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Sample Itinerary

The tours featured throughout our website are intended to give you ideas for what's possible when you travel with us. Treat them simply as inspiration, because your trip will be created individually by one of our specialists to match your tastes and budget.

Travel by bullet train to central Hiroshima. This well-known city was the first in history to bear the impact of the use of atomic weapons. The city never forgets its past, and there are memorials to the bombing of 6 August 1945 including the Atomic Bomb Dome, and the Peace Memorial and Museum.

You stay overnight in Hiroshima at a western-style hotel or travel by ferry to the UNESCO World Heritage island of Miyajima and stay at a traditional Japanese inn here.

Accommodation: Overnight in Hiroshima or spend a night on Miyajima Island
Meals: Breakfast (Dinner is included for guests staying at a Japanese inn)

Typical Accommodation
As standard, we offer a comfortable, centrally-located hotel in Hiroshima city, enabling you to enjoy the vast range of meal options this evening.

We can also provide a historic Ryokan located on Miyajima island, offering excellent rooms, meals and the opportunity to take a relaxing evening stroll once day-visitors have left the island. Please let us know on booking if you would like us to arrange this traditional option and please note that the availability of this option may be scarce during peak seasons, which can sometimes require a date change or supplemental fee.

Explore Miyajima island where wild deer roam free. Experience the amazing close-up view of the iconic red Torii Gate of Itsukushima Shrine which appears to float in the water at high tide. You might want to try the Miyajima oysters or the local dish of Anago Meshi grilled eel.

During the afternoon, you have time to climb Mount Misen, the highest peak of the island, offering spectacular views of the Seto Inland Sea via the returning cablecar. Please let us know if you would like to include a sea kayak experience around the Torii Gate of Itsukushima Shrine to complement the kayaking you will undertake later on the trip.

Walking distance: 4.7km / 3 miles of optional hiking
Elevation gain: 810m / 2,660 feet of ascent, negligible descent
Time required: About 2-3 hours

A longer 12.1km / 7.5 miles hiking option, with an ascent of 1,030m and descent of 1,015m, foregoing the descending cablecar ride, is available. A gentler, flat 2.4km / 1.5 miles sightseeing route covering the islands main attractions is also possible for a more leisurely day.

Accommodation: Overnight in Hiroshima or spend a night on Miyajima Island
Meals: Breakfast (Dinner is included for guests staying at a Japanese inn)

Typical Accommodation
As standard, we offer a comfortable, centrally-located hotel in Hiroshima, enabling you to enjoy the vast range of meal options this evening.
We can also provide a historic Ryokan located on Miyajima island, offering excellent rooms, meals and the opportunity to take a relaxing evening stroll once day-visitors have left the island. Please let us know on booking if you would like us to arrange this traditional option and please note that the availability of this option may be scarce during peak seasons, which can sometimes require a date change or supplemental fee.

Travel to Tomonoura Bay, the lovely thousand-year-old port town which inspired Studio Ghibli director Hayao Miyazaki when he created the animated film “Ponyo”. Tomonoura is recognized as Shiomachi-no-minato ”port awaiting a favorable tide” and this town preserves its old-fashioned fishing townscape. Enjoy a morning sea kayak tour around Sensui-jima Island.

Later in the afternoon continue to Sensui-jima island by ferry for your overnight stay at a traditional Japanese inn.

Kayaking time: About 2-3 hours
Walking distance: 2km / 1.2 miles of optional sightseeing
Elevation gain: negligible ascent and descent
Time required: About 1-2 hours

Please note that if kayaking is not possible due to poor weather, further exploration time on Sensuijima Island and in the quiet and relaxed village of Tomonoura with our two optional sightseeing walks are possible.
Accommodation: Ryokan inn
Meals: Dinner

Stay at a wonderful traditional Japanese inn, experiencing unique detox baths. Here you can enjoy a gourmet dinner featuring the fresh catch of the day. Lovely traditional Japanese artwork adorns the rooms and public spaces and it is possible to take a relaxing beach-side stroll in the evening.

Depart this morning for the romantic seaside town of Onomichi – the entry point on the mainland side of the Shimanami Kaido cycling course. Spend the day exploring Onomichi’s wonderfully old-fashioned shopping arcades and quiet hilltop back streets with our gentle sightseeing course before spending a night at a historic Ryokan inn, or a modern, stylish cycling-themed hotel.

