Best of Japan with Osaka (IAJD)

9 Day Package from Tokyo to Osaka

Monograms has created all-in-one packages a cut above going on your own, while leaving the group behind. Each package comes with hand-selected hotels, plus "they really do that?" service of a Monograms Local Host®-a local expert available throughout your stay. We've arranged sightseeing, exclusive to Monograms guests, complete with VIP access into some of the most incredible attractions (that means you skip the lines). We've arranged transportation and we offer a selection of special excursions. With Monograms, you travel in style independently without going it alone.


Always Included:

Your Choice of Hotels

We've carefully screened and selected the right hotels in the heart of the destination and you can choose your accommodations to match your style and budget.

Local Host

In each city

Meals Included

American breakfast daily; 3 lunches

Sightseeing & Activities

Private guided sightseeing with your Local Host as outlined in the day-by-day itinerary; inside visits, and special features are shown in UPPERCASE

Baggage Handling

Monograms has taken care of porterage at your hotel, so feel free to let the bellman help get your luggage to your room with no tipping required.

Day-By-Day 2018

DAY
1
Arrive in Tokyo, Japan

Welcome to Japan! Your hotel room is available for mid-afternoon check-in.

DAY
2
Tokyo

Today, hop on Tokyo’s subway system for a PRIVATE GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR of the city. First, stop at MEIJI SHRINE, a magnificent 20th-century Shinto monument set in a man-made forest. Next, stop at the SAMURAI MUSEUM to learn about their history and see authentic period-specific swords, armor, and helmets (kabuto). You will even have the chance to have your picture taken wearing a helmet and armor! You’ll also stop at SHINJUKU GYOEN GARDEN which dates back to the early 1600s. Lastly, visit bustling NAKAMISE SHOPPING ARCADE and ASAKUSA KANNON TEMPLE, the oldest of their kind in Tokyo. The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

DAY
3
Tokyo

Today, enjoy a full day at your leisure. Your Local Host will have suggestions.

DAY
4
Tokyo–Kyoto

Today, transfer to the train station and board your Bullet Train to historic Kyoto, former capital of Japan. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at your leisure.

DAY
5
Kyoto

This morning, your PRIVATE GUIDED SIGHTSEEING starts at stunning Kinkakuji, TEMPLE OF THE GOLD PAVILION, covered with shimmering gold leaf. Next, take a WALKING TOUR through Gion, Kyoto’s most famous geisha district, which is also known for its high concentration of machiya-style merchant houses. Continue on to SANJUSAGENDO TEMPLE, famous for 1,001 statues of Kannon, the Buddhist goddess of mercy. Flanking the main statue are 1,000 life-sized statues, covered in gold leaf, with 40 arms said to have the power to save 25 worlds. Finish with a visit to FUSHIMI INARI SHRINE, renowned for the thousands of brightly colored Torii Gates.

DAY
6
Kyoto

A full day at leisure to explore more of Kyoto’s historic temples and shrines.

DAY
7
Kyoto–Osaka

Today, transfer by road to Osaka. The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

DAY
8
Osaka

Your sightseeing tour starts at the OPEN-AIR MUSEUM OF OLD JAPANESE FARM HOUSES, where traditional thatched-roof farmhouses dating from the Edo Period have been restored. See the old architecture and be transported back in time. Next, visit OSAKA CASTLE and take a WALKING TOUR in Dotonbori, the city’s most famous entertainment district. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. Perhaps return to Dotonbori this evening to sample some local cuisine and see the sparkling neon lights.

DAY
9
Osaka

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Included Hotels

Kyoto
Osaka

Karasuma Kyoto Hotel

Karasuma-Shijo, Shimogyo-ku
Kyoto, Japan

Check-in - 12:00
Check-out - 11:00

Located in the heart of Kyoto's downtown, the Karasuma Kyoto Hotel welcomes you with friendly service. Their restaurants serve a variety of cuisine. Bar Anchor features seasonal cocktails and single malt Scotches. Amenities include currency exchange, a grocery/convenience store, a gift shop/newsstand and laundry facilities. A safe deposit box is provided at the front desk.

