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Our First Private Tour of Japan

Since A&C Tours Japan was established in June this year, we have received a large number of inquiries about private tours of Japan. Private tours are a great way to enjoy Japan with family or a small group of friends. They also allow you to see Japan at your own pace, and are the best way to ensure that you only visit the places that interest you.

In late September/early October this year we had our first ever private tour. The tour took in not only some of the most famous and popular sites in the Kanto region, but also some lesser known ones. We began by exploring Tokyo, including the fashion center of Harajuku, Meiji Shrine, Yoyogi Park, Shibuya, Shinjuku, and Shinjuku Gyoen Gardens. During our time in Tokyo we also enjoyed a wonderful day trip to Mt. Takao, where we were able to see the first signs of autumn with some beautiful Japanese maple trees just starting to change color.

Our next stop was the international city of Yokohama. Here we enjoyed a lovely stroll through Yamashita Park and had a delicious dinner at the largest Chinatown in Japan. We also took a day trip to the ancient capital of Kamakura, where we visited famous sites such as Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine and the Giant Buddha of Kamakura, as well as lesser known gems such as Hase-dera Temple. We also traveled to beautiful Enoshima Island where we enjoyed a spectacular Mt. Fuji sunset!

Next we traveled to Nagano where we visited "Jigokudani Monkey Park" to see the amazing snow monkeys frolicking in natural hot springs (onsen). That night we stayed in a traditional hot spring inn in the small town of Shibu Onsen. Here we were able to take a trip back in time by wearing traditional summer kimono (yukata) and traditional Japanese footwear (geta), and walking through the narrow streets stopping at various natural hot springs as we went.

On our way back to Tokyo we stopped by the mountain resort town of Karuizawa. Here we enjoyed several hours of shopping at one of Japan's largest outlet shopping malls, the Karuizawa Prince Shopping Plaza.

Our tour ended back in Tokyo where we experienced all the excitement of a Japanese festival at the 2017 Tokorozawa Matsuri! Although this festival is not one of the largest or most famous festivals in Japan, it has everything you would want to see without the extensive travel and crowds. We were able to eat a variety of delicious street foods, and see traditional Japanese dances, floats, and "mikoshi" (portable Shinto shrines).

You can see more videos and photos from this private tour on our new Gallery Page.

Our next tour is our Shades of Autumn Tour from November 21st to December 4th, 2017. Keep an eye out for photos and videos from this tour on our Gallery Page!

We look forward to seeing you on one of our private or small group tours of Japan sometime soon!

A&C Tours Japan

Craig wearing a traditional summer kimono (yukata)

Customers enjoying a stroll through the streets of Shibu Onsen in Nagano


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