This immersive family tour of Japan takes you to the country's top sites, with urban cityscapes, thrilling amusement parks, ancient architecture, and wildlife encounters. Start in vibrant Tokyo, where the kids will learn the art of sushi making and visit scenic Fuji Five Lakes. Then, hop on the train to Takayama for a cultural excursion to Hida Folk Village. Along the way, you'll marvel at the iconic floating torii gate in Hiroshima, pet the friendly deer in Nara Park, and end with a day at Osaka's Universal Studios Japan.


  • Play arcade games and see costumed cosplayers in Tokyo's Akihabara district
  • Experience thrilling rides and meet beloved Disney characters at Tokyo Disneyland
  • Say hello to curious monkeys and walk through lush bamboo forests in Arashiyama 
  • Inspire the kids with ancient and modern Japan on a walking tour of Osaka

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Tokyo, Free Day to Explore Tokyo
Day 2 Family Tour of Tokyo, Sushi Making, TeamLab, SkyTree & River Cruise  Tokyo
Day 3 Fuji Five Lakes Excursion, Itchiku Kubota Museum, Sengen Shrine Tokyo
Day 4 Full-Day Family Excursion to Tokyo Disneyland Tokyo
Day 5 Train to Takayama, Hida Folk Village Takayama
Day 6 Discover Takayama, Train to Hiroshima Hiroshima
Day 7 Visit Hiroshima's Peace Memorial Park, Miyajima Island & Floating Torii Gate Hiroshima
Day 8 Half Day at Itsukushima-jinja Shrine, Train to Kyoto Kyoto
Day 9 Guided Tour Around Kyoto, Nara Park, Saké Tasting & Fushimi Inari-Taisha Kyoto
Day 10 Arashiyama Bamboo Grove & Temples, Monkey Park, Sagano Scenic Railway Kyoto
Day 11 Transfer to Osaka, Osaka Castle, Dotonbori District & Umeda Sky Building Osaka
Day 12 Family Day at Universal Studios Japan Osaka
Day 13 Depart Osaka  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Tokyo, Free Day to Explore

Animé fans will love Tokyo's Akihabara district

Welcome to Japan! Your flight lands in Tokyo, Japan's capital city. Here, you'll find a blend of modern and traditional, with neon-lit skyscrapers and historic temples, all topped off with plenty of family-friendly activities. Your private driver will collect you from the airport and transfer you to your hotel. Once you've checked in and had a chance to regroup, step out to explore this fascinating urban metropolis.

Start with a visit to the bustling shopping district of Shibuya, known for its designer fashion, trendy boutiques, and vibrant nightlife. Stop at the famous Shibuya Crossing, one of the busiest pedestrian crossings in the world, and let the kids snap a photo of the iconic statue depicting the loyal Akita dog Hachikō. Continue to the serene greenery of Shinjuku Gyoen and Chidorigafuchi parks, a wonderland of cherry blossoms in spring and a true must-visit.

End the day in the lively Akihabara district, otherwise known as Electric Town, a dedicated hub for Japan's animé and manga culture. Walk along busy sidewalks past themed cafés, electronics stores, and arcades, and the kids can say hello to enthusiastic cosplayers in elaborate costumes and wigs. Gaming enthusiasts will be in their element here, as there are multi-story gaming centers filled with vintage and modern video games, often featuring the latest releases. Pit your wits against the kids, let them try their luck at a crane game, or simply enjoy the lively atmosphere. 

Day 2: Family Tour of Tokyo, Sushi Making, TeamLab, SkyTree & River Cruise 

Learn the secrets of the perfect sushi roll with a hands-on family class

Begin your morning with a guided family tour of Tsukiji Fish Market, a lively shopping spot with over 400 shops and restaurants crammed into its narrow lanes. Roam around the market as your guide discusses Japan's culinary culture, points out different kinds of fish and seafood to you and your curious little ones, and explains how each is used in different dishes. Once you've all worked up an appetite, meet with a local chef for a sushi-making class. Discover the secrets of the perfect sushi roll and let the kids unleash their creativity as they experience Japanese cuisine.

