Japan Winter Discovery with Snow Festival
Small group tour
14 days -
From incredible snow sculptures and rare birds in Hokkaido to snow monkeys and cultural treasures on Honshu; this tour demonstrates the myriad attractions of the enchanting winter season on Japan's two largest islands. Take an icebreaker cruise amongst the creaking floes of the Okhotsk Sea and in Yudanaka you'll witness the Japanese macaques as they stave off the cold in the mountain hot springs. Experience Japan's winter delights, whilst discovering her unique culture, fascinating history and contradictions.
- 12 nights hotel accommodation
- 1 night Ryokan accommodation
- breakfast daily
- day trains
- transport in air-conditioned vehicles
- small group touring
- entrance fees
- luggage transport
- Western tour leader based on a minimum of 7 travellers
- local English-speaking guides
- return transfers (on first and last day of tour only)
Prices and Departures
Small Group Tour Itinerary
DAYS 1-3: TOKYO
Arrive in Tokyo and transfer to your hotel. Embark on a tour of the city, taking in a walk of a traditional neighbourhood, Yanaka, and a calligraphy class. Visit a famous bonsai museum and historic street market, as well as the Tokyo National Museum.
Hotel: Shinjuku Washington
DAYS 4-6: MATSUMOTO & YUDANAKA
Journey by train to Matsumoto, where you will tour a wasabi farm, art museum and castle. Travel by train to Obuse, and visit its museum and temple. Continue on to Yudanaka and arrive at your traditional inn or 'ryokan' for the night. Enjoy the onsite onsen and a traditional dinner. Explore the snow monkey park and visit Zenkoji in Nagano, one of Japan's most significant temples.
Hotel: Matsumoto Tokyu REI Hotel
Hotel: Yorozuya Ryokan
DAYS 7-9: SAPPORO
Fly to Sapporo, where the exciting annual Sapporo Snow Festival will be taking place. Experience the magic of giant snow and ice sculptures adorning the city's streets and parks. Explore Sapporo's ski sites, including one used in the 1972 Winter Olympics. Visit a museum dedicated to Japan's oldest beer brewery, the botanic gardens and a historic village. There will time to explore at your own pace on your final afternoon here.
Hotel: Cross Hotel Sapporo
DAYS 10-12: KUSHIRO, LAKE ANAN & ABASHIRI
Take the train to Kushiro to explore a nature park and the endangered Red-crowned Japanese crane. Visit a series of lakes and watch a traditional Aiun performance. In Abashiri, enjoy a ride on an ice-breaker ship, and visits to its prison museum and ice museum. Journey to an onsen where you will stay the night.
Hotel: Hotel ANA Crown Plaza Kushiro
Hotel: Akan Yuku no Sato Tsuruga
Hotel: Sounkyo Grand Hotel
DAYS 13-14: SAPPORO
Visit frozen waterfalls and a sake brewery before travelling by road to Sapporo. The next day, transfer to the airport for your onward journey.
Hotel: Cross Hotel Sapporo
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