Walk Japan announces new tours
Leading tour operator Walk Japan is delighted to introduce two new walking tours, the Tokaido Trail and the Tohoku Hot Spring Snow Tour, to its stable, offering travellers even more original and intriguing ways to discover the ancient landscapes and beauty of Japan.
Walk Japan is the pioneering operator of seasonal walking tours across Japan, specialising in expertly led small group tours that traverse all four main islands, Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu, and visit many others of the archipelago. Authentic and cultural, these tours are for travellers who wish to gain an understanding of Japanese society, customs, history and food while walking at an enjoyable pace. Walk Japan takes visitors into the real Japan on journeys that intrigue geographically, culturally, traditionally and contemporarily.
The Tokaido Trail is an 8-day, 7-night tour starting in Tokyo and finishing in Kyoto, leisurely walking along the greatest of Japan’s ancient highways along the Pacific Ocean coast. It is a tour through the heartland of Japan between three of its greatest cities; Tokyo, Nagoya and Kyoto. It is also a journey through the very core of Japan’s history, culture and society to the present day. The Tokaido Trail reveals the best remaining sections of the Tokaido highway, taking travellers through towns and along paths seemingly forgotten since the days when the it was the major transport artery of the nation. The group explores on foot and also on Japan’s excellent public transport system following travellers of old, including the great emperors and powerful shoguns who shaped Japan; samurai warriors marching to battle; and the everyday folk who were given permission to leave their villages for perhaps only once in their lives.
From JPY360,000 (JPY = Japanese Yen) per person (AUD$4200).
Dates: February 18-25, 2018.
The Tohoku Hot Spring Snow Tour offers a 9-day, 8-night snowshoe expedition through the winter landscape of Tohoku in north Honshu. This is a region famed for its beautiful and rugged landscapes, delicious rice dishes, copious amounts of snow, culture, onsen hot springs, and revered Japanese poet Matsuo Basho, whose most famous poetic journey was through the region. Tohoku is dominated by towering mountains, remote valleys, vast forests and rugged coasts. Squeezed in between are communities where inhabitants have toiled heroically for generations to live in harmony with their environment; no more so than when snow falls and envelopes the landscape. Travellers are warmly welcomed into local communities, delightful farming hamlets and hot spring villages and towns, and gain insights into their lives, which is, in large part, still based on old traditions. The deep snows of winter pair delightfully with the warm and invigorating onsen hot springs, which are made ample use of throughout the tour. Here with snowshoes on our feet, the group ventures out over countryside that glistens in the winter sun, or otherwise becomes an other-worldly monochrome under snow-laden clouds. A long descent through the incredible juhyo snow monsters awaits as well as a steep climb without snowshoes on to one of Tohoku’s greatest treasures, Yamadera temple. Evening meals draw on the wide range of fresh produce from the seas, fields, rivers and mountains of Tohoku.
From JPY 480,000 (JPY = Japanese Yen) per person (AUD$5599).
Dates: February 24 – March 4, 2018.
Each night, accommodation is often in charming Japanese traditional inns, or ryokans, dotted across the countryside. Guests are invited to soak in the famous onsen hot spring baths and enjoy outstanding and distinct regional cuisine. Occasionally, such as in the larger cities, travellers stay in centrally located, carefully selected hotels. Tours run at a maximum of 12 people, plus the tour leader, ensuring all walkers receive the highest levels of care and attention.
Led by enthusiastic and informed guides, the walking tours vary not only in location and theme, but also in levels of activity; beginning with the easiest at Level 1 (walkers must be able to handle their own luggage, climb a few flights of stairs and walk less than 5km a day) to the most challenging Level 6 (in which there could be up to eight hours of activity per day over varied, mountainous terrain).
For more information, visit walkjapan.com