Autumn Colours of Japan | Sisterhood Womens Travel

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Autumn Colours of Japan

18 Days  |  Departing Tuesday 21st November 2023 and returning Friday 8th December 2023

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City sightseeing tour of Tokyo
Visit to Rikugien Garden to view autumn colours
Visit to Old Tokyo City
Visit to Nakamise Shopping Centre
Visit to Asakusa Sensoji Temple
View autunm colours at Mei Jing Shrine and Shinjuku Goyen Park
Sushi making lesson
Flower arranging class
Visit Toyosu Fish Market
Visit to Hakone Open Air Museum
Cruise on Lake Ashi with magnificent views of Mt Fuji
Ride on the Hakone Ropeway Gondala
Visit to the town of Yamanouchi famous for snow monkeys
2 nights stay in traditional Japanese Ryokans
City sightseeing tour of Takayama
Visit to Hida Folk Village
Visit to Kami Sannomachi "Preserved Housing" district
Washi Japanese paper making class in Gokayama
City sightseeing tour of Kanazawa
Visit to Gold Leaf Museum in Kanazawa
Visit to Kenrokuen Garden - Top 3 landscaped gardens in Japan.
Traditional Tea Ceremony in Kyoto
Exclusive meet and greet with an "Apprentice" Geisha
Visit to Sagano Bamboo Grove
Views of autumn colors at Golden Pavilion, Eikan-do Zenrinji Temple & Nijo Castle
Screen printing class
Visit and stay on Miyajima Island
Visit to Peace Memorial Museum at Hiroshima


Fully escorted tour - your Sisterhood Tour Hostess is on hand to assist with making your holiday a memorable one
Return airfares ex Melbourne including taxes (other departure cities upon request) 
Specialist English speaking guide
Private transportation throughout
All meals as described in itinerary
All sightseeing as described in itinerary
4 star accommodation as described in itinerary
Willing to share option




The itinerary is subject to change due to COVID-19 restrictions. 

Should social distancing measures remain in place, Sisterhood Womens Travel will adapt our itinerary accordingly. 

View Itinerary Map here :


Day 1 - Tuesday 21 November 2023

Melbourne - Tokyo (Meals in flight)

Welcome to Sisterhood Womens Travel!  Meet your Sisterhood Tour Hostess and fellow travellers at Melbourne Airport for our flight.  Sit back, relax and enjoy the inflight entertainment as we head towards Japan.

Day 2 - Wednesday 22 November 2023

Arrive Tokyo

On arrival at Narita Airport, we will be met by our english speaking where we will board a chartered coach and transfer to our hotel the in Tokyo. 

Tokyo is the capital of Japan, a city with 12 million residents and 3 million further commuters from neighbouring cities daily, for a total of 15 million people on most days. Famous for its spectacular architecture, futuristic displays, upmarket shopping and unique fashion sense, there will be free time to explore on your own. 

Welcome Dinner at La Cocorico Ueno no Mori Terrace

Overnight: Mitsui Garden Hotel Ueno  (or similar)

Day 3 - Thursday 23 November 2023

Tokyo (B,L)

Today, we will be taken on a full day tour of Tokyo city. Autumn in Japan is one of Japan’s best seasons for sightseeing; not only do the trees take on brilliant gold and flaming red colours, but it is the mildest in terms of rainfall. The temperature is normally in the high teens, and outside of specific coastal regions, rain is less common than the rest of the year. We’re going to be introduced to some of Tokyo’s best autumn colours sightseeing spots on our first day of sightseeing, with an initial visit to Rikugien garden. Located in northern Tokyo, this strolling garden was established in 1702 and often visited by the ruling leader of the time, featuring over 1000 trees made up of maple and gingko varieties. 

This is followed by Asakusa, in the old part of Tokyo city. Asakusa Sensoji Temple is one of the most celebrated temples in Tokyo, and a visit to Nakamise Shopping arcade here will be a good opportunity to pick up some trinkets and local goods for souvenirs. 

Lunch is included at a local restaurant, before heading to western Tokyo to take in the colours at Meiji Jingu Shrine and Shinjuku Gyoen Park.  

Overnight: Mitsui Garden Hotel Ueno  (or similar)

Day 4 - Friday 24 November 2023

Tokyo (B,L,D)

A relaxed start to the day follwoing breakfast we will take part in a sushi making lesson conducted by a professional sushi chef. 

The rest of the day is free at leisure for sightseeing or shopping.

This evening we’ll enjoy dinner onboard a Yakatabune (Japanese style houseboat), including a cruise on Tokyo Bay.

