Cultural Treasures of Japan

17-AAA-1440

This is what AAA Member Choice Vacations® is all about; we are the travel company that does more and cares more about the guest experience. Our inclusive tours offer you more value for your money while delivering those incredible moments that make travel so very special. Whether it’s helping to select a destination, sharing our expertise, providing ways to personalize your tour, or taking you places you might not go on your own, we are with you every step of the way. With a focus on service and quality, we give you more of what makes travel memorable.  AAA MCV’s diverse travel collection features land tours, river cruises, rail journeys, small group tours, and more. Every tour includes amazing accommodations, must-see sights, many meals, and enriching cultural experiences. Plus, with features like a professional Tour Manager, home to airport sedan service and an industry-leading travel projection plan, AAA MCV makes travel simple for you while providing outstanding quality and value.  When you travel with AAA MCV, all you have to do is relax and enjoy. We’ll handle the rest.

 

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AAA MEMBER BENEFIT

$50 savings per person (included in fare)

 

AAA Vacations® Amenity

With AAA Member Choice Vacations® receive roundtrip home to airport sedan service on all air-inclusive tours†

 

INCLUSIONS

  • 21-23 meals
  • 4-star accommodations
  • The services of a professional tour manager
  • Hotel-to-hotel baggage handling
  • Unparalleled sightseeing and enriching cultural experiences

 

Highlights

  • Explore the famous Ginza district where skyscrapers and neon lights meet high fashion.
  • Explore the hot springs and spas of Hakone, on the shores of Lake Ashi.
  • Travel by express train and the famous Shinkansen bullet train.
  • Take in magnificent views of Mt. Fuji from the Kachi Kachi Ropeway.
  • Taste the local culture during a variety of included local meals.

 

ITINERARY

Day One:
Overnight Flight

Come to know Japanese culture — both ancient and modern. Discover its timeless temples, unimaginable natural beauty, and technological marvels.

Day Two:
Tokyo, Japan – Tour Begins

Welcome to “the Land of the Rising Sun.” Your tour opens in Tokyo where rich traditions and pop culture thrive side by side. This evening, meet your fellow travelers at a welcome dinner.
Meals: Dinner
Hotel: Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa

Day Three:
Tokyo

Excitement builds this morning as you explore the famous Ginza district where skyscrapers and neon lights meet high fashion. Traverse Shibuya Crossing, the busiest intersection in the world! Find peace and harmony at Meiji Shrine, which rests amid a forest in the shadow of the city. See the Imperial Palace, a fine example of traditional Japanese architecture. Next, it is time for a true taste of Japan; a sushi lunch in Tokyo’s famous fish market.
Meals: Breakfast & Lunch
Hotel: Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa

Day Four:
Tokyo

This morning join the locals to experience a tea ceremony in an authentic setting. Next, have free time to explore the Nakamise Shopping Arcade, the best place to find a souvenir of your trip. Later, travel to Asakusa, Tokyo’s oldest Geisha district. See its famous Senso-ji, a Buddhist temple dedicated to the Bodhisattva Kannon. Soak in the relaxed atmosphere and old-world Japanese architecture. Return to Tokyo by boat on a cruise down the Sumida River.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Hotel: Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa

Day Five:
Tokyo – Hakone

Today we head to the lakeside resort of Hakone. Renowned for its hot springs and spas, this scenic town hugs the shores of Lake Ashi. With magnificent Mt. Fuji (UNESCO) rising in the distance, sit back, relax and soak up the incredible setting. Take to the deep-blue waters of Lake Ashi on a cruise featuring epic views of the mountain and stops at some of the lakeside towns. Tonight, gather for a leisurely walk to the charming town of Moto-Hakone.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Hotel: Odakyu Hotel De Yama

Day Six:
Hakone – Matsumoto – Takayama

This breathtaking day begins in the Kawaguchi’s “Five Lakes” area. Climb aboard the Kachi Kachi Ropeway which ascends over 1,300 feet and affords you a glorious panorama of Mt. Fuji and the surrounding lakes. Next, stop in Matsumoto for a traditional Japanese lunch. Then it’s on to see Matsumoto Castle, known as the “Crow Castle” due to its striking black exterior. Later, step back in time in Takayama, a rural Edo period town nestled in the Japanese Alps. Well known to the locals for its connection to sake, this is the perfect place to gather for a visit to one of Japan’s last family-owned sake breweries. You are in for a treat as we sample some traditional rice wine. In the old city, a special Hida beef dinner is on tonight’s menu.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Hotel: Hida Plaza Hotel

