Ancient Empires—Beijing to Tokyo

Rail, Beijing to Tokyo

Image by G Adventures

Tour description provided by G Adventures

Explore two ancient nations in 16 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 a 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.

What’s included

  • Carte Blanche: Shanghai Local Living: Overnight in Mount Koya Temple, Kōyasan
  • 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

Highlights

  • Meet the ancient terracotta warriors
  • Get a bird's-eye view of mt fuji from a cable car
  • Stay in a traditional ryokan

Itinerary

Day 1 Beijing Is Beijing top of your must-see list? Booking pre-trip accommodations will let you do Beijing your way before meeting up with the group. Included Activities: Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2 Beijing Head out of town to the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. Spend time wandering around, taking photos, and picking up souvenirs. Included Activities: Orientation Walk Great Wall Mutianyu Visit Transport: Private Vehicle (1.00 hour(s)) Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))
Day 3 Beijing/Xi'an Take the Beijing metro to visit the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. Later, board a fast train to Xi'an. Included Activities: Tiananmen Square Forbidden City Tour Transport: Metro Local train (5.75-6.00 hours)
Day 4 Xi'an/Suzhou (1L) Enjoy some free time exploring the city before a visit one of China’s greatest archaeological treasures—the Terracotta Warriors. After enjoy a local lunch at a farmhouse before hopping on an overnight train to Suzhou. Included Activities: Terracotta Warriors Guided Tour Transport: Basic overnight train (beds) (14.00-16.00 hours)
Day 5 Suzhou Visit Suzhou, the "Venice of the East." Explore the Master of the Nets Garden, one of China's most exquisite gardens. Included Activities: Master of the Nets Garden Tour
Day 6 Suzhou/Shanghai Travel by metro and train to Shanghai. After an orientation walk along Shanghai's famous Bund, you are free to explore the delights this modern Chinese city has to offer. Included Activities: Orientation Walk of the Bund Shanghai Acrobatic Performance Transport: Metro (0.50-1.00 hours) Bullet train (0.75-1.00 hours)
Day 7 Shanghai Enjoy free time in this bustling city.
Days 8-9 Shanghai/Osaka Board a flight from Shanghai to Osaka and enjoy a free night exploring the cityscape. Transport: Plane (2.25-3.00 hours)
Day 9 Osaka/Kōyasan (1B, 1D) Journey to Mt Koya, a religious centre founded in 816 by the Buddhist monk Kobo Daishi. The train ride up the mountain is possibly one of the finest rail journeys in Japan. For the final steep ascent, switch to funicular and then hop on a bus to reach the monastery. In the evening, dine on shojin-ryori, typical vegetarian cuisine, and relax in a yukata, or kimono. Included Activities: Overnight in Mount Koya Temple Oku-no-in Cemetery Visit Transport: Train (3.00 hour(s))
Day 10 Kōyasan/Hiroshima (1B) Early morning offers the chance to observe the monks praying. Breathe in some fresh mountain air before a vegetarian breakfast, then start the journey back down the mountain via bus, train and funicular. Later, board a train to Hiroshima, a historically significant city, marked by the explosion of the first atomic bomb in 1945. Included Activities: Hiroshima Park and Peace Memorial Transport: Bullet train (5.00 hour(s))
Day 11 Hiroshima Take a ferry ride over to the sacred island of Miyajima to see the famous floating torii gate. Opt to hike around Mt Misen. Included Activities: Miyajima Island Visit Transport: Hop a ferry to reach the island and journey back in the evening. Ferry
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. Included Activities: Gion Walk Nijo Castle and Gardens Visit Transport: Bullet train (1.50-2.00 hours)
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. Included Activities: Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine Visit
Day 14 Kyoto/Hakone (1D) Travel to Hakone, a town in the hills famous for its onsens, or natural hot springs. Stay in a traditional ryokan, with its own private onsen. In the evening, enjoy the ryokan, savouring a complex meal of traditional Japanese foods, followed by a recommended soak in the onsen. Included Activities: Lake Ashino-ko Boat Ride Traditional Ryokan Stay with Kaiseki Meal Transport: Bullet train (3.00 hour(s)) Local bus (0.50 hour(s))
Day 15 Hakone/Tokyo (1B) Arrive before noon to Tokyo, with time to explore this energetic metropolis. Opt to visit Ueno park and the museums, Akihabara for cutting edge electronics, Harajuku for funky fashions, Ginza for the highest of the high end, walk the grounds of the Imperial Palace East Garden, or just stroll the streets, looking for the traditional life that still lies just under the modern surface. Transport: Bullet train (2.00 hour(s))
Day 16 Tokyo Depart at any time. Additional Notes: We highly recommend booking post-accommodation to fully experience this vibrant city.
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