Location & Highlights

This central Kyoto hotel is a two minute walk from a subway station and a bus stop. Attractions within 1 mile include Kyoto International Manga Museum, Higashi Honganji Temple, Gion Corner, Nijo Castle, and Kyoto Tower.

Room Amenities

  • Phone
  • Climate Control
  • Desk
  • Alarm Clock
  • Smoking Rooms
  • Internet Access
  • Air Conditioning
  • Television
  • Hair Dryer
  • Pay Movies
  • Wake-Up Calls

Hotel Amenities

  • Bar/Lounge
  • Ice Machine
  • Beauty Salon
  • Elevator
  • Gift Shop
  • Parking/Valet
  • Dry Cleaning
  • Currency Exchange
  • Restaurant On-Site
  • Luggage Storage
Clean and simple rooms include high-speed Internet access, flat panel cable TV, and air-conditioning.

Other Hotel

Monograms offers an impressive choice of hotels pre-selected for their location, amenities and service. When booking your package check to see what other hotels are available for your dates. Some hotels may not be available for this package.

Tokyo
Kyoto
Osaka

Hilton Tokyo

6-2 Nishi-Shinjuku 6 Chome
Tokyo, Japan

Check-in - 14:00
Check-out - 12:00

The Hilton Tokyo is the the perfect base for exploring the vibrant, energetic city of Tokyo. The hotel offers complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the Lobby and Marble Lounge. Rejuvenate in the 24-hour health club within the hotel and relax in the sauna or soothing whirlpool spa. Choose from seven tempting restaurants offering a range of delicious cuisine. Favorites include Dynasty authentic Chinese restaurant, and Musashino, featuring sushi, tempura and teppanyaki. For a relaxing evening drink, visit St. George's Bar.

Location & Highlights

This hotel is in Tokyo's bustling Shinjuku neighborhood a short distance from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building and within one mile of Studio Alta.

Room Amenities

  • Mini-bar
  • Alarm Clock
  • Air Conditioning
  • Coffee Maker
  • Phone
  • Voicemail
  • Climate Control
  • Complimentary Newspaper
  • Room Service
  • In-Room Safe
  • Wake-Up Calls
  • Television
  • Complimentary Toiletries
  • Pay Movies
  • Hair Dryer
  • Iron/Ironing Board
  • Internet Access
  • Desk
  • Cable/Satellite

Hotel Amenities

  • Gift Shop
  • Beauty Salon
  • Elevator
  • Pool
  • Bar/Lounge
  • Fitness Room
  • Restaurant On-Site
  • Business Center
  • Dry Cleaning
  • Parking/Valet
  • Currency Exchange
  • Concierge desk
  • Spa Services
Feel at home in a Hilton Guest Room, located on the higher floors, with traditional Japanese touches.

Shibuya Excel Hotel Tokyu

1-12-2, Dogenzaka
Tokyo, Japan

Check-in - 14:00
Check-out - 11:00

This modern, high-rise hotel is a great hub for exploring exciting Tokyo. A 3 minute walk will take you to the adjacent metro station. Countless malls, restaurants, and bars are right outside as well.

Location & Highlights

The hotel is surrounded by countless restaurants and shopping outlets, and is positioned adjacent via walkway to the Shibuya Station, providing convenient access to the main sites.

Room Amenities

  • Pay Movies
  • Cable/Satellite
  • Air Conditioning
  • Climate Control
  • Television
  • Room Service
  • Complimentary Toiletries
  • Non-smoking Rooms
  • Disabled Access / Rooms
  • Internet Access
  • Phone
  • Hair Dryer

Hotel Amenities

  • Concierge desk
  • Restaurant On-Site
  • Currency Exchange
  • Free WiFi
  • Fitness Room
  • Elevator
Rooms are appointed with natrual décor and modern touches, and offer sweeping views of the surrounding city.

