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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.

Kyoto

Your airport pick up will meet you at Kansai International Airport (assuming your flight arrives after 8:00am and before 21:30) and will take to your hotel in Kyoto by public transportation. They will give you an orientation, hand you your transportation tickets, give you your rental pocket internet device, check you into your hotel, and answer any of your questions. You will be on your own for dinner but your airport pick up will make a few suggestions. The train from Kansai Airport to Kyoto Station takes approximately 80 minutes.

Kyoto, the former imperial capital of Japan, is where the traditional Japanese ‘high arts’ flourished like tea ceremony, calligraphy, poetry, philosophy and religion. Numerous temples and shrines are located throughout the city and walking along canals, next to traditional wooden houses and through the small streets really gives you an idea of the ancient imperial culture. Kyoto is also famous for its crafts: textile, kimono and pottery.

Kyoto

Your private local guide will meet you in the lobby of your hotel and will show you Kyoto. Your guide will take you to Japan’s most beautiful and historic temples and shrines, and you will walk down ancient streets where Japanese nobles strolled. There is too much to see and do but you want want to focus on Higashiyama to see Kiyomizudera, Gion to see geisha walking to their next appointment or head north to Kinkakuji. Your guide will work with you so you see the sights you are most interested in visiting. We can work on the sightseeing itinerary before you go to Kyoto to better tailor your sightseeing.

Lake Biwa

Today, after breakfast in Kyoto you will head for lake Biwa. You will first explore Omi-Hachiman and its traditional merchant town. Then you will stop in Hikone, famous for its well-preserved Castle. Finally you will reach Maibara where you will pick-up your bicycles. Today will be an easy 11 kms (7 miles) bicycle ride up to Nagahama where you will board for a cruise to visit the sacred  Island of Chikubushima, known to be a source of great spiritual energy on lake Biwa. You will spend the night in Nagahama. Dinner will be included in your stay so don’t be late. The train ride from Kyoto to Omi-Hachiman takes about 20 minutes. From Omi-Hachiman to HIko it takes about 20 minutes and from Hikone to Maibara it’s a 5 minute ride.

Lake Biwa

This morning after breakfast you will follow the eastern shore of the lake up to Kinomoto where you will have dinner and spend the night. It’s a 35 kms (about 21 miles) ride. Cycle at your own pace through beautiful natural scenery and rural landscapes: stunning lake views, vast rice fields, discover ancient Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples.

Lake Biwa

Today you will visit hidden Lake Yogo, known as the “mirror lake”, and enjoy the view from Shizugatake hill-top. Then you will head for Sugaura a picturesque lakeside village with a rich local history where you will rest for the night. Dinner will be included in your stay so please check-in by 17:30. Today’s ride is about 23 kms long (14 miles) with beautiful gentle mountain roads.

Lake Biwa

Today you will ride about 30 kms (18 miles) to reach the Takashima. Enjoy the ride at your own pace, appreciate some local food, discover flowers and wildlife of the lake. In summer this should be the perfect day for a bath in the lake. Omimaiko Beach is the most famous one with white sand and groves of shady pines. Tonight your accommodation will include dinner so check-in by 17:30.

From Lake Biwa to Kyoto

Today you will be your final day on the saddle with an easy ride to Omi-Maiko where you drop off your bicycles. The ride is about 22 kms long (13 miles). Don’t miss the Shirahige Shrine Torii gate it’s a must in the region! You will then take a train to go back to Kyoto. The train ride from Omi-Maiko Station to Kyoto Station takes about 45 minutes.

Kyoto

Your private local guide will meet you in the lobby of your hotel and will show you Kyoto. Your guide will take you to Japan’s most beautiful and historic temples and shrines, and you will walk down ancient streets where Japanese nobles strolled. There is too much to see and do but you want want to focus on Higashiyama to see Kiyomizudera, Gion to see geisha walking to their next appointment or head north to Kinkakuji. Your guide will work with you so you see the sights you are most interested in visiting. We can work on the sightseeing itinerary before you go to Kyoto to better tailor your sightseeing. The best way to explore the ancient capital is probably to rent bicycles, if you are interested let us know.

Nara

Nara is located in the central west of Honshu. Formerly known as Heijo-kyo, this city occupies an important position in the history of Japan as the first capital from 710 until 784. During this period, a large number of shrines and temples were erected under the protection of the imperial family and aristocrats. However, when the monks in the surrounding hills started gaining too much influence and eventually tried to seize power, it was decided to move the capital to Heian-kyo, nowadays known as Kyoto. Many of the temples built at the height of Heijo-kyo, like the Todai-ji and Horyuji temples, are currently registered as World Heritage Sites. Both Japanese and foreign tourists visit the city to see these temples, to walk among the free-roaming deer of Nara park or to visit some of the beautiful scenic mountains surrounding the city. The train from Kyoto Station to Nara Station will take about 45 minutes.

Today will be your last day on this journey. The train ride from Kyoto to Kansai International Airport will take about 1 hour and 30 minutes. We hope you enjoyed every second of your tour and wish to welcome you back to Japan in a near future.

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

Our team of Japan experts have all lived in Japan for years and know its the hidden treasures. Our team is here to answer all your questions and to build 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 and 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.

Izumi Yamauchi

Tour Arrangement team

Izumi has spent most of her life in the Kansai region, except for the 10 years that she enjoyed in the UK. Living abroad has made her appreciate her own culture and local beauty even more. She currently lives in Osaka with her family, including two cats and two dogs.

Why Rediscover Tours

Great trips don't just happen; it takes expert knowledge and years of experience to create a truly memorable holiday. You can rely on Rediscover Tours to make your perfect Japanese experience. Our dedication to excellence makes the difference.

Trips Made for You


Your Japan travel expert will create your trip just for you


Your interests and travel style will be front and center when designing your tour


Accommodations will be selected based on your style and we will inform them of all your special meal and physical requirements


Japan Experts


Your Japan expert has lived in Japan or is Japanese


They know the hidden treasures of Japan that you will love and most tourists miss


Most of our team lives in Japan giving them first hand knowledge of the latest trends and experiences for you to enjoy


Finest Guides


Private local guides add a whole new depth to your Japanese tour


We only hire the best guides and review each trip with them insuring excellent experience


Your private guide will listen to you, show you sights of interest and will make on the fly changes to match the weather and crowds


With Confidence


Our office in Japan is here to assist and support you


Rediscover Tours has been organizing travel to Japan since 2000


You will arrive comfortable in the knowledge that all details are taken care of and that our Japan office is just a call away