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Our Japan Quilt Tour offers the holiday of a lifetime for quilt, patchwork and embroidery enthusiasts and on tour you will be delighted and astonished by the quality of Japanese craftsmanship. There is quality and then there is Japanese quality!
On this Quilters Tour to Japan, your tour starts in Tokyo where one of the highlights of your trip is a visit to the wonderful Tokyo International Quilt Festival held at the vast Tokyo Dome. Apart from the superb quilt competition itself, there are many other quilt exhibits and demonstrations as well as a fantastic array of stalls for shopping.
Whilst in Tokyo you’ll visit the very atmospheric Sensoji Temple – beloved by all Tokyoites where you’ll get the feel of old Tokyo with the delightful arcade of stalls leading up to the Temple offering their religious wares, local delicacies and nicknacks. Meiji Shrine is another lovely spot we visit and as we are here on a Sunday you should have the privilege of being able to watch a series of Shinto weddings taking place which are always beautifully colourful. A visit to Nippori Fabric Town is a must and you will have more than 100 stores to choose from, but do take the time to sit in one of the mini coffee bars at the back of these stores where you can maybe chat with the locals about your purchases.
After Tokyo, you’ll speed on the superb Bullet train past beautiful Mt Fuji to Kyoto – the cultural heartland of Japan and the home of Japan’s silk and fabric industries. For centuries Kyoto has become re-known for producing some of the most skilled artists who collaborate to produce the best threads, dyes and fabrics that going into making the finest kimonos. The tailoring skills and hand-painting skills of these artisans elevate these kimonos into true works of art which can cost many millions of yen and will be handed down from mother to daughter. During your stay here you will get the chance to view some of these most beautiful creations at the Kodai Yuzen gallery and at the Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts. You’ll also have the chance to watch a kimono fashion show at the Nishijin Textile Centre and take part in a shibori tie dyeing class.
Kyoto boasts more than 2,000 temples and shrines and during your stay we’ll visit the glorious Temple of the Golden Pavilion and its lovely gardens and stunning Kiyomizu Temple perched on a hillside with beautiful views over Kyoto. We’ll also visit imposing Nijo Castle with it beautifully decorated interiors.
Japan is also a place of wonderful cuisine and your Guide will take you to a variety of delicious places to eat in the evenings (or you can, of course, do your own thing). In terms of food, your senses will be pleasantly bombarded by delicious sights, smells and tastes and every meal will contribute more happy experiences that make this a wonderful tour. As one of our New Zealand customer’s said: “I was hesitant before arriving in Japan, but this trip really was without fault. So many memories, so many quilts to sew; experiences and pictures to share along with a very firm recommendation to join your next Quilters Tour”.
Day 1: UK – Tokyo
Transfer by private coach to The Tokyo Dome Hotel for 5 nights. Your hotel is adjacent to the Tokyo Dome (where the Great Quilt Festival will be held).
Day 2: Tokyo International Quilt Festival
After breakfast, attend the wonderful Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival and enjoy the rest of the day there.
Day 3: Tokyo Tour
Enjoy a full day tour of Tokyo by private coach as we visit the Imperial Palace, bustlingSensoji Temple in Asakusa and then go on to Nippori Fabric Town – a fantastic centre for speciality fabric stores. With over 100 stores you are bound to find whatever you are looking for and at a reasonable price.
Day 4: Day at Leisure/ Optional Itchiku Kubota Trip
You have another opportunity to visit the Great Quilt Festival today. Alternatively we are offering a brand new, superb optional tour to visit the stunning Itchiku Kubota including lunch. Join us as we take a coach out of Tokyo to the Itchiku Kubota Museum which is located near Lake Kawaguchi offering you wonderful panoramic views of Mt Fuji, beloved by Itchiku. Itchiku is famous for his artistic kimonos inspired by a long lost 16th century technique called tsujigahana (a tie-dyeing technique mixed with drawings and impressing foil appearing at the end of the 15th century but disappeared some 100 years later). We will spend the day admiring 104 of his most spectacular kimono creations in the beautiful Gaudi inspired museum before returning to our hotel by coach.
