15 nights onboard Azamara Journey

15-Night Japan Intensive Voyage

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A luxurious boutique hotel at sea, the Azamara Journey® is a mid-sized ship with a deck plan that’s intimate but never crowded, and offers everything modern voyagers are looking for—plus some unexpected extras.

Leaving from: Tokyo
Cruise ship: Azamara Journey
Visiting: Tokyo Aomori Akita Niigata
Azamara Logo
Azamara

Sold by Royal Caribbean Group in January 2021, Azamara is already expanding under its new owners, Sycamore Partners. The destination-focused line has brought forth a ship, Azamara Onward - the former Pacific Princess - which, like the rest of the fleet, is a Renaissance Cruises R-class. But regular customers needn't worry.

In fact, they'll notice little change under the new ownership, as many itineraries will continue to be based on single countries, with late nights and overnight stays in port. The signature AzAmazing evenings - exclusive shore-based cultural events - and optional pre or post-cruise land tours are also staying.

690
Passengers
408
Crew
2000
Launched
2016
Last refit
30277t
Tonnage
180m
Length
25m
Width
18kts
Speed
8
Decks
USD
Currency
Cruise Itinerary
Day 1
Tokyo, Japan
Day 3
Aomori, Japan
Day 4
Akita, Japan
Day 5
Niigata, Japan
Day 6
Kanazawa, Japan
Day 7
Sakaiminato, Japan
Day 8
Busan, South Korea
Day 9
Kitakyushu, Japan
Day 10
Hiroshima, Japan
Day 11
River travel
Day 11
Takamatsu, Japan
Days 12 - 13
Kobe, Japan
Day 14
Shimizu, Japan
Days 15 - 16
Tokyo, Japan
Tokyo, Japan image
Day 1
Tokyo, Japan
Lights, sushi, manga! Sprawling, frenetic, and endlessly fascinating, Japan’s capital is a city of contrasts. Shrines and gardens are pockets of calm between famously crowded streets and soaring office buildings. Mom-and-pop noodle houses share street space with Western-style chain restaurants and exquisite fine dining. Shopping yields lovely folk arts as well as the newest electronics. 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 will provide it.
Aomori, Japan image
Day 3
Aomori, Japan
Aomori's main event is its Nebuta Matsuri Festival,held August 2 to 7. People come to see illuminated floats of gigantic samurai figures paraded through the streets at night. Aomori's festival is one of Japan's largest, and is said to celebrate the euphoria of post-battle victory, and is thus encouraged to be noisier and livelier than you may have been exposed to in other Japanese festivals. Dancers, called heneto, run alongside the floats, dancing crazily, and you're encouraged to join in. Throughout the year you can enjoy delicious seafood from Aomori 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.
Akita, Japan image
Day 4
Akita, Japan
Niigata, Japan image
Day 5
Niigata, Japan
Niigata city is the capital of Niigata prefecture and faces the Japan Sea on the island of Honshu, the largest of the four islands that comprise Japan. With a population of 810,000, Niigata is the largest Honshu city along the Japan Sea coast. The city is located at 300 km northwest of Tokyo and the bullet train would take you there in only two hours. Niigata offers four distinct seasons throughout the year, and people may find the winter season to be the best time to visit as many people would come for winter sports such as skiing or snowboarding. However, you will find the place abundantly beautiful throughout the year as well. Niigata is famous for growing rice as well as fresh seafood. If you try white rice without any seasonings, you would be able to taste the difference and appreciate its flavour. Thanks to the quality of the rice, they produce great Sake in the area. If you have time, why don’t you extend your journey to one of the famous Sake Brewery?
Kanazawa, Japan image
Day 6
Kanazawa, Japan
The capital of the Ishikawa Prefecture, Kanazawa once rivalled Kyoto and Edo (Tokyo) as a town rich in cultural achievements. Kanazawa escaped destruction during World War II and accordingly has been able to preserve many of the old districts in good shape. The city is famous because of Kenrokuen. Located next to Kanazawa Castle, Kenrokuen is classified as “One of the Three Gardens of Japan”. The garden has an artificial pond, and hills and houses are dotted within the 11.4 hectares. It has Japan’s oldest fountain using natural water pressure and a tea-house dating back to 1774. Close by is the Higashi Chaya Gai Geisha District, designated a National Cultural Asset and the biggest of the Geisha districts of Kanazawa. Some of the houses not only retain the original structure, but still are used as Geisha houses. Some of the streets have traditional shops creating a nostalgic atmosphere. Kanazawa is also known for its lacquer ware, Kutani-style pottery, gold-leaf workmanship and delicately painted silk kimonos.
Sakaiminato, Japan image
Day 7
Sakaiminato, Japan
Sakaiminato is a small city almost totally surrounded by water: the Sea of Japan to the east, the Sakai Channel to the north and Lake Nakaumi to the west. Across the lake the towns of Matsue and Yasugi offer interesting experiences. Matsue is known as the “Town of Water” next to scenic Lake Shinji and Lake Nakaumi. It has one of the very few wooden castles that still remain in Japan. Touring the castle and boat rides on the Horikawa River and the castle’s moat are popular. Yasugi has the Adachi Museum of Art, a private museum that houses one of the finest collections of contemporary Japanese paintings, but also has a 165,000 square metres garden –with plants and rocks collected by the museum’s founder. Six different gardens show different scenarios depending on the season. These gardens have been selected as “Japan’s best garden” for several years.
Busan, South Korea image
Day 8
Busan, South Korea
