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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

Meet your guide and other members of the group at the tour hotel in central Kyoto. There will be a Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.

Kurashiki

After breakfast, we travel by train to Kurashiki, famous for the picturesque scenery of its preserved canal area, framed with weeping willow trees and white-plastered storehouses (‘Kura’) from the Edo period. Many of Kurashiki’s former storehouses have been converted into museums, shops, and cafes. After lunch, we explore this lovely part of the town and then have some free time later in the afternoon. Overnight in Kojima on the coast near Kurashiki.

Kurashiki

A full day to explore the Kojima area of Kurashiki with your guide. Kojima faces the Seto Inland Sea and was once prosperous through sea-salt production and domestic trade through the port. We first visit a tatami-mat trimmer and create our own miniature tatami mats with the trim of our choice. We then transfer to Washuzan Hill with its short walking trail leading up to stunning views over the Seto Inland Sea. After lunch, we continue onward to Shimotsui Port and listen to a local artist play a traditional instrument and sing a beautiful song.

Yunotsu Onsen

We cross to the San-in coast, traveling by train to Yunotsu, a hot-spring town on the Japan Sea coast, whose waters were discovered more than 1300 years ago. In addition to being an onsen, Yunotsu flourished as a port during the Edo period, when silver from Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine was delivered and shipped. We arrive in Yunotsu around noon and explore the town. Yunotsu has the wonderful, pure hot spring “Yakushi-yu”, whose water properties received the highest rating from the Japan Spa Association. Our accommodation tonight has its own onsen baths, but you should try ”Yakushi-yu” too if you love onsen.

Today we visit Omori-cho, settled by Iwami Ginzan silver miners. Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007. It was the biggest silver mine in Japanese history, flourishing from the 16th to the 20th century. The distinctive landscapes connected to silver mining are still well preserved today – old mining sites, miners’ settlements, fortresses, transportation routes, and shipping ports. The area is now beautifully wooded, with wonderfully invigorating fresh air. Omori-cho is dotted with picturesque Shinto shrines, Buddhist temples, shops, and cafes. We will visit one of the major remaining silver mineshafts and explore the town. You will have some free time during the afternoon.

Tsuwano

After breakfast, we travel to Tsuwano. Popularly called the ‘Little Kyoto of San-In’, Tsuwano is known for its picturesque main street, lined with Edo-era buildings and Koi carp ponds. It was a castle town, ruled by the Kamei clan from the 17th to the mid-19th century. It also has the famous mountainside Taikodani Inari Shrine with its “one thousand vermilion torii gates”. We visit the shrine and the ruins of Tsuwano Castle, wandering the pretty streets.

Hagi

Today we travel by local bus from Tsuwano to the charming town of Hagi. Hagi was for 260 years the castle town of the Mori lords of Choshu. The town is protected on two sides by the forks of the Aibagawa river and on the remaining north side by the sea. The castle, now in ruins, is further fortified by moats and a defensive checkerboard of samurai dwellings. The remains of the dwellings, with their earthen walls, old gates, and orchards of colorful citrus trees are Hagi’s most famous sight. We explore the area and also visit the Kikuya House historic building.

Hagi

After breakfast, we will stroll around another area of the town to enjoy more of the historic houses. Hagi is famous for its pottery – Hagi-yaki is a pinkish-beige stoneware that ranks among the most highly esteemed tea ceremony wares. Hagi-yaki ripens to its full beauty with use, its pale tones deepening and softening as tea seeps into the porous crazing. After lunch, we will try our hand at pottery making and we will have the opportunity to buy pieces made by local artists.

Miyajima & Hiroshima

After breakfast, we leave the San’in coast and travel to Miyajima, an island nestling in the Seto Inland Sea near the city of Hiroshima. This island is famous for its UNESCO World Heritage Itsukushima Shrine with the giant red torii gate, which seems to float on the sea at high tide. The sight is ranked as one of the most scenic views in Japan. Wild deer live on the island, but they have now become accustomed to people. We will arrive on Miyajima island around noon and after lunch, we will visit Itsukushima Shrine and Daisho-in Temple. Our hotel tonight is in Hiroshima itself.

Tomonoura & Sensui-jima

This morning we travel to Tomonoura then to Sensui-jima Island, a secret paradise on the Seto Inland Sea. Before leaving Hiroshima, there will be a little free time and you may visit the Peace Memorial Park and A-Bomb Museum if you wish. After lunch in the lovely small fishing village of Tomonoura, we take a short ferry ride to the island. We stay at an island Ryokan with wonderful hot-spring baths. Bathing is not gender-segregated and bathing clothes will be provided by the Ryokan. Set just above the beach and overlooking the sea, the view from this onsen is wonderful and relaxing.

Tomonoura & Osaka

We spend the morning exploring the quiet fishing town of Tomonoura.

The town preserves its old-fashioned fishing townscape well. In recent years, Tomonoura has been chosen as a location for several international and local films, such as “Wolverine” with Hugh Jackman and “Ponyo on the Cliff” by the popular Studio Ghibli. After lunch, we travel to Osaka. There will be some free time in the afternoon before the group meets again for the Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant.

Our tour ends after breakfast at our hotel. Your guide will be on hand to offer advice on travel to the airport if you are flying home, or on onward travel if you are extending your stay in Japan.

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