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Embark on a 12-night voyage onboard the HANSEATIC Inspiration combing the delights of South Korea with the enigmatic coastal destinations of western Japan. Expert-led shore excursions are designed to help you discover the modern and ancient cultural elements of each nation and are complemented by the comforts of cruising on your luxury vessel. Explore immaculate Japanese gardens, bathe in natural thermal hot springs, discover historic port towns in South Korea, visit traditional geisha houses and admire the natural landscapes of Japan amongst many highlights on this Asian cruise adventure.
Day 1 & 2: Inchon (Seoul)
Arrive in Inchon (Seoul) where your South Korean and Japan cruising adventure begins. After a night in a conveniently located hotel, embark the HANSEATIC inspiration luxury vessel on your second day. Meet your expert crew and fellow travellers before setting off along the Yellow Sea in the direction of Busan.
Day 3: At Sea
A day at sea to enjoy the facilities of the HANSEATIC inspiration.
Day 4: Busan
Arrive in Busan at the southwestern tip of South Korea. This is your first opportunity to disembark the HANSEATIC inspiration and the port city will delight with an exploration of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Gyeongju or with a coastal walk through Igidae Park. Later this evening, your cruise will head along the Korea Strait with Japan your next destination.
Day 5: Karatsu
Your first stop in Japan is the coastal city of Karatsu, a refined town which serves as a perfect introduction into Japanese culture and nature. Plenty of time will be free to explore independently or to take a group excursion to Karatsu Castle and its splendid garden.
Day 6: Miyajima / Hiroshima
A busy but fulfilling day awaits with an early morning arrival at the city of Hiroshima. Whilst poignantly commemorating its infamous history, Hiroshima has a lot to offer visitors and a short excursion to the sacred island of Miyajima is the perfect place to start. Discover the allure of one of Japan’s most famous landmarks, the Itsukushima Shrine and then head back to the mainland for a tour of the city.
Day 7: Beppu
Follow in the footsteps of samurai by bathing in thermal waters in the spa city of Beppu. An ancient tradition and iconic in certain areas of Japan, you will be able to enjoy this exhilarating experience in a traditional onsen, surrounded by stone Buddhas thought to be over 1,000 years old.
Day 8: Hamada
On a scenic cruising morning, pass through the Kanmon Strait between the large islands of Kyushu and Honshu and into the Sea of Japan until you reach Hamada. Located on the coast to the backdrop of verdant hilly ridges, Hamada is wonderful city which a strong history, best discovered on a tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine.
Day 9: Maizuru / Kyoto
Arrive in Maizuru and travel to the spiritual centre of Japan, the imperial city of Kyoto. Spend the best part of the day exploring the city, with its myriad of temples and extravagant shrines as well as the Nijo Castle and the bridge of heaven which displays in all its glory one of Japan’s most beautiful natural landscapes.
Day 10: Kanazawa
A day to discover the spiritual and zen side of the country that is synonymous with Japan. In the city of Kanazawa, explore immaculate Japanese gardens, visit old geisha and samurai houses and admire the Eihei-ji Temple, one of the world’s most important Zen Buddhism sites.
Day 11: Sado Island
The island of Sado boast an impressive history and natural beauty and a culture that has heavily inspired the classic Japanese Noh theatre. Discover the landmarks of the island, both natural and man-made and admire the wooden ‘washtub boats’ that were traditionally used by the fisherwomen of the island.
Day 12: Noshiro
Travel further up the northern coast, one of the most beautiful stretches of natural scenery of the cruise and disembark in Noshiro. Explore the verdant hinterland of the region including the Shirakami-Sanchi beech forest before revelling in the tranquillity of the island of Hokkaido.
Day 13: Hakodate
On your last full day of the cruise, visit the Onuma Quasi-National Park reached after a short road journey from Hakodate. Explore the park characterised by its volcano, abundant bird life and rich vegetation before enjoying one final night onboard the HANSEATIC inspiration.
Day 14: Fly Home
Disembark the HANSEATIC inspiration in Otaru (Sapporo) and transfer to the airport for your onward flight.
From £6,999 per person
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