When you visit Japan, a trip through the Kansai region is a must! The Kansai region, located in the southern-central of Japan’s main island is considered the cultural heart and historical center of Japan and is well known for its food.
This short trip through the heart of Kansai starts in the vibrant city of Osaka where you discover its shrines, castles and museums as well as its popular food street, before leaving the city behind towards the sacred Mount Koya. Here, you have the chance to visit the Okunoin Cemetary with almost as many legends as there are graves and experience a night in a small spiritual retreat within a temple itself where you can appreciate the silence, prayer and Buddhist meals.
Your adventure in Japan continues to Nara, the city of deers where you delight in its numerous temples and shrines, then make your way to Kyoto where you get lost in its lively markets and parks. A highlight of your holiday is a day trip to the tea fields in the countryside of Tokyo where you can sample a variety of tea fresh from the fields around you!
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A perfect holiday for...
Visit Japan, visit Kansai! This 8-day trip is a total immersion in the heart of ancient Japanese traditions as you encounter sacred mountains, temples and shrines. Perfect for those looking for a slower-paced exploration of Japan’s historical heart, with shorter distances.
Welcome to Japan!
Start your adventure in Osaka, the third largest city in Japan. Take your time to stroll around and visit its magnificent shrines, the Osaka History Museum and Tenno-ji Park. One of the highlights is a visit to Osaka Castle for a glimpse into the life of a samurai. If you have time, why not head to the observatory of the Umeda Sky building for a stunning view of the city. In the evening, enjoy your last Japanese night out on Osaka's most popular street, Dotonbori Street. It’s the city’s epicenter after dark in the heart of Osaka’s most party district!
A sacred mountain | 90 km – 2h40 by train
Today, make your way to Mount Koya, also known as Koyasan, the most sacred mountain in the region. Formerly closed off to visitors and reserved for believers, the mountain has gradually opened up to the public and especially to women for whom access had previously been prohibited. Many legends remain, especially around the Okunoin cemetery. Covering much of the eastern part of the city, this forest of a thousand burials contributes to the mysterious aura of Mount Koya. In the evening you will sleep in a Shukubo, an unusual accommodation experience in a Buddhist temple.
The former capital | 130 km – 2h40 by train
From the Wakayama region, you make your way to Nara, the former capital of Japan by train while admiring the beautiful landscapes. In this peaceful city of deers, why not spend a unique moment in the heart of one of the oldest Ryokan in the country? Here you will taste delicate and authentic cuisine before relaxing in the hot Japanese baths to unwind.
A day in Nara | 45km – 1h de train
Take a walk in the large park of Nara where you can meet the city’s famous residents: the shika deer. Seeing these friendly animals will delight both young and old! It is very easy to approach them and they will surely come to tease you and search your bags. A great way to get some funny photos! Continue your exploration of Nara’s numerous temples such as Todai-ji, NIgatsu-Do, Hokke-Do, Kaidan-Do and Kofuku-Ji. In the afternoon, make your way by train to Kyoto.
“The Eternal City”
Today, set off to explore Kyoto, nicknamed “the Eternal City”, in the company of your English-speaking guide. Stroll the streets of Kyoto and witness ancient traditions, dazzling architecture and beautiful parks. The shrines and temples of the ancient Japanese capital will transport you to the past and you might be lucky enough to come across a Geiko.
Arashiyama Bamboo Grove
Today, you have a free day to explore Kyoto on your own. Why not head to the southwest of the city for a unmissable visit to the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, one of the highlights of Japan. A magnificent green pathway, the bamboo grove runs along the Tenryű-ji Temple and leads to a hidden side of Kyoto. The superb bamboos will impress you with their size and the noise they produce when they collide. A moment of great poetry awaits you during this atypical walk!
Japanese tea fields
Today, spend a full day with a local guide exploring Japanese tea fields in the countryside of Kyoto. Discover another side of Japan, rural and authentic, where you will travel through tea fields and rice fields. Discover the beautiful village of Wazuka near the great lake Biwa before heading north towards Ujitawara where you visit a small tea factory and taste several types of tea from the fields around you. Enjoy listening to the clear and passionate explanations of the charming tea pickers will delight you. In the evening, return to Kyoto.
For the last day of your exploration of Kyoto, why not make your way to the largest Shinto shrine in Japan, Fushimi Inari Taisha, where 30,000 torii follow one another forming a red vault winding through the heart of the forest and the mountain.
If time permits, you can continue your journey by discovering the Philosopher’s Path, dotted throughout small temples and shrines or visit the UNESCO-listed Ginkaku Ji, also known as the Silver Pavilion, a lacquered wooden pavilion surrounded by a soothing, streamlined garden nicknamed "The Sea of Silver Sand".
According to your flight schedule, make your way to Osaka KIX Airport for your departure flight.
We hope you enjoyed discovering the highlights of Kansai!
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