Honshu (Northern Section) + Hokkaido (17 Days)

Japan Tour, Japan Tours
Atlas Japan Tours - Feel, learn, and experience the Japanese cultures and the traditions by Atlas Japan Tour, specializing in Custom Japan Tours for families, small groups or big groups.

Northern part of Japan

Tokyo → Sendai,Miyagi →Dewa-Sanzan,Yamagata→Oga Peninsula, Akita→Lake Towada, Aomori →Hakodate→ Jozankei→ Asahikawa→Furano →Akan→Shiretoko→  Kushiro→ Sapporo→Kanazawa →Kyoto

Model Courses

Day 1 / Tokyo → Kamakura → Hakone

Tokyo→ Yokohama Bay Bridge→Yamashita Park→Yokohama China Town→Great Buddha of Kamakura→Shichirigahama Beach→Odawara→Hakone Onsen

The Great Buddha of Kamakura is a bronze statue of Amida Buddha that is located on the grounds of the Kotokuin Temple. With a height of 13.35 meters, it is the second largest Buddha statue in Japan (the largest is located in the Todaiji Temple in Nara).

[Stay in Hakone]

map6.jpgRoute

Day 2 / Hakone → Tokyo

Hakone→Open air Sculpture Museum →Owakudani →Kojiri → Cataramaran ferry→ Lake Ashino Checkpoint → Odawara →Tokyo

Owakudani is the area around a crater created in the last eruption of Mount Hakone 3000 years ago. Sulfurous fumes, hot springs and hot rivers can be experienced on a walk around the area. Eggs, boiled in the naturally hot waters.

[Stay in Tokyo]

p_02.jpgCrater in Owakudani

Day 3 / Tokyo → Sendai, Miyagi

The nickname of Sendai “Mori no miyako” (City of green) illustrates Sendai perfectly. The city has a rich cultural heritage stretching back 400 years to its founding by feudal lord Date Masamune.The Sendai Tanabata Festival held in summer is considered one of the four greatest festivals in the Tohoku region. In Sendai,we will take you to Aobajo castle ,Zuihoden, and then take a ferry from Shiogama for Matsushima to enjoy the scenery from the ferry.

[Stay in Akiu Onsen,Miyagi]

p_03.jpgSendai Tanabata Festival

Day 4 / Sendai → Dewa-Sanzan → Tendo

We will take you to Dewa sanzan, the three sacred mountains of Mt. Haguro, Mt. Gassan, and Mt. Yudono. Those mountains were opened as a religious center 1400 years ago. Whatever your religious persuasion, there is a strangely magical atmosphere at Haguro, which should leave you feeling moved and spiritually cleansed. Yamadera is a “Must see” in the Tohoku region. Tendo is famous for production of pieces for Shogi, Japanese Chess.

[Stay at Kagaya Ryokan]

p_04.jpgYamabushi, a mountain ascetics

Day 5 / Tendo → Oga Peninsula, Akita → Lake Towada, Aomori

In Oga, people believe that Namahage chase away bad luck and evil spirits with their loud voices and noisy actions through the ritual, which is an old and important folk-cultural event. 

At Namahage museum, you can learn about Namahage, and you will have a chance to change into a Namahage!

[Stay in Towada]

p_05.jpgNamahage

Day 6 / Lake Towada, Aomori→ Oirase Valley→ Aomori→ Hakodate

Enjoy the view from a sightseeing boat, strolling along the bank from Katsura-ga-hama, and visiting nearby Oirase. A three - hour hike through the spectacular gorge for you features fourteen waterfalls.

From Aomori, you can take Seikan Tunnel, which is a 53.85 km (33.49 mile) railway tunnel. At night, you can enjoy the nightview of Hakodate which is one of the 3 most beautiful nightviews in the world besides Hong Kong and Napolis.

[Stay in Hakodate]

p_06.jpgLake Towada

Day 7 / Hakodate → Jozankei

Hakodate → Oshamanbe → Trappist Monastery →Lake Toya → Cruise → Mt.Showashinzan → Jozankei Onsen

 Mt.Showa Sinzan is still sulfureous today, and stands directly next to Mt.Usu, which bears responsibility for the new mountain’s birth. You can get good views of the young volcano by taking the Usuzan Ropeway.

[Stay in Jozankei Hot spring town]

p_07.jpgMt.Showa Shinzan

Day 8 / Jozankei → Asahikawa

Asahiyama Zoo in Asahikawa is a Unique Zoo.

