Why should you travel to Japan with us?

Seems overwhelming, huge, and thrilling? Come with us to Japan and we’ll cut through the language barrier, the options, and the indecision.

Over the years, many have turned their lens on Japan; seeking to unpick its mysteries, to make sense of it all. Whether Ruth Benedict’s Chrysanthemum and the Sword (way back in 1946) or Wim Wender’s 1985 Tokyo-Ga. But there’s not much to unpick when you have the country’s best guides, contacts and locals at your disposal; from a former sumo wrestler who’ll introduce you to Ryo-Goku (the home of the sumo), to a traditional geisha and our local experts on the ‘art island’ of Naoshima (the place with Yayoi Kusama’s gigantic pumpkin statues). Whatever you choose to experience on your bespoke Japan itinerary, we’ve got it sorted. Immersive, transformational. Really, the trip of a lifetime.

Key facts

  • Population Population 126,400,000
  • Capital Capital Tokyo
  • Currency Currency Yen
  • Language Language Japanese
  • Time Difference Time Difference GMT + 9 | ET + 14
  • Best time Best time Mar - May / Sep - Oct

Example Itineraries

These are simply suggestions for the kind of holiday you might have. Yours will be tailored, altered, and refined until it matches you completely.

Tokyo & Kyoto: Learn the Way of the Ninja

Konnichiwa.. Here at Black Tomato our Japan experts have been working hard to hone one of our favourite experiences, one that promises to get you under the skin of Japan’s culture and it’s fascinating and mysterious ...

View experience

The Best of Japan: Ancient Traditions & Modern Worlds

Few places blend ancient traditions and cutting-edge contemporary culture as well, or as interestingly, as Japan. Here, you'll find the height of modernity alongside some of the world's most beautiful ancient temples and...

View experience

Tokyo, Kyoto & Takayama: An Art-Fuelled Discovery

Japan is a place of incredible art, wonderful ceremony and a unique culture that owes much to a vibrant and multi-cultural past. To delve into these things - perhaps the most important features of this wondrous country -...

View experience

Tokyo to Kyoto: A Journey Inspired by Hardy Amies

Spend eight nights in the naturally and culturally beautiful country of Japan, embarking on a journey from Tokyo to Kyoto, where you’ll flip between shopping experiences, stunning temple visits, and some of the finest ...

View experience

Tokyo, Hakone & Osaka: A Luxury Holiday around the Flavours of Japan

Japan’s culinary scene is truly a force to be reckoned with. From ultra-modern sushi bars to thriving marketplaces to the more traditional Kaiseki dining experience; this itinerary involves insightful tours by food pro...

View experience

Kyoto: Immerse Yourself in Japanese Culture

Travel from East to West over eight nights and discover Kyoto as the Yin to Tokyo’s Yang. Yes, there are temples, and yes, Japan is packed full of tradition. But it’s also moving quickly, and that's why we love it. O...

View experience

Tokyo, Kyoto & Naoshima: Unique Customs & Timeless Traditions

Sitting high on so many bucket lists, Japan is a country ripe for discovery. We've come for the fast-paced nature of its futuristic cities in the past but, today, it's all about the slow, mesmeric rhythms of its ancient ...

View experience

USA, Canada & Japan: Ski the Northern Hemisphere

We asked our travel experts what their ultimate bucket-list ski experience would be, and decided that sometimes one country just simply isn't enough. On this intrepid ski adventure, we'll take you to some of our team's f...

View experience

Okinawa: Island Hopping & Wild Isles in Japan

Tropical jungles teeming with extraordinary wildlife, myth-rich diving and remote beauty – it pays to get off the beaten track in Okinawa. Most forget that there are about 160 islands in Japan’s subtropic archipelago...

View experience

Tokyo to Mt. Naeba: A Cultural Ski Trip in Japan

Japan is one of those destinations that never fails to leave us truly spellbound. Culturally it stands alone with its unique heritage and fast growing modern metropolises, yet few of you may know it's also a serious hot-...

View experience

What to see & do in Japan

As ever, if you can’t see it here then we can still plan it for you.

A JOURNEY TO JAPAN

Loud and quiet. Traditional and modern. Japan is all these things at once. You can feel at one with this charming countr...

Loud and quiet. Traditional and modern. Japan is all these things at once. You can feel at one with this charming country that has cherry-picked the best of Western culture and married it with its captivating ancient traditions. Likewise, we’re here to handcraft your ideal visit. Whether you want a photo under the famous cherry blossom trees in Tokyo, would prefer to weave through the bright lights of Akihabara, or like the idea of lodging at Hakone National Park with Mount Fuji as a backdrop, we’ve got it covered.

Read moreless
Sushi in Japan

SAMPLE THE TASTES OF TOKYO

Tokyo is a city that ignites all of your senses. There is a never-ending stream of bright lights, quirky fashion, and da...

Tokyo is a city that ignites all of your senses. There is a never-ending stream of bright lights, quirky fashion, and dazzling architecture. All of the commotion can make us develop an appetite, so it’s a good thing Tokyo houses some of the best markets and restaurants on the planet. Make an early morning visit to the famous Tsukiji Fish Market and book into anyone of the over 200 Michelin-Starred eateries.

