Journey through Japan and South Korea

Tokyo, Hakone, Kyoto, Osaka, Seoul & Busan
15 nights private tour from $16,000 per person

Dive straight into the buzz and throng of life in Japan and South Korea with this immersive trip. Both are bursting with unique cultural experiences, here we combine their biggest draws, while uncovering a myriad of authentic experiences as you go, led by your taste buds and hunger for culture. We’ve packed this trip full of immersive tours that showcase these destinations in all their glory. A perfect combination for travelers wanting to explore these exciting and unique countries together.

Journey through Japan and South Korea
At a glance
  • Take fun and vibrant tours in Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto, cities known for their love of eating, delicious street food, Buddhist temples and magical gardens.

  • Dive into the buzz of Seoul and Busan with immersive tours, unlocking fascinating insights into this country's past and vibrant future, visiting many key attractions.

  • Indulge in the ultimate food scene of Japan and South Korea, be stunned by the breathtaking scenery, historical landmarks and unique landscapes.

  • Staying in luxury hotels in prime locations throughout the itinerary, including an upscale ryokan inn with onsen in Hakone.

Journey highlights
  • Take fun and vibrant tours in Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto, cities known for their love of eating, delicious street food, Buddhist temples and magical gardens.

  • Dive into the buzz of Seoul and Busan with immersive tours, unlocking fascinating insights into this country's past and vibrant future, visiting many key attractions.

  • Indulge in the ultimate food scene of Japan and South Korea, be stunned by the breathtaking scenery, historical landmarks and unique landscapes.

  • Staying in luxury hotels in prime locations throughout the itinerary, including an upscale ryokan inn with onsen in Hakone.

Our tailor made journeys include:
  • Your dedicated Travel Consultant who will take care of arrangements
  • Private international airport transfers in destination
  • Your own private, English-speaking local guides
  • Unique experiences, hand-picked by our Journeys team
  • Entrance to must-see local sites
  • Dedicated 24/7 team providing in-country support and guidance
  • Complimentary access to My Scott Dunn – industry-leading travel app providing pre-departure information and in-journey support

When to visit

  • J
  • F
  • M
  • A
  • M
  • J
  • J
  • A
  • S
  • O
  • N
  • D
Best time to visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit

Typically, spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) are the best times to go to Japan and South Korea, since this is when the two countries naturally breathtaking scenery comes alive. Spring and autumn are the slightly cooler seasons with less chance of rainfall compared to that of the wet and hot summer months and colder winter months.

 

Itinerary

Day 1-4

Tokyo, Japan

Begin your exploration of fascinating Japan in the exciting capital, Tokyo. Settle into your hotel after your journey and enjoy an evening to relax before your explorations of this wonderful city.

 

On your second day spend the day as you wish, or take a self-guided tour through the city, visiting the Tsukiji Outer Market, Zojoji Temple, Tokyo Tower and the Nijubashi Bridge. In the evening you will discover the hidden gems of the city on a private food tour. Lose yourself in Tokyo's diverse street food scene, offering a taste of the city's rich culinary tapestry. You will meet your private food-loving guide at the train station and set off into the streets for a Japanese food crawl. Starting with a visit to an izakaya for a distinctly Japanese experience, a small and cozy space offering an array of delicious food and drinks. Enjoy traditional izakaya favorites such as yakitori chicken skewers, fresh tuna sashimi, or cold edamame soy beans, served like tapas. Sample the dishes and wash them down with a cold beer alongside the locals. Through the evening you will stop at three venues, each with a distinctive style.

 

The following day you can embark on a self-guided tour exploring Tokyo. Visit the electronics district of Akihabara or discover Tokyo’s world-class museums and art galleries. Or choose to take an excursion to Kamakura, a lovely seaside town home to many ancient shrines, temples, and other structures like the Daibutsu, a giant bronze Buddha that stands 13 meters tall.

Accommodation: Peninsula Tokyo ( 3 nights )
Day 4-7

Kyoto, Kyoto & Around, Japan

Take one last soak in the onsen before you take the train to Japan’s cultural center, Kyoto, with hundreds of Shinto and Buddhist shrines and temples to explore, a beautiful Geisha district and a rich history. Spend the remainder of your day at leisure. 

