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Eternally Sacred Japan & South Korea: Japan Voyage Between Tokyo and Osaka, incl. South Korea

Tokyo - Osaka - Example 11 Day Cruise aboard Heritage Adventurer
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Set sail on this 10-day Eternally Sacred Japan & South Korea expedition cruise from Tokyo to Osaka aboard Heritage Adventurer. Discover Japan's ancient heritage and traditional culture in contrast with the world's most advanced technological civilization. Explore ancient castles, serenely beautiful gardens, and opulent temples and shrines while witnessing some of Japan's stunning natural landscapes. Highlights include the historic castle town of Matsue, the ancient town of Hagi, the sacred Miyajima, and historic Hiroshima. Set foot on Sado Island, widely considered a perfect miniature Japan and a thriving cultural capital filled with performing arts, natural scenery, samurai history, and more.
Hiroshima Peace Memorial or Atomic Bomb DomeNight view of Kobe Port, Japan
Highlights
  • Explore Kanazawa's rich arts scene and Noh theatre
  • Experience the vibrant energy of Kanazawa's open air market
  • Experience the traditional pottery making for which Hagi is known
  • Visit Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park with its eternal Flame of Peace
Places Visited
Activity Level: Variable
Activity options vary depending on destination and operator. Activity level is determined by the range and intensity of activities you choose to participate in. Discuss with your Trip Planner which options are best for you.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Osaka

  • 1 Dinner
Arrive at Honshu’s largest port city Osaka where modern architecture and a vibrant dining scene are nestled alongside the 16th Century shogunate Osaka Castle, and make your way to your hotel where you'll spend the first night of the expedition. This evening meet your fellow voyagers and expedition guides over dinner at the hotel.

Day 2: Osaka | Embark

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before exploring Osaka, opportunities here include visiting Minoh Park and Osaka Castle. With an area of just 9.6 square kilometers (963 hectares), Minoh Park is one of Japan’s smallest National Parks and home to the iconic 33-meter high Minoh Waterfall and diverse wildlife including Japanese Salamander and protected Mino Monkeys. Explore Osaka Castle, one of Japan’s most famous landmarks, take in the views from Osaka Castle Main Tower, and relive dramatic stories of warlords and Osaka’s fascinating history. Board Heritage Adventurer for lunch as your Captain and Expedition Team welcome you aboard and set sail for Miyajima.

Day 3: Takamatsu

Shikoku Island’s Takamatsu has had a long history as a port town earning itself the nickname ‘Gateway to Shikoku’, although more recently locals have been calling it ‘Udon Kingdom’. If you have an interest in plants a visit to Ritsurin Park, considered one of Japan’s finest gardens, is sure to be a highlight. Next, you'll enjoy a visit to Kinashi, one of Japan’s main bonsai production centers, where you'll learn about traditional methods of growing bonsai. For those interested in history and art you may wish to travel to Naoshima Island for a full-day excursion. Shikoku is known for its art and this excursion to Naoshima has you admiring its architecture and art museums, including Chichu Art Museum and Benesse House, featuring work by Japanese and international artists.

Day 4: Hiroshima | Miyajima

Despite its history including being the site of the world’s first atomic bomb attack on the 6 August 1945, Hiroshima is a vibrant and thriving cosmopolitan community. Plan to visit the beautiful Peace Park and Museum, with its somber cenotaph containing names of atomic bomb victims, and the permanently lit ‘Flame of Peace’. After visiting the Peace Park you'll travel to Miyajima Island, considered one of Japan’s most scenic spots, and the location of the Torii Gate and the Daisho-in Buddhist temple. For those after a nature fix, ascend Mount Misen on Miyajima Island by cable car and enjoy a hike, admiring the views below of the Shinto Shrine and Torri Gate.

