Humanity Tour in Japan
Study Humanities Abroad in Japan
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Your trip to study humanities in Japan begins today! Your group will arrive in the incredible capital city of Tokyo. After checking in to your accommodations, your group will head to the historic Sensō-Ji Temple. Founded in 645 A.D., it is one of Tokyo’s oldest Buddhist temples. It was dedicated to the Bodhisattva Kannon Bosatsu, revered for his compassion. After a day of roaming around the temple complex, your group will shift gears and visit the amazing Robot Restaurant. A truly unique experience, where Japanese culture and robots meet in a one-of-a-kind show! After, your group can walk the city and enjoy the nightlife.
Your second day in Tokyo begins with a traditional delicious breakfast. After that, your group will visit the majestic Meiji Shrine. Established in 1920, the Japanese Diet created this Shinto shrine to honor Emperor Meiji and his wife Empress Shōken for their role during the Meiji Restoration Period. The shrine complex is within 170 acres, so there are many places to see and areas to visit!
After enjoying a quiet and peaceful experience in a Shinto shrine, your group will go to the Yanaka Ginza. This quaint and atmospheric ambiance will take you back into the Tokyo of years past. Lined with traditional restaurants and shops, you will get the old town experience in the middle of one of the most cosmopolitan cities at the forefront of innovation.
For your final day in the city of Tokyo, your group will head to the Tokyo National Museum and the adjacent Ueno Park. Established in 1872, it is one of the oldest and largest museums in Japan and the world. This amazing museum was built within the beautiful Ueno Park, which is also home to other cultural facilities like the Museum of Western Art and the National Museum of Nature and Science, to name a few.
After a long day exploring all the amazing cultural facilities within Ueno Park, you will head to Omoide Yokocho. A remnant of the Showa era in Tokyo, it’s a very narrow alleyway filled with bars and traditional food stands. Try some authentic and traditional Japanese street food like ramen and yakitori, while winding down after a day full of walking and sightseeing.
After an early morning, your group will head to the famous Shinkansen for a wonderful ride to the historic city of Kyoto. Once you have arrived and have checked into your accommodations, the first place you will visit the Fushimi Inari-Taisha Shrine. Founded in 711 A.D., it was built in honor of Inari, the Japanese Shinto kami of rice and patron of business. After touring one of Japan’s most famous temples, your group will head to the Kinkaku-ji Temple. Built as a Zen Buddhist Temple in 1397, it was rebuilt in 1955 after being infamously burnt down in 1950 by the novice monk Hayashi Yoken.
After touring two of the city’s most famous temples, your group will end this day’s sightseeing with a visit to Kyoto Tower. Measuring 430 feet, it’s Kyoto’s tallest building. Inside, you will find different stores, restaurants, a hotel, and a 360-degree observation deck at 330 feet.
Your second day in Kyoto will begin with a tour of the Kiyomizu-Dera Buddhist temple. A part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto, it was was established in 779 A.D. during the early Heian Period by Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, later built by Tokugawa Iemitsu during in 1633. After, your group will head to the Eikan-dō Zenrin-Ji Temple, the head temple of the Seizan branch of Pure Land Buddhism. Also known as Jōdō-shū, it’s one of the most popular branches for Buddhism, along with Jōdō Shinsū. After walking through these beautiful temples, your group will visit the famous Nishiki Market. Around 400 years old, it’s a wonderful place to experience the traditional foods of Kyoto and a great place to do some shopping.
Your final day in day in Kyoto will begin with a car ride to the beautiful Mt. Arashiyama, to visit the Monkey Park Iwatayama. The park has around 120 snow monkeys, also known as Japanese macaque. Be sure to bring comfy shoes and lots of water, since there are many activities to do and places to see. The next stop on your tour is the Maruyama Park. Accessible through Yasaka Shrine, it is also flanked by the temple of Chion-in, as well as the smaller temple of Shōren-in.
The park is the busiest during April when the cherry blossom trees bloom, but it is still a lovely place to visit year round. The final place your group will visit is the Gion District, located on the other side of the Yasaka Shrine. It was founded during the famous Sengoku Period and has many cultural activities, teahouses, and restaurants to visit and explore.
After an early breakfast, your group will make the one-hour trip to the magnificent city of Osaka. After checking into your accommodations, you will visit the Minoo National Park. The park has a trail that leads to a lovely waterfall. The first half of the trail passes by several shops, temple buildings, and other facilities, while the other half is steeper and is surrounded by trees. After walking through nature, your group will visit the Hozenji Temple. A lovely Buddhist temple, it’s a smaller temple off the beaten path located on Yokocho Street. Finally, your group will head to the Osaka Shochikuza Theatre to enjoy a kabuki theatre performance. Kabuki theatre is a traditional style of dance-drama performance, created by Izumo no Okuni in 1603.
Your final day touring the cultural sites of Osaka begins with a delicious breakfast, after which your group will go to the historic Osaka Castle. It’s one of Japan’s most important and famous landmarks and one of the key places of the unification of Japan during the final years of the era of the Warring States. Built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi in 1586, it was destroyed in 1868 during the Meiji Restoration. Osaka’s Government has undertaken various restoration projects; they completed the most recent one in 1997.
After touring this magnificent castle, the next stop for your group is the Shitennoji Temple. Founded in 593 A.D. by Prince Shōtoku, it’s believed to be one of the first and oldest Buddhist temples in Japan. The structure that stands today was rebuilt in 1963, with careful consideration and care to preserve the original 6th-century design. Finally, you will visit the Kuromon Ichiba Market, a market that houses vendors selling street food, fresh produce, and shellfish. It’s also a great place to purchase souvenirs and other Japanese wares for your loved ones back home.
After an early breakfast, your group will be free to roam the city, doing some sightseeing or some final shopping before heading to the airport for the journey home.
Japan is an amazing country with a long and storied history. Their dedication as a culture to preserve their national heritage is one of the many reasons to come and visit. Join us to study humanities in Japan and learn how climate change affects every aspect of our lives!
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