1. Iconic Mount Fuji

Standing proud at 3,776 metres, Mount Fuji or Fuji-san is one of three sacred mountains of Japan, yet the most recognisable without a doubt. Of course, ascending Mount Fuji for spectacular views is an absolute must for any visitor, however, did you know there is so much to see and do around Mount Fuji? Enjoy a relaxing cruise on Lake Ashi, take to the skies on the Komagatake Railway Ropeway or be at one with nature as you hike at the base of the mountain.

2. Zip around by bullet train

Japan’s rail network is one of the most extensive and efficient in the world making travel by train one of the fastest and most convenient ways to explore the country. The network extends to every corner of Japan and is incredibly punctual with Japan’s bullet trains among some of the fastest in the world.

3. Sagano Bamboo Forest

Sagano Bamboo Forest is a sight to behold and a photographer’s paradise. Located in Arashiyama on the outskirts of Kyoto, this sprawling grove comprises of towering green stalks of bamboo.

It has been named one of the “100 Soundscapes of Japan” by the Japanese Ministry of Environment due to the sound of the rustling bamboo, a selection of everyday sounds intended to encourage locals to stop and appreciate nature’s music.

4. Visit the Snow Monkeys

Located north from Tokyo in Joshinetsu-Kogen National Park is a Snow Monkey’s paradise. Known by ancient Japanese as ‘Hell Valley’ for its unforgiving landscapes, Jigokudani is covered in snow for most of the year. Jigokudani sits at 850 metres above sea level, and the snow falls over one metre thick. The valley is one of the few places in the world where visitors can observe these social animals in their natural environment. Walking through a picturesque, forested valley, you will reach the steaming hot pools where the beautiful Japanese Macaques, or Snow Monkeys bathe and play in the water.

5. Nature at its best

Cherry blossoms have been an inspiration for poetry writing and painting for centuries. Hanami, translates to ‘looking at flowers’. Spring is one of the most popular times to experience Japan with the soft pink flowers in bloom, locals enjoying picnics underneath the trees or trees lit up by lanterns at night. In complete contrast the autumn leaves season brings a multitude of maple and gingko trees ablaze with leaves in rich, vibrant shades of red, yellow and orange. Autumn leaves in the Japanese Alps makes for a spectacular sight.

6. Relax in an onsen

Central to Japanese culture for centuries, an onsen or hot spring can be found all over Japan, in fact there are thousands given Japan is a volcanic country. The water contains minerals which are thought to have physical and health benefits and there are many different onsen including indoor and outdoor, natural and man-made. For a truly magical experience, try an outdoor onsen in spring with the beautiful cherry blossoms or for the brave, a winter onsen.

7. Experience Tokyo

A big, bright and brash city, Japan’s capital perfectly epitomises the clash of modern and traditional, futuristic and era’s gone by. As modern as it may appear, behind the neon façade is a traditional soul that can be found in the alleyways, temples and shrines of the Edo era. Today, Tokyo offers an abundance of museums, temples, shopping, culinary gems and gardens. Be sure to visit Tokyo Skytree, the world’s tallest tower for amazing views, Sensoji Temple and enjoy a cruise on Tokyo Bay at night, the perfect vantage point to admire the bright lights of the city.

8. Food glorious food

One cannot visit Japan and not mention the amazing and fresh culinary delights. From fresh sashimi and sushi to delicate hand-made noodles and steaming ramen, you will be spoilt for choice. Whether you are dining at a Michelin star restaurant or a traditional little eatery, you are in for a treat.

Experience Japan on Wendy Wu Tours’ collection of fully escorted tours. For a limited time, your companion flies FREE, or save 50% on the single supplement on selected tours and dates. See offer online or call 1300 727 998.

Images: Shutterstock

This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with Wendy Wu Tours.

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