Day 5: Uwajima

This morning you land on Shikoku Island and the port of Uwajima situated deep inside the sawtoothed coast of Uwajima Bay. The city of Uwajima is emerging as the nation’s largest pearl cultivation center and you'll learn the process of implanting, harvesting, extracting and sorting pearls on a visit to a pearl farm. You'll also see Uwajima Castle which is built on top of the hill with panoramic views over the town and harbour and the Tenshaen Garden, built in the Samurai era. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure.

Day 6: Shimonoseki

After a leisurely morning at sea, return to Japan and Shimonoseki Port perched above the 650-meter-wide Kanmon Straits and tucked away at the western end of Japan’s main island Honshu. Surrounded by water on three sides, Shimonoseki is rightly famous for its seafood and, in addition to being considered the gateway to Kyushu, is also known as ‘Japan’s Pufferfish/Fugu Capital’ – the potentially deadly local delicacy requiring takumi-level preparation by specially trained Fugu chefs. Other highlights include the city’s iconic Kanmon Bridge spanning Honshu and Kyushu Islands, the world-famous Karato Fish Market and the beautiful Akama Shinto Shrine built to honor the drowned child Emperor Antoku. The excursions today include an exploration of Mekari Park with its mural depicting the 1185 Battle of Dan-no-ura, time to explore Kokura Castle and its rich history at the crossroads of Japanese history and discover the beautiful Shiranoe Botanical Garden accompanied by its resident gardeners. There is also time to explore the world-famous Karato Fish Market adjacent to where Heritage Adventurer is docked and visit the Akama Shinto Shrine on the shores of the Kanon Strait.

Day 7: Hagi

Hagi was a minor fishing port until Mori Terumoto fortified it in 1604 and it was Mori Samurai that helped spark off the anti-Tokugawa revolt in the mid-19th century. Today it is better known for its traditional pottery making. This morning you'll explore the Teramachi District with its temples and shrines, the Jokamachi District, where you find the old Samurai houses, and also take time to explore Hagi Castle, Shizuki Park, and Tokoji Temple. This afternoon travel to the outskirts of the city and the Yoshika Taibi Memorial Museum which is dedicated to a large collection of Hagiyaki pottery which was highly prized in the Edo period as wares for tea ceremonies. Alternatively, discover the natural wonders of the 300 million-year-old limestone Akiyoshido Cave.

Day 8: Ulsan, South Korea

Today you cross the Sea of Japan to Ulsan in South Korea where you visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Gyeongju. The capital of the Silla Dynasty and dating back to the first millennium, Gyeongju is known as ’the museum without walls’ and is full of ancient Korean history and Buddhist culture. Enjoy strolling through hundreds of excavated monuments, temples, tombs, and pagodas, and experience Korean delicacies, and cultural performances, and visit the National Museum with its gold jewelry, metal weapons, and distinctive pottery. Today provides a perfect taste of the best South Korea has to offer.

Day 9: Matsue

This morning you arrive at the port of Sakaiminato, the entry point to Matsue, known as ‘the town of water’ due to being situated between Lake Shinji and Lake Nakaumi. The plan is to visit Matsue Castle, a national treasure and one of Japan’s few largely intact 17th-century castles. Other options today may include exploring Daisen-Oki National Park, steeped in beauty and history it’s also the home of rare flora and fauna including the giant salamander, visiting the picturesque Yuushien Garden (April departure coincides with the iconic annual Yuushien Peony Festival where the plan to experience the spectacle of more than 30,000 of the colorful blooms floating on serene ponds and lining the traditional garden’s paths in a floral carpet), the Adachi Museum of Art, learning about the art of Japanese paper making at the Yakumo-mura village, or perhaps you may wish to spend some time exploring the picturesque streets and local canals.

