5 MAR (SUN) HONOLULU,
Leave Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. A meal and snack will be served aboard the flight. Free Movies and Drinks.
6 MAR (MON) TSUKUBA,
HOTEL NIKKO TSUKUBA
Arrive at Narita International Airport and after entry formalities, proceed by bus to our hotel in Tsukuba, Japan’s “Science City” filled with relaxing mood with many parks and open spaces. We will stay 2 nights at hotel close to shopping area. Enjoy Holo Holo after hotel check in.
7 MAR (TUE) TSUKUBA / ITAKO,
HOTEL NIKKO TSUKUBA
Head to Itako, known as “Suigo” (the Land of Water) known for its clean water and good quality rice. Our 1st Sake Brewery to visit is “Aiyu Shuzo.” This brewery use “Shinsen” (God’s spring) water and high-quality rice for their Sakes. Their Daiginjo and Junmai-ginjo have received many awards. Learn the process of making Sake and sample their products to find a Sake that suits your taste. Next visit Cyberdyne studio which you can get in touch with the most advanced robotic technologies. We will see a movie on a dynamic 270 degrees seamless screen and exhibits of advanced welfare devices and robots including the “Mighty Ironman” and the “Terminator.” For those who want to, you can experience wearing robotic parts! You will see why Tsukuba is called the “Science City.”
8 MAR (WED) NASU HIGHLAND,
HOTEL EPINARD NASU (ONSEN) ♨
Visit Mito Kairakuen Garden ranked "One of the top three most beautiful landscape gardens in Japan." This will be the best time to visit here to see over 3,000 beautiful Ume Plum Trees should be right season to bloom. Enjoy a leisurely stroll of the garden which boasts a breathtaking view of beautiful forests and lakes with about 100 different varieties of vibrant color Ume blossoms some blooming white, pink and red. Later we will visit interesting Sake brewery "Shimazaki Shuzo" famous for its cave cellar aged Sake. You can actually enter this cave that was originally made for manufacturing the tanks during WWⅡ. Enjoy tasting and shopping of their products not only Sake but Wine, Sake Ice cream, Sake rice cracker, etc. Then go to Resort hotel located in beautiful Nasu Highland which is well-known as the “Royal Resort” because Japanese Royal Family visit here for their summer retreats. Soak and Relax in Onsen Hot Spring Bath and big Open Air Bath with beautiful nature and stream.
9 MAR (THU) LAKE INAWASHIRO,
HOTEL LISTEL INAWASHIRO (ONSEN) ♨
Go to To-no hetsuri, a 656 feet long cliff consists of tower-shaped cliffs that overlooks a river. This National Natural Monument features a unique natural environment that was created by deep cracks along the vertical joints, with many kinds of shapes and sizes rocks some formed around 28 million years ago. And visit Aizu Buke Yashiki Samurai Mansion to see the Aizu area’s rich cultural heritages of the high-class Samurai during Edo period (1603-1868). See the large Samurai residence that has 38 rooms! Also see the remaining old government office, traditional tea house, etc. Aizu is a major Sake producing area which has a long tradition of Sake brewing. We will visit Suehiro Brewery, one of the largest and most famous Sake breweries in the Tohoku Region. Their Sake is famous throughout Japan and annually wins international awards. Their premium Sake is used the traditional “Yamahai” method to produce a full, complex flavor. We will stay at resort hotel that offers magnificent views of Lake Inawashiro from your room. Enjoy a relaxing soak in Onsen Hot Spring Bath and Open-Air Bath. At Dinner time, you can bring the Sake that you bought at the brewery to taste with dinner (1 bottle per person).
