Japan - Mount Fuji and Beyond
- Highlights of the Land of the Rising Sun
- Dawn at the summit of Mount Fuji
- Kyoto`s Imperial Palace and geisha district
- Traditional ryokan accommodation
- An insight into Japanese culture
Japan is a land of contrasts - from the magnificent natural wonder of Mt Fuji to the dynamic modernism of Tokyo. Undiscovered by Europeans until the 16th century, it remains one of the most alluring countries in the far east. Starting out in Kyoto, our programme includes a visit to the World Heritage Sanjusangendo temple and a walk through the famous geisha district of Gion for an evening of traditional Japanese entertainment. Then, after a refreshing day of sawanobori, the Japanese version of ghyll-scrambling, we will travel by express train to Osaka where we visit the famous 8 story castle and take a beginner's lesson in the traditional non-aggressive martial art of akido. We visit Takayama with its beautifully preserved ancient buildings and stay in a traditional Ryokan. Here we also visit the Hida Folk Village, the morning market on the banks of the Miyagawa River, and the Ankokjui Temple. Transferring to the Japanese Alps, we will hike to the top of Nishihodoppyo Peak (2701m) for some spectacular mountain views, before continuing our journey to the lakeside resort town of Kawaguchiko. Here we will have plenty of opportunity to enjoy views of majestic Mount Fuji (3776m) reflected in the lakes. Finally, our ascent over 2 days of Japan's highest peak is a great way to end this diverse and culturally fascinating holiday.
Is this holiday for you?
This holiday is a mixture of touring and walking, encompassing a wide variety of cultural experiences. There are five days of walking within the itinerary. Generally, the underfoot conditions during the walks are relatively easy, mostly following good paths throughout. The ridge walk to the summit of Nishihodaka is a little exposed in places and there are some sections of loose trail. Some rock scrambling is necessary at the summit. There are also some sections of moderately steep and loose trail during the ascent of Mount Fuji although these are short-lived and the trail is very well maintained and protected with chains. Also, during the visit to the Shiga Mountains there is the option to take part in ghyll scrambling, including jumping into deep pools. During this activity the accent is on having fun rather than technical climbing, and instruction and all safety equipment is provided. You will need to ensure you are physically prepared for the walking element of the trip and for the ascent of Mount Fuji. You should be comfortable with walking uphill for 5 or 6 hours in a day (with several rests).