Day 10: Kanazawa

Options today include exploring the historic mountain settlement and UNESCO World Heritage Site of Shirakawa-go, high in the remote mountains of the Shogawa River Valley in Hakusan National Park. Take in the sights on mountain walks and experience the unique cultural traditions including the region’s iconic Gassho-zukuri farmhouses, some of which are more than 250 years old, designed to withstand the heavy snow in winter and provide a large attic space for cultivating silkworms. Alternatively, explore the rich art center of Kanazawa discovering some of the unique styles of Japanese art. Kanazawa is rightly famous for its Kutani-style pottery, exquisite lacquerware, gold-leaf workmanship, hand-painted silk, and classical Noh dance-drama performed since the 14th Century. Wander winding cobblestone streets, elegant restaurants, and craft galleries, and visit the impressive Edo-period Kenrokuen Garden, one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan, and explore the Omicho Market boasting everything from flowers to crafts and food.

Day 11: Kanazawa/Tokyo | Disembark

After breakfast and final farewells board a Shinkansen ‘bullet train’ to Tokyo Station and continue your travels. To allow time for disembarkation procedures and travel, it is not recommended to book flights departing before 1500 hours.

Ship/Hotel

Heritage Adventurer

Dining area
Heritage Adventurer Restaurant

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$8,395 2-3 travelers
Superior Triple
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Superior Triple
Superior Triple Cabins on Deck 5 are a spacious 22m2 and feature large panoramic windows, two single beds, and one Pullman bed which folds down from the wall, comfortable lounge, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Main deck
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Main Deck Triple
Main Deck Triple Cabins on Deck 3 is a spacious 22m2 and feature two porthole windows, two single beds, and one Pullman bed which folds down from the wall, comfortable lounge, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Deck 4 Superior
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Deck 4 Superior
Superior Cabins on Deck 4 are a spacious 22m2 and feature large panoramic windows, king or two single beds, comfortable lounge, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Deck 5 Superior
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Deck 5 Superior
Superior Cabins on Deck 5 are a spacious 22m2 and feature large panoramic windows, king or two single beds, comfortable lounge, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Main deck
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Main Deck Single
Main Deck Single Cabins on Deck 3 is a spacious 22m2 and feature two porthole windows, king bed, comfortable lounge, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Heritage Adventurer - Superior Single
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Superior Single
Superior Single Cabins on Deck 5 are a spacious 22m2 and feature large panoramic windows, king bed, comfortable lounge, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Worseley Suite
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Worsley Suite
Located on Deck 6, Worsley Suites are a spacious 22m2 and feature large panoramic windows, king or two single beds, comfortable chaise-style lounge suite, writing desk, private en-suite with shower, ample storage, and a flat-screen entertainment system.
Heritage Suite
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Heritage Suite
Located on Deck 6, Heritage Suites are an expansive 44m2 and feature large double panoramic windows, king bed, large living area with a sofa, coffee table, and chairs, and grand marble bathroom with a double basin, bathtub, and shower, large writing desk, floor to ceiling cabinetry for storage and a flat-screen entertainment system.

Notes

- Single clients are matched with a sharer of the same sex in a twin-share cabin. Payment of a single supplement guarantees a single cabin. The single supplement is 1.8 times the price of the voyage with the exception of the suites which are double the single rate.
-Emergency medical evacuation coverage for a minimum of US$100,000 per person required. Contact us for details on arranging travel insurance.

TECHNICAL SPECS
Year Built: 1991
Shipyard: Rauma, Finland
Classification: Lloyds 1AS, GL E4
Accommodation: 140 guests
Length: 124 metres
Beam: 18 metres
Draft: 4.97 metres
Gross Tonnage : 8,378gt
Engines: 3,940 horsepower (x2)
Maximum Speed: 15 knots
Cruising Speed: 12 knots
Range: 8,600 nautical miles
Zodiacs: 14
Included
  • 9 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 9 Dinners
  • 10 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • House beer, wine and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Landing fees
  • All expedition shore excursions
  • Programme of lectures by noted naturalists
  • Hotel accommodations
  • Bullet train transfer and pre/post cruise transfers
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Required Visas if applicable
  • Laundry 
  • Mandatory medical evacuation insurance

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

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