Day 5: Tokyo Tour
Today we visit the serenely beautiful Meiji Shrine, lively Harajuku and the Omote-Sando for more great fabric shopping before moving on to Shinjuku – the modern heart of Tokyo. Today’s tour will be by public transport.
Day 6: Kyoto
After breakfast, we transfer by the famous Bullet Train to Kyoto. You’ll be met at Kyoto station by private coach from where you will enjoy an afternoon tour of Kyoto. Visit the beautiful Temple of the Golden Pavilion and its gardens. Then we go on to the stunning Kiyomizu Temple perched on the slopes of a hillside. Check in to the Kyoto Royal Hotel for 5 nights
Day 7: Kyoto
Today we start with a little walking tour of the local covered markets before visiting the awe-inspiring Sanjusangendo Temple which features 1,001 gilded statues. We then move on to the Kyoto Handicraft Centre where you have time to take lunch and browse a multitude of craft shops. After lunch we will visit the nearby Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts where you can see a selection of wonderful handicrafts and how they are made.
Day 8: Nara
We take a short train trip to the nearby town of Nara to visit stunning Todaiji Temple – the largest wooden building in the world, which contains the Great Buddha – Japan’s largest. Here you can take a stroll in Nara Park and feed the deer. We then return to Kyoto for a Shibori Dyeing Class.
Day 9: Free Day or Optional Tour to Hiroshima
Enjoy a full day at leisure. Alternatively, you may wish to join an optional day trip to by Bullet Train to Hiroshima and the nearby beautiful island of Miyajima.
Day 10: Kyoto
After breakfast, we visit the Yuzen Gallery to learn about the art of Yuzen silk craftsmen. We then move on to Nijo Castle with its gorgeous interiors and famous squeaking “nightingale” floor which alerted the inhabitants to intruders. Then on to the Nishijin Textile Center in the Nishijin district – the famous home of Kyoto’s silk fabric weavers. Here you can try on a 12 layered kimono or try hand weaving (both require a prior appointment), watch a kimono show and learn about the method of kimono making. In the evening, enjoy a Farewell Dinner.
Day 11: Return to UK
Sadly it is time to say “sayonara” and after breakfast transfer to Kansai International Airport (Osaka) by private coach to depart for home.
A modern 4* deluxe hotel in the heart of Tokyo. Easily accessible from Narita Airport via the Airport Limousine bus which stops at the hotel and also JR and Subway Suidobashi stations.
Rooms at the Tokyo Dome Hotel are spacious and provide wonderful unobstructed views over Tokyo. In room wi-fi is available for a small charge and free in the lobby and all rooms have a safe, refrigerator and tea making facilities.
For breakfast you will have a large selection of Japanese and Western options to choose from.
The hotel is part of Tokyo Dome City which has plenty of restaurants, shops and entertainment . If you don’t want to venture out of the hotel there are 11 restaurants and lounges to choose from including French, Chinese and Japanese.
Located on Kawaramachi Street, one of Kyoto’s main restaurant and shopping streets and a stone’s throw from the covered markets. The modern and brightly furnished rooms include complimentary wi-fi and LCD TVs with BBC as well as refrigerator and tea making facilities.
A breakfast buffet serving both Western and Japanese dishes available in the hotel restaurant.
Other facilities include an English bar and Spa facilities to help you relax and unwind.
Not Included in Price:
Land Only Price: tbc
Single room Supplement: tbc
*OPTIONAL TRIP TO ITCHIKU KUBOTA: tbc
*OPTIONAL DAY TRIP TO HIROSHIMA: tbc
Travel can be a great experience, but it can also be fraught with problems, so when going anywhere it is essential you are properly covered with good travel insurance. You should be protected against cancellation, curtailment and loss or damage to your belongings as well as medical emergencies and have peace of mind if the unexpected happens.
Japan Journeys in association with Holiday Extras, is now able to offer excellent low cost cover to their customers.
Please click on the image below for a quote.