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Cherry blossoms, Japan

Best of Japan on Silver Muse

18-day luxury cruise


Short description

Discover the beauty of Japan's blossom season with Silversea

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  • Seek out Japan's iconic cherry blossoms
  • Experience the neon buzz of Tokyo
  • Delight at the views of Mt Fuji from Shimizu
  • Wander amid ancient gardens and centuries-old shrines
  • Enjoy all the indulgent trappings of a Silversea cruise

In Brief

  • 1 Night Tokyo
  • 14 Nights Silver Muse


Recommended for:
History & culture | Ocean cruise

Japan’s cherry blossoms are a visual delight as, each spring, the country's ancient temples, shrines and gardens are framed in pretty pink. This luxury cruise aboard Silversea's Silver Muse makes the most of this spectacular season, calling into a host of ports noted for their rich culture and stunning floral displays. Following an included hotel stay amid the neon delights of Tokyo, you'll seek out the blossoms in Shimizu and Hakodate, as well as take in three new-to-Silversea ports – Akita, Kanazawa and Yeosu. And, along the way, you'll be treated to all the indulgences of a Silversea cruise, from complementary butler service to fine dining in a host of open-seated venues.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
Depart UK

Start your holiday in style with included airport lounge access before your overnight flight to Tokyo.

Day 2

Arrive in Tokyo and transfer to your hotel in the city centre. You'll then have the rest of the day to explore this sprawling, frenetic, and endlessly fascinating city. Shrines and gardens are pockets of calm between famously crowded streets and soaring office buildings. Traditional noodle houses fight for space alongside Western-style chain restaurants and exquisite fine dining restaurants. There's even a three-Michelin-star sushi restaurant – the superb Sukiyabashi Jiro – tucked away behind Ginzo station. Shopping yields superb folk arts as well as the newest gadgets. And, nightlife kicks off with karaoke or sake and continues with techno clubs and more. Whether you seek the traditional or the cutting edge, Tokyo has it all.

Stay: Luxury Tokyo hotel

Meals: B

Days 3-4

Transfer to Silver Muse on the evening of day four before your cruise begins with an overnight hop to Shimizu. The salt and pepper cone of Japan's most famous natural landmark won’t fail to take your breath away, as it soars into the sky in a vision of spectacular symmetry. Make sure your camera is fully prepared before you dock in Shimizu’s port, where unparalleled views of the extraordinary Mount Fuji’s dramatic peak await. Further highlights can be found in the bustling fish market, and the Kunozan Toshogu Shrine. Take the cable car up to the top, to experience the tranquillity of the shrine's surroundings, and to marvel at its deep scarlets and gleaming golds. You can also enjoy heart-stopping views out over the Bay of Suruga, and the tea plantations below.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Days 5-6

Having sailed overnight, you'll arrive into Kobe, which was one of the first harbours to accept foreign traders in 1868 when Japan was emerging from centuries of isolation. What followed was a surge of Western trade and exports. Today, Kobe is a multicultural melting pot, home to expats from some 98 different nations, all of which provide a cultural diversity best seen in a  culinary scene, made famous by the much-sought-after Kobe beef. Aside from the superb food, this is a cosmopolitan city with lively shopping arcades, fascinating museums and a port that is still at the heart of things. And, around the city, there are several pretty parks, which really come into their own during cherry blossom season. Highlights include riverside Ikutagawa and Sumaura on the lower slopes of Mt. Tekkai.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 7
At Sea

Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, whale watching, catching up on your reading or simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 8

Your next port of call is Hiroshima, a city rebuilt after the devastation of World War II. Take in its modern streets with a stroll that brings you along leafy boulevards and among the cherry blossoms of Peace Memorial Park – a place for quiet contemplation. Elsewhere, Hiroshima has a vibrant, eclectic edge, showcased in the bustling downtown where you'll be treated to numerous shops and street-food stalls. And, it's all just a stone's throw from Miyajima and its iconic Torii gate.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 9
Yeosu, South Korea

Hopping across to South Korea, you'll arrive in the port of Yeosu. Punctuated by cliffs, islands and peninsulas the region's scenic shorelines are nothing short of spectacular. Explore its redeveloped waterfront and head out to explore its butterfly-shaped peninsula, known for its succulent seafood and, in spring, its abundance of camellia blossoms.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 10
At Sea

Enjoy another indulgent day at sea, enjoying fine dining, spa treatments and a host of onboard entertainment as you sail towards Kanazawa.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 11

Return to Japan and the capital of the Ishikawa Prefecture, Kanazawa, which once rivalled Kyoto and Tokyo as the country's cultural centre. Highlights include Kanazawa Castle and its next-door gardens, Kenrokuen. Classified as one of the 'Three Gardens of Japan', its 11 hectares are a delight to explore, host to centuries-old fountains and a tea-house that dates back to 1774. Close by, you'll find the Higashi Chaya Gai Geisha District where traditional geisha houses sit side by side with shops selling everything from lacquer ware and Kutani-style pottery to delicately painted silk kimonos.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 12

Sail to Niigata, a port city on Honshu's Sea of Japan coast. The city's sprawling park is a particular highlight, especially during cherry blossom season, while the impressive Nippo observation deck affords some stunning views across the city and beyond. Take time to enjoy a relaxing lunch – the city is well known for its rice and sake.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 13

Arrive in Akita, a beautiful city located on the northern tip of Honshu island, around 500 km north of Tokyo. Your cruise hopefully coincides with the best of the city's superb sakura cherry blossoms, and there can be few more lovely sights than the pink shock of the cherry trees alongside ancient Samurai residences. Akita is also home to a two-kilometre tunnel of blossoming trees that run along the banks of the Hinokinai River. The area is also well known for its onsen hot-spring baths, so take the chance for a relaxing dip before heading back to the ship.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 14

Sail on to Aomori where you can enjoy delicious seafood straight from the bay, including Oma no Maguro (tuna of Oma), as well as delicious fruits and vegetables (particularly garlic). And come every summer, the town cuts loose to throw the decidedly wild Nebuta Matsuri festival, a frenzied, utterly unaccountable period when normal gets thrown to the wind.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 15

Facing out on two bays, Hakodate is a 19th-century port town, with clapboard buildings on sloping streets, a dockside tourist zone, nostalgic streetcars, and fresh fish on every menu. An important trading post since the mid-19th century, Russians, Americans, Chinese and Europeans, and these influences can still be seen today, in the sprinkling of churches and red-brick warehouses that line the historic waterfront. Other notable highlights includes the city's Edo-period Fort Goryokaku and the blossom-filled Hakodate Park, both of which can easily be seen in a day.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 16
At Sea

Enjoy a final full day at sea as you make your way back to Tokyo.

Stay: Silver Muse (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Days 17-18
Tokyo to UK

Once back in the capital, it's time to disembark and take your included shared transfer to the airport for your flight to the UK, arriving home the next day.


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