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Yokoso! Welcome to the World of Art and Culture of Japan - Traditionally, the four seasons are celebrated in Japanese culture. For example, in autumn we celebrate the harvest and nature’s beauty such as viewing of the full moon.

Japanese arts, tradition, history, and culture are deep and varied. These tours are focused on select artistic elements as an introduction to the art and culture of Japan. Our hope is that our themed tours will help preserve Japanese culture and crafts, while fostering awareness and appreciation internationally.

JAPAN - Island of the Performing Arts and Culture

There are more than 10 UNESCO World Heritage sites registered in Japan, but throughout the country, we can find there are people trying to their traditional Japanese arts and culture alive. Shirakawago, one of the World Heritage sites has many people visiting for their one day tour, but on our tour we highly recommend staying overnight there at a house with rafter roof that is a cultural asset itself, as you will see and feel the arts in the moment of quieter morning before the tour groups visit there.

World Heritage sites in Kyoto - We recommend that you first decide which areas to focus on before picking the sites. If your focus is Japanese Gardens, then Ryoanji, Ginkakuji-Silver Pavilion, and Saihoji (moss garden) might be good choices. If the focus is Japanese traditional architecture, then Kamigamo shrine, Uji-Byodoin, and Golden Pavilion would be ideal. We allow you to choose sites based on your interests for you to experience and enjoy Japanese culture.

"Chochin" in Takayama

Arts & Tradition

Many traditional arts are still practiced today. -Noh classical Japanese drama was developed in the 14th century and still some 250 classical repertories are performed today. Kabuki is a theatrical art and has a history of more than 400 years. All characters are performed by men and every stage of the vivid art design of costumes and make-up remain true to Kabuki tradition.

Japan is also a wonderland of dyeing and weaving such as those seen in kimono(one of Japan's traditional textiles.) One of the traditional dyes is blue but even then "blue" textiles come in a variety of patterns, shades, and colors. Most probably the yukata(summer cotton kimono) you will wear at the Japanese inn (ryokan) will be blue. In Japan, weaving also is done in a variety of colors and techniques. Obi(sash of kimono) with extravagant patterns and symbols weaved on silk or brocade is probably one of few arts we can touch and wear nowadays.

Takayanagi Town House
-Sliding doors made by Japanese papers-

Old Japan Comes Alive in Modern Arts

Ukiyoe-wood block prints in the early 17th century. These were born in the Edo era, but by no means a product solely of the Edo period. Ukiyoe arts are sometimes recognized for beautiful Japanese women in kimono, Ukiyoe artists such as Utamaro and Yoshitoshi influenced artists such as Ito Shinsui who later became renowned for prints of feminine beauty.

Contemporary anime was born among Japanese genius animators and has become popular worldwide. You see some popular ones - Japanese animation at Louis Vuitton collaborated and created by Takashi Murakami. Studio Ghibli movies - Japanese cartoons produced by Hayao Miyazaki now watched by children and adults worldwide. Many scholars trace Japanese animation’s roots to some of the great traditions of Japanese art. Many anime are based on manga, the ubiquitous comic magazines read by Japanese of all generations, and manga style clearly incorporates elements of 17th to 18th century Ukiyoe woodblock prints.

Modern art and architecture you can enjoy in many museums and buildings in Japan, and worldwide well-known Japanese architects such as Tadao Ando, Kengo Kuma, and other Japanese masters definitely adopt Japanese traditional way of construction, design in ways that show elements of nature. At Benesse Art Site Naoshima designed by Tadao Ando, or Bato-machi Hiroshige Museum of Art designed by Kengo Kuma, you may feel old Japan arts blending with modern architecture and appreciate how the essence of Japanese tradition is used to create the modern style.

Stone Architecture in "Stone Museum"

Click here to overview our newly designed Arts and Cultural Tours
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Our pre-designed tours are all inclusive tours with carefully chosen  hotels for each tour categories,expert guides with the flexibility to  tailor touring for your spare time, itinerary designed with smooth routing.