Activities & Excursions

The following optional excursions are examples only for this vacation. These may or may not be offered, and availability is subject to days of operation and seasonality. Please select a departure date to view optional excursions and pricing for a specific date (due to currency fluctuation, pricing shown is subject to change until purchased).

Price Ranges

$ ($50 USD and under)
$$ ($51 - $100 USD)
$$$ ($101 - $150 USD)
$$$$ (Over $150)

Tokyo
Kyoto

Tokyo

Mount Fuji & Hakone with lunch

Enjoy a full-day Mount Fuji sightseeing excursion, including a cruise on Lake Ashi.

Price Range: $$$$

Kyoto

Kyoto Maiko Dinner

An elegant evening of culture, entertainment, and delectable food awaits at Kacho in Chion-in Temple.

Price Range: $$$$

Nara Afternoon Tour

We'll introduce you to some of Japan's oldest Buddhist temples and most ancient treasures when you travel to Nara, the first permanent capital of Japan during the 8th century, on this wonderful afternoon excursion.

Price Range: $$

Kyoto Night Tour

Japan has been renowned for its refined culture throughout the centuries, and we'll help you experience it firsthand on this very special evening excursion.

Price Range: $$$

Kyoto Afternoon Tour

The imperial capital of Japan for more than a thousand years, Kyoto is celebrated today as the "City of Ten-Thousand Shrines." In the company of an expert Local Guide, head out to explore and photograph some of the city's most iconic landmarks.

Price Range: $$

Insider

Tokyo
Kyoto
Osaka

Tokyo

Meet Nobuko, one of your Local Hosts in TokyoMonograms provides travelers access to a Local Host®, so you will have someone on hand to answer those vacation questions pertaining to Tokyo. No waiting in line at the concierge desk or trying to ask your waitress at breakfast directions to the shopping district. Simply ask your Local Host® about Tokyo and you'll be on your way in no time. Plus, your Local Host® will share local Tokyo insights and share suggestions for getting off the beaten path, leaving you more time to create lasting vacation memories that are yours alone.

Meet a Local Host®

Hi everyone! I'm Rumi and am proud to work as a tour guide in Tokyo, the coolest city in the world. I'm excited to help you discover all there is to this incredible city. I am quite confident that you will enjoy traveling in Tokyo.

Sensoji Temple

Founded in 628, Sensoji Temple is Tokyo’s oldest temple. According to legend, two brothers found a statue of Kannon, the goddess of mercy, while fishing. They returned the statue to the river, but it in turn kept returning to them, so they built the temple for the worship of Kannon. Consult the oracle inside the temple to have any question answered!

Edo-Tokyo Museum

The Edo-Museum celebrates the history and culture of Edo-Tokyo and creates a vision of the city and life in the future. The permanent exhibition, showcasing original objects and replicas, offers visitors a journey through the 400-year history of Edo-Tokyo since Tokugawa Ieyasu entered Edo.

Tokyo Fish Market

This massive market may have meats and flowers, but the main attraction is the estimated 2,000 tons of seafood handled each day. Arrive early (around 5 am) to see restaurant purveyors and chefs engage in the tuna auction, which ends at 6:15 am. Make sure you try some of the freshest sushi you’ll ever find at one of the on-site restaurants.

Ginza

Shopping the Ginza is a unique experience—massive department stores, futuristic products, and gracious service are all trademarks. It’s worth a half-day’s stroll around this eye-opening area, even if you don’t plan to buy —particularly on weekends, when a large section is closed to cars.

Shinjuku

One of the 23 wards that make up Tokyo, Shinjuku thrives around Shinjuku Station, the busiest train station in the world. This large entertainment, shopping, and business area is a great place to walk around and soak in the atmosphere, do some shopping, or get a birds-eye view of Tokyo at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Center. Here you can ascend to the 45th floor of either the North or South observatory for sweeping views of the city, for free!

Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

Wandering (or lying on a blanket) in a Japanese landscaped garden is a unique experience. From the rush of modernism in mostly urban Tokyo, you’ll suddenly find yourself in a tranquil area filled with countless trees and carefully manicured gardens. In the spring, flowers abound, and you might even catch the short blooming season of the cherry trees.

