Take the trip of a lifetime to Japan

If you’re looking for the trip of a lifetime to Japan, you’re in the right place.

Japan is one of the most fascinating countries in the world, but getting beneath the surface can be a challenge for even the most experienced travelers. Our specialty is helping travelers embark on unique, memorable experiences – not just sightseeing or checking items off a list.

Sample Boutique Japan Itineraries

Our sample trips are here to inspire you.

We can use them as a foundation for your bespoke trip, or design your trip completely from scratch. These are not fixed itineraries, and can be customized or altered in almost any way.

Learn more about planning a custom trip with Boutique Japan.

Boutique Japan is a small company that eschews volume and spends more time customizing each trip to offer travelers a fresh, creative approach to Japan.” — Condé Nast Traveler

Bespoke Japan Travel Experiences

Japan offers an incredible array of cultural and culinary experiences, from the sublime to the exhilarating. We don’t believe one size fits all, and design your trip just for you whether your interests lie in:

  • Japan’s incredible cities and historic towns and villages
  • Experiencing the tradition of a luxurious ryokan (inn)
  • Visiting centuries-old crafts shops in the backstreets of Kyoto
  • Exploring neighborhood izakayas, high-end restaurants, and casual noodle shops with a local expert
  • Modern and traditional arts and crafts, and the art island of Naoshima
  • Soaking in remote onsen (hot springs) while snow falls around you
  • Outdoor pursuits amid beautiful natural surroundings
  • Architecture and gardens
  • Or virtually anything else Japan offers

We meticulously arrange your trip around your unique interests, ideal travel pace, accommodation preferences, and personal travel style.

Pricing for a trip with Boutique Japan

Every trip we design is unique, thus we don’t have “set” pricing. The price of your trip depends on factors such as travel dates and seasonality, accommodations, guides and experiences, and more.

To help give you a good sense of approximate pricing, over the years we’ve found our trips tend to fall into one of the ranges below (these are merely guidelines, and are not hard categories).

Please note that during peak seasons, pricing may be higher.

If budget is not a concern and you are simply looking for the absolute best of everything, we also offer a White Glove option.

A Japanese woman purifies herself before entering Fushimi Inari Taisha

Itinerary Design Fee

We typically require a preliminary itinerary design fee, which allows us to dedicate our time and efforts to each of our clients, and give each trip the personal love and attention it deserves.

The amount varies depending on various factors (such as trip length, itinerary intricacy, etc.) and is fully applicable toward the final cost of your trip.

What’s included in the cost of a trip with Boutique Japan?

The exact details vary, since every trip is completely unique, but a trip with us typically includes:

  • A tailor-made itinerary crafted personally for you, based on our in-depth Japan expertise, relationships, and firsthand experience
  • All your accommodations, in boutique and luxury hotels and ryokans to match your taste and priorities
  • In-country transport via the shinkansen (bullet train) and more, with expertly-planned logistics for peace of mind and convenience
  • Unique private tours and experiences, with as much (or little) free time as you’d like
  • Recommendations for authentic, memorable experiences, including well-known highlights and hidden gems
  • Meals at accommodations and during culinary outings
  • Extensive pre-departure information to help you prepare for your trip, including expert advice on etiquette, food, packing, Wi-Fi, language, tipping, and more
  • A Japan specialist to answer your questions, and thoughtful customer service (including 24/7 assistance during your trip)

Skyline of Osaka, Japan at night

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Why travel with Boutique Japan?

We’re a small, independent company and intentionally choose to work with a small number of clients at a time (see our current availability). This enables us to give each trip the love and attention it deserves. If you’re looking for a completely unique, once-in-a-lifetime trip to Japan, we’d be honored to help.

How does your service work?

It’s simple! We listen to you, provide expert input based on our in-depth Japan expertise, and then design a completely unique Japan itinerary for you. You can learn more about planning a custom trip with us here.

When is the best time of year to visit Japan?

Japan is a year-round destination, and we usually recommend taking advantage of any chance to visit, since each of Japan’s seasons is great in its own way.

If your dates are flexible, we recommend reading our in-depth article, When is the best time of year to visit Japan? While we can typically plan around your ideal travel dates, advance planning is essential.

Do you offer group tours?

At this time, we focus primarily on private tours. We can help whether you’re a solo traveler, couple, family, group of friends, or a private group.

Can you arrange travel to places in Japan not mentioned in the sample trips?

Yes, of course! Our sample itineraries are simply examples. We plan every single trip from scratch, based on our travelers’ unique priorities and interests.

How much do things cost in Japan?

Probably not as much as you think! While Japan may be more expensive than places like Latin America or Southeast Asia, it’s generally less expensive than places like Singapore, Australia, or Scandinavia. See our post, Is Japan expensive?

Is Japan good for families?

Yes, Japan is an amazing family destination. For more on family travel in Japan, see our article, Is Japan good for families?

Do I need the Japan Rail Pass?

The Japan Rail Pass can be a good way to get around Japan, but most people don’t realize it’s not always the best option. For a more in-depth approach, see our article, Should you get the Japan Rail Pass?

What is it like to stay in a ryokan?

Staying in a ryokan is a great way to fully immerse yourself in traditional Japanese culture. But for non-Japanese, there can be many surprises, as it’s quite different from staying at a hotel.

Take our virtual ryokan tour to see if it’s right for you. Even if not, in most parts of Japan there are non-ryokan hotel alternatives.

I have so many other questions!
  • What should I pack?
  • Can you teach me some basic Japanese etiquette?
  • Which Japanese words and phrases should I learn?
  • Do I need a visa?

Not to worry! We make sure all of our clients are prepared with extensive pre-departure information – this is simply part of our service.

Anything else I should know?

Japan is an amazing destination for so many reasons. But don’t just take it from us — see what our travelers say.