On this personalized Japan vacation, discover the verdant landscapes and historic landmarks of Kyushu, the westernmost island in the country. Uncover the eclectic trading town of Fukuoka and in Nagasaki, explore the Peace Park and the Atomic Bomb Museum. In Kumamoto, visit landmarks such as the 16th century Kumamoto Castle and sample the culinary gems of Josaien with your very own guide. In Kagoshima, take a personalized tour of the seaside city, including its spectacular gardens and the Sakurajima volcano! Next, experience a coastal haven on the island of Yakushima, where you can enjoy a customized forest hike under the shade of ancient trees. Finally, visit eclectic Osaka with its majestic temples and castle, and vibrant nightlife and food.
Do you want to explore historic Kyushu at your own pace? Get in touch with us and customize this itinerary to suit your style and preferences.
Fukuoka is a strategic harbor city anchored on Kyushu island in southern Japan. Historically, part of marine trade routes since the 13th century, discover a wealthy, cosmopolitan metropolis.
Highlights of Fukuoka Tour Explore the landmarks of Fukuoka on this tour. Visit the famous eighth century Shinto shrine of Kushida-jinja that hosts the annual Yamakasa Festival. Stroll around the grounds admiring the beautiful floats used in the festival, the biggest Otafuku mask in Japan, and a well to pray for eternal youth. Try lifting the Trial Stone and learn about the beliefs behind it. Continue on to the beautiful green lung – Ohori Park, and stroll on the pathway around the central pond. View the ruins of the Fukuoka Castle and the lovely cherry blossoms in bloom during spring. If you wish, relish a local delicacy – the Hakata Ramen – for lunch. (Half Day; Times: 0900/1300 hrs; This activity includes public transport – local trains and buses. You will be picked up and dropped off at the hotel.)
Close to mainland Asia, foreign traders, merchants, and missionaries have thronged to Nagasaki since the 16th century. The only trading port during national isolation, the city has played a significant role in modernizing Japan.
Nagasaki: A Colorful Fusion of Civilizations Discover the unique ambience of this historic town that straddles both the orient and the occident with ease. As the only Japanese town that could interact with foreign merchants during the nation’s era of seclusion, it is home to old British mansions, churches and Chinese shrines. Visit the charming Glover Hill open-air museum, showcasing the residences of European merchants built during the second half of the 19th century. Enjoy panoramic views of the city and harbor stretched out below. Stop by the Chinese shrine of Koshi-byo dedicated to Confucius, built in the 1890s. Walkover to the city’s bustling Chinatown and sample the delicious steamed dumplings at the many street stalls. Your afternoon is dedicated to the Nagasaki Peace Park that commemorates the atomic bombing of Nagasaki in August, 1945. Discover how the city has recovered since that time, and visit the monuments and memorials leading up to the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum and the Hypocenter Park. (Full Day; Time of Day: Morning; Duration: 8 hrs; Private Activity & Public Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate).
Kumamoto, nicknamed “fire country” for its proximity to the active volcano Mount Aso, invites you to explore its varied attractions. Many Japanese gardens create green oases across the city with Suizenji Joju-en, which adjoins the Suizenji Temple, being the most prominent.
Kumamoto’s Best Begin your exploration of Kumamoto at Suizenji Garden that dates back to the 17th century. Stroll down the circular path with your guide to enjoy the beauty of this sprawling Japanese garden that was set up by the Hosokawa family. Delight in looking at miniature reproductions of the 53 post stations of the historically relevant Tokaido road, as well as Mount Fuji at this verdant park. Head over to the majestic 16th century Kumamoto Castle with its vast grounds and cluster of buildings. Despite being damaged by the massive earthquake of 2016, you can relish the complete castle experience at this spectacular edifice. Walk over to Josaien located next door to browse through a range of crafts and gastronomic delicacies. Browse through exhibits detailing the rich historical and cultural heritage of Kumamoto, before making your way back to the hotel. (Half Day; Time of Day: 0900 or 1400; Duration: 4 hrs; Private Activity; Public Transport; Fitness Level: Easy)
Kagoshima, with its own unique Japanese dialect, is set by the sea on the island of Kyushu. Home to hundreds of onsens or mineral springs, Kagoshima is dotted with public bathhouses that invite you to enjoy the hot springs.
Kagoshima Uncovered Explore the many offerings of the seaside city of Kagoshima! Start your day off with a visit to Sengan’en Garden, a Japanese-style landscape garden that will regale you with spectacular views of Sakurajima Island and Kagoshima Bay along the coast. Located north of downtown Kagoshima, this garden was built in 1658, during the Edo Period, by one of the most influential feudal clans of the time, the powerful Shimazu Clan. Explore the Islo Residence, located at the center of the garden, which became where the Shimazu Clan lived after the end of the feudal age. Admire the historical interiors of the rooms, which have been preserved in the same way they were used back in the 19th century. Wind up your walk around the garden with a sumptuous full-course meal of Satsuma (the former name of Kagoshima) specialties at the garden’s restaurant. After lunch, take the ferry to the magnificent Sakurajima Island, where you’ll find one of Japan’s most active volcanoes as well as the symbol of Kagoshima. You’ll notice that the volcano is always emanating smoke, and small-scale eruptions take place a few times a day. While it is forbidden to approach the crater, enjoy the thrilling experience of being so close to the majestic volcano. (Full day, Time of Day: Morning: 0930 hrs, Duration: 8 hrs; Private Activity; Fitness Level: All Levels Accepted; Shared Transfers)
Yakushima, located off the coast of Kagoshima, is a slice of tropical heaven with its ancient cedar trees, some of which date back thousands of years. The ethereal ambiance of this natural UNESCO World heritage site has inspired plenty of animators, writers, and filmmakers who have featured it in their works.
Yakishima Forest Trails Embark on a picturesque hike under the canopies of Yakushima’s ancient trees. You will be picked up from your hotel by a local guide who will accompany you on a drive to the trailhead. Comfortable in a raised seat, you can enjoy a spectacular view of the passing scenery from the van. The Konohana hiking route you will be following is a great way to get to know the island; you will hike through the lush forest, admiring the swing bridges and the island’s spectacular rivers and falls. Take your time to click some photos along the hike, and go on to savor lunch that will be provided. (Half Day, Time of Day: Morning at 0900 hrs, Duration: 4-6 hrs; Private Activity; Lunchbox included; Fitness Level: Moderate to Excellent, as this hike consists of some uneven paths and old wooden ladders. As the hike takes place in all weather conditions, you are advised to bring waterproof walking shoes and rain gear during the rainy season, warm layers in the winter, and a hat and sunscreen during the summer. Please note that transport to trailhead is provided by way of a van with raised seating, and a chauffeur and guide with hotel pick-up and drop-off.)
Osaka is third largest city of Japan and has been the home of traders and merchants. It is also well-known for Japan’s oldest temple, the Shinto Sumiyoshi-taisha, and the majestic 16th century Osaka Castle.
Shared Transfer from Osaka Hotel to Kansai Airport
Price & Inclusions
Option 1 From $ 5,890 /person
Option 2 From $ 6,890 /person
Prices are in USD and exclude international flights. This trip price is based on low season rates for accommodation and other applicable services, and may change depending on availability, currency fluctuations and number of people traveling together. For high season prices, please contact us with your exact travel dates and preferences.
Accommodation and meals, as specified in the itinerary
Activities and excursions, as specified in the itinerary
Transportation services, as specified in the itinerary
Your Trip Coordinator: a 24/7 point of contact supporting you during your trip
Carbon emissions offsetting for your trip
Entrance fees and meals, unless mentioned in the itinerary description