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4.5 star rating: Recommended 2 Reviews

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  • Location: Tokyo, Japan
  • Duration:  2 days, 1 night
Venture by bullet train from Tokyo to the historical sites of Nara, and enjoy an overnight stay in Kyoto – the heart of Japanese culture! On this two-day trip, visit top attractions including five UNESCO World Heritage Sites – from Nara’s Todaiji Temple and Kasuga Shrine to Kyoto’s Golden Pavilion Temple, Nijo Castle and Kiyomizu Temple. Enjoy a morning and afternoon sightseeing tour of Kyoto with a professional guide, who will take you to the Imperial Palace and Heian Shrine, including daily lunch and a stop at the Deer Park.

Highlights

  • Two-day trip to Kyoto and Nara by rail from Tokyo
  • View the stunning, snow-capped peak of Mt Fuji from the Shinkansen bullet train
  • Take a sightseeing tour of Nara, including UNESCO World Heritage-listed Todaiji Temple and Kasuga Shrine, with a knowledgeable local guide
  • Visit the Golden Pavilion Temple and Nijo Castle, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, plus the Imperial Palace on a morning sightseeing tour of Kyoto
  • Admire 1,001 statues at Sanjusangendo Hall, and see Heian Shrine and Kiyomizu Temple on an afternoon tour
  • Keep an eye out for free-roaming deer at the Deer Park
  • Enjoy lunch at the New Miyako Hotel and the Kyoto Handicraft Center (KHC)

Why Our Insiders Chose This Tour

  • High-tech meets ancient tradition as you zip about via bullet train to major landmarks of historic Japan. Get up close and personal with the friendly deer at Nara Park.

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

2-Day Kyoto and Nara Rail Tour by Bullet Train from Tokyo

Kinkakuji in Kyoto

Your overnight trip to Kyoto by way of Nara includes pickup from selected Tokyo hotels, your choice of first-class or tourist-class accommodation in Kyoto, and all entrance fees. Your guide will lead you through magnificent temples and shrines in both cities, offering expert commentary on Japanese culture along the way!

Itinerary

Day 1: Tokyo – Nara – Kyoto (L):
After hotel pickup around 9am, transfer to Tokyo Station and board a Shinkansen train with your guide and tour group, headed for the classical city of Kyoto. As you zoom by bullet train to your destination, take in the spectacular views (weather permitting) of impressive Mt Fuji, Japan’s highest mountain, which hovers 12,389 feet (3,776.24 meters) above sea level.

Upon arrival in Kyoto, you’ll have lunch at the New Miyako Hotel, located in front of the bullet train stop at Kyoto Station. After your meal, travel by coach to Nara – Japan’s first permanent capital city, established in 710 AD – located in the Kansai region about an hour from Kyoto. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided city tour of Nara’s historical treasures, including some of Japan's oldest Buddhist monuments and UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

First, visit the 8th-century Todaiji Temple, considered one of the country’s most historically significant temples, and admire Japan's largest Buddha image – an enormous bronze statue – housed in the Daibutsuden (Great Buddha Hall). Next, visit the colorful Kasuga Shrine with its 3,000 antique stone and bronze lanterns.

Before returning to Kyoto by coach, your guide will take you to the Deer Park, where you can observe more than 1,000 tame deer that freely roam over its 1,250 verdant acres (505 hectares).

Overnight: Kyoto Hotel Okura or Kyoto Monterey Hotel (first class); New Miyako Hotel or Rihga Royal Hotel (tourist class) in Kyoto

Day 2: Kyoto – Tokyo (L)
Embark on a morning sightseeing tour around Kyoto, an ancient capital and home to more than 2,000 gorgeous temples, shrines and gardens. Visit Kyoto Imperial Palace, where Japan’s emperors once resided, and two UNESCO World Heritage Sites – the gold-plated Golden Pavilion Temple (Kinkaku-ji Temple) and Nijo Castle, noted for its gorgeous interior and ‘nightingale’ floors, which were designed to squeak in order to warn the castle’s Tokugawa shoguns of intruders.

After lunch at a restaurant at Kyoto Handicraft Center, where you’ll find many traditional Japanese and Kyoto-made specialty items, enjoy an afternoon sightseeing tour of the city. Starting at Sanjusangendo Hall (also called Sanjusangendo Temple), Japan's longest wooden structure, admire the 1,001 images of Senju Kannon – the goddess of mercy.

Next, take in the glorious vermilion-hued Heian Shrine (a renowned Shinto shrine) followed by a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Kiyomizu Temple to enjoy its wooden veranda and classical Japanese gardens.

In the evening, board the Shinkansen bullet train back to Tokyo at approximately 6:40pm, arriving at Tokyo Station around 9pm.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2014

Wonderful tour! Our guides were great. They helped to the bullet train and all along the way. The tours in Kyoto were very fun and we saw a lot of sights in a day and a half. Would definitely do again. Our hotel was very nice too!

4 star rating: Recommended November 2013

Great tour which in effect was three mini tours bolted together - Nara afternoon tour, Kyoto morning tour and Kyoto afternoon tour. The transfer to Tokyo station for the Shinkansen was great and we were taken to the train and met immediately upon arrival. From there it was a short walk across the road to lunch before starting the tour.

Nara was great and the guide was both humorous and informative. The sights were saw were impressive and I liked the way we were given a leaflet at each venue giving some details and history of the locations.

The day two sights turned the wow factor up to 11. There was an element of feeling a bit rushed, but I suppose trying to see the most important sights of such a historical city in a day is always going to mean keeping moving. However, both the am and pm guides were very good and I left with a good understanding of what I was seeing, and cleverly, a desire to go back and see more!

My only real negative was that breakfast was not included in the overnight hotel. It was detailed on the information, but for the cost of the trip, and the requirement to be ready to be picked up quite early, this seemed like a mean omission.

Overall, a great, well organised trip, with excellent transport, guides and amazing sights. Thanks

From USD $ 642.10

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