Ancient Empires-Beijing to Tokyo
Explore two ancient nations in 18 well-packed days on this unique journey that takes you from the epic lengths of the Great Wall of China to the poetic views of Mt Fuji. Hop aboard trains and ferries and face an army of Terracotta Warriors for an historical encounter you won't soon forget. Spend nights in a traditional ryokan and a shukubo temple lodging for an authentic Japanese experience. Our CEOs will take you off the beaten track to reveal the cultural treasures of the region's ancient sites.
Train, local bus, air-con bus, walking, bullet train, plane, ferry.
Hotels (12 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), mountain monastery (1 nt, shared facilities), traditional inn (1 nt, shared facilities).
Meet the ancient Terracotta Warriors, get a bird's-eye view of Mt Fuji from a cable car, stay in a traditional ryokan
Local Living: Overnight in Mount Koya Temple, KÅyasan. Great Wall excursion and entrance (Beijing). Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City guided tour. Terracotta Warriors excursion (Xi'an). Master of the Nets Garden visit (Suzhou). Shanghai orientation walk. Chinese acrobat performance (Shanghai). Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum visit. Miyajima excursion with floating torii gate visit. Nijo Castle and gardens visit (Kyoto). Gion walk. Fushimi Inari shrine visit. Lake Ashino-ko boat ride. Traditional ryokan stay with kaiseki meal. Japan Rail (JR) pass (7 days). Internal flight. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Day 9 Osaka/KÅyasan (1B, 1D)
Depart early and travel to the centre of Buddhism in Japan and sleep in a temple atop the 800m Mt Koya. Savour a traditional dinner of shojin ryori (Buddhist vegetarian cuisine). Watch the monks pray in the morning.
Day 10 KÅyasan/Hiroshima (1B)
Watch the monks pray in the morning and enjoy a traditional breakfast before travelling to Hiroshima.
Day 11 Hiroshima
Visit the Peace Park and Memorial Museum and take a ferry ride over to the sacred island of Miyajima to see the famous floating torii gate.
Day 12 Hiroshima/Kyoto
Travel to Kyoto and start exploring. Visit the impressive Nijo Castle and gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the evening, explore the geisha district of Gion on a CEO-led walking tour.
Day 13 Kyoto
Enjoy a visit to the beautiful Fushimi Inari Taisha shrine and walk under the bright torii gates. Opt to shop, stroll along the riverbank, or explore another of Kyoto's many temples with free time.
Day 14 Kyoto/Hakone (1D)
Take a boat ride on Lake Ashino-ko and a walk along the Old Tokaido Highway, and hopefully catch a glimpse of majestic Mt Fuji. Enjoy a stay in traditional ryokan accommodation, feast on a Japanese multi-course kaiseki meal, soak in the natural hot springs, and sleep on a futon.
Day 15 Hakone/Tokyo (1B)
Head to Tokyo with time to do some last-minute shopping.
Day 16 Tokyo
Depart at any time.
Day 1 Beijing
Arrive at any time.
Day 2 Beijing
Take the Beijing metro to visit the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square.
Day 2 Beijing
Enjoy an included visit to the Great Wall.
Day 4 Xi'an/Suzhou (1L)
Visit one of China's greatest archaeological treasures-the Terracotta Warriors-and enjoy a local lunch at a farmhouse. Opt to cycle the ancient city walls before an overnight train to Suzhou.
Day 5 Suzhou
Visit Suzhou, the "Venice of the East." Explore the Master of the Nets Garden, one of China's most exquisite gardens.
Day 6 Suzhou/Shanghai
Travel to Shanghai and take an orientation walk along the Bund.
Day 7 Shanghai
Enjoy free time in this bustling city before watching a spectacular Chinese acrobat show in the evening.
Days 8-9 Shanghai/Osaka
Hop on a flight from Shanghai to Osaka. Take the evening to explore the city.
Day 10 Osaka
Enjoy free time to explore this vibrant and exotic city.