Day Seven:
Takayama

Embrace the ancient culture of Takayama as you explore its historic district. Next, head to the bustling open-air markets that date back over 600 years. Catch a glimpse of the past at the 19th-century Jinya government building. Explore the winding streets lined with charming traditional inns and houses. Your afternoon is free to explore however you like, including joining your local guide at a nearby nature park.
Meals: Breakfast
Hotel: Hida Plaza Hotel

Day Eight:
Takayama – Shirakawa-go – Kanazawa

Today we cross the mountainous Shokawa Valley on our way to Shirakawa-go (UNESCO). Uncover the unique charm of this village with gassho-zukuri-style (resembling two hands joined in prayer) thatch-roofed houses. The adventure continues as we travel to the scenic town of Kanazawa. Once one of the country’s richest regions, gold leaf-making began here in the 16th century. Explore at your leisure and enjoy the timeless feel of this special place. Tonight we gather in town for dinner.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Hotel: Ana Crowne Plaza Kanazawa

Day Nine:
Kanazawa

Adventure awaits as we travel as the locals do – aboard a local transport. We will make our way through the Omicho market, the Samurai district, Higashi tea district, and Kenroku-En (Garden of Six Qualities), one of Japan’s most beautiful gardens. Then it is time for your hands-on gold leaf class. Dive deep into this ancient craft as you create your own bento box to take home. Once again you have a free afternoon to independently experience this dynamic culture.
Meals: Breakfast
Hotel: Ana Crowne Plaza Kanazawa

Day Ten:
Kanazawa – Thunderbird Express Train – Kyoto

Board an express train bound for Kyoto. This former Imperial capital of Japan (784 – 1868) is now one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the nation. Even as it has taken its place as an international city, it remains true to the past and is home to a staggering 2,000 temples and shrines. Next, head to the Gion (Geisha) district. Along its narrow lanes you will find teahouses and women in traditional dress. Dine tonight in the heart of the city at a traditional yakitori (grilled chicken) restaurant.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Hotel: Westin Miyako Kyoto

Day Eleven:
Kyoto

Explore Nijo Castle (UNESCO), home of the first Shogun. See elaborate woodcarvings, wall paintings, and the Ninomaru Garden, designed by Kobori Enshu, a landscape architect and tea master. Travel to Kodai Yuzen-en Gallery for a lesson in the art of stenciling. Ascend the hillside to Kiyomizu temple and take in a wonderful view of the city. Then, it’s on to the Fushimi Inari Taisha for a tour of the most revered shrine of Inari. Find yourself strolling along its spectacular rows of orange Torii (made famous in the movie Memoirs of a Geisha) as they weave through the forest and lead you to the inner shrine.
Meals: Breakfast
Hotel: Westin Miyako Kyoto

Day Twelve:
Kyoto – Bullet Train – Hiroshima – Kyoto

Board the Shinkansen bullet train to travel to Hiroshima. Pause to see the ruined building known as the Atomic Dome (UNESCO) before visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and park. After lunch in the city we will make our way south to board a ferry for the short trip to Miyajima Island, “Shrine Island.” See the iconic great Torii gate which appears to be floating on the water. As this moving day comes to a close, return to Kyoto by Shinkansen bullet train for an evening at leisure.
Meals: Breakfast
Hotel: Westin Miyako Kyoto

Day Thirteen:
Kyoto

Relax or set out to explore Kyoto on your own. Tonight, experience Japanese culture during a special farewell dinner that features a Geisha show.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Hotel: Westin Miyako Kyoto

Day Fourteen:
Kyoto – Tour Ends

Your tour comes to a close in this fascinating land. As you depart, reflect on its beauty and all you have learned about its rich history and culture.
Meals: Breakfast

 

More Info? Ready to Book? Call 800.529.3222 or click here to contact a travel agent.

*Rate is per person, land only, based on double occupancy and subject to availability. Call for air-inclusive rates†
†Purchase of roundtrip international or domestic U.S. airfare from MCV through AAA Travel required to obtain sedan service. When applicable, purchase of required internal airfare does not qualify for sedan service. Included in many U.S. cities within a 50 mile radius of more than 90 airport gateways. Service is available between 51 and 75 miles for a small fee. One transfer per room booking. Additional stops are not permitted on route. Other restrictions may apply; call for details. CST# 2006766-20 UBN# 601220855 Nevada Seller of Travel Registration No. 2003-0279