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School Geography Trip to Japan

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Japan’s mountains, volcanoes and lakes are a perennial draw for geography school trips to Japan, with visits to Mount Fuji, the earthquake museum, Lake Ashi and the Sakurajima volcano on offer!

Located on the Pacific Ring of Fire, Japan is home to many landscape features created by the large amount of seismic activity in the region. Earthquakes occur regularly here and Tokyo is an excellent place to study the effects of these and learn about the measures put in place to prevent serious damage.

The human element can be studied through the plans in place to reduce climate changing greenhouse gas emissions through the Kyoto Protocol. Also of interest is the city of Hiroshima, which has risen from the ashes to once again become an important city on a national level.

Suggested Itinerary (Based on 9 days/7 nights)

Mount Fuji, Japan

See Mount Fuji!

Still classed as an active volcano by geologists, despite not having erupted since 1707, Mount Fuji is the tallest mountain in Japan! Despite lying around 100km south-west of Tokyo, it can be seen from the Japanese capital on a clear day.

Mount Fuji is one of the country’s ‘Three Holy Mountains’, along with Mount Tate and Mount Haku, and is sacred to both Buddhists and Shintoists.

It’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a national symbol of Japan. Mount Fuji has inspired poets and artists for centuries, placing it right at the heart of traditional Japanese culture - no trip to Japan is complete without a visit here.

Did you know? Mt. Fuji is actually three volcanoes in one – making it a stratovolcano! The bottom layer is made up of the Komitake volcano, the middle layer is the Kofuji volcano and the top layer, which is the youngest, is Fuji.

A-Bomb Dome, Hiroshima

Visit the A-Bomb Dome!

Part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the A-Bomb Dome has been preserved in the same state it was left in after the US dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. It now stands as a reminder of the devastation and as a symbol of hope.

Commonly known as the Genbaku Dome, the building managed to retain its shape because the explosion was almost directly overhead. Because the blast was downward, the building’s vertical columns managed to resist and keep the Genbaku Dome standing when others were destroyed.

‘Little Boy’, as the bomb was codenamed, was dropped on Hiroshima at 8:15am on 6th August 1945 and possessed a force equivalent to 15,000 tons of TNT.

Did you know?

Hiroshima was a target for the US because it had an important port on Honshu (Japan’s main island) and was also the headquarters of the Japanese Second General Army.

Himeji Castle, Japan

Visit Himeji Castle!

Widely considered Japan’s most spectacular castle, it has withstood earthquakes and survives in its original form, unlike many other Japanese castles.

The castle is nicknamed the ‘White Heron’ because it’s considered to resemble that animal taking flight. And recent renovations have seen this UNESCO World Heritage Site returned to its former glory.

And you can now download an app that will allow you to experience castle life in virtual reality as you explore!

Did you know?

Himeji Castle is famous for its complex defences, despite the fact that these have never been tested! There are paths that turn back on themselves, blind corners and trapdoors through which boiling water can be poured. And when it was built it had three moats – one of which was over a mile away from the castle!

Day 1

Morning

 

Afternoon

 

Evening

Flight to Tokyo

Day 2

Morning

Arrive in Tokyo

Group to be met on arrival and transferred to accommodation

Afternoon

Free time to explore with your guide

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 3

Morning

Visit the Tokyo Rinkai Disaster Prevention Park, Asakusa Temple and Nakamise shopping street

Afternoon

Visit Meiji shrine and Harajuku area

Visit to the earthquake simulator at the Ikebukuro Earthquake Museum

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 4

Morning

Full-day excursion to Hakone with views of Mt. Fuji

Enjoy the Komagatake ropeway and a cruise on Lake Ashi (subject to weather)

Afternoon

Visit the Hakone Open Air Museum before returning to Tokyo

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 5

Morning

Transfer by Shinkansen bullet train to Kyoto

Afternoon

Visit the Nijo Castle and enjoy a walking tour of Gion

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 6

Morning

Full-day sightseeing in Kyoto including Kinkakuji, Ryoanji and Arashiyama and the impressive bamboo groves

Afternoon

Continue sightseeing

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 7

Morning

Board the Bullet train for Hiroshima where you'll see the Peace Park and the A-Dome - see how the city has developed and rebuilt from the end of WW2

Afternoon

Return to Kyoto

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 8

Morning

Visit Nara Park

Transfer to Osaka Castle and gardens

Afternoon

Visit Umeda Sky Building

Spend time in Dontonbori and Shinsaibashi

Evening

Evening meal at local restaurant or accommodation

Day 9

Morning

Return flight to the UK

Afternoon

Arrive back in the UK

Evening

N/A

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  • tick iconVAT at current rates to tour operators
  • tick iconVisits and entrance fees as per the sample itinerary

Educational activities and visits

Lake Ashi

Lake Ashi

Lake Ashi (Japanese: Ashinoko) was formed in the caldera of Mount Hakone after the volca… Read more

Mount Fuji

Mount Fuji

Mount Fuji is the highest mountain in Japan, standing at 3,776 metres high about… Read more

Owakudani Valley

Owakudani Valley

Owakudani is the area around a crater created in the last eruption of Mount Hakone 3000… Read more

Cultural activities and visits

A-Bomb Dome

A-Bomb Dome

The Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall was a mere 160 meters northwest of the… Read more

Asakusa Area

Asakusa Area

Asakusa is one of the largest downtown amusement centers in Tokyo and a must for visitors … Read more

Ginza Area

Ginza Area

Ginza is Japan's most fashionable shopping address, with high-end shops, boutiques, art… Read more

Himeji Castle

Himeji Castle

Himeji Castle is located in the centre of Himeji City, about 50 kilometers west of Kobe a… Read more

Kyoto Imperial Palace

Kyoto Imperial Palace

Kyoto Imperial Palace used to be the residence of Japan's Imperial Family until 1868 when … Read more

Accommodation

Tokyo Central Youth Hostel
Tokyo Central Youth Hostel

Tokyo Central Youth Hostel occupies the 18th and 19th floors of a high-rise building in a very central location, so offers fantastic views over the city, something not usually offered by this style of accommodation.

The hostel welcomes guests from all over the world and provides Japanese-style shared baths (separate for ladies/gents), a dining room, a meeting room, a lounge and tourist information centre, making this a great base for exploring Tokyo. Please note that the youth hostel has a curfew of 11pm. Individual room and locker keys provided at check-in.

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