• Catch a Glimpse of Geishas

  • See Daibutsu in Nara

  • Stroll the Famous Bamboo Path

  • Enjoy Kinkakuji Temple

Japan Kansai- 7 Days

 Land Only from US $1699-$1950

Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe, Nara, & Kyoto

Departs January-December 2014

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Highlights

    Featured Arrangements

    • Kansai (Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe Area):
      • Glide through the countryside on the famous Shinkansen Bullet Train.
      • Tour a sake brewery and enjoy Kobe beef dinner. 
      • Discover Japanese antiques at the Miho Asian Art Museum. 
      • See the best icons of Kyoto and get a glimpse of modern Geishas in Gion.
      • Soak in outdoor hot spring after a Kyoto style Kaiseki dinner.
      • Explore the Dotonbori restaurant district, known as the “Kitchen of Japan.”

    Luxury Accommodations

    • TokyoImperial Hotel Tokyo – Icon of Tokyo and 2013 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice winner.
    • Osaka: Imperial Osaka or Nikko Osaka – High end hotels in prime central location. 
    • Kyoto: Hanakaido Hotel – Hot spring hotel with lakeside views.
    • Kyoto: Grand Prince Hotel – Located in the hills above Kyoto with spacious rooms.
    • Kyoto: Kyoto Hotel Okura – Within walking distance to Gion and shopping. 

    Culinary Experiences  

    • Arranging great culinary experiences is a specialty we are very proud of. Our development team samples each meal before presenting them to our guests. On this trip, you will have a chance to taste Japanese delicacies including Kobe beef, shabu shabu, and traditional Kaiseki banquet dinner. 

     

Tour Map

Itinerary

Day 1

Depart North America for Tokyo, Japan

  • Depart from your home airport, have a great flight!

Day 2

Arrive in Narita, Tokyo

  • "Yokoso" or "Welcome" to Japan! A Super Value Tours Representative will meet you at the arrivals gate and make sure you and your luggage get to the hotel.
  • Take today to rest up or if you’re up for it, explore Tokyo on your own before official plans begin tomorrow. 

*Airport transfer is available until 7:30pm. 

Dinner  
Local Specialty
Hotel  
Imperial Hotel Tokyo or Keio Plaza Hotel
Day 3

Tokyo Shinkansen (Bullet Train) - Osaka  Kobe  Osaka

  •  Shinkansen: Experience a true modern marvel by riding the Shinkansen (bullet train) to Osaka.
  • Osaka Castle Park: Explore the largest castle in Japan.  
  •  Nada Sake Brewery: Tour a local Sake Brewery, enjoy complimentary tasting while learning about traditional sake brewing techniques. 
  •  Kobe: Explore the city of Kobe before dining on the destination's famous beef for dinner.

Breakfast  
Western and Japanese Buffet
Lunch  
Japanese lunch set
Dinner  
Kobe Beef Dinner
Hotel  
Imperial Osaka or Nikko Osaka
Day 4

Osaka Nara  Biwako (Hot Spring Ryokan)

  • Nara Park: Experience the beauty of Nara Park and stand in awe in the presence of Japan's largest Buddha statue- Daibutsu. 
  •  Miho Asian Art Museum: Travel off the beaten path and see an incredible collection of Japanese antiques at the Miho Museum, designed by I.M. Pei. (If Miho Museum is closed, we will visit Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts.)
  •  Soak in the outdoor onsen hot spring after a Kyoto-style Kaiseki dinner.

Breakfast  
Western and Japanese Buffet
Lunch  
Japanese Nature lunch set
Dinner  
Kaiseki dinner (Japanese banquet) with Karaoke!
Hotel  
Hanakaido Ryokan Hotel or equivalent
Day 5

Biwako Kyoto

  • Kyoto: See the best of Kyoto! Explore old alleyways of Sannenzaka and Ninenzaka and climb to the top of Kiyomizu temple for a spectacular view of Kyoto.
  • Nijo Castle: Relive the days of the Shogunate in Nijo Castle.
  • Gion: Geishas of Gion may be elusive, but if we're lucky we'll have a chance to see them before exploring downtown Kyoto.

Breakfast  
Western and Japanese Buffet
Lunch  
Japanese-Italian cuisine
Dinner  
Dinner in downtown Kyoto; choose your own restaurant
Hotel  
Kyoto Hotel Okura or Grand Prince Hotel
Day 6

Kyoto  Osaka

  • Sagano Romantic Train: Take a scenic ride through the tranquil Hozagawa River Valley. 
  • Arashiyama: Walk through the flourishing bamboo forest and discover the alluring beauty of the surroundings. 
  • Kinkakuji Temple: Discover an icon of Kyoto, the "Golden Pavilion," covered with gold foil.
  • Shinsaibashi: Stroll through Osaka's largest and most significant shopping district.
  •  For dinner, you have the opportunity to choose your own delight in the Dotonbori restaurant district, known as the "Kitchen of Japan."

