Leave you home airport for Japan. Most flights will arrive the next day due to the time change.
Arrive at Haneda Airport in Tokyo and check into hotel right at the terminal. Enjoy Japanese cuisine and relax.
View the incredible Nitten Exhibition in Tokyo which features Japan's most accomplished artists! Gorgeous ceramics as well as other amazing art forms. Then we'll travel to Utsunomiya and have a delicious dinner. Above: Kaku Hayashi
Home of Shoji Hamada and many potters, Mashiko has museums, pottery studios, and galleries. In the morning, we'll do a special indigo dyeing workshop at a historic studio.
See the mind-blowing collection of temples and shrines at the Unesco World Heritage site of Nikko. The craftsmanship is unbelievable in this culturally rich area.
Kasama is another pottery town with a wide variety of contemporary potters continuing to work in clay here since the 1700's.
Travel to Kyoto by bullet train. This city dates back to the 7th century and was Japan's home to the imperial court. It was the capital of Japan for more than 1,000 years! Free time in the afternoon. Shopping anyone?
Today we'll travel to Imbe to visit the Bizen style potters.. We'll see Kibido Bizenyaki, above and other pottery studios and galleries. We'll also see a pottery shrine!
Visit the historic Kiyomizu-dera temple and surrounding enticing area. Then we'll visit the Kyoto Ceramics Center and go to the Nishiki Market which dates back 400 years!
Visit three different established Shigaraki potters like Sako Yoshihiro above. We'll also visit the internationally know Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park in this historic pottery town. Shop at a ceramic supply store too!
Today we'll visit the Robert Yellin Gallery, the Raku Museum, and the Kinkaku-ji temple, (the Golden Pavilion) above. See world renown potters and iconic Japanese sites.
We'll go to another of Japan's six ancient kilns, Tamba or Tanba. They have been making pottery here for over 800 years! We'll see many potters and kilns!
Spend the first part of the day relaxing, eating, shopping, getting a massage, or visiting other iconic Kyoto sites. We'll travel back to the Haneda Airport in the afternoon. Above: Matcha at Kumonocha.
Travel back home from Haneda. No scheduled tour activities today. If you have a later flight, there's lots of shopping and restaurants in the airport for those last minute gifts! I always say I'm not going to buy too much on this trip, but always fail!
Every time I leave Japan I say, "Awe Man, I'm gonna miss Japan!" I take back lots of yummy food to enjoy once I'm home. I cherish and relive being in Japan, and share lots of tasty treats with my friends and family.
$4,700 - (Does not include airfare)
Includes: All accommodations - single rooms or double, same price! All activities, entrance fees, transportation in Japan, daily breakfasts and other select meals - see itinerary, provided upon request.
November 3rd - Travel to Japan
November 4th - Arrive in Japan, Haneda, Tokyo
November 5th - 8th Utsunomiya with day trips to Mashiko, Nikko, and Kasama
November 9th - 14th Kyoto with day trips to Bizen, Shigaraki and Tamba
November 15th - Kyoto then Haneda
November 16th - Travel home
November is beautiful time to visit Japan, with gorgeous fall color and pleasant weather !
This carefully planned tour is action packed! We'll be hopping on and off trains and busses at times with our luggage. Not recommended for people with mobility issues or limited physical fitness.
All ages 20 and up are welcome! Maximum group size is 18.
Upon registration, you'll receive a lot of information about what to expect, pack, and prepare for while on the trip. Sheri Leigh is accessible and happy to answer all your questions and will provide a lot of "Japan Tips" that she's learned from all of the great trips she's taken to Japan! She's a professor emeritus, so she loves sharing information, and will provide all the necessary paperwork too.
Please sign up for the mailing list to get information about this and future trips.
I'm happy to set up a phone call, Zoom meeting, or in person meeting.