Haute to Handicraft: Japan’s Artistic Heritage

Haute to Handicraft: Japan’s Artistic Heritage

Join Ker & Downey as we travel in luxury through Japan’s captivating artistic heritage. From high-end design to centuries-old craftsmanship, this 12-day pilgrimage is an homage to this prolific country’s creative culture and innovative roots.

Suggested Itinerary-at-a-glance:

  • Day 1:

    Arrive Tokyo / Mandarin Oriental Tokyo

  • Day 2:

    Tokyo / Mandarin Oriental, Tokyo (B)

  • Day 3:

    Tokyo / Mandarin Oriental, Tokyo (B)

  • Day 4:

    Kanazawa / Kayotei (B,D)

  • Day 5:

    Kanazawa / Kayotei (B,D)

  • Day 6:

    Kyoto / The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto (B)

  • Day 7:

    Kyoto / The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto (B)

  • Day 8:

    Kyoto / The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto (B)

  • Day 9:

    Naoshima / Benesse House (B)

  • Day 10:

    Naoshima / Benesse House (B)

  • Day 11:

    Tokyo / The Peninsula Tokyo (B)

  • Day 12:

    Tokyo / Departure (B)

Itinerary Description:

Your luxury journey through Japan's artistic heritage begins in Tokyo, the country's capital and purveyor of both pop and imperial culture. Experience Tokyo's "must-see" sites, including the Imperial Palace, the Edo Tokyo Museum, and the bustling Ginza entertainment center, before diving deeper into Tokyo's architectural and cultural pulse. Visit some of its most fascinating structures along Omotesando Avenue, Tokyo's Tadao Ando-designed Champs-Élysées, and spend an entire afternoon in Tokyo's National Art Center and the 21_21 Design Sight Museum.

Next, venture to Kanazawa, a region known for its timeless hot springs and prestigious artisans and craftsmen. While here, relax in the serenity of Kayotei, one of Japan's foremost luxury ryokans, with traditional kaiseki cuisine and soothing moments in the restorative onsen. Explore the fascinating arts and culture of Ishikawa, visit a Samurai residence in the Nagamachi district, and meander through one of Japan's three most beautiful gardens, Kenroku-en Garden.

Kyoto is the true storehouse of Japan's traditional culture and is the ideal stop on this art-centric itinerary. Take time to visit Kyoto's historical highlights, such as the Golden Pavilion, the Nijo Castle, and the geisha district of Gion, before embarking on a day-long excursion to the famous ceramic town of Shigaraki. Stroll around Shigaraki's famous pottery shops and learn about the kiln used to create this rare pottery -- known as one of the "Six Old Kilns" in Japan.

The final stop on your luxury Japanese cultural journey is Naoshima, a small island in the Seto Inland Sea known for its symbiosis of modern art, sculpture, architecture, and nature. The best way to experience Naoshima is at Benesse House, a part-hotel, part-museum accommodation where art litters the lawns and beaches and where guests receive exclusive after-hours access to the modern art museum full of Jasper Johns, Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol, and Sam Francis originals. Further afield is the Chichu Art Museum, the Art House Project in Honmura, and The Ando Museum, all magnets for contemporary art and examples of Japan's progressive creative mentality -- the perfect way to end your artistic exploration of Japan.

Customize This Journey

Choose additional countries and destinations, change property selections, add activities, tours, and more. With Ker & Downey, the choice is yours – just ask your travel expert!

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