Read moreless

WALK AMONG THE CHERRY BLOSSOM

Every year between March and April, the gardens of Japan turn pink with an abundance of blooming Cherry Blossoms. A powe...

Every year between March and April, the gardens of Japan turn pink with an abundance of blooming Cherry Blossoms. A powerful and intoxicating sight, witnessing this sea of pink florets is an incredibly special and memorable experience. To marvel at this natural spectacle, we recommend visiting Nakaragi no Michi Path in Kyoto or Shinjuku Gyoen in Tokyo – both of which we offer intimate tours of.

Read moreless

RELAX IN AN ONSEN

A Japanese pastime since the 18th century, an Onsen is a natural hot spring containing a number of beneficial minerals, ...

A Japanese pastime since the 18th century, an Onsen is a natural hot spring containing a number of beneficial minerals, and there are over 2,500 of them in the country. A luxury holiday in Japan wouldn’t be complete without a visit to one of these magical baths, followed by a fantastic night’s rest at a traditional Ryokan. We know just the place…

Read moreless
Neon lights in Tokyo skyline

Neon lights and Skyscrapers in Tokyo

Immerse yourself in the always-on buzz of Tokyo life: enjoy a private sake tasting afternoon with a local brewer, learn ...

Immerse yourself in the always-on buzz of Tokyo life: enjoy a private sake tasting afternoon with a local brewer, learn the spirituality of the ninja at the feet of a master sensei, and succumb to the top names of the Ginza shopping district, including Valentino and Shiseido. If you fancy something a little more Zen, you can seek serenity at the ancient Buddhist temple, Sensō-ji. We’ll know the right people to get you in before the crowds arrive, letting you roam the ancient temple at your leisure.

Read moreless
Kyoto travel

Temples and tradition in Kyoto

Boasting close to 2,000 temples and shrines across the region, Kyoto is the opposite of modern Tokyo. Awash with traditi...

Boasting close to 2,000 temples and shrines across the region, Kyoto is the opposite of modern Tokyo. Awash with traditional Japanese culture, Kyoto was once Japan’s former capital and still lives on as the cultural hub of the country. Enjoy expert guidance on an exclusive tour of the dramatic dragon paintings of Tenryu-ji, live life through the eyes of a geisha with a personal tea experience in the Gion district, and embark on a tantalizing ramen cooking class with a private chef.

Read moreless
Street food tour in Osaka

Foodie tours in Osaka

It’s all about eating in Osaka. The fun-loving city is renowned for its unique gastronomical wonders, such as deep-fri...

It’s all about eating in Osaka. The fun-loving city is renowned for its unique gastronomical wonders, such as deep-fried pork cutlets and world-class takoyaki octopus dumplings. Explore the local delights of the Shinsekai neighborhood on an exclusive foodie tour designed by us around your personal palate. After dining out on delicious delicacies, enjoy the uninterrupted night-time views over the vivid cityscape at the top of the iconic Umeda Sky Building. It’s well worth getting over vertigo for, we promise.

Read moreless
Aman Hotel, Tokyo

Aman, Tokyo

If the organized chaos of Tokyo has left you exhausted, you’ll welcome the comfort of Aman. A luxury urban retreat tha...

If the organized chaos of Tokyo has left you exhausted, you’ll welcome the comfort of Aman. A luxury urban retreat that features show-stopping views of the city and the Otemachi Forest, Aman Tokyo is one of just a handful of places in the city where you can experience true peace. Take a dip in its chic, contemporary spa or unwind with one of the bartenders’ ingenious cocktail creations.

Read moreless
Hiiragiya Ryokan in Kyoto

Hiiragiya Ryokan, Kyoto

Kyoto is brimming with Japanese tradition and the family-run Hiiragiya Ryokan is testament to that fact. With just 28 ro...

Kyoto is brimming with Japanese tradition and the family-run Hiiragiya Ryokan is testament to that fact. With just 28 rooms in a subtle, stripped-back-yet-luxurious style, it has a homely vibe. Hard to believe you’re just minutes from the buzz of downtown Kyoto.

Read moreless
st-regis osaka

St Regis, Osaka

The rush of the bustling metropolis of Osaka can soon leave you seeking a more peaceful setting, and the St Regis Hotel ...

The rush of the bustling metropolis of Osaka can soon leave you seeking a more peaceful setting, and the St Regis Hotel knows this all too well. Check-in for instant serenity, which includes impossibly comfortable rooms decked in decadent gold and cream. A 24-hour butler service is at your beck and call, should you feel like an after-hours snack or glass of Champagne. Or the throng of Nanba’s nightlife is just 15 minutes away.

Read moreless
Luxury camping with Black Tomato

Blink luxury camping

Sleep among the foothills of the sacred Mount Fuji then wander our favorite route along the winding trails that lead to ...

