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Collect your favourite destinations, experiences and travel styles in your bucket list

Collect your favourite destinations, experiences and travel styles in your bucket list

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Osaka & Kobe, Himeji

Osaka is Japan's second largest metropolitan area after Tokyo. It has been the economic powerhouse of the Kansai region for many centuries. Osaka was formerly known as Naniwa and this name is still seen throughout the city and on the number plates of cars.

Before the Nara Period, when the capital used to be moved with the reign of each new emperor, Naniwa was once Japan’s capital city, the first one ever known.
In the 16th century, Toyotomi Hideyoshi chose Osaka as the location for his castle, and the city may have become Japan’s political capital if Tokugawa Ieyasu had not terminated the Toyotomi lineage after Hideyoshi’s death and moved his government to distant Edo (Tokyo). Osaka has a very deep culture, but now days is known to be a more relaxing and laid back city when compared to that of Tokyo. The local dialect, food culture, fashion is also very different from Tokyo offering a different view into Japan.

Kobe is the capital of Hyogo Prefecture and one of Japan’s ten largest cities. Located between the sea and the Rokko mountain range, Kobe is also considered one of Japan’s most attractive cities. The night view from just under 1000 metres of Mt.Rokko is known around the world as a million dollar view.


 

Kobe has been an important port city for many centuries. Its port was among the first to be opened to foreign trade in the 19th century alongside the ports of Yokohama, Nagasaki, Hakodate and Niigata.
In 1995, Kobe was hit by the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake, which killed over 5000 people and destroyed tens of thousands of buildings. Today the city is completely rebuilt, and few signs of the terrible event remain, but if you get to Meriken Park you can still see the cracked port. Kobe is also famous for its high consumption of bread and western style sweets (Cakes).   Also approximately 40 minutes by train from Kobe is the City of Himeji. Himeji boasts Himeji Castle which was one of the first World Cultural Heritage sites picked within Japan. Himeji Castle is also the most visited castle in Japan. Gone under a 5 year restoration, the castle exactly stays the same as hundreds of years ago, but as the roof tiles (kawara) have been replaced making the castle an astounding bright white color, and also reviving the name to The Castle of the White Heron (Shiro-Sagi-jo).

Explore Japan'sExperiences

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------All our expectations were exceeded by far! Japan is an amazing country. From breath taking sky scrapers in Tokyo, to beautiful mountains, the very specil Snow Monkeys, old traditional Japan on the Nakasendo trail, the exotic food, the kindest friendliest people - and just so many more. Scott Kent from Experience Japan Travel is simply the best! From the 1st emails some months ago, I knew that this was going to be a very special experience. Scott's attention to detail, the prompt emails, very comprehensive detailed itinerary, website links and all the extra little bits of info made it an unforgettable trip. The choice, variety and locations of the accommodations were absolutely perfect and easily accessible from all the stations. We never felt lost or unsure of where to go or what to do. The itinerary was so well planned, with enough time to see and do. The guides with chartered Cars that you provided on the guided days were excellent, professional of high standard and caring. Ms Yuka in Tokyo was delightful, taught us a lot and was like a real mother hen - so concerned about all our travelling days by ourselves. Scott and Mr Nakagawa were so helpful in getting us to the doctor when Stef got ill. Ms Saiko is a knowledgeable easy going and caring tour guide. It was such a privilege that we could meet Scott in person. The day in Kyoto - although cold and wet was a high light of the trip. Kosanji Temple and surrounds touched our souls. Your easy way of going around with clients, passion for what you do, and sharing knowledge made it a fantastic experience. I've dealt with various travel companies before but I must say - Experience Japan Travel is in a league of its own. This was surely one of our best organized trips - to a country so far and different to anything else - it was just magic! Japan is a must see destination! - and we will be back to see the many other faces of Japan. Best regards Stef & Inamarie Greyson... READ MORE

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