10 MAR (FRI) NIIGATA,
HOTEL OKURA NIIGATA
Go to beach side of Lake Inawashiro. This lake is called "Heaven’s mirror lake" because of its high reflection of the sky like a mirror. On sunny days, the clear water appears as a deep shining blue. Later visit Noguchi Hideyo Memorial Museum. See the exhibition and birth house of the world-renowned Dr. Hideyo Noguchi who had made significant contributions in his research towards a vaccine for yellow fever. His portrait is depicted on the 1,000-Yen bill. And visit Eisen Brewery which has been producing top-quality Sake for over 150 years and highly acclaimed at many Sake competitions every year. This brewery using natural spring water that is selected as one of the top 100 Best quality Spring Waters in Japan. It makes their Sake smooth with delicate flavor and fresh, lively fragrance. Then we will enjoy Kitakata Ramen for lunch. Kitakata Ramen is famous brand and ranks amongst Japan’s most famous types of ramen noodle. Then proceed to Niigata known as the “Rice capital of Japan.” Because its rice and rice products receive a high evaluation as “Best in Japan.” We will stay 3 nights at hotel which is located right in front of the longest river in Japan, Shinano River, with easy walking distance to main shopping area in Niigata City. After hotel check-in, good chance to browse around shopping area near the hotel. At dinner time, you can bring the Sake that you bought at the brewery to taste with dinner (1 bottle per person).
11 MAR (SAT) NIIGATA / SADO ISLAND,
HOTEL OKURA NIIGATA
1-day trip to Sado Island for a Sake brewery tour! Board the Jetfoil to Sado Island, often called “Sake drinker’s Paradise where savor excellent Sake.” Sado’s Sake style breaks away from Japan’s mainland. It features a dry, clear taste and a refreshing finish made from its exceptional clear water and delicious local rice. First, visit Hokusetsu Shuzo Sake Brewery, producing a dry, smooth Sake, which evokes images of heavy snow in the northern provinces. Their Sake is served at NOBU restaurants and attracting celebrities from around the world. Later go to Obata Brewery. Their “Manotsuru” has been honored as a prestigious gold medal in the Sake category at the world’s largest wine competition. Enjoy their brewery tour with a short movie about Sake in English and taste a selection of Sake for sale. Then catch a Jetfoil to go back to Niigata city. After arrival at the hotel, free time to enjoy shopping, meet your relatives or just rest. (In case of cancellation of jetfoil, we will go another place in Niigata)
12 MAR (SUN) NIIGATA,
HOTEL OKURA NIIGATA
Visit Senbei (rice cracker) Kingdom to enjoy “Grilling Senbei” by yourself. You can taste fresh grilled rice crackers. Also, you can buy fresh Senbei rice crackers at the factory store. Later visit the biggest Sake event in Japan (attracting over 141,000 visitors), Niigata Sake-no Jin, an annual Sake fair, attended by over 80 Sake breweries from across Niigata Prefecture that is the largest number in Japan. You can taste a variety of Niigata Sake including famous Kubota, Koshinokanbai, Kikusui, etc. You can choose from over 500 different Sake!! It must be like heaven to Sake lovers!! Afterwards visit Niigata Furusato Village where you can learn the history and culture of Niigata with life-size models of old houses, shops in the northern town, falling snow machine, etc. This is a good place to buy local souvenirs of whole area of Niigata, such as Dried seafood, Traditional Handicrafts, Utensils, Groceries, etc. At dinner time, you can bring your own Sake that you purchased at the Sake-no Jin Sake event site (1 bottle per person). (In case of cancellation of Niigata Sake-no Jin, we will go another place where you can enjoy Sake.)
13 MAR (MON) ECHIGO YUZAWA,
NASPA NEW OTANI (ONSEN) ♨
Go to Tsubamesanjo worldly known for its big Cutlery production. Enjoy shopping at Kitchenware Factory shop. You can buy Knives, Utensils, Garden scissors, etc., at a wholesale price. Then go to Hakkaisan Brewery, one of Japan’s most well-known Sake breweries. Their “Yukimuro (Snow room)” is a giant room filled with real snow to create a “natural refrigerator” that is cold by storing a mound of snow in a huge warehouse. It develops into a round and smooth Sake with a subtle and fine aroma. Enjoy tasting and shopping for their products. Then stop at Shiozawa-juku old town, an old post town of Edo period where developed in heavy snow area. Enjoy browse around the old town street with many stores (carrying Sake, Rice, etc.) lining. The town is strongly influenced by the Snow Country’s history and culture. Our hotel is an Onsen hot spring resort in the spectacular surroundings of Yuzawa Town. Enjoy a relaxing soak in the Onsen Hot Spring Bath and Open-air Bath.