Akihabara

Akihabara or “Akiba” is known for the hundreds of electronic stores around Akihabara Station and lining Chuo Dori. From large shops on the main drag to small shops on the side streets selling anything from the newest camera’s to secondhand electronic junk, this is a fascinating area to visit, especially for techies! Although many shops offer goods that will only work in Japan, you can find English-speaking shops that offer goods for use overseas. If you do plan to buy, bring your passport and shop duty free for larger purchases.

Kabuki

The traditional Japanese theater form called kabuki began in 1603 and continues to this day. While you may not speak the language, the themes—such as love and revenge—are usually universal enough to understand. You’ll want to see the elaborate costumes and the skill of the performers, who often sing and dance. Shinbashi Enbojyo is the perfect theater to witness this fascinating art form.

Sekirei

With an expansive beer garden that feels more like a backyard, this bar is the perfect place to relax after a long day. Sekirei is popular with the happy hour crowd, and you may want to join them to escape the throngs of the city. Enjoy a drink beneath a pine tree as dancers in kimonos perform on the lawn. Prices are very reasonable, especially considering the upscale atmosphere.

Kyoto

Meet Kyoko, one of your Local Hosts in KyotoMonograms provides travelers access to a Local Host®, so you will have someone on hand to answer those vacation questions pertaining to Kyoto. No waiting in line at the concierge desk or trying to ask your waitress at breakfast directions to the shopping district. Simply ask your Local Host® about Kyoto and you'll be on your way in no time. Plus, your Local Host® will share local Kyoto insights and share suggestions for getting off the beaten path, leaving you more time to create lasting vacation memories that are yours alone.

Meet a Local Host®

My name is Kyoko, and I am a Local Host in Kyoto. I have almost 30 years of experience showing visitors all this wonderful city has to offer. As your Local Host I would like to show you the most charming points of the city and some of Japan’s greatest treasures.

Gion

This is Kyoto’s most famous geisha district and is highlighted by traditional machiya-style merchant houses, which are narrow and long. The area is infused with ochaya (teahouses where geisha entertain), shops, and restaurants—making it the perfect place for shoppers and foodies to explore. One of the highlights is a stroll along the Shirakawa Canal by night. The canal is lined with willow trees, and when illuminated, it is a beautiful sight. Keep in mind that the chances of seeing a geisha walking around increases at night, but it is still a rare occurrence. Your best bet is to take in a show or visit an ochaya for tea.

Higashiyama

Located in the eastern part of Kyoto, Higashiyama is one of Kyoto’s eleven wards featuring charming restaurants and shops. It is a great place to buy local pottery, candy, or regular souvenir items. The highlight of the area is Kiyomizudera “Pure Water” Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage site built in 780 AD, by one of the oldest Buddhist sects in Japan. Taste the spring water that gives the temple its name and enjoy sweeping views of Kyoto from the famous wooden terrace.

Zen state of mind

Kyoto is famous for its Japanese Rock “Zen” Gardens. The most famous is the karesansui (dry landscape) rock garden at Ryoanji Temple. Here the simple use of moss-covered boulders representing waterfalls and raked gravel representing waves make for a calm space to lose your mind in thought. Lesser known but equally impressive is the garden at Saihoji Temple, also known as Kokedera (Moss Temple). This UNESCO World Heritage site is a fine display of the other Japanese garden-style called tsukiyama “hill garden,” which typically consists of a hill with a stream and pond. Here you can meander through the paths and admire the beauty surrounding you.

Nishiki-Koji Market

This covered street market is where the local residents, restaurants, and hotels buy their food. Here you will find traditional Japanese cooking ingredients such as pickled daikon, mushrooms, and octopus as well as savory foods to eat like baby squid, fish cakes, and sushi. You will also find other items for sale, including dishes, cooking utensils, and clothing. It is best to go in the morning before things pick up and the locals do their shopping. Hours of operation vary, but shops are typically open from 9 am to 6 pm and closed on either Wednesday or Sunday.

