As you sip steaming macha in a tea house on a small island on a serene lake within an intricate Edo Period Japanese garden, the 21st-century skyscrapers that rise from the neighboring Shiodome district seem like a far-off alien landscape.
This is the exciting contradiction of modern-day Japan, where the ultra-modern cityscapes of Tokyo and the busy contemporary lifestyles of its residents are juxtaposed with the country’s deep respect for its ancient cultural traditions and precise arts. Explore the ancient temples, shrines and charming traditional architecture of Tokyo. In Kyoto, you’ll discover the many elaborate castles and Buddhist temples of the former imperial capital, including a visit to the Ginkakuji Zen temple in Kyoto’s stunning eastern mountains.
From the centuries-old traditions of Kyoto’s kimono-clad geishas to Tokyo’s trendy costume-obsessed teens, this tour provides an immersive experience that spans centuries of Japan’s cultural traditions.
Enjoy a personalized vacation that best suits your needs, developed by one of our experienced destination experts. Relax during your trip with our 24/7 support and expert local guidance.
Welcome to Japan!
Meet your driver for a shared airport transfer.
Take a day tour of this fascinating city with a local guide, making use of Tokyo’s comprehensive and user friendly public transport system. The day begins with a visit to Meiji Shrine, a shrine dedicated to the deified spirit of Emperor Meiji and a popular place for traditional Japanese weddings. Take a walk down Omotesando shopping street, a broad tree lined avenue home to the flagship stores of the world’s top fashion brands. Head across town to Asakusa, Tokyo’s old town where you can soak in the atmosphere of old Tokyo. Visit Sensoji, Tokyo’s oldest temple and wander down Nakamise, a shopping street that has been providing temple visitors with a variety of traditional, local snacks and tourist souvenirs for centuries. Take a boat cruise on the Sumida River passing under 12 bridges. Disembark in Hamarikyu garden, an Edo Period Japanese garden surrounded by the Shiodome district’s futuristic skyscrapers, a great example of how Japan is the land of contrasts, where you will stop for a cup of steaming matcha and Japanese sweets in a tea house on a small island in the park’s lake. Please note that with this tour you will have a private guide, but rather than travelling by private vehicle, you will make use of Tokyo’s efficient local transit system.
Enjoy time at leisure to explore at your own pace, or relax at your hotel.
We recommend hailing a local taxi for today's transfer, they are readily available, safe and affordable.
Transfer by train from Tokyo to Kyoto. The train ride is approximately 2.5 hours.
Visit 3 of Kyoto’s 17 UNESCO World Heritage Sites on this half day tour. Start the day with a visit to Kinkakuji Temple (Golden Pavilion), which was originally built as a retirement villa for the Shogun. After his death it became a Buddhist Temple at his request, and is now one of Kyoto’s most famous temples. Next is Nijo Castle, an ornamental castle built by the founder of the Edo Shogunate as his Kyoto residence and is surrounded by stunning surrounding gardens. The main building was completed in 1603, and is famous for its architecture, decorated sliding doors and ‘chirping’ nightingale floors. Finish the day with a visit to Kiyomizu (Pure Water) Temple. From the 13 meter high veranda jutting out from the Main Hall you can enjoy amazing views of the whole of Kyoto, while pondering the fact that both the Main Hall and Veranda were built without the use of nails or any kind of joiners. End the tour in the Kiyomizu area. Please note that with this tour you will have a private guide, but rather than travelling by private vehicle, you will make use of Kyoto’s efficient local transit system.
With your local guide, cycle through the Miyagawacho and Gion geisha districts, hoping to see a geisha or maiko (apprentice geisha) as they dash between appointments. Continue along the Shirakawa canal lined with weeping willow trees, past traditional Kyoto style tea houses. Next, will be the Imperial Palace Park with its beautiful gardens. Cycle back to Kyoto station along the Kamogawa River, whose riverbanks are popular with the locals. Cherry blossoms bloom along the banks of the river in spring, and in summer the restaurants open their balconies looking out to the river. End the tour near Kyoto Station. If you wish to continue sightseeing in Kyoto on your bike after the tour has finished, it can be arranged for you to keep the bike until 19:00 at no charge.
Transfer by train from Kyoto to Kansai Airport. The train ride is approximately 1.5 hours.
Citadines Shinjuku Hotel is located within walking distance of the Shinjuku East area, one of Tokyo’s thriving urban centres. The hotel is a contemporary residence which enjoys a prime location close to the Marunouchi and Toei Shinjuku subway lines. At Citadines Shinjuku, you can look forward to a pleasant stay that combines the convenience of a hotel with the freedom and privacy of an apartment. The residence’s range of optional services are customized to suit your business and leisure needs, allowing you a choice of short or long term stays. The Citadine is conveniently situated near restaurants, supermarkets, shopping malls, the Shinjuku hospital and Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden.
Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto is located a short walk from the business district and Kyoto's tourist belt. Restaurants, shopping and entertainment are close by as are many of the cultural heritage sites. For destinations throughout the city, the subway is highly efficient and the Gojo subway station is outside the residence. It is one stop from the main Kyoto station of Shinkansen. These stylish serviced residences provide the comfort, convenience and security desired while living and working in Kyoto. Choose from the studio twin, studio double, studio premier twin, studio premier double and one bedroom premier for the apartment that suits the guests requirements and budget. Each apartment is fully furnished with stylish interiors, designer fittings and modern amenities. The prime address allows for easy access to the city as well as a retreat with 24 hour security, services and facilities. The resident's programmes provide the opportunity to explore and discover Kyoto. Relax in the resident's lounge and work efficiently with business facilities available.
Olive Ramchand ,
June 03, 2014
"I have to admit, this was the BEST vacation I ever had. The tour was nothing less than Fantastic! The hotels were great, the guides were great, the transportation was great, the places were great, the people were great, the food was great and last but not least China, itself was out of this world. I'm so glad I booked this tour and would recommend this to anyone. Thanks so much for all your help, your interest and your recommendations. Steve in China was so attentive, he called constantly to make sure everything was fine. We really had a fabulous time and even my jaded husband who normally only seems to care about where the nearest golf course is, was impressed and had a wonderful time.
Thanks again, and unto the next vacation (although I don't know how we would top this one!!)
Jeanne Tarvin ,
April 21, 2014
"The tour was absolutely fabulous. It all started with the planning. Kathryn graciously accommodated our tight schedule and multiple needs, including a mid-trip change in plans. The tour guides and drivers were all great and extremely knowledgeable. The accommodations and meals were fantastic. I was apprehensive about going to China not knowing the language but it worked out great!"
January 15, 2014
"We just returned on Monday from our wonderful trip to South Korea, Bangkok and Phuket. I wanted to thank you for all of your hard work in planning our tours and adventures. Everything was spot on, from our arrivals at the airports, to the guides and the tours. I would not hesitate to recommend you and your company. It was truly a wonderful vacation. Thank you again.
Bob Feldman ,
November 19, 2013
"I wanted to let you know that our trip to China was great! Everybody enjoyed themselves. When planning a trip I am always concerned about the itinerary, the vehicles and the guides. All 3 of these were great. The guides were particularly good and in this case really made the trip a pleasure. Overall a great trip. Thanks for all you did."
Gloria DeWeese ,
October 10, 2013
"A wonderful trip and everything went like clockwork. Thank you so very much for all your assistance. I hope I will have a chance to work with you again."
Wayne Gavioli ,
September 04, 2013
"We just returned from our thailand/cambodia trip. It was fantastic. You did a great job. The guides were excellent as was the drivers. We loved the Victoria Hotel you selected in Siem. Wish we had more time. Thailand met our expectations but our expectations for Cambodia were low and they exceeded them. Loved the places selected for the included lunches. Certainly would use Kensington again"
Santo Filice ,
August 30, 2013
"Thank you for arranging our guided trip to Thailand - Vietnam. It was a memorable, and pleasant trip - a 1st for us with Kensington tours and a most enjoyable one. We found that we were able to maximize our visit of the the area without the concern of booking hotels, airline, finding parking and understanding the local language. "
Tim Mesarch ,
August 02, 2013
"Alexis helped us fit in all of the sites we wanted to see on our trip to Thailand and Cambodia, and suggested some more. It was valuable talking with someone who had been there and done that. The planning went pretty smoothly, and so did the trip. The local guides were all top-notch! "
July 25, 2013
"I highly recommend Kesington Tours. The planning of our trip to Cambodia was outstanding. Our advisor Alexis Mayer was unbelievably patient, knowledgeable and responsive. We planned the trip in every possible detail and Alexis was extraordinary during the whole process. Once we were in Cambodia, we had a tiny issue with the car. I was able to get in contact with Alexis right away and the problem was instantly solved. The trip itself was fantastic. Everything was very well planned and perfectly organized. The local guides and drivers were great. The hotels were very well chosen.
Great trip. I would definitely travel again with Kensington Tours."
Pennie Quintana ,
August 07, 2013
"Thank you so much for the amazing trip we enjoyed!! All our guides were fantasy. Joseph in Jakarta, July in Jojakarta and Deon in Borneo!! Wow!! Bless you for all your attention to detail and the outstanding communication to all my questions. You made me feel so taken care of and tended too!! "
Stay in the know: Subscribe to our newsletter to have our hand-picked trips & specials delivered to you!
Please enter a destination