Japan backpacking tour

“A fantastic organised group backpacking tour around Japanís most popular cities. Local knowledge helps you beat crowds and cut costs.”


Tokyo | Kamakura | Hakone | Kyoto | Arashiyama | Hiroshima | Miyajima Island | Osaka | Japan Rail Pass included | Activities include: sushi lesson, sake tasting, sightseeing cruise, onsen visit, karaoke

Description of Japan backpacking tour

Japan has a reputation for being pricey, but you can keep costs down by staying in hostels (like a true backpacker) in shared rooms, and even one night in a capsule hotel. Your tour leader knows some great authentic, but cheap restaurants Ė Osaka is brilliant for street food and youíll get a sushi lesson in Tokyo. Youíll be given a Japan Rail Pass to get around without spending a fortune, and you can ride the famous bullet train.

You need to devote a lot of time to Tokyo, which is why this tour takes four days to get to know the capital Ė one minute youíll be taking a swing at a batting cage, the next relaxing in a local bathhouse or going to see a robot show. By doing local activities, there no queues or big crowds involved Ė except, of course, when you visit Shibuya Crossing, the busiest pedestrian crossing in the world.

A bullet train to Kyoto whizzes you back in time in Japanís elegant, historic city. Just as itís essential to spend lots of time in Tokyo, you need to give Kyoto a few dayís attention, too. See geisha performances, witness a tea ceremony and cycle around the city to Zen temples, Kinkaku-ji, and the Imperial Palace. Finally youíll visit Hiroshima, with its moving Peace Memorial Park, before filling your stomach in Osaka Ė Japan's greediest city and returning to Tokyo on the bullet train again.

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

01273 823 700 Calling from outside the UK?

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US pricing:
The currency converter above works on todays exchange rate. We do take bookings in USD but the price is set at a rate confirmed months in advance and is typically above the current exchange rate. Please enquire for details.
Accessibility overview:
Tours involve using public transport, and this can make accessible travel difficult in certain places. However, we are very keen to chat with travellers with specific needs to see if we can make a trip possible.

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

We are committed to ensuring that the tours do not negatively impact on the destinations and the communities benefit from the tourism.

Before departure, all travelers are provided with information about responsible travel. We encourage all travelers to take a reusable water bottle so that unnecessary plastic is not wasted. We also inform traveler of water shortages and how to minimize water wastage, by taking shorter showers and by using hand sanitizer in areas where water is scarce. We ask that travelers are responsible with litter. When trekking, routes are pre-planned and limit unnecessary erosion.

Our company is dedicated to keeping our wastage to a minimum. We are environmentally responsible and recycle waste products. We use fair trade products and recycled paper. We are also committed to the reduction of single use plastic in the office.

On the tour, only public transport, such as buses, overnight trains and boat, used which ensures that the groups carbon footprint is kept as low as possible.

The group use local hostels that have been thoroughly checked before the tour arrive. The group board sleeper trains and boats, which means that by combining accommodation and transport, the group can keep their environmental impact to a minimum.

We actively discourage the participation of groups in activities that exploit both wild and domestic animals and look to promote charities that look after animals ethically.

Tour guides promote greater integration between travellers to our destinations and local people. We also ensure that tour guides work with local communities to ensure that tours do not impact negatively on the area. All travellers are encouraged to get rid of their litter and to avoid buying or using single use plastic such as straws, coffee cups, plastic bottles, shopping bags.

The Impacts of this Trip

Our tours are designed to offer travelers the opportunity to see incredible sites and to experience unique experiences. We aim to give travelers the opportunity to try new skills and to learn more about the destination's culture so that they gain personally. We are also committed to ensuring that the tours do not negatively impact on the destinations and the communities benefit from the tourism.

This tour is affordable and is perfect for backpackers. Group sizes are typically 20 and travel by public transport. All overnight stays are either at local hostels or on overnight trains. This feeds into the local economy and reduces pollution caused by tour buses. The tour stops at major tourist hot spots but also visits lesser-known destinations, which means smaller communities are able to benefit as travelers spend money in local shops and restaurants.

Local restaurants, cafes and bars are promoted to help the local communities and to give travelers a more authentic experience. Local guides are used which creates jobs within the community. They are paid fairly and use their expertise to help create the itinerary. They have access to leadership opportunities.

Before departure and during the briefing at the start of the tour, cultural sensitivity is promoted . We emphasize the importance of showing respect for local people and their customs. A kit list is also provided so that travelers are aware of what clothing is culturally appropriate in Japan. Participants will work alongside permanent staff, forming close bonds and getting an insight into real life in Japan


2 Reviews of Japan backpacking tour

4.5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 28 Sep 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There isnít one best memory it was a fantastic trip, with so many memories

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Thereís a lot of walking, so a good level of fitness and decent footwear is required

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We used local transport and ate locally so yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was excellent

Reviewed on 08 Jun 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Watching Sumo training

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Comfortable shoes because we walked a lot and luggage you can manage yourself because there are lots of stairs at stations

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

No. Japan is very clean but they are using sooo much plastic

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent value for money

Read the operator's response here:

Thank you, Janice, for your review of your time in Japan. Iím delighted that you have had such a great time on the tour. I know that you were really looking forward to watching the Sumo training and Iím pleased that this lived up to expectations and became a highlight of your trip.

Your comment about the use of plastic in Japan is a really important one and one that I wanted to follow up on. Iíve spoken with our partners in Japan and they have told me that they advise participants to refill their water bottles and only to buy plastic bags in shops when absolutely necessary. We will work with them to see if there is more we can do on the ground in Japan.

Single use plastic is a major problem that needs to be addressed around the globe. We are trying to play our part by reducing the amount of single use plastic that people use on our projects. In our pre-departure briefing documents we give advice on how to avoid using plastic. We also offer people the opportunity to purchase one of our reusable Chillyís bottles to help reduce the amount of single-use plastic we use.

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