Breakfast  
Western and Japanese Buffet
Lunch  
Yakiniku– Japanese Barbeque
Dinner  
Free time in Dotonbori restaurant district, Dinner not included
Hotel  
Nikko Osaka or Imperial Osaka or equivalent
Day 7
 

Osaka (KIX) or (ITM)  Next Destination 

  • After breakfast, guests with morning flights will be sent off to the shuttle bus station bound for Itami or Kansai airport. For guests with afternoon flights, your morning is free and our tour guide will provide directions for you to explore Osaka city for last-minute shopping or sightseeing. Sayonara!

 *Airport send off available from 9:00am-7:00pm

Breakfast  
Western and Japanese Buffet
Osaka

Enclosed by mountainous terrain on three sides and the crescent-shaped Osaka Bay to its west, the Osaka region is located in the outskirts of Japan’s Midwest. The area was fueled by a network of transportation channels by land and sea and also its close proximity to two ancient capitals, Kyoto and Nara. Consequently, by the 9th century, Osaka had grown into the largest commercial center in Japan and is still well-known for its savvy merchants today.

Kobe

Kobe was the hub of a thriving trade with China during the Southern Sung Dynasty. In 1867, the Tokugawa Shogunate signed the An-zheng Treaty with the United States fleet, thus forcing Kobe to open its trade with the west. For over a hundred years thereafter, Western and Japanese civilization blended in Kobe, resulting in a now highly graceful and charming culture intertwined of diversity. Neither Europeans nor Americans ever imagined that the people of Kobe, who used to be the ones to imitate practices of drinking coffee, eating steak, and baking pastry would now be the ones setting the par that others now imitate. The steaks, coffee, and pastry of Kobe have risen to worldwide prominence.

Nada Sake Brewery Museum

The district of Nada in Kobe City boasts fine quality (shrine) water, perfect for brewing sake and producing high quality rice. When the transport of cargo by sea became widely available in 18th century, the area thrived on sake production and today, Nada sake is now highly reputed across Japan.

Our museum operated as a brewery long before being renovated. Here, we will learn fun facts about the brewing of sake and be introduced to the brewery equipment of the past. Complimentary tasting is included!

Nara Park

The park not only showcases many important historical monuments of Nara (such as the Todaiji, the Kofukuji, the Nara Public Museum, and the Kasuga Taisha Shrine), but also keeps a number of spotted deer for the enjoyment of visitors. If you're feeling adventurous, you may purchase some crackers and treat the deer to some snacks!

Todaiji

Inside the Todai-ji is Nara Daibutsu, one of the world’s largest bronze Buddha statues. Visitors come from around the world to visit this humbling and immaculate figure in hopes of attaining a little extra luck.

Nara Daibutsu

Standing 14.98 meters tall, weighing 380 tons, with a face that stretches 5.33 meters and a 3.6 meter long hand, the Nara Daibutsu is the biggest bronze statue of Buddha in the world. Rumor has it that you will get astounding results from your fortune telling drawings in the presence of this kind-faced Buddha. Try it and see for yourself!

Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts

Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts is dedicated to preserving a variety of handicraft industries which has been passed down for over 1,000 years. The museum displays about 500 artifacts, all created by traditional craftsmen, including luxurious kimono, obi sashes, lacquerware and ceramics, allowing visitors to discover the traditional beauty and culture of ancient Kyoto.

Here, guests can enjoy a traditional Yuzen dyeing experience.

Miho Museum

This hidden treasure is off the beaten path and seldom included in most tour itineraries, but the beauty and serenity makes the trip worthwhile. Designed by famed Chinese architect I.M Pei (Louvre Reception Hall in France, JFK Library in Mass., and Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong), the building houses the private collection of patron Mihoko Koyama which includes over two thousand pieces of painstakingly curated Asian and Western antiques.

Kyoto

Kyoto was the nation’s capitol for a period of 1075 years (from 794 to 1869 A.D.) and is now considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The city draws its beauty from its sophisticated, unique art culture and its rich, glorious history. It is no surprise that Kyoto lays claim to 17 of the world’s landmarks which have been inducted into UNESCO’s World Heritage list (Kiyomizu Temple, Kinkakuji Temple, Nijo Castle, Tenryuji Temple, etc.).

