Walking and culture

Imperial Pilgrimage Route

Type: Walking and culture | Mountain hiking | Level: moderate

This was the first tour we ran in 2003, and has remained a very popular itinerary.

Although less dramatic than the Japan Alps, the forested mountains of the Kii Peninsula, south of Nara, have for centuries been regarded as sacred. We’ll hike a pilgrimage route to Kumano Sanzan shrines as well as doing other walks, stay at wonderful onsen, enjoy delicious food, and explore Yoshino, Asuka, Nara, and Kyoto.

Duration: 13 or more nights

Mountains of Central Japan

Type: Walking and culture | Mountain hiking | Level: vigorous

One of our original tours, one we’ve been running since 2014.

Starting in Tokyo, the tour route is to the North Japan Alps and Hida Mountains to Shirakawago where we stay in a mountain village farmhouse, then on to Kanazawa. One of our most popular itineraries, this trip will appeal to those who enjoy mountain hiking. In addition to great hikes, there is plenty of time to learn about and experience many aspects of Japanese culture along the way.

Duration: 8 - 12 Nights

Walks in the Heart of Japan (2)

Type: Walking and culture | Level: vigorous

A guided walking tour including a wonderful, quite challenging climb up the Osugidani valley to the Odaigahara Plateau, described by LP as a ‘stunning hike’. We then visit some of the culturally and historically most important sites in Japan: Yoshinoyama, Asuka, and Nara and hike the Yamanobe no Michi connecting Miwa Jinja Shrine and Isonokami Jingu Shrine.

It was here that early Japanese culture flourished under a succession of emperors and empresses as their centres of power moved from Fujiwarakyo (today known as Asuka), to Heijoykyo (today known as Nara), and then to Heiankyo (Kyoto).

Duration: 7 Nights or less

Walks in the Heart of Japan (1)

Type: Walking and culture | Level: easy

A guided walking tour visiting some of the culturally and historically most important sites in Japan: Mount Koya, Yoshinoyama, Asuka, and Nara. Hike the Yamanobe no Michi connecting Miwa Jinja Shrine and Isonokami Jingu Shrine. It was in this area that the state of Yamato was established and culture flourished under a succession of emperors and empresses as their palaces and the centres of power moved from Fujiwarakyo (Asuka), to Heijoykyo (Nara), and then to Heiankyo (Kyoto).

Duration: 7 Nights or less

The Deep North

Type: Walking and culture | Mountain hiking | Level: moderate

Exploring of the beautiful far north of the main island Honshu. Hiking in forests and on upland marshes, with stays in traditional inns, and little-known natural hot springs. Delicious food!

Duration: 7 Nights or less