Sleep among the foothills of the sacred Mount Fuji then wander our favorite route along the winding trails that lead to the glistening Lake Kawaguchiko just in time for sunrise. Sound impossible? We can arrange for you to lay your head anywhere with Blink luxury camping.

Read moreless
Sumo stables in Tokyo

Access all areas with a sumo expert

Synonymous with sumo, Tokyo’s sumo stables are presented now as they were hundreds, if not thousands, of years ago. We...

Synonymous with sumo, Tokyo’s sumo stables are presented now as they were hundreds, if not thousands, of years ago. We can arrange for access to a sumo wrestling expert ready to give you a hands-on experience. Ask about the culture of a sport that has remained unchanged for hundreds of years, learning its age-old traditions, as well as getting geared up and having a grapple yourself.

Read moreless
Geisha in Kyoto, Japan

Private dining with a geisha

You’ll find few things more iconically Japanese than the kimono and chalk-white complexion of the geisha. Trained in v...

You’ll find few things more iconically Japanese than the kimono and chalk-white complexion of the geisha. Trained in various arts, meeting and interacting with these traditional female entertainers in Kyoto is a highlight for many on a luxury holiday to Japan. We know all the right people around the graceful Gion geisha district so you can open all the doors that average visitors can’t. We’ll arrange for you to share a private tea and dining experience with a traditional host, uncovering the origins of this ancient tradition first-hand.

Read moreless
Samuari swords in Japan

Get to grips with the noble history of the samurai

Towering in stature and selfless in their actions, the samurai existed only to serve. Discover your sense of ‘Ko’ (...

Towering in stature and selfless in their actions, the samurai existed only to serve. Discover your sense of ‘Ko’ (‘no self’) as you spend one-on-one time with a local samurai professor who has studied the art his entire life. Draw strength from trying on the ancient karuta armor and get a handle on the impressive weaponry, unsheathing the iconic curved katana as those in feudal Japan did hundreds of years ago.

Read moreless

Cherry Blossom season sweeps from south to north, lasting even into the dog-days of April. Nothing quite beats attending a traditional tea ceremony (chadō) in Kyoto’s incredibly authentic Gion District during the peak of the bloom. 

Alys Colayera, Japan Travel Expert

Top Locations in Japan

If we were asked to choose our top three places in Japan, we’d go for these.
Old wooden temple tablets in Tokyo

Tokyo

See the world’s busiest city through the eyes of its locals.

Tokyo is big, sleepless, and diverse. With something for everybody, our guides can introduce you to literally anything. A behind-the-scenes sumo tour in Ryo-Goku. A culinary adventure through the eateries of Ginza (more traditional, Michelin-ranked) or Shibuya (small, cosy, informal). Receiving a tour of closed temples and gardens. Or heading on a bar-crawl through Golden Gai. Just ask, and we’ll handle the details.

Bamboo Forest Arashiyama, Kyoto

Kyoto

For tunnels of torii, the temples of Kinkaku-ji, seafood, geisha and monks.

Where Tokyo is heaving and modern, Kyoto is older, quieter and more traditional. We’ll arrange for you to see Japanese culture at its most authentic, whether attending a geisha-led tea ceremony, touring its temples, or watching a beautiful kabuki performance at the newly renovated theatre of Minamiza.

Hakone in Japan

Hakone

Escape the crowds at the foot of Mt Fuji

Framed by the magnificent mountain scenery of Mt Fuji, Hakone – nestled south of Tokyo on Sagami Bay – offers a calming escape from the bustle of Tokyo and the history of Kyoto. Centred on the lake of Ashino-ko, from which the iconic gold-red torii rises, we’ll arrange for you to explore castles, sample incredible seafood, and kick back in some of the country’s most spectacular hotels.

Best Hotels in Japan

Nothing but the best. Browse the hotels that can feature in your bespoke Japan itinerary.

Other destinations you may like

The Great Wall of China Black Tomato
Vietnam holidays
Seville, Spain
The Great Wall of China Black Tomato
Indian Ocean
Indian Subcontinent

Looking for Inspiration?

More about us

FAQS

Got questions about our service? Head here for the answers.

Read more

How it all works

It’s simple, really. This is our service in seven steps.

Read more

Client Testimonials

Take it from them, not us.

Read more

What the Press Say

“The hottest company in luxury
travel takes transformative trips
to the next level”

“Black Tomato are one of the coolest
things in the world. Don’t even try
and live without them”

“Black Tomato, the people who
bring you the coolest vacations
you’ve ever heard of”

“Black Tomato is a super innovative
company where the sky is the limit
for their clients”

“Black Tomato prides itself on
meeting customers every minor
need or desires”

“Many companies brag about offering once-in-a-lifetime experiences. But with Black Tomato it’s not hyperbole”

Can't find it? Don't worry. Just because it's not here, doesn't mean we can't do it.
Call us on +44 207 426 9888 or +1 646 558 3644 or tell us what you're looking for here.
We'll make it happen.

Our cookie policy

By using our website you consent to the use of cookies. To find our more information about how we use cookies, visit our cookie policy page.