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Gardens, Temples and Customs of Japan

15 days from £6,950 per person

This itinerary features in our Top 10 Romantic Holidays.

Start at the heart of 21st-century Japan, in the upmarket Ginza district of Tokyo. The faded grandeur of the Imperial Palace is not far away, and its gardens are one of the most tranquil strolling spots in the middle of the buzzing city. Fly on to Kanazawa to experience the food, baths and hospitality of a deluxe ryokan. The next day meet your guide and dip into teahouses, a sake brewery and a traditional textile house before relaxing in Kenroku-en, one of Japan’s official top three gardens.

Catch the express train on to Kyoto where a wealth of World Heritage sites, temples and gardens awaits you. As well as the iconic gold and silver temples, there is a beautiful ornate moss garden and the grounds of old royal villas to explore. Kyoto is also famous for its restaurants, the best of which can be found on Pontocho street along the river in the Gion district where you have the best chance of seeing Geisha flitting by.

Take in the great wooden temple at Nara that houses enormous statues from Buddhist lore, before taking the bullet train on to Hiroshima to explore the Peace Park, the iconic shrine and 'floating gate' of Miyajima Island, and one of our favourite gardens called Shukkei-en. Then head on across to Matsue, 'the Venice of Japan' situated between two lakes on the north coast of Japan. Explore our favourite castle which is filled with Samurai armour exhibits and other fine Japanese treasures, visit one of Japan's most important shrines, and the Adachi Museum of Art with its famous moss and rock garden.

Back in Tokyo, you have a couple more nights to delve deeper into the big city with numerous gardens such as Rikugien and Shinjuku Gyoen to explore as well as optional day excursions to Nikko and Kamakura.

As with all our itineraries, this is just an outline - it can be booked as it is or the pace and length of it can be adjusted until it is just right for you. If you'd like to see similar trips, take a look at our Epic Journey and Honeymoon collections; as well as our favourite Ultimate Luxury, Culinary ToursTrains and Spa & Wellness itineraries.


Itinerary details

15 days from £6,950 per person

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I can't think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything.
Bill Bryson

So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
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Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
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We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
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I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
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I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India

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