Kiyomizu Temple

Kyoto was the nation’s capitol for a period of 1075 years (from 794 to 1869 A.D.) and is now considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The city draws its beauty from its sophisticated, unique art culture and its rich, glorious history. It is no surprise that Kyoto lays claim to 17 of the world’s landmarks which have been inducted into UNESCO’s World Heritage list (Kiyomizu Temple, Kinkakuji Temple, Nijo Castle, Tenryuji Temple, etc.).

Sannenzaka/Ninenzaka

Designated by Japan as an important historical architectural preservation district. The age of the district is evident where well-preserved streets emanate an air of the distant past. The shops that fill these streets sell local specialty goods of Kyoto such as Kiyomizu (pottery ware), Yusen-Zome (colorful and artisan tapestry), hsichimiya (type of seasoning), otabe (sweet snack made of dough), tsukemono (pickled products), Kyogashi (assortment of sweets), traditional hand-held fans, incense, green tea, and more.

Nijo Castle

Built in 1603, the Nijo Castle in Kyoto was the personal residence of the great Shogun Tokugawa. Apart from its splendid architecture, the castle has witnessed two major historical events within the last 400 years. The first when Toyotomi Hideyori formally surrendered to Tokugawa Ieyasu inside the castle, officially ending the civil war and the second when Tokugawa Yoshinobu announced inside this castle the return of sovereignty to the Meiji Emperor, officially ending Shogunate governance in Japan.

Gion

Gion was a red light district during the Edo period. Today, apart from the presence of many traditional shops, still hidden within the streets and alleys are many of the classic up-scale tea houses and ryotei (traditional Japanese inns). The art of Geishas entertaining guests with their dances still exists in this area. If you are lucky, you may run into a genuine, fully-costumed Geisha of Kyoto while roaming these streets.

Sagano Romantic Train

 

The entire length of the train ride is 7.3 kilometers. It takes about 25 minutes to travel the entire distance one way. This romantic train route winds along the pleasant Hozagawa river valley. Cherry blossoms overwhelm this area during spring, lush greenery covers the landscape during summer, and crimson maple leaves color the entire mountain during autumn. Let this amazing natural scenery immerse you in joyful tranquility.
Tenryuji Temple

Figuratively regarded as the first of five magnificent “mountains” in Kyoto (“mountain” in Japanese also means Buddhist sect). The temple's garden, designed by Musō Soseki, features a circular promenade around the Sōgen Pond, creating a perfect blend of the elegance of nobility and profound tranquility of Zen Buddhism. Tenryuji's garden is one of the most famous gardens in Kyoto and is also registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Landmark.

Sagano/Arashiyama

Sagano was a retreat destination used by ancient nobility for pleasure excursions. The scenery is sublime, especially when cherry blossoms surface in the spring and when maple leaves turn bright red in the fall. Thus, the area has been known for ageds as a prime location for observing these wonders of nature. Meanwhile, old town Arashiyama has kept intact many of its antiquated dwellings and temples. All of its residents maintain cherry trees and maple trees in their yards so this old town can express even more of its irresistible charm during the spring and autumn seasons.

Togetsukyo Bridge

Serving as the center of the Arashiyama scenic area, the bridge of a timber surface stretches over the Oi-gawa River with its frame resting on steel pillars. Its antiquated beauty complements the pristine natural surroundings of Arashiyama.

Bamboo Walking Path

A flourishing bamboo forest lies near the Arashiyama train station.  The walking path runs between bamboo trees of cloud-reaching heights which sway with alluring beauty at the passing of a breeze. Take a stroll on a forest trail to discover hidden poetry within the engulfing serenity.

Kinkakuji Temple (Golden Pavilion)

Built in 1397, the Golden Pavilion was originally a country chateau for Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, later named Rokuonji and converted into a Buddhist temple. Because it is covered with gold foil, the temple is also known as Kinkakuji. Mishima Yukio, the Japanese novelist and political radical, used this place as a setting for his widely celebrated novel, “Kinkakuji”, making this scenic spot internationally known.

Shinsaibashi

Here in the largest and most significant shopping district in Osaka, you will find a gathering of giant shopping malls, more traditional stores, and an endless array of tiny shops owned and run by the locals. There are also numerous eateries, among which you will not only find a wide variety of Japanese food, but also cuisines from all over the world.

Dotonbori

Assembled within an area no more than 200 meters wide and 700 meters long, are the most popular restaurants of Osaka. The area also has the highest concentration of eateries serving Japanese delicacies. Osaka is reputed as “the kitchen of Japan” with Dotonbori as its culinary center.

