Somewhere in between the ultramodern high-speed trains and the ancient sound of temple bells lies daily life in Japan. Like a haiku it is succinct, beautiful, and incredibly attuned to seasons. It is a place that knows the reach of its own topography both geographically and culturally. It exquisitely offers up its food, culture, and landscape in exactly right the doses of accessibility and mystery. Tokyo offers its vast pulsing energy to project millions of people through their lives in its high reaching skyscrapers and it’s deep subway tunnels. The mountains rumble with their volcanic power and awe inspiring ruggedness. Kyoto’s expectation of beauty and knowledge lies in its soul and dares its visitors to challenge it. To travel in Japan is to glimpse, taste, and explore.  

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Deep Kyoto is an in-depth look at Kyoto’s past and present. We will spend our days exploring the finely built beauty of the city. Each day offers a deep look into the corners of this city through its delicious food, amazing architecture, and nuanced history. The quiet and rhythmic pace offers the chance for travelers to get to know this city by spending enough time with each garden, cup of tea, and temple.

April 15th-24th, 2016

Day 1

Depart USA for Osaka

Day 2

Arrival

Transfer from Osaka by train to the beautifully designed hotel near Kyoto Station

Day 3

Yasaka Shrine and Kyo-mizu dera

We begin our time together in Kyoto with a walk that highlights a few of the essential elements of Kyoto: temples, teahouses, and villas. In the evening we open our trip with a dinner together on Kyoto’s iconic Ponto-cho.

Day 4 

Fushimi Inari 

Today we head slightly out of the city to Southern Kyoto to experience the iconic shinto shrine Fushimi Inari.

Day 5

Momijiya Ryokan

Taking a leisurely morning for walks and short individual explorations we set out a bit later today for our trip out of the city.

Day 6

Arashiyama

In the shade of the immaculately cared for bamboo forest we spend the day in Arashiyama, a nationally-designated Historic Site and Place of Scenic Beauty.

Day 7

Nishikidojodori-Food Street and Cooking Class

We jump into Japanese culinary traditions today first by a tour of Kyoto’s finest food street which is packed with delicacies, kitchen supplies, teas, and sweets.

Day 8

Ryoan-ji and Myorenji 

Today we contemplate Zen temples and their famous rock gardens. We begin early in the morning at Ryoan-ji which is considered one of the most refined rock gardens in Japan.

Day 9

Eastern Kyoto

Our last full day in Kyoto we explore some hidden gems off of the beaten path by steeping ourselves in the gardens and temples of Eastern Kyoto. We meet up at night for our final dinner to mark the end of our voyage together.

Day 10 

Transfer to Osaka

Departure to USA

 

 

Japan Country Inns is the quintessential trip to Japan offering the best of what this amazing country has to offer. We will explore the modern thumping capital that is Tokyo through its museums and markets. In the mountains we will soak in the mineral rich waters and revel in the presence of the alps. In Kyoto we will look to the past, wandering down crooked little streets to knife stores, stumbling on exquisitely prepared cups of tea, and appreciate the craft of gardens and temples.

September 24th-October 5th,2016

Day 1

Depart USA for Tokyo

Day 2

Arrive in Japan

Transfer to Park Hotel Tokyo

Day 3 

Tokyo

We spend the morning wandering through the biggest fish market in the world. In the evening we open our trip with a dinner together at a popular local restaurant.

Day 4 

Tokyo

We continue our tastes of the metropolis.  First, we drop into the pulse of the city through the rich and varied cultural landscape of museums in Ueno Park.  Then, we experience the city from above, on the 53rd floor of the incredible Mori Tower and Art Museum .

Day 5 

Mountain Onsen

Nakanoyu

We travel north across central Honshu and into the Japanese Alps near Kamikochi.

Day 6 

Kamikochi

We stay at our mountain onsen for another night and spend the day exploring near the headquarters of the Chubu Sangaku National Park. 

Day 7 

Takayama

We travel across the mountains to the town of Takayama. Spared from the bombing in World War II, it maintains an authentic atmosphere.

Day 8 

Takayama

Take in the morning farmer’s market, enjoy a walk through the temples on the edge of town. We get a sense of old Japan by visiting an open air museum based on traditional Japanese farm life with carefully preserved buildings of a traditional village.

Day 9 

Kyoto

We travel from rural Takayama to the capital of Japan’s culture and history, Kyoto. Begin to explore the unique wonder that is Kyoto, complete with beautiful contemporary design and shopping nestled in with age-old temples and tea shops.

Day 10

Kyoto

Kyoto is like an incredible tapestry that as you get closer you keep noticing more and more intricacies and yet when you step back the whole picture is beautiful too. We begin our time together in Kyoto with a walk that highlights a few of the essential elements of Kyoto: temples, teahouses, and villas.

Day 11

Kyoto

Our last full day in Kyoto we explore some hidden gems off of the beaten path by steeping ourselves in the gardens and temples of Eastern Kyoto. We meet up at night for our final dinner to mark the end of our voyage together.

Day 12

Departure from Osaka 

We take a small number of curated trips each year. These journeys highlight a carefully selected set of meals and places that we find deep inspiration from. These itineraries are born out of extensive exploration and relationships. These trips offer introductions to the countries we love and offer an experience that allows travelers to be transported to the uniqueness of each place through food, art, and culture.  Check out our planned itineraries above.

We work with people to create trips that they dream of going on by offering custom trips that offer  experiences based on your passions. Please contact us if you’d like to set up a custom trip with us.