Let`s go to the movies! - Venture - Venture Events, Expeditions and

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Let`s go to the movies! - Venture - Venture Events, Expeditions and
JAP130728/3
Let’s go to the movies!
Visit some of the spectacular locations used for filmmaking in Japan
Lights! Camera! Action!
Japan has a long and proud history of filmmaking
Not only from local directors such as Yasujirō Ozu; Akira Kurosawa; and Ishirō Honda (who have
produced classic movies such as Tokyo Story; Seven Samurai; and Godzilla), but Japan has
also been the dramatic setting for Hollywood blockbusters such as The Last Samurai (with Tom
Cruise); The Wolverine (with Hugh Jackman); and the soon to be released 47 Ronin (starring
Keanu Reeves).
Using the silver screen as our inspiration, on this trip we immerse ourselves into the diverse
scenery, cultures and traditions of this fascinating land.
Trip Duration: 14 Days
Grade: Basic Level
Accommodation: Traditional Inns (13 nights)
Price: TBC
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing
activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you
get the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.
Day 1: Australia to Tokyo
Having arrived at Narita International Airport, we check­in to our accommodation Shigetsu
Ryokan, a comfortable traditional Japanese inn located in Tokyo’s old downtown area.
We will get to experience how a typical family lives in the ryokan, sleeping in the traditional style
of a futon which the staff will prepare for you each night. Slippers and a yukata (Japanese
bathrobe) are provided as is traditional, with the addition of modern conveniences in all the
rooms including wifi, air­conditioning, private bathroom facilities, minibar, TV and telephone, as
well as complimentary Japanese tea.
This evening before dinner we indulge in a bit of Lost In Translation wistfulness over cocktails in
the Peak Bar at the Park Hyatt; and then it’s on to a traditional Japanese dinner Kill Bill­style,
although without the Crazy 88 or Uma Thurman.
Day 2: Tokyo
We immerse ourselves in this vibrant and eclectic city.
Travelling via public transport we get a feel for the rhythm and pace of the city ­ starting in
Asakusa, the Sony Building, Ginza shopping area (where we can get a photo with the Godzilla
statue outside the Toho building), and experience the Harajuku youth culture.
We contrast the Japan of today with some of the more traditional elements of this fascinating
culture ­ we visit the sumo stables, traditional Japanese gardens, the Meiji shrine, and the
world’s largest fish market (Tsukiji).
We’ll also track down the sushi of ‘Jiro Dreams of Sushi’ ­ created by sushi master Jiro Ono and
his son Yoshikazu.
Tonight we get a bit edgy and hit the ramen bars around Shinjuku station, exploring the red light
district of nearby Ni­chōme. It’s not hard to imagine the Yakuza gangs in operation in this type of
neighborhood (although it’s actually quite safe).
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you get
the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.
Day 3: Studio Ghibli
While in Tokyo we visit Studio Ghibli.
Director Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli have brought us so many magical films, including
Spirited Away, Howl's Moving Castle, and My Neighbour Totoro.
Our visit to the studio within Mitaka's Inokashira Park allows us to take a unique glimpse into this
fascinating world of animation.
Tonight we karaoke!
Day 4: Tokyo
Today we head to New Akihabara electronics town and explore the Tokyo Anime Center
This is a permanent facility that has been created to market Japanese anime (animation) to the
world. Its Events Gallery screens new animated shows and hosts talk shows featuring voice
actors, besides other anime related events. The Gallery windows feature over 20 popular anime
characters.
The Recording Studio of the Center has a large see­through glass panel which allows us to
watch voice actors record their voices. The Center also includes the AKIBA3D Theater, which
uses the latest audio and video technology to reproduce the highest quality visual experience.
The theater screens popular works and special presentations of 3D visuals.
Day 5: Tokyo to Nagasaki
We jump on the bullet train south to Nagasaki. The bullet train has captured the imagination of
film­makers throughout the years ­ most recently it was featured in The Wolverine where Hugh
Jackman’s character clawed his way to victory in a spectacular fight sequence.
After checking in to our accommodation we explore the city that spawned Godzilla.
Day 6: Gunkanjima Island
Today we take a ferry out to Gunkanjima ­ an island off the coast from Nagasaki. This was the
island that recently featured in the James Bond movie Skyfall ­ spookily deserted and the perfect
hideaway for plotting revenge or world domination.
This is ideal material for photographers ­ the abandoned buildings providing extraordinary light
and shade for visually stunning and spooky images.
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you get
the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.
Days 7: Kyoto
Back on the train and we journey to Japan’s ancient capital, Kyoto.
On arrival in Kyoto we walk to the Heianbo Ryokan, an 8 minute walk from the station. Located in a quiet
and traditional neighbourhood, this ryokan is a short walk from a number of temples, gardens and shopping
streets. Rooms have private facilities and air­conditioning. The property also features a Japanese
bathhouse.
We explore this fascinating city and immerse ourselves in the history and culture of old Japan.
Days 8: Kyoto
With more than 200 temples and shrines, Kyoto has a lot to choose from. Here are a few we recommend.
