your daily adventures
Meet in Tokyo, travel by train and bus to Magome
Today you meet your guide for the trip and begin your journey on the Nakasendo Trail by traveling to the post town of Magome. Almost completely destroyed by fire in 1895, the town has been lovingly brought back to life with the combined hard work of the Japanese Government and the local residents. Once checked in to our traditional accommodation for the night, we have the remainder of the day to explore the small shops dotted along the main street of the town or walk up to a viewpoint that offers spectacular views of the area.
Walk from Magome to Tsumago
Our journey along the Nakasendo Trail truly begins today with a walk over Magome Pass to Tsumago, one of the best-preserved and most evocative of the Nakasendo post-towns. Spend the night at a family-run Minshuku in Tsumago or the nearby hamlet of O-Tsumago, with a delicious home-cooked Japanese dinner and breakfast included.
Walk from Tsumago to Nojiri
The longest day on the trail is a beautiful and varied hike from Tsumago to Nojiri. The trail travels through small valleys and past forests of bamboo and Japanese cedar, through some of the least-developed scenery on the tour. We will then continue by train to Kiso-Fukushima. Stay at a lovely hot-spring Ryokan set in a peaceful valley above the town. Complimentary transfer from the station is provided by the Ryokan. The Ryokan has lovely indoor and outdoor hot-spring baths.
Morning walk to Gongentaki Falls. Afternoon visit to local Sake Brewery
Today we’ll take a picturesque but short walk to Gongentaki Falls. During the Heian period, the General Kiso Yoshinaka fought fiercely with the powerful Heike clan. It is said that he prayed to the god of Gongentaki Waterfall, Ontake Daigongen, for victory. The trail will take us along a river path with a steep ascent to the falls, from here we’ll enjoy the gentle descent back into the town with its wonderful views.After lunch, we’ll visit a traditional sake brewery to learn about how sake is made. Sake is only brewed in the cooler months, when the delicate koji molds can work their magic and provide the necessary fermentation.
Walk from Kiso-Fukushima to Narai
The Ryokan will drive us back to Kiso-Fukushima after breakfast for us to take the short journey from Kiso-Fukushima to Yabuhara, the starting point for the hike over the Torii pass to Narai. We’ll have a chance to explore this atmospheric village before check-in to our family-run inn in the heart of the village for the evening.
Walk from Narai to Kiso-Hirasawa
After breakfast, we’ll begin the short walk to the town of Kiso-Hirasawa, famous for its lacquer ware. We’ll spend time exploring the small shops selling beautifully-crafted tableware and furniture, learning about the how these are made. From here we board a train at Kiso-Hirasawa station for your onward journey to Karuizawa for your final overnight stay. Traveling first to Matsumoto, we will visit the renowned castle before connecting onwards to our destination Karuizawa.
Onward travel to Tokyo
After breakfast we begin our journey back to Tokyo where our tour ends.