Japan 12 Ways
Japan’s sights are as remarkable as they are varied. Our 12 immersive experiences allow you to see its myriad faces, while appreciating deep-rooted customs, neon-hued modernity and lush landscapes –sometimes all at the same time.
1 Spot the Snow Monkeys, Yudanaka
Perhaps one of Japan’s most documented images is that of the fluffy ‘snow monkey’ enjoying a steamy bath in a hot spring. See the playful primates for yourself at Jigokudani hot springs. As well as soaking in the warm waters, the Japanese macaques often play, preen and even throw snowballs.
2 The Secrets of the Sumos, Tokyo
Experience Japan’s oldest sport, with a privileged look at how sumo wrestlers live and train and be privy to an exhilarating sumo wrestling ‘basho’ (tournament). Watching these skilled giants embody the ancient art of sumo is a fascinating insight into the pervading traditions of Japan.
3 Bring Anime To Life, Tokyo
The home of manga and anime, Tokyo is the place to immerse yourself in the world of Japanese comic culture. Appreciate the intricate skill of sketching in a manga drawing workshop, visit a riveting Japanese animation studio and lose track of time in a cavernous manga comic library.
4 Simmer in Hot Springs, Mount Fuji
Steamy and reviving, Japan’s hot springs in Hakone National Park are part of the fabric of everyday life. Stay in a traditional ryokan and be immersed in local architecture including tatami mat flooring and futon mattresses. Best of all, soak in an outdoor onsen bath, warmed with mineral-rich geothermal spring water.
5 Sip Sake, Takayama
Traditional market town Takayama is a popular spot for artisan crafts and is also home to a number of sake breweries. This makes it the perfect place
to sample a variety of different sakes from the abundance of family run brewers in the old town. Follow up with a dinner of soba noodles or roasted rice balls.
6 Ski Powder Pistes, Niseko
Fly down the slopes of Niseko, Hokkaido’s ultimate winter sports resort surrounded by the alpine beauty of Japan. For aficionados of off-piste, Niseko’s
extensive network of backcountry routes can be explored with a knowledgeable guide. A cold beer and sushi platter awaits you at the end of a long day.
7 Meet a Maiko, Kyoto
Geishas and maikoes (apprentice geishas) are an evocative and enigmatic icon of Japan’s far-reaching culture. With our contacts, have the honour of a face-to-face tea ceremony in a Gion tea house in Kyoto. With a translator, enjoy conversation, traditional games and watch a dance performance.
8 Explore an Art Isle, Seto Inland Sea
A tiny island, Naoshima sits in the Seto Inland Sea, set apart by its extraordinary collection of modern art. Galleries, architect-designed buildings, workshops and even beaches are home to sculptures and artwork by the likes of Yayoi Kusama and James Turrell. Cycle around and absorb all this artistic isle offers.
9 Wander a Zen Garden, Kanazawa
Experience the joy of a beautifully landscaped Japanese garden at famed Kenrokuen, known for its perfectly zen ambience. Admire lily ponds, artfully raked gravel, stone pagodas, bridges and tea pavilions among sculpted moss, pine trees, bamboo and flowering blossoms.
10 Street Food Taster, Osaka
Osaka’s motto kuidaore – to ‘eat, drink and enjoy life’ – is easily achieved on this street food tour where roadside sushi bars, pubs, hole-in-thewall eateries and ramen joints showcase the stars of Osaka’s deep rooted food culture. Don’t miss the katsu skewers and octopus dumplings.
11 Live Like a Monk, Mount Koya
Connect with Japan’s prominent religion – Buddhism – with a fascinating stay at a Buddhist temple lodge, known as a shukubo. Similar in design to a ryokan, you will join the monks for morning meditation, eat Buddhist vegetarian cuisine and observe the pilgrim’s unique way of life.
12 Walk The Nakasendo Way, Kiso Valley
Follow in the footsteps of the samurai along the Nakasendo Way, traversing the picturesque lower Japanese Alps; the prettiest section covering the scenic
Kiso Valley. Observe rural life, quaint Japanese architecture, tea plantations, bamboo forests and friendly locals ready to say konnichiwa.
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Enjoy reading our colourful collection of travel blogs, insider journeys and first-person insights. Our articles are designed to fuel your wanderlust. Feeling inspired? Give us a call and our experts can start planning your next travel experience.
Journey through Japan with Aman
What better way to explore the cultural nuances and dizzying contrasts of Japan than through luxe hotel brand Aman?
Booking with Bailey Robinson means access to the finest travel experiences. When planning your holiday we do all the hard work – in-depth research and meticulous organisation. You can be confident in the individual care for your holiday from your dedicated and experienced Personal Travel Designer and Concierge.