Continue to TeamLab Borderless, an interactive and immersive art exhibition that gives new meaning to the term "modern art." Located in the Mori Building, you'll find an expansive display of exhibits and sculptures. Walk through Bubble Universe, where "bubbles" of lights intrigue and delight, Future Park, and Sketch Ocean, which allows the kids to draw their own fish and see them come to life on the walls.

Afterward, take a cruise on the beautiful Sumida River, watching the dazzling city lights come to life as you glide past landmarks such as the Rainbow Bridge and the Asahi Group Headquarters Building. If the kids aren't too tired from the long day, finish with a visit to Tokyo Skytree, a broadcasting and observation tower that stretches above the city at more than 2,000 feet (634 m). Here, you'll find panoramic views, and if the weather is clear, you might even catch a glimpse of Mount Fuji.

Day 3: Fuji Five Lakes Excursion, Itchiku Kubota Museum, Sengen Shrine

Tour the incredible Fuji Five Lakes region

Trade city for countryside today with an excursion to the Fuji Five Lakes area. After breakfast, meet your guide for the 1.5-hour drive to your first stop, Kawaguchi-ko, the largest of the five lakes. Here, you'll board a boat for a leisurely cruise around the lake, which takes you past lush forests and quaint villages (if you're here in spring, the cherry blossoms are everywhere).

Next, visit the Itchiku Kubota Museum, where you'll step into the world of legendary kimono artist Kubota Itchiku. These creations showcase the wonders of nature, the cosmos, and the changing seasons, and you and the kids can marvel at his unfinished masterpiece, "Symphony of Light," which combines 80 intricately designed kimonos to portray Mount Fuji. Enjoy a quick lunch, then take a scenic drive around Lake Saiko and Lake Shojiko, catching glimpses of the mystical Aokigahara Sea of Trees Forest, born from the aftermath of a Mount Fuji eruption.

Top off the day at the historic Sengen Shrine, nestled within a magnificent cedar forest at the foot of Mount Fuji. Built in 788 CE, the shrine is significant in Japanese culture as a revered sanctuary honoring one of the country's most sacred mountains. This is also the gateway to the Yoshidaguchi climbing trail, a fun place for your family to hike around before heading back to the city for the evening.

Day 4: Full-Day Family Excursion to Tokyo Disneyland

Enchant the kids with a fantasy-filled day at Tokyo Disney

It wouldn't be a family trip to Tokyo without Disney, and today, you'll experience it all with a full day at Tokyo Disneyland. Start the day early as you arrive, just as the park opens, and take some photos in front of the iconic Cinderella's Castle. Then head to Fantasyland for attractions like "It's a Small World" and "Peter Pan's Flight" that transport you into beloved Disney fairy tales. Step into Adventureland and take a thrilling ride on "Pirates of the Caribbean," then break for snacks at one of the many themed restaurants. 

Once the kids have been re-energized with some food and beverages, continue to Tomorrowland. Feel the excitement as you ride "Space Mountain," an exhilarating roller coaster through outer space, or join Buzz Lightyear's intergalactic mission at "Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blasters." Next, make your way to Toontown, an area filled with whimsy and joy. Visit "Minnie's House" and meet your favorite Disney characters. Don't forget to hop on "Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin" for an action-packed adventure.

Throughout the day, look for shows, parades, and character meet-and-greets. Check the schedule to ensure you don't miss the thrilling performances and opportunities to meet Mickey, Minnie, and friends. As the day comes to a close, witness the park's evening fireworks show, which illuminates the night sky above Cinderella's Castle—the perfect punctuation to this memorable day. 

Day 5: Train to Takayama, Hida Folk Village

A green tea ice cream is the perfect accompaniment to a stroll in the beautifully preserved old town of Takayama

Your next destination is the mountainous city of Takayama, located in Japan's Gifu region and known for its Edo-period homes and rural beauty. After departing your hotel, your family will head to the train station for the 1.5-hour ride. Arrive and check-in at your hotel, then step back in time with a guided visit to a traditional Hida Folk Village.

Once a bustling mountain farming settlement, Hida Folk Village (Hida no Sato) is now home to 30 historic structures, some dating back over 200 years, all built entirely from natural materials that harmoniously blend with the surroundings. Take in the incredible architecture as you walk around, and the kids can participate in interactive demonstrations of traditional craft-making. After the tour, return to your hotel in Takayama, where you're free to relax or explore on your own.

