Japan Hideaway Report Itinerary
Few countries in the world are as fascinating as Japan. Besides spectacular monuments, museums and scenery, there is a deep culture of excellence and refinement that informs daily life. Helpfully for the traveler, more Japanese people than ever speak English, and new English-language signage has appeared in airports and train stations. The following 12-day itinerary would be ideal for an introduction to Japan, combining stays in two important cities with respites in the beguiling countryside. The destinations can all be easily linked by train, making long and inconvenient treks to airports unnecessary.
Day 1 - 3 : Arrive in Tokyo
To recover from your long flight, consider having a restorative massage or exfoliating scrub (or better yet, both).
Spend these days exploring Tokyo, visiting diverse sights such as the Meiji Shrine, the new Roppongi art district and the famous Tsukiji fish market. Note that the market will move to a new location in early November, so this is your last chance to enjoy the atmosphere and animation of a place that’s been in business on the same site for centuries.
Contemporary property occupying the top six floors of the Toranomon Hills
skyscraper, situated in a stylish neighborhood between the Tokyo Tower and
Distinguished hotel, and Aman’s first urban property, set in the top six floors of the Otemachi Tower in the heart of the financial district, a short walk from Tokyo station.
Day 4 : Trains to Hakone
Take the Shinkansen high-speed train from Tokyo to Odawara. Change to the narrow-gauge line to Hakone, a popular resort for Tokyoites in need of fresh air and some greenery.
Check in at Hakone-Ginyu or longtime favorite Gôra Kadan. Both properties are ryokans, traditional Japanese inns, often intended for rest, reinvigoration and contemplation. And both properties offer kaiseki dinners, comprising about a dozen Japanese dishes that are as beautiful to look at as they are to taste.
Intimate ryokan (traditional inn) set on a peaceful hillside in Hakone, a brief train ride from Odawara.
Superb ryokan (inn), once an imperial summer retreat, that now gracefully blends Japanese tradition and Western modernity.