Walking distance: 4km / 2 miles
Elevation gain: 260m / 850 feet of both ascent and descent
Time required: about 3-4 hours

Accommodation: Ryokan inn (or cycling hotel)
Meals: Dinner, Breakfast

Typical Accommodation
Stay at a lovely Ryokan with over 100 years of history, which is a registered Tangible Cultural Property of Japan. The inn offers exemplary meals with freshly caught local seafood.

Selecting your bikes, depart for the first day of cycling from Onomichi. Explore the wonderful nature and relaxing cafe culture of the inland sea, before spending the night on a remote island part-way along the cycling route.

Cycling distance: 35-65km / 20-40 miles (up to 80km / 50 miles)
Elevation gain: negligible ascent and descent (with some very brief ups and downs to reach each bridge)
Time required: 3-6 hours (up to 8 hours)

Cycling distances vary based on the inn you stay at and how many of our optional side-trips along the islands you wish to undertake. For less confident cyclists, don’t hesitate to inquire with us about alternative arrangements.

Accommodation: Ryokan inn
Meals: Dinner, Breakfast Typical Accommodation
Stay at a lovely ryokan inn located part-way along the Shimanami Kaido. Originally a wealthy merchant’s house, the inn has a long history dating back over 100 years, providing excellent fresh seafood as part of the Kaiseki meals, together with relaxing sea views from your room.

Continue along the Shimanami Kaido cycling route, passing through small island settlements with some of the most scenic sections of the route before arriving into Imabari town on Shikoku Island. Drop off your bikes at Imabari Station head inland by bus to reach the trailhead of our 4-day Shikoku 88 Pilgrimage Self-guided walking tour to begin your hike to Temple 57 Eifuku-ji. The walk gradually passes from urban townscape to rural farming communities before entering a forest with a steady climb to Temple 58 Seny?-ji. Visit Eifuku-ji and Seny?-ji and there is also an optional detour to Temple 56 Taisan-ji. Overnight at Seny?-ji, which offers pilgrim lodgings, or alternatively stay in a western-style hotel in Imabar.

Cycling distance: 20-45km / 13-28 miles
Elevation gain: negligible ascent and descent (with some very brief ups and downs to reach each bridge)
Time required: 2-4 hours

Cycling distances vary based on the inn you have stayed at and how many of our optional side-trips along the islands you wish to undertake. Most guests will undertake the 45km, 4-hour cycle today.
Walking distance: 4.4km / 2.7 miles
Elevation gain: 250m / 820 feet ascent and negligible descent
Time required: About 1.5 hours

Accommodation: Shukubo (Pilgrims Lodging) or Hotel
Meals: Dinner

Typical Accommodation
Your inn for this evening provides spacious, comfortable tatami rooms in an authentic, modern, hilltop pilgrims lodging with wonderful views.

The hike continues with a gentle walk down the mountain from Seny?-ji, with the opportunity to explore small village settlements on the way. Return to the town of Imabari, with an optional paved hike on to Temple 59 Iyo Kokubun-ji and continue onwards to Matsuyama by train and overnight in Dogo Onsen.

Walking distance: 4.4km / 2.7 miles
Elevation gain: Negligible ascent and 250m / 820 feet descent
Time required: About 1 hour
An optional paved walk of 4.1km (2.5 miles) can extend the hike by a further 1.5 hours.

Accommodation: Hot-spring Ryokan (Travellers Inn)
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Typical Accommodation
This charming inn in the heart of Dogo Onsen is run by a friendly family with exceptional service, beautiful Japanese rooms, exquisite cuisine, and lovely thermal baths.

Head south by bus and pre-paid taxi from Matsuyama to Temple 45 Iwaya-ji, a temple closely linked to Kobo Daishi – the priest who founded Shingon Buddhism and Mount Koya. Climb the iconic ladder to his meditation spot, with its spectacular views over the surrounding region. From Iwaya-ji, enjoy a lovely forest hike to Temple 44 Daiho-ji before returning by bus to Matsuyama in the evening. Overnight in Dogo Onsen.