Overnight: Mitsui Garden Hotel Ueno  (or similar)

Day 5 - Saturday 25 November 2023

Tokyo - Hakone (B,D)

We start the day off with a visit to the iconic Ginza shopping district, with some free time here to do a bit of shopping. This is followed by a unique cultural experience at Sogetsu Kaikan for a flower arrangement (ikebana), which concludes at around 12:30PM.

We’ll then be making our way to Hakone National Park, a hot spring resort area on the outskirts of Mt. Fuji, by train. This will be our first traditional experience in Japanese style accommodation; though to ease us in, this property will still have western bedding, and our own private hot spring baths. We have the afternoon free to relax, before an exquisite Japanese banquet dinner is served. 

Overnight: Susukinohara Ichinoyu (Japanese style rooms with western bedding and private onsen)

Overnight: Susukinohara Ichinoyu (Japanese style rooms with western bedding and private onsen)

Day 6 - Sunday 26 November 2023

Hakone (B,L,D)

Today we will enjoy a day tour of Hakone. Firstly a stroll along the Old Cedar Avenue through the Hakone-machi. This will be followed by lunch and then a cruise on Lake Ashi, where on clear days the view of Mt Fuji is excellent. After our cruise, we'll take a ride on the Hakone Railway (gondola) across Owakudani valley, open areas in the crust revealing hot spring steam and smoke, this is a famous attraction. Our day finishes with a visit to Hakone Open Air Museum, with world famous art works on dispaly in meticulously landscaped gardens. Dinner is included tonight.

Overnight: Susukinohara Ichinoyu (Japanese style rooms with western bedding and private onsen)

Day 7 - Monday 27 November 2023

Yamanouchi (B,L,D)

After breakfast and checking out of our hotel, we will be taken by coach to the town of Yamanouchi (lunch included along the way), famous for the Japanese Macaque, or more commonly known as “Japanese Snow Monkey”. Jigokudani Park, located in the Kanbayashi Onsen area in Yamanouchi is the main attraction and we will be taken to see the snow monkeys bathing in the hot springs among the snow. 

Tonight, we will be experiencing a traditional “Ryokan” (Japanese guest house) stay, at Biyu no Yado. Our room will have a tatami mat with futons to sleep on. Service will be exceptional, and a beautiful traditional Japanese banquet dinner and breakfast are sure to be very memorable culinary experiences. We will also have the opportunity to use the natural hot springs with 2 private hot springs available for our use on the rooftop. Dinner is included tonight.

Overnight – Biyu no Yado Japanese Guest House (or similar)

Day 8 - Tuesday 28 November 2023

Yamanouchi - Takayama (B,L,D)

After breakfast today we will travel to the town of Takayama in the Japan Alps. Lunch is included at a local restaurant along the way. Takayama is a countryside farming town, famous for its traditional Japanese preserved architecture. Takayama has been well known in the past for producing some of Japan’s best architects and builders, and as such part of the city has been preserved as National Treasures. Hida Beef, is also well known throughout Japan, rivalling even Kobe beef as some of the highest quality beef available. 

The rest of the day is free at leisure in Takayama with dinner included at the hotel tonight.  

Overnight: Takayama Ouan (or similar)

Day 9 - Wednesday 29 November 2023

Takayama (B,L)

Today we will enjoy a full day guided tour of Takayama. First up we will visit Takayama Morning Market, a market where farmers’ wives from neighbouring villages come each morning to hawk fresh produce. Following this will visit the Hida Folk Village, a museum that will allow us to learn about country farming life in the Japan Alps. After lunch at a local restaurant, we will have the afternoon free to stroll around Takayama or relax at the hot springs at our hotel.  

Later this afternoon our guide will take us on a stroll around the Kami Sannomachi “Preserved Housing” district, returning to our hotel with dinner at leisure. We highly recommend a barbecue Hida Beef dinner at a local restaurant.

Overnight: Takayama Ouan (or similar)

Day 10 - Thursday 30 November 2023

Takayama - Kanazawa (B,L)

Today, we will travel to Kanazawa by coach, with a stopover in Gokayama to participate in “washi” (Japanese paper) making. The region of Gokayama is arguably the most famous in Japan for its washi. Lunch is included at a local restaurant, before arriving in Kanazawa mid afternoon.  

Kanazawa is a city famous for Kenrokuen Garden, samurai heritage, and cultural goods production, some of which we will have the opportunity to experience. The rest of our day and dinner is at leisure to further explore Kanazawa.

