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Unique Japanese Port Experiences

Japan may be a small island country, but what it lacks in land mass it makes up for in big culture and fascinating people.

Touring Japan by cruise ship gives you the opportunity to experience all that Japan has to offer, without the inconveniences of land travel through multiple cities. Many Japanese cities have ports that can accommodate cruise ships, here are some of the most unique things to do in the most popular ports:

Hakodate- Craft a Souvenir

Learn about traditional Japanese leatherwork and craft a unique piece of your own to take home- you can engrave a name, letters, numbers or patterns, paint the leather with a special dye, apply a finishing coat, and attach beads and braids. The skills will be taught carefully to each person, making it enjoyable for people with no prior experience. No work requires physical power, so a whole family can easily enjoy the experience together.

Otaru- Private Guided Walking Tour

You can explore Otaru as you want with a local professional & friendly guide on a private walking tour. Since this is a customized private tour, you can choose the tour time and the sights you visit, so come with a list (your travel advisor can help!) or ask for a sample tour itinerary.

Kushiro- Wildlife Photography Workshop

The Red-Crowned Cranes, known as snow ballerinas, are the main photographic subject on this tour. You'll capture their mesmerizing courtship dance as they bow to one another, raise their heads towards the sky; a pair, or the entire flock, will leap into the air and call in unison to sanctify their bond. Your photography workshop leader will use his years of experience to get the best shots fast.

Aomori- Japanese Hot Spring Experience

Experience traditional Japanese hot spring bathing. You may choose whether you prefer mixed bathing or separated (special cloths are available if you would like to limit your “exposure”, as traditional bathing is typically done without clothing).

Akita- Floating Tent and Lake

This excursion takes place at Tazawako Campground, where you will spend time on the lake in a floating tent. The staff will explain the precautions to be taken at your campsite, and then you are welcome to relax and read a book, take a nap, or invent your own way to spend your time!

Tokyo- Private Mt. Fuji Tour

Check out one of Japan's most beautiful, iconic destinations—Mt. Fuji—on this convenient day tour from Tokyo. Visit several places in the Fuji area from where you can get beautiful views of the mountain (weather permitting), including Hakone, Lake Kawaguchi, the 5th Station on Mt. Fuji, and more. Since this is a private tour, you can customize the itinerary to suit your own interests.

Kyoto- Traditional Tea Ceremony

If you’re visiting Japan for the first time, receive a cultural introduction to the country during a tea ceremony in traditional kimonos. During the ceremony, learn about Japanese history and sample matcha green tea, a local specialty. Plus, wearing a traditional kimono means you leave the experience with fantastic photographs to commemorate your time in Kyoto.

Hiroshima- Miyajima, Hiroshima Castle, and Peace Memorial Park

This tour is the ideal way to make the most of your time in Hiroshima. Visit the beautiful island of Miyajima to see its beautiful floating Itsukushima Shrine and the Buddhist Daisho-in Temple. Then visit the Impressive Hiroshima Castle, and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.

Ishigaki- Snorkel “Phantom Island”

Experience one of Japan's most renowned snorkeling destinations during this half-day excursion to Ishigaki Island—nicknamed “Phantom Island” since the inlet disappears at high tide. Snorkeling equipment is included, and you'll receive digital underwater photographs of your adventure. Enjoy panoramic sea views and a peek at coral-filled Iriomote Ishigaki National Park. Get a first-hand immersion into one of Japan ’s most celebrated coral reefs.

Kagoshima- Make Sushi!

A family-trained sushi chef (an Haikara-tei) will teach you how to make different types of sushi using traditional ingredients and techniques. You’ll wear a uniform to make (and eat!) your own sushi creations.

Curious about cruising in Japan? Check out a sample itinerary.

Ready to start planning YOUR trip? Schedule a quick phone call with me or submit a trip request form .

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