Railbookers has debuted three new Japanese itineraries. Lasting between nine and 14 days, The Golden Route of Japan, Scenic Japan and Best of Japan packages offer rail-based travel with stops in Tokyo, Hakone, Kyoto, Matsumoto, Takayama and Hiroshima.
The Golden Route of Japan
The shortest of the three itineraries, The Golden Route of Japan begins in Tokyo, where guests visit Hamarikyu Garden, the Meiji Shrine and Tsukiji Market. After a ride on the Tokaido Shinkansen bullet train, travelers arrive in Hakone, where they can see Mount Fuji and Lake Ashi. Moving on to Kyoto, the itinerary includes a guided bus tour of the city with stops at Kinkakuji Temple, Nijo Castle, Nishiki Market and the Sanjusangendo temple. On an included day tour of Nara and Fushimi, guests visit several temples and shrines, including the world’s largest wooden building and the site of Japan’s largest Buddha statue. The nine-day trip concludes in Tokyo, where guests have time to see the city on their own.
Lasting 11 days, the Scenic Japan itinerary adds visits to Matsumoto and Takayama. The itinerary starts off similarly to The Golden Route of Japan in Tokyo, except with one day less to explore and see the Tsukiji Market. The route then moves on to Matsumoto, where guests learn how to make soba noodles. With plenty of time to explore the city by themselves, guests can visit the Matsumoto City Museum of Art, see Japan’s oldest extant castle or simply wander the scenic streets. Travelers then visit the village Takayama. Guests have about two days here, during which they can see the Karakuri Museum, Hida Folk Village, the Sanmachi Suji District, the Sakurayama Hachimangu Shrine and more. In Kyoto, travelers take a four-hour Japanese cooking class, as well as the same bus tour from The Golden Route of Japan. After a stop in Hakone, the tour ends in Tokyo, where guests have a day to explore by themselves.
Best of Japan
The 14-day Best of Japan tour begins with the same first few days in Tokyo as The Golden Route of Japan. When guests arrive in Hakone, however, they stay in a traditional Japanese ryokan and have time to ride the second largest cable car in the world to the top of Mount Owakudani. Travelers then take the Limited Express Hida Wideview for a scenic trip through Japan’s gorges and mountains to Takayama. While here, visitors can stop by Hida No Sato Folk Village where they can see traditional structures from the Hida region. After stopping at the UNESCO-recognized Shirakawago village, travelers go on to Kanazawa, where they can explore the city’s gardens, museums and historic sites. The tour then moves on to Hiroshima for a visit to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. After a two-hour trip on the Shinkansen, guests arrive in Kyoto, where they will spend the final three nights of the journey. While here, guests take a private cooking class on the city’s kappo cuisine, visit Kinkakuji Temple, tour Nijo Castle and take a day trip to Nara. On the final day of the itinerary, guests leave for Kyoto for the Tokyo Narita Airport.