KYOTO & NARA AMAKURA
Monday, 25 Jun 2018 8:00 AM - Thursday, 28 Jun 2018 12:00 PM
3 nights and 4 days | US$1700
Board the futuristic bullet train to Kyoto and step into an ancient world of charming temples, shrines and traditions.Upon arrival have lunch in a traditional Japanese restaurant, before heading to Kinkakuji, also known as the Golden Pavilion. Originally built as a retirement villa for the Shogun, he requested it be converted into a Buddhist temple after his death. Together with the pond, it is one of Japan’s most famous landmarks. Afterwards, head to your hotel for dinner at leisure.
On the next day, explore Arashiyama, a pleasant district in the western outskirts of Kyoto where you’ll visit Tenryuji Temple and its rustic Zen gardens. Not far from Tenryuji also lies the famous bamboo grove. This dense forest often functions as the backdrop for many historical drama shows. Let a rickshaw take you through this enchanted Asian forest and also visit Nonomiya Shrine where unmarried imperial princesses would stay for a year. Lunch will be have tofu lunch at Yoshiya. In the afternoon, leave Arashiyama for Nijo Castle with it’s ‘chirping’ nightingale floors. It used to be the Kyoto home of the Shogun from where he would keep the emperor in check. End the tour at Kiyomizu-dera Temple for a view over Kyoto. The rest of the day will be at leisure.
Rise early the third day to head out to Nara, first making a stop at Fushimi-Inari Shrine which lies just outside of Kyoto and was featured in the movie “Memoirs of a Geisha.” The shrine is home to more than 10,000 red tori gates, which form a path up the mountain behind the temple. Next, continue to Nara, Japan’s capital in the 8th century, to find the monumentous Todaiji Temple with the world’s largest wooden building and Japan’s most important temple. It is home to Japan’s largest bronze Buddha statue. Travel back to Kyoto for lunch and then explore the old Gion and Kawaramachi shopping districts at leisure. On the last day, you will have reserved seats aboard the futuristic shinkansen bullet train and will be whisked back to Yokohama in 134 minutes.
ZONTA HOUSE IN YAMADA-MACHI
Wednesday, 4 Jul 2018 8:00 AM - Friday, 6 Jul 2018 12:00 PM
1 nights and 2 days | US$1200
Transfer to the city of Morioka in northern Iwate Prefecture by bullet train today and visit Zonta House which was established to support women and children affected by the Tohoku Pacific earthquake in 2011. Dinner will be at your accommodations will be in a ryokan with hot spring. The next day, head to Morioka Castle Ruins Park for some easy strolling in the dappled shade of beautiful, verdant trees. During the time of the samurai, a large, stately castle used to stand on this location. The ruins of the castle have since been transformed into a modern park with vivid colors, whilst retaining their historic grandeur. Like many Japanese poets, you will be enchanted by this picturesque fantasy world before heading back to Yokohama by bullet train.