Japan at Cherry Blossom Time
plus a Seven-night Cruise
03 – 21 April 2018
Escorted by Damian O’Connor
This CHERRY BLOSSOM coach and cruise tour will give you a thorough insight into the Japanese way of life. The myriad of colour will astound.
Japan is a mixture of modern and traditional, conventional but progressive, bustle and serenity, colour and culture - a country of distinct seasons.
Visit iconic Mt Fuji – Japan’s distinct landmark, ride bullet trains, sample seafood, sushi and sake – the famous rice wine, wander castles and historic sites from the 1500s.
Experience Tokyo with its neon lights, Osaka in the south, Hiroshima – the country’s symbol of peace, Nagoya and Kyoto also await.
The cruise from Tokyo includes the South Korean city of Busan, fishing ports, cities and towns, markets, medieval cities, temples and museums.This new tour is already attracting interest, enquire now
“A laid-back ship with lots to do at a slow pace”
Max Speed 22 knots / 41k/h
Art Gallery ● Theatre ● pools / tubs ● Sports Court
● Lotus Spa ● Internet / Café / Library ● Casino
OceanviewCabin 56 – 59 sq m
Tuesday 03 Auckland – Osaka D
A morning departure from Auckland on Air New Zealand for flight to Osaka in Japan via Tokyo. Arrive in Osaka early evening. Transfer to hotel. Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.
Wednesday 04 Osaka – Kyoto B D
After breakfast a half-day city tour includes Osaka Castle and Umeda Sky Building. Depart mid-afternoon on the Bullet train to Kyoto. Transfer to hotel for three night stay. Welcome Dinner at local restaurant.
Thursday 05 Kyoto – Nara – Kyoto B D
Depart for full day sightseeing tour of nearby Nara with eight UNESCO sites including the Tôdai-ji Temple with its 15m high bronze Buddha. Return to Kyoto. Dinner at local restaurant.
Friday 06 Kyoto B L
Depart by coach for a morning sightseeing tour of Kyoto including the Golden Pavilion and a rickshaw experience in the Arashiyama Area. Mid-afternoon enjoy a traditional tea ceremony in a typical Japanese thatched farmhouse.
Saturday 07 Kyoto – Hiroshima B L
Travel by Bullet Train (2h 45m – 360km) to Hiroshima. Visit the Hiroshima World Peace Memorial and park, plus the A Bomb Dome Museum – the only structure left standing near the bomb’s hypocentre. Listen to a talk by a Hiroshima survivor. Transfer to hotel for two-night stay.
Sunday 08 Hiroshima - Miyajima Island – Hiroshima B
Morning travel to Miyajima Island in Hiroshima Bay by tram and ferry for half-day sightseeing tour to see the forests, temples and a nostalgic street where you feel you have stepped back in time. Return to hotel early evening.
Monday 09 Hiroshima – Takayama B D
Early departure by train to Takayama (5h30m) via Nagoya, arriving just after mid-day. Enjoy an afternoon tour of Takayama a mountainous city with narrow streets, merchants’ houses and known as the ‘City of Festivals.’ Dinner at local restaurant.
Tuesday 10 Takayama – Matsumoto B L
Today’s travel takes you through a remote mountainous region to Shirakawago – a village with traditional farmhouses, some up to 250 years old. Lunch at a local village restaurant.
Wednesday 11 Matsumoto – Mt Fuji – Matsumoto B L
Travel to the Mt Fuji Visitor Centre with time to experience the national park and surroundings. Also visit Matsumoto Castle.
Thursday 12 Matsumoto – Hakone – Tokyo B L
Enjoy a morning cruise on the crater Lake - Ashi, the Hakone Cablecar Ropeway with views to Mt Fuji on a fine day and Owakudani Hot Springs before travelling to Tokyo by Romance Car. Transfer to hotel.
Friday 13 Tokyo – Cruise Ship B D
A half-day sightseeing tour of Tokyo before transferring to Yokohama Port to board ‘Diamond Princess.’ Sail out of Tokyo early evening.
Saturday 14 At Sea B L D
A day to settle into and explore your new home as you sail along Japan’s coastline.
Sunday 15 Kanmon Straits - Busan (South Korea) B L D
Enjoy a day cruising through the Kanmon Straits, the strip of water separating two of Japan’s four main islands. Many historical sea battles were fought in the straits as early as the 1100s. Pass the cities of Shimonoseki and Kitakyushu before sailing across Korea Strait to Busan, South Korea’s second largest city. Mountains, beaches, fish markets, high-rise towers alongside ancient Buddhist temples - an amalgam of old and new, will make for an interesting afternoon.
Monday 16 Sakaiminato B L D
Arrive in the major fishing port of Sakaiminato on Japan’s west coast, known for its crab and Bluefin Tuna and bronze statues.
Tuesday 17 Tsuruga B L D
A day to explore this sea port with its history, parks, beaches, boardwalks, wetlands and cherry blossoms – why not hire a bicycle?
Wednesday 18 Akita B L D
Arrive in the vibrant city of Akita, known as ‘The Empire of Beautiful Sake.’ Festivals and street parades are part of everyday life – a great place to spend an afternoon.
Thursday 19 At Sea B L D
Friday 20 Tokyo – Auckland B L
Disembark and transfer to the airport for your Air New Zealand flight to Auckland.
Saturday 21 Arrive Auckland
Morning arrival in Auckland
*Itinerary subject to change
Cancellations and Refunds
Max ˚c Min ˚c
Tokyo 17˚c 10˚c
Osaka 19˚c 11˚c
Busan 18˚c 10˚c
On board Diamond Princess, daytime – comfortable touring clothes and walking shoes
Nightime – smart casual
On Board ‘Diamond Princess,’ account to be paid in USD at the end of the cruise