Taste of Japan 2017 | May 10 – May 21, 2017

$4,250 (w/ RT flight from LAX)

 *PacSet PICK!  $4,250 total | $3,450 LAND ONLY
(view Tour Information below for what this price includes and package explanations)
Read Terms & Conditions and FAQ / Prices listed are per person, double occupancy
Sign up: CLOSED
Read the Tour FAQ

If you’ve ever wanted to walk in the footsteps of the samurai, eat every kind of Japanese cuisine imaginable, and experience all the beauty, culture, and urban fun that Japan has to offer, you’re in for a real treat.

PacSet’s acclaimed Taste of Japan Tour is back with a new schedule, new stops, and of course new things to eat! We’ll travel along the old Nakasendo, one of the major walking roads used in the Edo Period, as we sample steak, seafood, matcha, miso ice cream and so much more! Of course, there’s more to this trip than just food; you’ll walk through historical post towns, soak in relaxing hot springs, walk through the temples and shrines of Kyoto, and breathe in the vibrant atmosphere of cities like Tokyo and Kobe. The new gems on our “menu” include an extra night in the picturesque Yatsugatake Mountains, a morning in the bamboo groves of Arashiyama, the seaside views of Kobe, and a whole extra day to explore and sample more tasty goodies.

Almost all of the meals are included for this journey, so practice your chopstick skills for a feast that’s sure to put that Japanese restaurant at the mall to shame! Sign up today and get ready for a timeless adventure you won’t soon forget!


Tour info:What is a *PacSet PICK?Tour itinerary:Payment plan schedule:

Baggage: 1 carry-on sized bag — NO LARGE/CHECK-IN SIZED BAGS, except in Tokyo.
Due to rural destinations and terrain, participants must be in good physical health, prepared to walk, and are encouraged to keep their luggage LIGHT. Any large luggage may be stored in Tokyo for shopping purposes.
Tour price includes:
  • R/T airfare from Los Angeles to Japan
  • Tour dates: Departs May 10, returns May 21
  • Hotel, ryokan, inn and onsen (hot spring) accommodations across Japan
  • All meals EXCEPT for on the last 1 1/2 days
  • Stops in Tokyo, Ikaho Onsen, Karuizawa, Nobeyama, Lake Suwa, Magome, Tsumago, Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe and points between
  • All transportation (train, ropeway, bus, shinkansen/”bullet train”, etc.) within Japan
  • Professional bilingual guide services
  • Admission to all activities
  • Customized tour guidebook
  • Nightly turndown service with local snacks and homemade sweets
  • Much, much more!
NOTE: Trip participation is limited to twenty people.
“PacSet Pick” is Staff’s Choice, highlighting our favorite tours because we think you’ll love them just as much as we do! The itineraries are very unique and custom created.

With a unique mix of rural and urban destinations, this tour offers a combination of meals and destinations you won’t find anywhere else! The unofficial 2015 Tour slogan was “See everything, eat everything, regret nothing” – and we’ll be keeping that same fun, “hang with the locals” spirit with the 2017 tour!

NOTE: The itinerary you see here is not set in stone. Itineraries are subject to adjustments due to changes in events, travel, and other necessary items to make the trip run smoothly.
Day 1: Departure!
After meeting up at Los Angeles International Airport, we’ll board our flight to Japan!

DAY 2: Appetizers

We arrive in Tokyo! After getting in, we’ll head out for our first dinner of the trip at a PacSet favorite: a local izakaya serving delicious variations of Kyushu-style Chicken!

Day 3: The First Course
We begin our adventure with a fresh sushi breakfast and a tour of the Kappabashi shopping district, where Japan’s finest chefs go to shop for their tools of the trade. We then cross over to Akihabara to explore Japanese fast food venues, shop, and eat the best Ramen Tokyo has to offer. Finally, we head off to the beginning of the Nakasendo, Nipponbashi and Ginza, to hunt for bargains, check out some of Japan’s oldest dessert spots, and finish with a tasty Kushiage (fried skewer) dinner.

