands. After Kosanji Temple visit, we will arrive Dogo Hotspring town. Overnight is at Dogo Prince Hotel with renowned Dogo hot spring and kaiseki dinner.
Dogo - Usuki - Beppu
Morning visit to Matsuyama Castle built in 1628. Ride a ropeway and lift to the castle for a panoramic view of Matsuyama City. We will take ferry to across the Hoyo Straits to Oita City of Kyushu Island. Visit Usuki, which was formerly a castletown of Sorin Otomo and thrived as a port for trade with Portugal in 16 century. About 20mins by bus from Usuki Station is Usuki-no- Sekibutsu, where at the site of Mangetsuji Temple, more than 60 ancient stone images Buddha are elaborately carved from the rocky cliffs. Then check-in Beppu Fugetsu Hammond Hotel and enjoy the world renowned Beppu hot spring with a lavish kaiseki dinner.
Beppu - Mt. Aso - Kumamoto
Bus will head for Kumamoto via Yamanami mountain scenic highway to Mt. Aso, the Land of Fire, the creator basin measuring 24km in length and 125km in width, is the largest of its kind in the world, is the most active, constantly spewing forth back smoke accompanied by underground trembling. Also visiting to Kumamoto Castle built in 1607 and Momoyama style garden of Suizenji. Overnight is at Kummoto Garden Kashoen Hotspring Hotel.
Kumamoto - Kagoshima
Morning departure via Kyushu Highway into the Sakurajima Island, an active volcano still constantly belching smoke. After tour to Ariuma Laval observatory we will arrive to the volcano city of Kagoshima. Lunch break is at Lord Shimaz's Iso Garden, a villa for the reigning feudal lord in front of beautiful Kinko Bay, and its Shoko Shusekan Historical Museum. Overnight is at Sun Royal Hotel with hot spring spa. (B|L|D)
Ibusuki - Cape Nagasakibana - Lake Ikeda
Morning departure to Ibusuki Town, it owes its popularity in part of its lovely white sandy beach and lush subtropical vegetation. A unique form of hot sandbathing is offered here and is a great way to relax. Then driving through the beautiful scenery of Mt. Kaimon to the scenic Cape Nagasakibana at the tip of Satsuma Peninsula. Lunch break is at Lake Ikeda, which has the largest round shaped crater in Kyushu. Overnight is at Sun Royal Hotel.
Kumamoto - Unzen - Nagasaki
Today across in Ariake Sea by ferry to Shimabara where you will see the Fugen Mountain Earthquake Ruin, then journey through Unzen Volcanic National Park enroute to Nagasaki. A visit to Nagasaki Peace Park, which was laid out to commemorate the exact spot of the atomic blast on August 9, 1945; and Thomas Glover Garden Mansion displays its glorious history of a Scottish merchant's success story in Japan Meiji Modernization era. It is also noted for its scenery reminiscent of the setting for Puccini's opera, Madame Butterfly. Standing on the hillside of Nagasaki, take in commanding panoramic view of the harbour. After dinner enjoy a leisure walk in Nagasaki Chinatown. Overnight is at Nagasaki Grand Hotel.
Nagasaki - Arita - Imari - Takeo
We will visit Kyushu Ceramic Museum in the Saga Ceramic Valley, Master Kakiemon Kiln Park and Museum, Master Manji Inoue Gallery. The Saga Ceramic Valley is home to the world famous “Old Imari.” It covers an area
from Nishi Arita, across to Takeo, and down through Ureshino. Ceramics are still produced, strongly influenced by centuries of history. The same area is one of the major hot spring resort regions in Japan. It also offers a vast reservoir of culture that can be seen in the form of the many shrines, temples, and local festivals. Four hundred yeaers ago, Arita, now known as the birthplace of Japanese porcelain, was only a small village in a pocket of the hills. It was Ri Sampei, a Korean potter, who started the history and tradition of the porcelain industry in Arita. He was originally brought here by Lord Naoshige Nabeshima. Ri Sampei and his colleagues discovered kaolin suitable for porcelain in Izumiyama and they set a milestone in porcelain production by opening a kiln in Kamishirakawa Tengudani. Following this, more and more kilns came into operation producing white porcelain glazed with indigo-blue patterns. Arita flourished as the first porcelain producer in Japan. Arita porcelain attracted many Westerners. The pottery became known as Imari after the port from which it was shipped. Ko-Imari, one of the three main styles of Arita porcelain, is characterized by its remarkable glazing and patterns. Red and gold are generously used in this style which is frequently employed for big ornamental plates and vases. The Kakiemon style, created by Kakiemon, is noted for its milk - white background and delicately tinted red patterns. The Kakiemon's elegant ambience as well as the brilliant Ko-Imari was popular in Europe and largely influenced porcelain manufacturing technique there. Continue to Okawachiyama the village of the secret kilns once owned by the Feudal Lord of Nabeshima, is a secluded area surrounded by beautiful mountains and country road. Overnight is at Takeo Century Hotspring Resort with its famous mineral spa and the most beautiful Japanese tea garden Keishien, a former Nabeshima local Daimyo's residence garden inKyushu area.
Yoshinogari - Fukuoka
Morning departure for the Historic Remains of Yoshinogari, it is Japan's largest village enclosed by moats in the Yayoi Period (300BC - 300AD), burial mounds, and watchtowers with many interesting displays. After lunch at
famous Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine, we will climb 234m high to the Fukuoka Tower Observation Desk for a panoramic view of Fukuoka and its gold coast line. Arrive in the mid-afternoon at Tokyu Inn in the bustling shopping & entertainment area. Afternoon is free for your shopping leisure in Nakasu and Tenjin districts as well as the famous Canal City. (B|L|D)
After breakfast, transfer to Fukuoka Airport and disband. (B)
| Hotel taxes and service charges additional: U$ 472 (Land Only) / U$ 88 (Single Supplement) per person. 10 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 10 dinners |
All prices are quoted USD, per person twin/trip occupancy.
Minimum group size 10 for private bus.
Group size under 9-4 will use bullet train, subway and mini van with same itinerary & escort.
Please enquire our air fare from these carriers:
Please contact : Elite Orient Tours / Japan Story
4-112 Elizabeth St, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1P5
email : firstname.lastname@example.org www.elitetours.com
| || |