Day 6: Discover Takayama, Train to Hiroshima

Try delicious local treats at Takayama's morning markets

Discover more about Takayama's culture by visiting the morning markets. One of the largest outdoor markets in the region, you'll find stalls at two locations: one in front of the Takayama Jinya outpost and the other on the Miyagawa River. Start at the riverside, where vendors sell everything from fresh produce to pickles, souvenirs, and wooden carvings. Get a bite to eat or let the kids purchase a one-of-a-kind gift for their friends back home, then head to the Takayama Jinya side, where you'll find more food and handicrafts.

Once you've had your fill of the market, take the family on a tour of Takayama Jinya, the last remaining government outpost from the time of the Samurai and Shoguns. This protected historic site includes an office space where the magistrate worked, living quarters, and a rice storehouse where the annual tax rice was stored.

Stop for a sample of saké at a local brewery (with soft drinks for the little ones), then board the train to Hiroshima, the historic city that was largely destroyed by an atomic bomb during World War II on August 6, 1945. The ride takes about five hours, with a transfer at Nagoya. Arrive and make your way to your hotel, where you can enjoy some downtime with the kids or perhaps take an evening stroll after the long day. 

Day 7: Visit Hiroshima's Peace Memorial Park, Miyajima Island & Floating Torii Gate

See somber reminders of the atomic bomb at Peace Memorial Park

After breakfast, meet your guide for a tour of Hiroshima's most important sites. You'll start at Peace Memorial Park, located on what was ground zero. Featuring original photography, detailed explanations, and artifacts recovered from the site, the Peace Memorial Museum is a somber reminder to never take peace for granted. The Atomic Bomb Dome, a building still left standing from the bomb explosion, is a disturbing but important testament to the horrors of war.

Finish the tour, then take the ferry for a quick ride over to Miyajima island, a sacred and holy place for Shintoism since the earliest times. See the giant red-orange torii gate built here, which appears to float in the ocean. During low tide, your family can walk all the way to the foot of the gate to see it up close. You'll have time to walk around the island, see the on-site shrine, and sample local goodies like maple leaf-shaped cakes before returning to your hotel. 

Day 8: Half Day at Itsukushima-jinja Shrine, Train to Kyoto

Spend a morning discovering Itsukushima-jinja shrine and its "floating" torii gate

Head back to Miyajima island this morning for an in-depth tour of UNESCO-listed Itsukushima-jinja, a shrine built over water with boardwalks connecting its main hall, prayer hall, and other buildings. The shrine dates back to the 6th century, with the present structure dating to the 12th century. Featuring crimson pillars and white walls, the shrine and torii gate provide a stunning contrast with the surrounding lush green forests and deep blue sea. 

This afternoon, check out of your hotel and board the train to Kyoto, a cultural powerhouse of a city known for historical traditions, geisha entertainers, and its numerous temples, gardens, and palaces. Tonight, visit a local restaurant for a kaiseki dinner (multicourse Japanese meal) or the 400-year-old Nishiki Ichiba market for delicious street food such as soy milk doughnuts, skewered baby octopus, sticky rice cake, or homegrown pickles—there's sure to be something here for every family member.

Day 9: Guided Tour Around Kyoto, Nara Park, Saké Tasting & Fushimi Inari-Taisha

Walk through the endless torii gates of Fushimi Inari-Taisha

Today's tour takes you to Nara. This was the first permanent capital of Japan, and the city is famous for its temples and resident herds of deer in Nara Park. Meet your guide in the morning and board the train for a quick 45-minute ride, then arrive and make your way to the park. Animal lovers in the family will be delighted to feed the park's more than 1,000 friendly deer, who will likely follow you from place to place as you wander. While here, visit the eight-century Todai-Ji temple, which houses a giant Buddha statue, as well as the shrine of Kasuga Taisha, with its grand architecture and beautiful bronze and stone lanterns. 

Before returning to town, stop for a saké tasting at a local brewery, then visit the famed Fushimi Inari-taisha. Featured in the movie "Memoirs of a Geisha," this shrine has more than 10,000 picturesque red torii gates, all donated by individuals and businesses as a sign of appreciation to the god Inari for the blessings received. The brightly colored gates will entrance little ones, and you can all stroll through them at leisure. If you and your kids are physically active, you can also take a light hike, following the torii-lined route up the mountain for sweeping countryside views.

