Japan Express: Osaka to Tokyo
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Offering the perfect first-time introduction to Japan, the Japan Express, a short but sweet adventure captures the many faces and flavours of this intriguing and unique country. From the neon lights of Osaka to the fascinating history of Hiroshima, and from the magnificent temples and gardens of Kyoto to the sheer craziness of Tokyo, the Japan Express packs quite a punch. Take time out at a serene mountain monastery to learn the lifestyle of Buddhist monks, visit the regenerated city of Hiroshima, relax in an open-air onsen at a traditional Japanese ryokan and tuck into something weird, wonderful and deliciously different for dinner every night!

  • Duration: 9 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure: Yes
  • For lovers of:
  • Physical rating: Average
  • Accommodation standard:   Budget%
  • Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Tour code: 126495
  • Starts: Osaka, Japan
  • Finishes: Tokyo, Japan
You will Visit
  • Osaka
  • Tokyo



Day 1: Osaka

We highly recommend booking pre-accommodation to fully experience this lively city.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting


Day 2: Osaka/Kōyasan (1D)

Journey to Mt Koya, a religious centre founded in 816 by the Buddhist monk Kobo Daishi. The train ride up the mountain is possibly one of the finest rail journeys in Japan. For the final steep ascent, switch to funicular and then hop on a bus to reach the monastery.

In the evening, dine on shojin-ryori, typical vegetarian cuisine, and relax in a yukata, or kimono.

Included Activities:
Overnight in Mount Koya Temple
Oku-no-in Cemetery Visit

Train (3.00 hour(s))


Day 3: Kōyasan/Hiroshima-shi (1B)

Early morning offers the chance to observe the monks praying. Breathe in some fresh mountain air before a vegetarian breakfast, then start the journey back down the mountain via bus, train and funicular.

Later, board a train to Hiroshima, a historically significant city, marked by the explosion of the first atomic bomb in 1945.

Bullet train (5.00 hour(s))


Day 4: Hiroshima-shi

Visit the Peace Park and Memorial Museum and take a ferry ride over to the sacred island of Miyajima to see the famous floating torii gate.

Included Activities:
Hiroshima Park and Peace Memorial
Miyajima Island Visit

Hop a ferry to reach the island and journey back in the evening.


Day 5: Hiroshima-shi/Kyoto

In the evening, stroll along the river or around Gion, get a fantastic meal, and see locals dressed in traditional kimono.

Included Activities:
Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine Visit

Bullet train (1.50-2.00 hours)


Day 6: Kyoto

Visit the impressive Nijo Castle and gardens along with the famous Kinaku-ji Golden Pavilion, and practice meditation in Daisen-in's Zen rock garden.

Included Activities:
Nijo Castle and Gardens Visit
Kinkaku-ji Golden Pavilion Visit
Daisen-in Zen Rock Garden Visit


Day 7: Kyoto/Hakone (1D)

Travel to Hakone, a town in the hills famous for its onsens, or natural hot springs. Stay in a traditional ryokan, with its own private onsen.

In the evening, enjoy the ryokan, savouring a complex meal of traditional Japanese foods, followed by a recommended soak in the onsen.

Included Activities:
Lake Ashino-ko Boat Ride
Traditional Ryokan Stay with Kaiseki Meal

Bullet train (3.00 hour(s))
Local bus (0.50 hour(s))


Day 8: Hakone/Tokyo (1B)

Arrive before noon to Tokyo, with time to explore this energetic metropolis.

Opt to visit Ueno park and the museums, Akihabara for cutting edge electronics, Harajuku for funky fashions, Ginza for the highest of the high end, walk the grounds of the Imperial Palace East Garden, or just stroll the streets, looking for the traditional life that still lies just under the modern surface.

Bullet train (2.00 hour(s))


Day 9: Tokyo

Depart at any time.

Additional Notes:
We highly recommend booking post-accommodation to fully experience this vibrant city.

    • Overnight in a temple on Mt Koya with traditional meals
    • Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum visit
    • Miyajima excursion with floating torii gate visit
    • Nijo Castle and gardens visit (Kyoto)
    • Kinkaku-ji Golden Pavilion visit
    • Daisen-in Temple and Zen garden visit
    • Fushimi Inari shrine visit
    • Lake Ashino-ko boat ride (Hakone)
    • Traditional ryokan stay with kaiseki meal
    • Japan Rail (JR) pass (7 days)
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    • Hotels (6 nts), mountain monastery (1 nt, shared facilities), traditional inn (1 nt, shared facilities)
    • 2 breakfasts, 2 dinners
    • Bullet train, tram, ferry, public bus, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides
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Tour Highlights:
  • Take in views of Mt Fuji
  • Stay in temple lodging and a traditional ryokan
  • Gaze at the famous floating torii gate in Miyajima
  • Explore Kyoto's Nijo Castle