Quest, Circle Japan Intensive Voyage ex Tokyo Rountrip 14 Night Cruise sailing from Tokyo roundtrip aboard Azamara Quest.
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14 Night Cruise sailing from Tokyo roundtrip aboard Azamara Quest.
Explore the culture, history, and beauty of Japan on a two-week voyage that begins in the metropolis of Tokyo before circumnavigating the entire country.
From Tokyo, you’ll spend a day at sea before arriving in beautiful Hokadate. During your stay, you can spend time enjoying the company of wildlife at the Hakodate City Tropical Botanical Garden. Before you leave, be sure to snap a photo of Mount Hakodate, the vast 334 meter-high mountain that towers above the city.
Next, your voyage will take you to Akita, home of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Shirakami-Sanchi Mountains. Then, it’s off to Kanazawa and Sakaiminato to explore traditional tea houses and take a walk down Shigeru Mizuki Road.
After an evening at sea, you’ll arrive in Busan, South Korea. In this bustling city, you’ll have the opportunity to climb Busan Tower for a picturesque view of the surrounding area. From here, you’ll visit Nagasaki, Kagoshima, and Kochi, where you can visit volcanic hot springs, Kōchi Castle, and Huis Ten Bosch—a theme park modeled after a Dutch city.
Your voyage will then bring you to Kobe for an overnight stay. While exploring Kobe, tour the sake breweries in the Nada district, walk through the Sorakuen Japanese landscape garden, and do some shopping at Kobe Harborland. When the sun goes down, take the Shin-Kobe Ropeway up the southern slope of the Rokko mountains for a stunning nighttime view of the city.
After an overnight in Kobe, you’ll journey into Suruga Bay to visit Shimizu and glimpse Japan’s most iconic landmark—Mount Fuji. In Shimizu, you’ll find Miho-no-Matsubara—a beautiful park with four miles of pine groves along the seashore. Feeling relaxed and reenergized, your journey will conclude with an overnight in Tokyo, having gained a lifetime of experiences in the span of two incredible weeks.
Highlights of this cruise:
It’s hard to imagine Tokyo as a tiny fishing village named Edo. Tokyo is now the largest metropolitan area in the world, an exciting city with a seemingly unlimited choice of shopping, restaurants, museums, temples, and gardens to visit.
Start with the live tuna auctions at the Tsukiji Fish Market, the largest and busiest fish market in the world, then head to Tsukiji’s electronic equivalent, Akihabara Electric Town (Denki-Gai), for the very latest in gadgetry and games, and of course a classic sushi experience is a must. Slow down at the serene Meiji Shrine, the beautiful Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, or take it all in from high above at the Tokyo City View, the 52nd floor observation deck at Mori Tower in Roppongi Hills.
In a quintessential story of old meets new, Tokyo is fast-paced, trendy and high tech, but is never very far away from its enchanting past.
Busan’s deep harbor and gentle tides have made it a desirable port, now fifth largest in the world. Get the big picture with a panoramic view of the city and surroundings from atop Busan Tower.
Koreans consider raw fish both a delicacy and an everyday meal, so for a look or a taste, head to the fish market, where the seafood is so fresh it’s still swimming.
Cultural explorations include the 9th century Beomeosa Temple in town, or a trip to the ancient capital of Gyeongju, a “museum without walls”, containing the ruins of temples, palaces, and pagodas of the 1000-year Silla Kingdom, which once ruled most of the Korean Peninsula.
Mount Fuji, Japan’s tallest peak, overlooks this beautiful port town at the Northern end of the Izu Peninsula. One of Japan’s “Three Holy Mountains,” Mount Fuji is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a Special Place of Scenic Beauty, and is one of Japan’s official Historic Sites. Shimizu’s mild climate makes it perfect for exploring nature, like Miho-no-Matsubara, four miles of pine grove on the town’s seashore.
Bustling with activity from the region’s busy fisheries, the Port of Shimizu is a vibrant area full of commercial highlights you’ll want to experience before diving into the natural beauty at the town’s edges. Once you’ve ventured away from the town’s lively port, you’ll quickly understand why Shimizu, one of three wards in the city of Shizuoka, translates to Calm Hills.
A stroll through Miho-no-Matsubara will leave you not only refreshed and energized, but inspired. Home to more than 30,000 pine trees lining the seashore and a jaw-dropping view of Mount Fuji, it’s no surprise this scenic area has been the subject of many paintings, poems, and legends throughout Japanese history.
Famous for the beef that bears it name, Kobe is headquarters for numerous Japanese and international firms, and has long been an important port. It is also a short bullet train ride from Kyoto, ancient capital of Japan from the 8th to the 19th century.
Here vestiges of the past are easier to find than in many of Japan's modern, high-tech cities: countless temples and shrines, the palaces and castles of shoguns and emperors, and narrow lanes paved in stone and lined with wooden buildings housing shops and restaurants that have been serving travelers for centuries.