Day 10: Arashiyama Bamboo Grove & Temples, Monkey Park, Sagano Scenic Railway

Say hello to curious monkeys at Arashiyama Monkey Park

Get outside today and tour the scenic district of Arashiyama, located on the outskirts of Kyoto. Your guide will collect you from your hotel, and you'll first stop at Okochi Mountain Villa, the former home of samurai film star Okochi Denjiro. There are several lovely gardens that the kids will enjoy walking in, as well as living quarters, tea houses, and a Zen meditation hall.

Enjoy some matcha green tea and a light snack, then continue to Sagano Bamboo Grove, a natural bamboo forest encompassing more than 3,800 acres (1,537 ha). There are walking paths and trails that take you through towering bamboo stalks, and you can visit shrines such as Nonomiya, where unmarried princesses once stayed, and Tenryu-ji, Arashiyama's largest temple. Along the way, your guide will regale the kids with stories and tales about local mythology and the cultural significance of the region.

Next, visit Arashiyama Monkey Park, which is sure to be a highlight for the little ones! See adorable monkeys roaming freely through the park, and allow the kids to observe and interact with these curious creatures. The friendlier among them may come within close distance, and you and your youngsters could have the chance to feed them, but be cautious about making eye contact and never try to pet or touch them. End the day with a ride on the Sagano Scenic Railway, an old-fashioned sightseeing train that winds along the Hozugawa River and through the mountains.

Day 11: Transfer to Osaka, Osaka Castle, Dotonbori District & Umeda Sky Building

See the bright neon lights of Osaka's Dotonbori district

You're off to the port city of Osaka, located on the island of Honshu. Japan's third largest city, this commercial hub, is known for its sleek architecture, historic sites, and hearty street food. After breakfast and hotel check out, you'll gather up the family and meet your driver for the one-hour drive, settle in at your hotel on arrival, and then step out for a guided city tour. Start at Osaka Castle, a prominent landmark showcasing Japan's rich history. Young historians will enjoy the dioramas that depict various battles, uniforms, and helmets, and be sure to visit the observation deck for excellent city views. 

Then, take a walking tour of the Dotonbori district, a high-powered sensory overload of neon, modern buildings, and throngs of people. Nicknamed "Osaka's Times Square," you'll find enticing food stalls, game arcades, and plenty of shopping in this energetic district. See mechanized signs such as the famed Glico Running Man sign and Kani Doraku crab sign, and sample dishes such as grilled crabs, takoyaki (balls filled with vegetables and seafood), or kid-friendly taiyaki (fish-shaped pastries) from the various eateries. 

The tour closes with a visit to the Umeda Sky Building, a spectacular high-rise located in Osaka's Kita district. The 567-foot (173-m) building consists of two main towers connected by the "Floating Garden Observatory" on the 39th floor and offers panoramic views of Osaka. 

Day 12: Family Day at Universal Studios Japan

Spend a day at fun-filled Universal Studios Japan

Make today all about the kids with a visit to Universal Studios Japan. Opened in 2001, this is one of six Universal Studios parks in the world, with exciting rides, captivating shows, and, of course, the beloved characters of Universal movies and shows. Visit Hogwarts Castle in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, experience the "Forbidden Journey" ride, and sample a pint of the famed butterbeer. Then, walk through the shops of the Hollywood-themed area and watch some of the live entertainment that takes place here.

Next, take a wild ride through Jurassic Park, see the characters from Hello Kitty and Sesame Street in Universal Wonderland, and enjoy everything from burgers to Japanese specialties at one of the many restaurants. After lunch, hit up the mind-blowing 4D "Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man" ride and a live-action "WaterWorld" show, or walk through the enticing Super Nintendo World. Encounter cute minions at the Minion Park, then finish the day by soaring through the skies on the "Flying Dinosaur rollercoaster."

Plan your trip to Japan
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 13: Depart Osaka

Farewell to fabulous Japan!

Your family journey through Japan ends today. After breakfast, your private driver will transfer you to the airport to catch your flight home or your next destination. Safe travels! 

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