Day 4: A Path to the Mountains
Today, we’ll board a bus and ride into the mountains of Gunma Prefecture to our accommodations at Ikaho Onsen on the side of Mt. Haruna! Our trip starts with the region’s famous Mizusawa Udon, served alongside some of the best tamagoyaki we’ve found. Then we’ll explore the mountain, soak in the hot springs and relax – but don’t forget to leave room for a traditional kaiseki dinner with delicious locally-raised meats and vegetables.

Day 5: Elevation Change
After breakfast, we’ll head further inland to Karuizawa, a scenic resort town with all kinds of tasty goodies served for lunch. Then we’ll board the world’s only gas-electric hybrid train as we climb the backbone of Nagano Prefecture on the Koumi Line. We’ll ride past mountain streams and stop to explore a hidden waterfall before checking in at a friendly local inn for a filling dinner!

Day 6: Miso Mania
After breakfast at our inn, we head back onto the Koumi Line to continue our adventure! After lunch at west-meets-east Italian restaurant, we head for Lake Suwa! When we arrive, we’ll check out a local sake brewery and sample some of the other regional specialty: MISO! Get some soup or ice cream made with the iconic ingredient before taking time to explore the lake. Here you can rent a boat and sail, browse cute waterfront boutiques, or just kick back in one of the local onsens. At night, enjoy a fancy ten course dinner prepared with local ingredients.

Day 7: Walking the Nakasendo
Today is all about history! After shipping some of our luggage ahead to Kyoto, get the rest of your stuff into a backpack for the stroll down the old Nakasendo between the post towns of Tsumago and Magome. In Magome, we’ll have a tasty lunch at one of the rest houses before hitting the trail. After the trip, we’ll take a rest and eat a meal prepared by our innkeepers before a free evening to explore the area.

Day 8: Shrine Tunnels and Steeped Brews
After breakfast, we complete our trip following the Nakasendo as we head to Kyoto! Here, you’ll have an afternoon to explore the shrine gate tunnels and beautiful views of Fushimi Inari Shrine. To cap the day, we head to Uji – the green tea capitol of Japan – to have some of the city’s finest green tea and nibble on the traditional meal of the monks, the naturally vegetarian “shojin ryori.”

Day 9: Kyoto Deluxe
Today, we check out the oft pictured and always inspiring bamboo groves of Arashiyama on the edge of the city. Soon after, we’ll venture to the Higashiyama area of Kyoto, hitting Kiyomizu Temple and the nearby Ninenzaka Street to see better views of the old capitol and shop for souvenirs. Then it’s off to Gion for an all-you-can-eat Sukiyaki and Shabu-Shabu dinner!

Day 10: Castle and Cows
It’s time to head to the cities where people go to cheat on their diet: Osaka and Kyoto! First up: Osaka’s Namba area, the birthplace of Okonomiyaki and the spot where locals go to eat and drink in excess. :) Leave some room though; stop #2 is Kobe, where Japan’s most delectable breads and puddings are made. Of course, you won’t want to miss dinner: a steak made with the region’s world-famous beef.

Day 11: Flexible Free Day!
Today is a free day; take the time to explore a spot you missed, or to re-visit a place or spot you want to see more of. As always, your guide will be on hand to help you select a destination. Plus: you can spend your free day in the Kansai/Kyoto area, Tokyo, or both! Ask your guide for more details!.

Day 12: Return home
Head home and show off all those photos you took!

Find the month you plan to sign-up and begin your payment plan. That’s how much you will pay each month! Please review how our Payment Plan Works before choosing this option.

Payment plans for this tour don’t begin until May. If you choose this option, we will invoice you for a $300 deposit to reserve your spot, then begin payments in May!

May $360 $290
June $390 $315
July $430 $350
August $475 $385
September $535 $435
October $610 $495
November $710 $580
December $855 $695
January $1,065 $865
  • email: info [at] pacsettours.com
    tel: +1.310.218.3816
    hours: Mon-Fri 9am-6pm PST
    (closed during major holidays)
  • Follow:
  • Share:
  • Subscribe to our Newsletter!