Ahead of the Rugby World Cup (2019) and Olympics (2020) being hosted in Japan, the country is getting ready for an influx of tourists.
For many South Africans the challenge will be where to visit, and when?
Given the country's length stretching some 3,000km north to south from almost Siberia to Taiwan together with its mountainous terrain, the arrival of the seasons and their length varies greatly according to region and climate, from sub-arctic in the north to sub-tropical in the south.
What began as study trips originally run by two Hong Kong University academics, Tom Stanley and Richard Irving, for their students of Japanese history and social geography, Walk Japan have developed walking tours to discover beautiful and interesting areas of Japan that are now well known and difficult to access.
About Walk Japan:
National Geographic has described Walk Japan as “one of the 200 Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth”.
The company creates and runs private, custom tours tailored to customers’ particular interests and requirements. These include private tours for families, friends, societies, companies and schools.
Founded in 1992 by two academics, Dr Thomas Stanley and Prof. Richard Irving, the company has grown considerably both in its number of tours and customers to become the acknowledged leader of specialised tours that immerse visitors in Japanese society and culture; provide great insights
into the nation and its people; and often explore little-visited, beautiful and diverse regions of the n ation.
Based in rural Kyushu, Walk Japan supports the communities in which they operate and ensure that their tours have a positive impact in these areas.
Wherever possible they use and supports family-run and local businesses.
Their tours include:
Hokkaido Snow Tour
An 8-day, 7- night tour, the Hokkaido Snow Tour is a snowshoe tour through Hokkaido’s less-visited snowy east, suitable for the occasional walker and providing the opportunity to walk over pristine snow, spot abundant wildlife and survey crater lakes shimmering in the crystal-clear air. Evenings are spent in
traditional accommodation, warming up in onsen hot spring baths.
Izu Geo Trail
The Izu Peninsula is one of the most unique geological areas on the planet. Although only 150km from Tokyo, Izu, with its distinctly different landscape and climate akin to a sub-tropical island, is a world away from the capital. With temperatures well into double figures and perfect for walking comfortably
by March, the Izu Geo Trail tours through this spectacular geological park and has a wealth of interest including amazing rock formations, beaches, waterfalls, literature and history. Beautifully located inns, bountiful seafood and onsen hot spring baths make this 7-day, 6-night tour a real treat.
Kyoto City Tour
Kyoto is the enchanting cultural capital of Japan. Walk Japan’s two-day Kyoto Tour takes participants through the city’s rich history while exploring in depth some famous and some less well-known areas – a unique look into Japan’s old capital, its history, arts, crafts and people.
Walk Japan tour prices include all accommodation full guiding from an experienced Tour Leader and most meals and transportation within the tour