White-sand city beaches and hot-spring resorts may not be everyone's first image of Korea, but these are what Koreans flock to Busan for all year. And there are plenty of opportunities for rest, relaxation, retail therapy, and even a touch of glamour every October with the Busan International Film Festival. Busan's beaches are the big summertime draw but there is plenty to be seen year round. Quintessential experiences include taking some rest and relaxation at a local spa and exploring the Beomeosa temple complex.
Kitakyushu, Japan image
Day 9
Kitakyushu, Japan
Hiroshima, Japan image
Day 10
Hiroshima, Japan
History buffs will want to write home Hiroshima. Despite being devastated in 1945, this Japanese city is known to all for its commitment peace – its ruin on the 6th August 1945 led to the end of the war and today, the Peace Memorial (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) , is a constant reminder of the destruction that war brings. A walk in the leafy boulevards of Peace Memorial Park brings quiet contemplation. The Flames of Peace – set in the park’s central feature pond – burn brightly and will continue to do so until all the nuclear bombs I the world have been destroyed. There are many other inspiring messages of hope around the city too; the Children’s’ Peace Monument just north of the park is a homage to little Sadako Sasaki, who was just two in 1945. When she developed leukemia in 1956, she believed that if she folded 1,000 paper cranes – a symbol of longevity and happiness in Japan – she would recover. Sadly she died before she finished her task but her classmates finished the rest. It is impossible to ignore the events of 1945 in Hiroshima, but this is far from a depressing place. The great efforts that have been made in rebuilding of the city over the years have given Hiroshima a vibrant, eclectic edge, with the downtown shopping area and street food stalls being well worth a visit. The proximity to Miyajima and its iconic, impressive, Torii gate should not be overlooked either. If you are lucky enough to visit during the unpredictable and short-lived Sakura (cherry blossom) season, then the extraordinary sight of the delicate pink blossom floating across the water to the red gate, means you can consider yourself one of the luckiest people on the planet.
River travel image
Day 11
River travel
Takamatsu, Japan image
Day 11
Takamatsu, Japan
Takamatsu city is the capital of Kagawa prefecture which is Japan’s smallest prefecture. This city is a vibrant blend of natural beauty and cosmopolitan functionality with a population of 420,000 people. The port of Takamatsu used to be the main gateway to Shikoku Island until the opening of the 37km long Seto Ohashi Bridge in 1988. Takamatsu city has flourished along with the Seto Inland Sea since 17th century when Matsudaira family, the relatives of the Tokugawa Shogun, ruled this area. Matsudaira family has completed the famous Japanese “Ritsurin Garden”. It took more than 100 years to complete this spacious garden with 75 hectares of land which features 13 landscaped hills, 6 ponds and many stone arrangements that have been placed in perfect balance in front of a vast green vista of Mt. Shiun. This garden was constructed as a villa of Matsudaira family and it attracts many visitors from all over the world. Furthermore, Takamatsu is a great place to find fresh seafood, its product, and famous Sanuki Udon noodles.
Kobe, Japan image
Days 12 - 13
Kobe, Japan
Located on the calm waters of the Inland Sea, Kobe has served as an important port town for hundreds of years. It was one of the first harbours to accept foreign traders in 1868 when Japan was just emerging from its centuries of isolation. What followed was a surge of Western trade and exports. Today, Kobe is quite multicultural, with expatriates from 98 different nations in residence, providing a cultural diversity most easily visible in restaurants serving every kind of cuisine, including the now world famous Kobe beef. The Great Hanshin Earthquake of 1995 set back Kobe’s development, but not for long. Kobe emerged more vibrant than before - with additional attractions, hotels and urban redevelopment, and only a few remnants of the extensive damage. It is a cosmopolitan place with lively shopping arcades, interesting museums, great restaurants, and a port that is still at the heart of things. Kobe is well known for its nightlife, in an intimate quarter of neon lights, cosy bars and sophisticated nightclubs. It also serves as the gateway to the ancient Japanese capitals of Kyoto and Nara.
Shimizu, Japan image
Day 14
Shimizu, Japan
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. Take your time to soak up one of Japan's most iconic views, before dipping your toes into the rest of what this destination of tranquil temples has to offer. While there’s a bustling fish market, and a charming amusement park waiting close to the port, most new arrivals immediately set off in pursuit of the best views of Mount Fuji, or to see the stunning panorama on offer from the heights of the Kunozan Toshogu Shrine. Take the cable car up to the top, to experience the tranquillity around the forested shrine, and to enjoy its stunning architecture of deep scarlets and gleaming golds. You can also enjoy heart-stopping views out over the Bay of Suruga, and the tea plantations below.
Tokyo, Japan image
Days 15 - 16
Tokyo, Japan
Lights, sushi, manga! Sprawling, frenetic, and endlessly fascinating, Japan’s capital is a city of contrasts. Shrines and gardens are pockets of calm between famously crowded streets and soaring office buildings. Mom-and-pop noodle houses share street space with Western-style chain restaurants and exquisite fine dining. Shopping yields lovely folk arts as well as the newest electronics. 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 will provide it.
Ship Details
Azamara
Azamara Journey

A luxurious boutique hotel at sea, the Azamara Journey® is a mid-sized ship with a deck plan that’s intimate but never crowded, and offers everything modern voyagers are looking for—plus some unexpected extras.

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