‘The Land of the Rising Sun’, Japan is a destination that captivates all who enter and offers experiences quite unlike any other. Its culture is entirely unique, contrasting ancient traditions with a modern love of technology and pop-culture to create something distinctly its own; here there is a real sense of the merging of old and new. A similar sense of contrast exists between the natural beauty of Japan’s serene rural towns and the vibrant cities that are symbols of its immense progress. This is a country where you can immerse yourself in the tranquillity of nature among candy-floss pink cherry blossoms, snow-capped mountains, and crystal clear lakes - before easily heading to the hustle and bustle of lively cities, where something new and exciting lurks around every corner. In Japan there is truly something for everyone - watch Geishas dance in Kyoto, take a dip in an onsen, visit the eccentric Akihabara district in Tokyo, there is no shortage of things to do. From the enchanting and beautiful, the modern and inspiring, to the downright bizarre, Japan has something to surprise, entertain, and charm even the most seasoned traveller.
- Watch the blossoms bloom on the trees in the spring time
- Watch a traditional dance performed by Geishas in Kyoto.
- See the leaves change colour in the Autumn.
- Explore the different districts of Tokyo and marvel at the wonderful things you find within them.
- Sample authentic Japanese cuisine, there's more to it than sushi!
- Visit an onsen/hot spring to relax after a long day exploring.
- Go skiing in the mountains
The seasons in Japan are very distinct and follow the same pattern as our own but with more extreme conditions, although this varies between the north and south of the country. The North tends to see the cooler weather, with longer winters and more snowfall, whereas the South is generally warmer. The rainy season falls between June and July, while it may not rain everyday it will feel very humid during this time; there is also the chance of typhoons between July and October.
- Spring: Spring falls between March and May and the weather during this time is rather mild with temperatures usually reaching between 10°C and 15°C.
- Summer: June to August sees the hottest temperatures as well as the most humidity, with temperatures averaging in the high 20s but can reach up to 40°C in some places.
- Autumn: The weather between September and November is generally mild but can be unpredictable with a risk of typhoons; it is less humid than the summer months which can make it a more pleasant time to visit.
- Winter: Winter falls between December and February and sees the coldest weather, with temperatures averaging between 1°C and 5°C and the mainland seeing some snow, although temperatures can drop lower in the North and along the Japan Sea Coast and much more snow falls.
Best time to go
Japan is a year round destination, however in terms of weather the best time to go is in the spring when temperatures remain comfortable and there is less risk of rain, this is also a great time to be able to see the trees blossom.
- Capital - Tokyo
- Currency - Japanese Yen
- Point of Entry - Tokyo
- Airlines - British Airways, Turkish Airlines, Virgin Atlantic
- Flying Time - Average over 13 hours depending where you fly to.
- Time Zone - GMT + 9 hrs
- Visa - Not required, visitors can enter Japan for up to 90 days without a visa.
- Fabulous Food - From sushi and sashimi to fresh noodles and miso soup, Japan’s cuisine is a big selling point
- Outdoors - Mountains, coral reefs and multi-day hiking trails make it a magnet for outdoor-lovers
- Islands - Japan has more than 6,500 islands that offer both sun and snow escapes
- Traditions - Temples, tea houses, Zen rock gardens, geishas – Japan has strong traditions to explore
- Technology - It’s also a high-tech destination, with sleek cityscapes, walls of neon and a population that just loves gadgets
- Hot springs - Onsen (or hot springs), are found across the country. They can be located indoors or out
- Accommodation - Whether you stay in a ryokan (traditional inn) or a hotel, the quality tends to be high
- Ease of transport - Bullet trains, ferries and efficient public transport make getting around simple
- Cherry blossom - The natural spectacle of the cherry blossom season each spring always draws the crowds
- Events - The Rugby World Cup takes place in the country in 2019, while the following year will see Tokyo hosting the 2020 Olympic Games.
- Culture - Himeji Castle, a 17th-century attraction on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, reopened in March after more than three years of restoration.
- Transport - In March 2015 a line was extended between Tokyo and the historic city of Kanazawa, cutting transport times by almost 50% to two-and-a-half hours. And next year sees the opening of a new line extension that will reach the northern island of Hokkaido. Around 23km of the line will be under the seabed.
14 Days Highlights of Japan
From £5,379 per person based on 2 people sharing
Duration: 14 days
See the iconic sites, cultural heritage and natural wonders that define Japan. Spend two weeks travelling from bustling Tokyo to historic Hiroshima to charming Kyoto and the hidden gems in between. With insightful guided tours, this tour goes beyond what the guidebooks say and steps into the heart o...