14 MAR (TUE) MUSASHI HILL, SAITAMA,
HERITAGE RESORTS (ONSEN) ♨
In the morning, have fun with Strawberry Picking in season. Taste fresh and sweet Japanese Strawberry as much as you like. Then proceed to the renowned Gateau Festa Harada confectionery shop, 120 years old local bakery that has become the most famous confectionary maker in Gunma. Their most famous creation is the "Gouter de ROI." This delectable buttery French Bread with a sugary crust draws long lines of customers wishing to purchase this at their shop in Tokyo. You will be able to buy their exclusive chocolate covered version at the factory store. Later we will visit Konnyaku Park. Gunma is the biggest producer of Konnyaku. Enjoy a factory tour to learn how Konnyaku is made and try tasting various kinds of Konnyaku dishes. Then head to Onsen resort hotel located in National park surrounded by natural forest. This hotel has lots of Hot spring bathes such as Jacuzzi, Zashiki (Tatami) Buro, etc. Soaking and relaxing in Onsen Hot Spring Bath! At dinner time, you can bring your favorite Sake that you purchased during the tour (1 bottle per person)
15 MAR (WED) YOKOHAMA,
YOKOHAMA BAY SHERATON HOTEL & TOWERS
Today we will head to Saitama prefecture is one of top 5 producer of Sake. We will visit Igarashi Sake Brewery. Their signature Sake is Tenranzan Junmai Daiginjo. They have received many awards by the International Wine Challenge also the Fine Sake Award in Japan. After enjoy lunch and shopping at Aeon Shopping Center, head to Yokohama, 2nd largest city in Japan. We will stay 2 nights at hotel that is located within easy walking distance to department stores, 100-Yen shop, big Electronics store, etc. After hotel check-in, tour guide will take you Holo Holo around the hotel.
16 MAR (THU) YOKOHAMA / TOKYO,
YOKOHAMA BAY SHERATON HOTEL & TOWERS
Enjoy shopping at Yokohama Wholesale Market to buy Japanese traditional foods, such as Umeboshi, Tsukemono pickles, etc, at wholesale prices. Then head to Tokyo to visit Ameyoko, one of Japan’s most popular shopping streets, filled with many discount stores that carries various products such as dried seafood, candies, snacks, clothes, etc. And visit Tokyo Sky Tree. "New symbol of Tokyo" is the world’s highest stand-alone tower boasting a height of 2,080 ft. From its observation deck, you can enjoy the best 360-degree panoramic spectacular views out over Japan’s giant metropolis. You will also get a chance to visit its interesting shopping complex "Tokyo Solamachi." There are many highly specialized shops that offer a variety of Japanese traditional crafts and pop-culture goods. After going back to the hotel, Free Time to finish Shopping, Packing, etc. (Lunch and dinner will be at your own expense.)
17 MAR (FRI) YOKOHAMA / HONOLULU
At checkout time our agent will come to tape and tie-up the boxes and take the baggage to be checked-in down. In the afternoon proceed to Narita International Airport to catch Airline Flight # in the evening to Honolulu. Arrive in Honolulu the same morning, 17 MAR (FRI) After clearing U.S. Customs, proceed home. (Lunch and dinner will be at your own expense.)
Clients remaining back will be assisted in obtaining plane, train, and hotel reservations. Members may return to Honolulu individually, but no later than 90 days from day of departure. Weekend returns will cost more per person. Please call our office if you are extending your stay. MAHALO!
*Buffet meals are subject to change Set meals.
*At this moment Tohoku Travel Service are working on the prices for all our tours. They will be posted soon, as we are also waiting for airfare prices. Mahalo for your patience.