Todaiji Temple in Nara, Japan

Japan Photography Tour: Cities, Castles, Landscapes, Nature & More

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Customizable Itinerary

This is a sample itinerary to inspire a personalized trip designed with your travel specialist

Countries Visited


Places Visited

Tokyo, Kamakura, Matsumoto, Yamanouchi...

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Suggested Duration

12 Days

Capture the dreamy and authentic, historical and contemporary during your 12-day Japan photography tour. Your camera will accompany you with specialist guides on a custom-tailored tour as you uncover majesty from traditional inns to the snowcapped Japanese Alps. Discover Geishas strolling beneath blossoming cherry blossoms and witness neon lights shining above a traditional sushi restaurant. From artisan masters to bullet trains, you will discover the picturesque in Japan.

Customizable Itinerary

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Trip Highlights

  • Spend several nights in ryokans, traditional Japanese inns with tatami floors and onsens, thermal hot springs
  • Enjoy a guided bike tour of Kyoto, allowing you to enjoy the visually stunning region at your own pace
  • Photograph the Japanese Snow Monkeys as they enjoy a leisurely rest in naturally-occurring thermal hot springs
  • Ride the famous Shinkansen, a high-speed bullet train that is able to run at speeds up to 200 mph
  • Embark on tours throughout Matsumoto, home to the “Crow Castle” and learn about the history of the Samurai
  • Capture the image of Tokyo's fashion culture when visiting Harajuku, a district famous for showcasing young men and women dressed in the wildest of fashions 
  • Visit Shirakawago’s homes to find gassho-zukuri , thick thatched roofs designed to hold up the weight of the heavy winter snow that collects each year

Detailed Description

Your tour begins in Tokyo, the largest city in the world. There is no shortage of photographic opportunities here, from peaceful shrines to the vibrant youth culture. With a guide and on your own, you see what makes this city one of the most talked about places on Earth.

Your journey then extends to Matsumoto, home to an imposing medieval castle nicknamed ‘crow castle’ due its broad black roof. Within, learn about the daily lives of samurai and the shoguns who ruled Japan hundreds of years ago. The castle grounds are strikingly beautiful, especially in the spring, as millions of cherry blossoms turn the area into a paradise.

While in Matsumoto, take a day trip to Jigokudani Park, home to Japan’s famous snow monkeys. Living around humans for so long, they are quite tame and are used to having people take their picture. You may inadvertently make a few monkey friends if you should bring anything they can climb onto.

Takayama is buried deep within the Japanese Alps, and until recently was cut off from most of Japan during the winter months. This isolation has ensured that Takayama has not lost its small town charm. Also, with blocks of preserved city streets to explore, you feel transported back into the past.

Shirakawago is an even more secluded village, where traditional construction methods have produced some of Japan’s most beautiful homes. Not only do you find yourself taking pictures, but you also briefly join their way of life as you stay in a centuries old ryokan, or Japanese inn, for the night.

Though you only have half a day in Kanazawa, the city’s efficient transportation system means you can see the best sites. The city is home to one of the most beautiful gardens in Japan, and the seafood is second to none. You leave this city feeling at peace, and your stomach full of delicious sushi.

Kyoto is home to more than 2,000 shrines and temples. With a guide and on your own, see the most beautiful sites in the city on foot and by bicycle. There is plenty of time to take many splendid shots of Kyoto, as your guide knows how to avoid the crowds and make sure you have the best experience possible.

From Kyoto, you head to Hakone, home to Mt. Fuji and rolling hills of densely packed trees. In the shadow of the mountain, have a traditional Japanese dinner and soak in relaxing onsen baths. The next morning, tour the area by ropeway or lake cruise. If the weather is just right, you may get the perfect picture of the mountain. Your final night in spent back in Tokyo.

This tour is perfect for couples of all ages. It is best taken in the spring or fall when Japan’s natural beauty is at its peak, and the temperature is just right for outdoor activity.

Starting Price

$6,235 per person (excluding international flights)

Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.

What's Included

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all activities and tours
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip

Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.

Reviews of Zicasso's Referral Service

4.85 stars based on 544 reviews.

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