Walking distance: 11.7km / 7.3 miles
Elevation gain: 650m / 2,130 feet ascent and 580m / 1,900 feet descent
Time required: About 4 hours

Accommodation: Hot-spring Ryokan (Travellers Inn)
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Typical Accommodation
This charming inn in the heart of Dogo Onsen is run by a friendly family with exceptional service, beautiful Japanese rooms, exquisite cuisine, and lovely thermal baths.

The tour ends with a rewarding hike in the east of Ehime Prefecture. Travel by bus and pre-paid taxi from Matsuyama to reach the trail and walk to Temple 60 Yokomine-ji, Temple 61 Koon-ji and onwards to Temple 62 Hoju-ji. The walk passes through a rural area of Shikoku and the temples are in lovely natural settings. After the hike, travel onwards by train to the Kansai area, arriving mid-evening.

Walking distance: 13.7km / 8.5 miles
Elevation gain: 620m / 2,050 feet ascent and 870m / 3,850 feet descent
Time required: About 4-5 hours

You can reduce the hike by about one hour to 11.3km / 7 miles, avoiding the first uphill section. Simply pay locally to extend the taxi ride to Temple 60 Yokomine-ji. Choose on the day – no need to decide in advance.

What Our Customers Have To Say

The tours featured throughout our website are intended to give you ideas for what's possible when you travel with us. Treat them simply as inspiration, because your trip will be created individually by one of our specialists to match your tastes and budget.

John Moawad

Classical Japan Tour

It was our first trip to Japan. Working with Jeff was a pleasure. His knowledge of the country and local contacts were very helpful. Choice...

Marina Boyer

North Central Exploration

Working with Jeff at Rediscover Tours was a wonderful experience. He helped me plan a 10 day trip of a lifetime to Japan with my mother...

Edan Ecker

Shoguns and Samurai

I would like to take this opportunity to commend and thank you for the marvelous vacation we recently enjoyed in Japan. The entire experience exceeded...

Our Team Of Local Experts

Years after years we have selected the best specialists about Japan. They have at least lived a minimum of 10 years in the country. They are here to answer all your questions and to make your tour just the way you want it.

Jeff Aasgaard

Tour Sales Director

Jeff was born in a south suburb of Chicago named South Holland and lived in Japan for 14 years. He now lives in Commerce Township, Michigan with his wife Yoshimi, son Shota, and daughter Mina. He enjoys playing with his kids, volunteering with his daughter’s marching band, cycling and training & teaching Aikido.

Michiyo Kakiuchi

Tour Arrangement Manager

Michiyo was born in Noboribetsu, Hokkaido Prefecture though currently lives in Takarazuka, Hyogo Prefecture. Her main passions in life is traveling all around the world and enjoying their cultures.

Noriko

Tour Arrangement team

Noriko was born in Nagoya. During her childhood she moved around Japan following her father’s office transfer. She especially liked her time in Shizuoka, facing Mt Fuji. She now lives in Minoo (in the suburb of Osaka). Noriko graduated from Hiroshima university. She’s been to Malaysia, Thailand and Europe (Germany and Bulgaria). Her hobbies are hiking, reading and surfing.

Why Rediscover Tours

Great trips don't just happen It takes a lot to create a truly memorable holiday. You can rely on us to make your trip a perfect Japanese Experience

Trips Made for You


This is your trip. Together we will design it just for you.


Your interests will be front and center.


We handle your specific requests. We will inform accommodations, guides and partners of any meal requirements, allergies or disabilities you may have.

Japan Experts


Your Japan expert has lived in Japan for many years or is Japanese.


We know the hidden treasures of Japan.


Because most of our staff live in Japan we are always aware of what’s happening in Japan. Throughout our network of partners we get first-hand information that will benefit your trip.


Finest Guides


They add a whole new depth to your Japanese tour.


Our local guides are extremely professional and knowledgeable.


Your guide will listen to you, give you suggestions and show you sights you want. They are also very flexible and can make on the fly changes to fit your style, mood, weather and crowds.


With Confidence


Our office in Japan is here to assist you.


Rediscover Tours has been organizing travel to Japan since 2000.


You will arrive in Japan feeling safe and comfortable knowing that all the details have been taken care of and that our Japan office is just a phone call away. Indulge yoursefl!