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  • Monday 8.30am - 5.30pm
  • Tuesday 8.30 - 5pm
  • Wednesday 8.30pm - 5pm
  • Thursday 8.30am - 5pm
  • Friday 8.30am - 5pm
  • Saturday Closed
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Tours to Japan

Japan is a diverse and alluring country, full of surprises at every turn. In true Japanese fashion, our tours combine the traditional and the modern. From exploring the grand temples and meeting a Geisha to taking a super-fast bullet train, our Japan holidays have it all.

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Japan

Discover our Japan tours

From the ultramodern cityscape of Tokyo to the ancient temples of Kyoto, our small group tours to Japan will take you on an all-encompassing trip of discovery.  Our expert tour leaders will show you the cultural highlights as well as some lesser-known hidden treasures. 

Get into the heart of Japanese culture with a stay in a Buddist temple and family-run ryokan, observe snow monkey bathing in the hot springs of Jigokudani Onsen and whizz across the countryside on a bullet train to explore the city of Hiroshima. Or, for a Japan tour with a difference, go exploring on two wheels with our Japan cycling trips. Discover the coast of the Noto Peninsula, feel the salty breeze rush past as you pedal along Chirihama Beach and stay in traditional Japanese accommodation with futon mattresses and tatami-mat floors. 

Considering a trip to Japan but new to Explore? We've answered some of the most-asked questions about our small group tours. 

Our most popular Japan tours

Simply Japan

Japan Discovery Trip code QJS
Best seller
14 Days From NZ$6230 without flights

Highlights of Japan

Japan Discovery Trip code JPH
8 Days From NZ$4420 without flights

Shogun Trail

Japan Discovery Trip code JS
Best seller
12 Days From NZ$7740 without flights

Cycle Japan

Japan Cycling Trip code CJA
13 Days From NZ$8310 without flights

Walk Japan - Kumano Kodo Trail

Japan Walking and Trekking Trip code WJP
12 Days From NZ$7440 without flights
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Tours to Japan

​Formed from an archipelago of nearly 7,000 islands, the four largest – Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku – make up most of the land mass of this country of 128 million people. Because Japan is so mountainous, most of the population centres are located in the coastal regions, giving Japan extremely densely populated areas and cities. While Japan is considered to have a temperate climate, there is a considerable difference in the temperatures and biodiversity of Hokkaido (to the north) and Kyushu (in the south).

Honshu, often called the main island, is the country’s most populous island and home to Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, and Hiroshima. The northernmost of the four main islands, Hokkaido is the second largest and its capital, Sapporo, is the fourth-largest city in Japan. The southernmost main island, Kyushu, has Nagasaki as its capital, is the third-largest island, and has the dubious honour of having the most active volcano, Mt Aso, while the smallest and least populous of the four main islands is Shikoku. Tunnels, bridges or a combination of both connect all the main islands, allowing you to travel by Japan’s effortlessly efficient train system right around the country. 

While Japan’s status as the world’s second largest economy after the United States (by GDP) has been taken by China, the country is still an economic powerhouse. The earthquake and tsunami that struck the northeast on 11 March 2011 had a huge short-term effect on the economy (including tourism), but its fast recovery really proved how stoic the Japanese people are.

Japan is now more open than ever, offering a breadth of experiences, from sleeping in a ryokan (Japanese inn) to experiencing the white-glove service of a five-star hotel, from downing drinks with locals in an izakaya bar to quietly savouring sushi at temples to gastronomy with three Michelin-stars. Discovering that Japan isn’t a complete mystery has never been so much fun. 

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