Day 1: Kyoto – HiroshimaAfter morning pickup from the New Miyako Hotel, head to Kyoto station to board the Nozomi or Hikari bullet train (Shinkansen) to Hiroshima station. After the approximate 2-hour ride, disembark and walk with your guide to Hotel Granvia Hiroshima to check in.
From here, board a comfortable coach to Miyajimaguchi, where your tour continues via boat to Miyajima, aka Sacred Island. Follow your guide on a 45-minute tour of Itsukushima Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage site that appears to float on water at high tide.
Afterward, enjoy 1.5 hours of free time for lunch (own expense) before returning by boat to Miyajimaguchi, where you’ll board a coach with your guide. Visit Peace Memorial Park, located near the epicenter of the first atomic bomb, which fell on the city on August 6, 1945.
Gaze in wonder at the UNESCO-listed Hiroshima Peace Memorial (or the Genbaku Dome), the only original structure left standing in the area. Preserved as it was immediately after the nuclear blast, the skeletal dome serves as both a stark reminder of a devastating event and a symbol for peace.
You’ll also visit Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, featuring poignant exhibitions of items related to the A-bomb such as tattered student uniforms, drawings by survivors, and the diary of a middle school student documenting the days leading up to the tragic day.
After around 1.5 hours at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, reboard the coach to JR Hiroshima station. Your tour ends at your accommodation in the evening, with free time to purchase dinner out on your own.
Overnight: Hotel Granvia Hiroshima in Hiroshima
Day 2: Hiroshima – Kyoto (L)Check out of your hotel and depart for Hiroshima station to board the Kodama bullet train for a 1.5-hour ride to Shin-Kurashiki station.
When you arrive in Kurashiki, take a walking tour of the town's Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter lined with well-preserved buildings from the 17th to 20th centuries.
Stroll the streets and alleys on your sightseeing tour as your guide points out earthen-walled villas and stone bridges flanked by weeping willows lining the Kurashiki River. If there’s time, browse the cafes, souvenir shops, and art galleries.
After breaking for a lunch with your group, proceed with your guide to the Ohara Museum of Art. This private museum, established in 1930, is the oldest in Japan to feature Western art. During your 40-minute tour, view works by the likes of Monet, Cezanne, Gauguin, Manet and Pissarro.
Then, continue on from Kurashiki station to take the JR train (non-reserved seat) to Okayama. Take a short walk from the station to Okayama Korakuen Garden. Completed in 1700, the World Heritage site was destroyed in World War II and later restored to its original appearance by using Edo-period paintings and diagrams of the gardens.
You'll return to Okayama station in the evening to ride the 1.5-hour Hikari bullet train back to Kyoto station, where your 2-day tour ends.