Nijo Castle with its ‘nightingale’ floors that sing as you walk; Ryoan­ji’s Zen rock garden and the enchanting
Kinkaku­ji building; the incredible Sanjusangen Temple with over a thousand statutes of the Buddhist
goddess of mercy; the view of Kiyomizu Temple’s pagoda and main hall, built on the edge of a hillside and
supported by a system of wooden pillars and juts, is breathtaking; or perhaps just a leisurely stroll along the
Path of Philosophy which runs alongside the cherry tree lined canal.
If you’re interested in Japanese cuisine, visit the Nishiki­koji market and its array of Japanese ingredients
from seafood to pickles and dried bonito flakes.
Arthur Golden’s novel Memoirs of a Geisha gave us a fascinating glimpse into the world of the geisha district
of Gion ­ brought to life in the 2005 movie that starred Ken Watanabe and Michelle Yeoh. We embrace our
inner geisha, participate in a traditional tea ceremony, then take an evening walk through the district of Gion
and learn about these beautiful women and their important contribution to keeping traditional Japanese arts
alive.
Day 9: Kyoto
Today we visit Tōei Uzumasa Eigamura; also known as Kyoto Studio Park.
Essentially a small town from the Edo Period, the park features a collection of various traditional buildings
which are regularly used as a backdrop for filming historical movies and television dramas.
The park includes entire streets depicting town scenes, including a replica of the old Nihonbashi Bridge, a
traditional court house, a Meiji Period police box and part of the former Yoshiwara red light district. Park
attendants dressed in historic costumes add to the atmosphere of the town. Filming often takes place in
various parts of the park and we will be able to observe the action.
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you get
the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.
Day 10: Kobe
Today we travel to Kobe to visit Himeji Castle ­ a hilltop castle complex located in Himeji, in
Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan. The castle is regarded as the finest surviving example of Japanese
castle architecture, comprising a network of 83 buildings with advanced defensive systems from
the feudal period.
Himeji Castle is frequently known as Hakuro­jō ("White Egret Castle") or Shirasagi­jō ("White
Heron Castle") because of its brilliant white exterior and supposed resemblance to a bird taking
flight. The castle has been featured extensively in foreign and Japanese films, including the
James Bond movie "You Only Live Twice" (1967), and Akira Kurosawa's Kagemusha (1980) and
Ran (1985).
Day 11: Kobe
The 1993 classic movie ‘Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla’ was set in Kobe, but this fifth largest city of
Japan has a lot more to discover.
Located between the sea and the Rokko mountain range, Kobe has been an important port city
for many centuries and was one of the first to be opened to foreign trade in the 19th century.
In 1995, Kobe was hit by the Great Hanshin­Awaji Earthquake, which killed over 5000 people and
destroyed tens of thousands of buildings. Today the city is completely rebuilt, and few signs
remain of that disaster.
Day 12: Osaka
As well as being the setting for four Godzilla movies, Osaka was the setting for most of the
Gamera monster movies. Created in 1965 by the Daiei Motion Picture Company (to rival the
success of Toho Studios’ Godzilla franchise), Gamera is a like a giant prehistoric turtle and
through the years has gained fame and notoriety as a Japanese icon.
With a population of 2.5 million, Osaka has been the economic powerhouse of the Kansai region
for many centuries.
We spend the day exploring and discovering this dynamic city so often destroyed by the
monsters of the movies.
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you get
the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.
Day 13: Tokyo
We return to Tokyo and visit Sengakuji ­ a small temple near Shinagawa Station. The temple is
famous for its graveyard where the "47 Ronin" (also known as Akoroshi, the "masterless
samurai from Ako") are buried.
The story of the 47 loyal ronin remains one of the most popular historical stories in Japan, and
many people visit the temple in order to pay respect to the Akoroshi by burning incense sticks
(senko) in the graveyard. A small museum commemorating the 47 ronin can also be found at
Sengakuji.
December 14 is the anniversary of the 47 ronin's vengeance. A festival is held annually at
Sengakuji to commemorate the event, attracting thousands of visitors. The small graveyard
becomes very crowded and smoky during the festival, and many festival foods such as
Okonomiyaki and Takoyaki can be enjoyed at temporarily constructed food stands.
Day 14: Departure
After a traditional breakfast together we say farewell and board our flights to return to Australia.
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you get
the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.
Accommodation
● Traditional inns (6 nights)
● Please keep in mind that accommodation as shown in the itinerary is subject to availability at time
of booking. The closest available alternative will be substituted if our first choice hotels are not
available. Deductions or supplements may be applied to the trip price as a result.
Meals
● While travelling with us you will experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world.
Generally, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where and what to eat, not all meals are
included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility.
Meal Inclusions
● 6 Breakfasts
Transport
● Bullet train, train, bus, metro, ferry, walking
Fast Facts
● Private Groups: Private group options are available
for this trip
● Singles: A single supplement is available for this
trip (ask our staff for more information)
● Leader: Expert local leader
Welcome to www.ventureea.com:
Venture specialises in small group travel ­ designing activities and itineraries tailored to ensure that you get
the most out of your Adventure, Expedition, or Event.

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