Mount Hieizan

Located to the northeast of Kyoto, Mount Hieizan is home to Enryakuji Temple, one of the most important religious sites in Japan. Originally built by Buddhist monks of the Tendai sect in 788 to protect Kyoto from evil spirits, it eventually grew into a monastery complex with both size and power. In fact, it had so much power that in 1571, the mountain was invaded, and every building was burned to the ground. The complex was rebuilt in the 17th century when new rulers came to power. Ride a cable car up the mountain and explore the temple and other buildings in a beautiful mountain setting.

Ginkakuji Temple

This “Temple of the Silver Pavilion” was built by the grandson of the man who built the “Temple of the Gold Pavilion” with the intention of covering it in silver leaf. Don’t expect to see the glimmer though as unfortunately his plans were never carried out. Nonetheless the temple stands as a monument of simplistic Japanese design and has lovely gardens so it is definitely worth a stop.

Kiyomizudera Temple

The “Pure Water Temple” is the most popular Buddhist temple in the city. For over 1200 years, pilgrims have climbed the slope to pray to the temple’s 11-headed Kannon image and drink from the sacred spring. The main hall which is a Japanese architectural marvel is made with no nails and offers wonderful views of Kyoto.

Osaka

Monograms provides travelers access to a Local Host®, so you will have someone on hand to answer those vacation questions pertaining to Osaka. No waiting in line at the concierge desk or trying to ask your waitress at breakfast directions to the shopping district. Simply ask your Local Host® about Osaka and you'll be on your way in no time. Plus, your Local Host® will share local Osaka insights and share suggestions for getting off the beaten path, leaving you more time to create lasting vacation memories that are yours alone.

Meet Yoshizawa, one of your Local Hosts in OsakaMeet a Local Host®

Hi! I am Mickey, and I've been working as a national licensed guide for over 30 years. Osaka is the bubbling food capital of Japan, known as the ‘Gourmet’s Paradise.’ After exploring the feudal and religious past, I can wait to help you find the best places to enjoy Osaka style cuisine. Bon Appetit!

Shiten'no-ji Temple

Shiten'no-j is the oldest temple in Japan. Built by Prince Shotoku-taishi, a regent and statesman known for his profound Buddhist faith when Buddhism was not yet widespread in Japan. With its middle gate, tower, main hall and lecture hall arranged from south to north in a beeline, Shiten'no-ji Temple typifies the Buddhist structures built in the Asuka Period from the late 6th - early 7th century.

Takoyaki

Order Takoyaki, octopus dumplings, for a truly Osakan treat. These dumplings are filled with octopus, onions, and cabbage (some may include pickled ginger) that is poured onto a special iron plate with holes and baked. The result is crispy and spicy on the outside while soft inside, giving the dumplings a unique, crunchy texture and taste. Choose from a variety of toppings to compliment this popular dish.

Osaka-style Okonomiyaki

Often described as a Japanese pizza, it's more like a savory pancake snack that tends to be pretty filling. Ingredients are simply mixed together with batter and griddled. Cabbage is the mainstay, and there’s usually pork. But in Osaka, you can also find okonomiyaki cooked with octopus, squid, shrimp, sliced chicken, just veggies, scallions, or kimchee. Feel free to mix and match for your favorite combination.

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Prices are per person, based on double room occupancy. For singles traveling alone, a supplement will be quoted at the time of booking. Single rooms are available at a supplement; triple rooms are available at a reduction.

2019 departures are subject to itinerary and price modifications. Details will be available in August 2018.

* The "Starting at" or listed price is based on the lowest price available to book. Price is per passenger based on double occupancy and does not include airfare; additional fees/charges are not included. Pricing may vary on this date due to hotel availability. If a price is crossed out, the new price includes a limited time promotional offer(s) – please review current promotions or deals for additional information. Some packages require intra-vacation flights (and in some cases intra-vacation segments must be purchased from Monograms).