 

As there is so much to do and see in Kyoto, the following day we have included a full-day self-guided tour of the city so that you get the most out of your time here. Kyoto is also famed for its foodie scene and culture and we have included a visit to the buzzing Nishiki Market for you, full interesting market stalls. Visit the Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Yasaka Shrine and Gion District.

In the evening you will meet your guide for a glimpse into the secret life of a geisha, where you will take part in a traditional tea ceremony where you’ll enjoy traditional dance, green tea and Japanese cake served by the geisha or her maiko. While they will not speak any English, your guide will be on hand to translate and this a fascinating opportunity to step into an ancient world of Japanese traditions shrouded in mystery. Enjoy the surroundings of a traditional wooden townhouse in downtown Kyoto, making for a truly unique and memorable gourmet experience. After this lovely experience, return to your hotel for some rest and relaxation. 

 

The following day to chose to explore the rest of Kyoto as you choose. Take a self-guided tour through the former imperial capital and visit some of Kyoto’s World Heritage Sites utilizing Kyoto’s comprehensive bus and subway systems. Take a visit to a visit to Nijo Castle, Kinkaku-ji Temple, Ryoan-ji Temple and in the afternoon, visit Kiyomizu-dera or ‘pure water temple’, followed by a stroll through the atmospheric Higashiyama district.

Accommodation: HOTEL THE MITSUI ( 3 nights )
Day 7-8

Osaka, Japan

Your final destination in Japan is Osaka, the food capital of Japan, affectionately known as ‘the nation’s kitchen.’ The city has a huge entertainment district, which lights up at night with neon-lit music and karaoke venues, bars, and restaurants, but the star of the show is the highly revered cuisine. Your last night provides this opportunity, with a guided evening tour in vibrant Dontonbori, the focus of Osaka’s street food culture. A pedestrian-only restaurant street, it is famous for the vast range of food available and is considered Japan’s ultimate foodie paradise. During the evening, you will explore the colorful shops and bars, trying local specialities, including the famous takoyaki (fried octopus balls), okonomiyaki (savory pancakes) and kushikatsu (skewered meat and vegetables). From hole in the wall stands to streetside ramen bars, your guide will direct you to the best eateries for indulging in Osaka’s culinary delights.

Accommodation: W Osaka ( 1 night )
Day 8-11

Seoul, South Korea

Depart Japan ready to start your adventure in South Korea, in the buzzing capital city of Seoul. Once you land, you will be met and transferred to your hotel for the next three nights. Located in the heart of the city, you’re just moments from Seoul’s main attractions, traditional cafés, and best restaurants. We’ve handpicked some of our favorite experiences to inject your stay with endless fun and fascinating insights at every turn. Explore the city’s dynamic neighborhoods with our expert guide, who will unlock a hidden side to some of the most famous sights with captivating secrets and stories. 

 

Your guide will meet you at the hotel to take you on a tour of Seoul, starting at the Mangwon Market, a traditional market where you can buy fresh produce and devour delicious street food, including options from sublime fried chicken food stalls. It’s all about the food in Seoul and this experience will bring the flavor and variety of food alive while your guide helps you navigate the bustling stalls. Try as many of the local dishes as you can and be ready to be blown away by the taste sensation that Korea is famous for. Next, visit a Bukchon Hanok village, famous for its traditional Korean houses, known as hanoks, giving you a glimpse into the country's rich cultural past and enjoy a tea drinking experience in one of the homes. 

 

The following day will start off with a visit to the National Museum of Korea, boasting displays of over 300,000 artifacts, making sure not to miss the Goryeo blue porcelain and paintings from the Joseon Dynasty. The central stairway in the museum is an amazing spot where you can take great view the N Seoul Tower. The museum also offers trails with ponds and a traditional pavilion made of wood to take a walk. For an exciting end to today's tour head to SEOUL SKY, the nation's tallest and the world's fifth tallest building. The observatory offers a panoramic view of the entire capital city, beautiful both day and night. Enjoy a final evening in Seoul before you transfer to Busan the following day.

