Tour Glossary

Wondering what some of the stuff means on our tour pages? Here’s a quick rundown of each category and field. Need more information? E-mail info@pacsettours.com and we’ll help you out!

Seasons

WINTER: Winters in Japan are pretty mild compared to many parts of the United States; in fact, the temperature rarely dives below 25 degrees Fahrenheit (-5 degrees Celsius). Furthermore, if your tour is sticking to the big cities of Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka and so on (like Japan Holiday), it’s likely that temps will hang around 50F/10C for most of the time and you won’t see much snow. However, at the higher altitudes and up north, expect to see a LOT of snow. What Japan lacks in cold they definitely make up in snow, but that’s a good thing because that’s why Japan’s ski and snowboard scene is so amazing (not to mention the snow festivals that draw visitors from all over the world). In short: if you can handle some milder temps, you’ll love Japan in the Winter!

SPRING: The time of the cherry blossoms is far and away Japan’s most popular season, and for good reason – it’s gorgeous. You’ll see the trees bloom, experience cool breezes, and have a grand time. Two disclaimers: there is a little bit more rain in this season, and where you go in Japan can affect the temperature a great deal. For more detailed weather information for each tour, e-mail or call.

SUMMER: Japan in the summertime means two things: festivals and humidity. East Asia has some of the world’s most notorious humidity, and drinking lots of water is an absolute necessity. Pace yourself and take breaks, because the payoff is immense: fun on the coastline, spectacular festivals, and fireworks that fill the night sky. If you agree with our alumni and prefer a little something cooler, we suggest you scroll down…

MILD SUMMER: Up in Hokkaido (and sometimes Tohoku), Summer is a lot easier to face since temps are a little cooler. The locals know it too; this is the season that many city-dwellers from Tokyo and Osaka head for Hokkaido. It can still be a little sweaty, but not as much as what you’ll get in Tokyo.

FALL: If weather is a sincere worry for you, stop right here – Fall is the best weather Japan gets all year. While rain can still happen, it’s not as common as in the spring, and the changing colors of the leaves are bound to leave you speechless.

Features

Animals: This is a tour that features an animal-centric destination, such as Tashiro-jima (the Cat Island), Okunoshima (home to thousands of bunnies), a cat cafe, or other stop. If you’re allergic, notify your guide.

Festivals: This tour includes one (or more) festivals! These events can get crowded, so let PacSet know if you are easily claustrophobic or have an aversion to crowds.

Food: This tour includes most meals. Be sure to let your guide know if you have any difficult dietary restrictions!

Hot Spring/Onsen: One of our most popular options, this tour includes a stop at (or overnight at) a hot spring or hot spring resort. Using the Onsen, as they are called in Japanese, is done in gender-separated baths and is done naked – no bathing suits allowed! While this may sound daunting, this is the most popular kind of stop we offer and most people adjust just fine. If you’re shy, or if you have large tattoos, please talk to PacSet so we can ensure that you have the best possible experience.

More Shopping: This tour offers more than two stops that allot a half-day for shopping time (such stops include Akihabara and Harajuku in Tokyo, Namba in Osaka, Susukino in Sapporo, Canal City in Fukuoka and many others). Alternative activities and stops will be arranged for people who do not want to shop or explore.

Sports: This tour includes one or more stops where you will try a sport, such as Kendo, cycling, rafting, and more. If you have limited mobility, don’t worry – we’re here to help accommodate you! E-mail info@pacsettours.com early so arrangements can be made.

Pace/Physical Rating

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: Japan is a country where people do a lot of walking! That can be a challenge for people from a car-dominated culture like the USA, and it’s nobody’s fault – it’s simply a cultural difference. That being said, bear in mind that all tours will probably involve a little more walking than you may be used to. Here’s a little bit about all the different ratings you’ll see on our tour pages…

Easy: Tours that involve as little walking as possible, or are more relaxation centric. These are tours that will involve just as much chill time as they do walking time. 

Walking: These are basic tours that involve a bit of walking, akin to the typical walking regimen of a person in Tokyo.

Walking and Shopping: These are tours with an average amount of walking, much like the typical city dweller. However, they also include shopping stops, which can be exhausting if you spend the entire time you’re shopping standing. Make sure to pace yourself.

Active: With an eye on exploring, these are tours that involve an average amount of walking but also a few stops that are seen by foot, or involve short hikes. These are not strenuous trips by any means, and many guests have remarked that tours with shopping have been more exhausting, but do let us know if you have any concerns.

Hiking/Exploring: These tours are very active, and feature a lot of movement, walking, and exploring. Participants will need to be in good health.