Overnight: Hotel Hotel Mystays Premier  (or similar)

Day 11 - Friday 1 December 2023

Kanazawa (B,L)

Today we will have a full day tour of Kanazawa. We’ll be heading through the Nagamachi Bukeyashiki, a preserved samurai housing district in Kanazawa; on our way to a local gold leaf museum. Kanazawa is famous for producing these cultural goods, along with ceramics, Kutaniyaki Pottery, and silver leaf; in fact, Kanazawa produces 99% of the gold leaf used throughout Japan.  

Lunch is included today, before a visit to Kenrokuen Garden.  Kenrokuen Garden is considered one of the 3 best landscaped gardens in Japan, and will likely be one of the most beautiful we will ever see. Touring concludes today at our hotel late afternoon with dinner at leisure tonight.

Overnight: Hotel Hotel Mystays Premier  (or similar)

Day 12 - Saturday 2 December 2023

Kanazawa - Kyoto (B,L,D)

This morning, we will travel to Kyoto by coach, with lunch included at a local restaurant along the way. We’ll be doing some autumn leaves viewing at Eikando Zenrinji Temple in Kyoto’s east, one of the most celebrated autumn colours spots in Kyoto, showcasing Japanese maples at their finest.

Following a quick check-in at the hotel, we will visit a traditional Japanese restaurant for a beautiful Japanese banquet dinner including an exclusive meet & greet with an apprentice geisha. This will be a fun evening! 

Overnight: Rihga Royal Kyoto Hotel (or similar)

Day 13 - Sunday 3 December 2023

Kyoto (B,L)

This morning, we will be taken to Sagano Bamboo Grove, an area reminiscent of feudal era Japanese films. A fun Kimono fitting and a stroll through this area has been arranged for us, what a truly unique experience.  Lunch is included at a local restaurant. 

The afternoon will see you visiting the Golden Pavilion, a World Heritage site featuring a picturesque gold leaf covered pagoda aside a pond.

You will then be taken to Tondaya, a cultural venue for experiencing a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, and an etiquette lesson to learn about Japanese manners. You will return back to your hotel at around 5PM, with dinner at leisure.

Overnight: Rihga Royal Kyoto Hotel  (or similar)

Day 14 - Monday 4 December 2023

Kyoto (B,L)

There will be further autumn colour viewings today at the World Heritage site of Nijo Castle (former Kyoto residence of the Tokugawa Shogunate, ruling party of Japan prior to the current royal family), and then the World Heritage site of Kiyomizu Temple (constructed without nails, overhanging a cliff with a great view of Kyoto city). 

Lunch is included at a local restaurant.

This afternoon, you will take part in a special Yuzen (Kimono silk) dyeing program at Marumasu Nishimuraya, learning about the various techniques using “furoshiki” traditional wrapping cloth. 

We follow this with a visit to the World Heritage site of Kiyomizu Temple (constructed without nails, overhanging a cliff with a great view of Kyoto city).

Today’s touring concludes around 5PM back at your hotel, with dinner at leisure.

Overnight: Rihga Royal Kyoto Hotel  (or similar)

Day 15 - Tuesday 5 December 2023

Kyoto - Miyajima (B,D)

This morning our main luggage will be couriered overnight to our hotel in Osaka, while we take a detour to the island of Miyajima. We will require an overnight bag as we will travel by train and ferry accross to Miyajima Island. Before taking the ferry to the island we will travel by bullet train to Hiroshimna, with some free time for lunch then a visit to Peace Memorial Museum as well as the Atomic Bomb Dome.  

Miyaijma island is famous for its natural scenery, many wild deer and for Itsukushima Shrine. The view from Itsukushima Shrine is considered one of the best 3 in Japan. Our touring today concludes at our ryokan in Miyajima, our second for this tour.

Overnight: Hotel Makoto (Japanese style rooms, with private ensuite)

Day 16 - Wednesday 6 December 2023

Hiroshima - Osaka (B,D)

Today, we will head to Osaka by bullet train with lunch at our own expense.

Our accommodation will be in the popular Shinsaibashi area in Osaka, famous for its “Eat-til-you-drop” food culture, and is arguably the best place to finish up our fantastic tour. Diversity of cuisine is abundant here, as are wonderful shopping opportunities. We’ll enjoy a farewell dinner at a local restaurant and reminisce on great times spent with new friends. 

Overnight: Gracery Osaka Namba (or similar)

Day 17 - Thursday 7 December 2023

Osaka (B)

After some last minute shopping, we will transfer to Kansai airport for our flight to Melbourne. Sit back, relax and enjoy the inflight entertainment of our airlines as we head towards home.

Day 18 - Friday 8 December 2023

Arrive home

Welcome Home!  Thank you for travelling with Sisterhood Womens Travel and we look forward to welcoming you back for your next adventure!

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