There are many unique interactive animal viewing facilities here at Japan's northernmost zoo. This provides an environment where each species can use their abilities and a space where each animal can be relaxed.

p_08.jpgAsahiyama Zoo

Asahikawa → Furano

For 3 seasons of the year, the vibrant colors of Furano’s flowers, the lavender and the rivers and the mountains create a magic which must be experienced to be believed. We will take you to fascinating flower fields and the breathtaking scenery of Hokkaido’s countryside and amazing art galleries.

[Stay in Furano]

p_09.jpgFlower fields in Frano

Day 9 / Furano → Akan

Ainu are an ethnic group indigenous to Hokkaidō. There are most likely over 150,000 Ainu today. You can go to “Ainukotan” to learn about Ainu people and see old rite dance. After that, you can enjoy from the sightseeing boat on Lake Akan and see “Marimo”, round green alga. And then, it is nice to make yourself feel relaxed and go into a hot spring in Lake Akan hotspring town.

[Stay in Akan]

p_10.jpgAinukotan

Day 10 & 11 / Akan → Shiretoko

FShiretoko in northeastern Hokkaido becomes the Japan's third World Natural Heritage Site in 1993. You can have a lecture on the nature of Shiretoko, and then enjoy the eco tour. In winter, Ice floes can be seen in winter.

[Stay in Shiretoko]

p_17.jpgEco Tour in Shiretoko

Day 12 / Shiretoko → Kushiro

Kushiro Marsh Land is located on the Pacific coast in Eastern Hokkaido. Kushiro City is blessed with magnificent nature, which has Kushiro Marsh Land National Park covering an area of 27,000 hectares where neither cars nor visitors are allowed to enter. You can take the slowest train in Japan, called ”Norokko-go” to enjoy the extraordinary sights of Kushiro Marsh Land.

[Stay in Shiretoko]

p_11.jpgNorokko trainin in Kushiro Marsh Land

Day 13 / Kushito → Sapporo

Susukino is one of Japan's largest entertainment districts, with nearly 4500 restaurants serving sushi and other local cuisine, clubs, bars, and "karaoke" venues. You can enjoy at Izakaya, Japanese style bar in Susukino.

[Stay in Sapporo]

p_12.jpgSusukino in Sapporo

Day 14 / Sapporo → Kanazawa

KKanazawa is one of Japan's foremost castle towns. First you will visit Kanazawa Castle, reconstructed and re-opened to the public recently. And then walk to Higashiyama Geisha district where still preserves an aspect of the Kanazawa feudal times, showing the picturesque atmosphere of the wooden lattice fronts of old geisha houses.

A certified expert guide can provides special information on Japanese history, archaeology, monuments and attractions, places of interest and any general matters of interest to you.

You can stay over night at any type of accommodation in Kanazawa.

[Stay in Kanazawa]

p_13.jpgHigashiyama Geisha District

Day 15 / Kanazawa

Today we will take you to Noto Peninsula. First, we will visit Kita Family who once wealthy kaga landowners descended from the famous warrior Nitta Yoshisada. The Kita family preserves articles and artifacts giving us a glimpse of Japanese life during that period.

And then you can enjoy the beautiful coastline. Noto Kongo referes to the magnificent, long stretch of shoreline on the west side of the peninsula. The continuous pounding of the sea has formed many beautiful rock formations.

[Stay in Kanazawa]

p_14.jpgBeautiful silhouette at sunset

Day 16 / Kanazawa → Kyoto

Sanju-sangen-do →Yogenin → Chishakuin → Kyoto National museum → Toyokuni Shrine → Kawai Kanjiro Memorial house

Sanjusangendo was originally built in 1164. This temple features a huge hall containing 1,001figures of Kannon carved in the 12th and 13th centuries. Kanjiro Kawai's home in Kyoto was made into his memorial museum and it shows his life. Kanjiro Kawai (1890-1966) was one of the best potter in the Japanese contemporary ceramc history, and also great leader of Mingei Movement in 20th century. It is a must see for anyone visiting beautiful Kyoto.

[Stay in Kyoto]

p_15.jpgKawai Kanjiro Memorial House

Day 17 / Kyoto

Shimogamo Shrine→Tadasu no Mori→Imura art Museum→Kyoto Gosho→Shijo Kawaramachi

Shimogamo Shrine is dedicated to the god of thunder and has one of the few real expanses of lawn in the city. Located in an historical area of Shinto priests' houses, linked by a narrow stream, the shrine and its environs make for a very pleasant and relaxing stroll.

[Stay in Kyoto]

p_16.jpgShimogamo Shrine