Imperial Hotel Tokyo

A truly historic icon of Tokyo, the Imperial Hotel even has its own wikipedia entry and lego set!  Equally famous for its service, this hotel has been awarded the Tripadvisor Travelers' Choice Award for luxury & service for several years in a row.

Our stay in the Imperial Hotel is just one more remarkable feature to make our time in the city a memorable experience.


Imperial Hotel Osaka

Known as one of Osaka's best luxury hotels, the Imperial is located near Osaka Castle on the cherry tree-lined Okawa River in a relaxing, resortlike setting. Free shuttle service to Osaka Station is available as well as complimentary bikes to explore the area (10-min. ride to Osaka Castle).


Biwako Hotel

This hot spring hotel is known for its comfortable fusion-style rooms, each offering a private lakeside balcony view of Lake Biwa. Enjoy an expertly-prepared Kyoto-style banquet dinner and fabulous service.


Hanakaido Hotel

The Hanakaido Ryokan embodies the elegance Kyoto is so famous for. Featuring hot spring baths and lakeside views of Lake Biwa, we can enjoy their magnificent outdoor onsen and a beautiful Kaiseki dinner in traditional Kyoto style.


Yumoto Kan

Surrounded by tranquil mountains, the Yumoto Kan is a ryokan (Japanese-style hotel) featuring hot spring baths and stunning views of Lake Biwa, the largest lake in Japan. Ogoto Onsen, the local hot spring for the hotel, has been supplying natural mineral-rich water for 1200 years.


Grand Prince Hotel

Designed by the late architect Togo Murano, the Prince Hotel Kyoto offers luxurious and spacious rooms. This hotel is uniquely-styled to blend with the natural environment and beauty of Kyoto.


Kyoto Hotel Okura

Centrally-located in Kyoto city, the Okura is within walking distance from Gion, popular restaurants, and exciting shopping areas. The Kyoto Okura is a Kyoto icon and has long been regarded by locals as one of the best places to stay in the city.


Nikko Hotel Osaka

Hotel Nikko Osaka is a high-end hotel located in a prime area of central Osaka. The hotel faces the famous tree-lined Mido-suji Avenue, the city's main boulevard which is home to the headquarters of major corporations and the city’s main shopping and leisure district.

 

Our inclusion of the Nikko Osaka ensures we always have easy access to fun shopping districts and the delicous restaurants Osaka is so famous for.


Kaiseki (traditional Japanese banquet dinner) with Karaoke
Japanese-Italian cuisine
Kobe Teppanyaki beef
Yakiniku(Japanese-Korean barbeque)
  Sushi & Udon Set

Taylor W. (Irvine, CA)

  

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Another wonderful experience traveling with Super Value. Excellent choice of points of visit, restaurants, and hotels. Above all, an excellent tour guide. 

June 2013

Sarah L. (New York, NY)

  

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Maiko was an excellent tour guide. Very organized, helpful, knowledgeable, and polite. We really enjoyed her. Everything was very organized, clean, and thoughtful. Hotels were nice and food was pretty good.  

June 2013

Doris C. (Mercer Island)

  

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Very impressed with Maiko and her organization. Wonderful personal stories and interesting stories about Japanese life. 

June 2013

Thomas H. (Cupertino, CA)

  

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Excellent tour. This is the second time for my family on this same tour package. Maiko was excellent! 

June 2013

Yaeko S. (Cupertino, CA)

  

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Maiko was professional, well informed, pleasant, polite and made the tour excellent experience for the guests. 

June 2013

Candace L. (Mission Viejo, CA)

  

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Junko was fantastic! We were fortunate to have her as our tour guide. I hope I can join another tour with her some day! We are very pleased with everything. You have a great product, excellent service, and wonderful personnel! 

July 2013

Nicole H. (Rancho Santa Margarita, CA)

  

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Junko was kind, patient, funny, generous, caring, and thoughtful of our personal interests! She was willing to go out of her way to find something special for us and our specific interests. Thank you for sharing and teaching us your culture and customs—beautiful country!

July 2013 

Nancy Y. (Los Angeles, CA)

  

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I really liked how the size of the group was small. Akira was an excellent tour guide! He was very professional. He made sure everyone was taken care of. He was very personable.

July 2013

Emily C. (Covina, CA)

  

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Our tour guide May Ueda was extremely attentive, and completely took care of the need of every one. Completely satisfied!!! 

October 2013

Cathleen (Vancouver, BC)

  

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I have several food allergies and J made a point of confirming with all the restaurants, so that I could eat. She even walked with me to a restaurant during “free time” in Gion! I was so happy! 

January 2014

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