8 days Japan in style
From £6,769 per person based on 2 people sharing a room
Duration: 8 days
Capture a glimpse of Japan’s stylish side with a fascinating journey from Tokyo to Hakone and Kyoto. Enjoy exclusive tours that bring local culture to life and visit lesser-known monuments that exemplify Japan’s sophisticated architectural taste. Relax in the evenings at stylish properti...
Japan Alps Explorer
From £3,799 per person based on 2 people sharing [Guide Price*]
Duration: 10 days
Head to the hills for a Japan adventure like none other. Visit the ‘alps’ of Japan to discover pristine alpine towns filled with history and culture. Hike along a former trading route, take a scenic train journey and soak in mountain-side onsens whilst enjoying breath-taking landscapes a...
From £4,549 per person based on 2 people sharing [Guide Price*]
Duration: 10 days
This itinerary takes you on a spiritual journey through this enchanting country. Soak in therapeutic natural hot springs, visit the UNESCO-heritage Koyasan to watch Shingon Buddhism being practised by monks. Travel to a Zen monastery, and learn the practice of Zazen meditation from a local inst...
Tucked away amongst the mountains in the sleepy town of Hakone sits Hakone Ginyu, a tranquil spa resort and traditional Japanese ryokan. Surrounded by nature, this is the place to come to forget the world as you enjoy spectacular views, bathe in the relaxing onsen, and soak up the serene environment...
RIHGA Royal Hotel Hiroshima
Considered a landmark of Hiroshima city, the sleek and towering RIHGA Royal Hotel Hiroshima catches the eye of all who come across it. Conveniently located right in the centre of this city which holds so much historical and cultural significance, the hotel is the perfect basepoint to get out and exp...
Located on the stunning Ago Bay in Japan’s Ise-Shima National Park the Amanemu resort is a beautiful resort combining minimalistic elegance with hints of traditional Japanese ryokan. Built around an onsen, the resort spa & private onsens are fed by a nutrient-rich hot spring from near...
Stay somewhere different on your next trip to Japan and opt for Benesse House, a hotel located within a functioning museum. Like the works found within the museum itself, the hotel is an impressive work of contemporary art, with incredible architecture that sets it apart from other accommodation. Be...
Hyatt Regency Kyoto
Located in the heart of Japan’s ancient capital Kyoto, sits the stylish and luxurious Hyatt Regency Kyoto. Found in the historical area of Higashiyama Shichijo, the hotel is the perfect base to get out and enjoy some cultural exploration with many of Kyoto’s landmarks within close proxim...
Experience the luxury synonymous with the Ritz-Carlton chain at the Ritz-Carlton Osaka, a lavish hotel perfectly placed within the vibrant business and shopping district of Nishi-Umeda, Osaka. Aiming to resemble the look and feel of an 18th Century Georgian home, you can expect to find an elegant sp...
RIHGA Royal Hotel Osaka
Located in the vibrant city of Osaka sits the modern and stylish RIHGA Royal Hotel Osaka, a hotel where quiet luxury and excellent service combine to ensure you enjoy the perfect stay. Featuring sleek guest rooms fitted with modern amenities and furnishings, excellent facilities to meet all your nee...
Conrad Hotel Tokyo
Experience luxury in the heart of Toyko at the sleek and opulent Conrad Hotel Tokyo. Offering guests panoramic views across the cityscape and Tokyo bay from its high up location within a skyscraper, as well as proximity to the lively shopping and entertainment district of Ginza, this is the perfect ...
Hyatt Regency Tokyo
Situated in Shinjuku, a vibrant business and entertainment district in Tokyo, the Hyatt Regency Tokyo is ideally located to appreciate all that this incredible city has to offer. Found right next to Shinjuku Central Park, guests can enjoy views of this green haven amongst the towering buildings, as ...
Mandarin Oriental Tokyo
Situated right in the heart of Tokyo sits the opulent 5-star Mandarin Oriental Tokyo. Occupying the top nine floors of the Nihonbashi Mitsui Tower, the hotel offers stunning views over Tokyo's patchwork of skyscrapers as well as close proximity to all the action of the vibrant city. As is t...
Park Hotel Tokyo
Ideally situated in the bustling business and cultural hub Shiodome in the heart of Tokyo, sits the luxurious Park Hotel, Tokyo. Offering guests stylish rooms, a range of facilities, sweeping views across the vast cityscape, and superb hospitality, this is the perfect hotel to enjoy the delights of ...