Accommodation: Conrad Seoul ( 3 nights )
Day 11-13

Busan, South Korea

The next stop on your itinerary is the bustling ‘city on the beach’, Busan. Take a seamless trip on the KTX train from Seoul for your transfer to Busan, where you will be met and transferred to Signiel Busan. This chic beachfront hotel boasts a rooftop pool and stunning harbor and sea views. Enjoy the rest of the day at to spend at your leisure. Relax and unwind in the hotel or head out to soak up the atmosphere of Busan and find a local spot to enjoy a meal before your city tour the following day. 

 

The following day you will get to explore the wonderful Gamcheon cultural village on a guided tour. A complex of colorful houses that are built in a staircase fashion on the foothills of the coastal mountains. Formerly the ‘slums’ of Busan, today the area is a myriad of thriving streets with fascinating art galleries and studios, cafés and restaurants, with the exteriors vibrantly decorated with murals and sculptures created by the residents. Proceed to the Jagalchi Fish Market, Korea’s largest seafood market, for some well-earned lunch. Brimming with fresh fish from the morning catch and teaming with restaurants and fish stalls, pick your fish from the market and the restaurants will then cook it to perfection. Sit back and enjoy as you soak up the buzzing atmosphere.

 

You are in for a real treat after lunch with a ride on the Songdo Marine Cable Car. The cable car will take you over Songnim and Amnam Park with breathtaking views of the stunning coastline. For more exhilarating views your guide will take you to the Songdo Yonggung Suspension Bridge. The bridge connects the renovated Songdo Cloud Bridge from Songdo Beach to Geobukseon Island to Dongseom Island. Follow in the footsteps of your guide and enjoy the exhilaration of walking above the crystal blue sea while soaking up the beautiful views as you go. Afterwards, head back to Busan for an evening at your leisure, relax at the hotel and pool or head to the city for a delicious evening meal, before your onward journey home the following day. 

Accommodation: Signiel Busan ( 2 nights )
We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you.
Call us on 858 523 9000 to start planning your holiday.

Price Guide: (per person based on double occupancy and includes international flights)

Departing Price from*
  • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
  • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
  • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
Deposit from * Enquire
July 2024 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
August 2024 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
September 2024 $19,400 $4,900 plan your trip
October 2024 $19,400 $4,900 plan your trip
November 2024 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
December 2024 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
January 2025 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
February 2025 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
March 2025 $19,400 $4,900 plan your trip
April 2025 $19,400 $4,900 plan your trip
May 2025 $19,400 $4,900 plan your trip
June 2025 $16,000 $4,000 plan your trip
  • July 2024
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
  • August 2024
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
  • September 2024
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $19,400
    Deposit from*
    $4,900
  • October 2024
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $19,400
    Deposit from*
    $4,900
  • November 2024
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
  • December 2024
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
  • January 2025
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
  • February 2025
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
  • March 2025
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $19,400
    Deposit from*
    $4,900
  • April 2025
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $19,400
    Deposit from*
    $4,900
  • May 2025
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $19,400
    Deposit from*
    $4,900
  • June 2025
    Price from *
    • Pricing is a guideline only, is based on two people sharing and excludes special offers.
    • Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year, festivals and other public vacations) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.
    • Solo traveler pricing is available upon request.
    $16,000
    Deposit from*
    $4,000
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When to visit

  • J
  • F
  • M
  • A
  • M
  • J
  • J
  • A
  • S
  • O
  • N
  • D
Best time to visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit

Typically, spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) are the best times to go to Japan and South Korea, since this is when the two countries naturally breathtaking scenery comes alive. Spring and autumn are the slightly cooler seasons with less chance of rainfall compared to that of the wet and hot summer months and colder winter months.

 

Journey through Japan and South Korea
Journey through Japan and South Korea

We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itineraryis a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely personalized to you. Call us on 858 523 9000 to start planning your vacation.

Plan your trip

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