Nagasaki To Niigata ASIA expedition cruise Silver Discoverer

The land of the rising sun holds many off the beaten track treasures. Full of ancient traditions, sacred temples and famous gardens and castles, it is also the land of underground caves, delicate craftsmanship and solemn history. From the peaceful cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima to the Tori Forest Park with its Crested Ibises, experience Japan at its vibrant best.
Voyage 9807

FEATURED EXCLUSIVE OFFERS / PROGRAMMES:

Fare Guarantee Program: When you plan ahead and book early, you will benefit from any future reduction in the voyage fare, upon request.

Fares shown are per guest

included in the cruise fare

  • Personalised service – the best crew-to-guest ratio in expedition cruising
  • Butler service in every suite and stateroom – all guests are pampered equally
  • Open-seating dining options – dine when and with whomever you please
  • Beverages in-suite and throughout the ship – select wines, premium spirits, specialty coffees and soft drinks, plus your own tailored mini-bar
  • In-suite dining and room service – available 24 hours aboard Silver Explorer, and from 06:00 to 23:00 aboard Silver Galapagos and Silver Discoverer
  • Enrichment lectures by a highly qualified Expeditions Team
  • Guided Zodiac, land and sea tours, and shoreside activities led by the Expeditions Team
  • Gratuities always included in your fare
  • One hour free Wifi per day for all guests. Unlimited free Wifi for guests sailing on select suite categories
Cruise itinerary

Our itineraries are second-to-none – below please find detailed information regarding ports of call, arrival and departure times, as well as supplemental information about the destinations you’ll visit
Click here to see all photos and videos.

Our itineraries are second-to-none – below please find detailed information regarding ports of call, arrival and departure times, as well as supplemental information about the destinations you’ll visit
Click here to see all photos and videos.

Nagasaki city has developed into one of the most important port cities in Japan. During Japan’s period of isolation in the 17th century, Nagasaki played a prominent role in foreign trade relation and only a very few ports were open to restricted numbers of foreign traders. Even though Holland was a major country who conducted trading during this period, Dutch people were only allowed to stay in Dejima Island and were not allowed to have contact with the Japanese people.

Time moves at a much slower clip here on Jeju-do. Blessed with tangerine groves, swaying palm trees, white sand beaches, and a verdant landscape, Korea's southernmost volcanic island has long been a favored holiday and honeymoon retreat for natives and neighbors. Still relatively unknown to Western travelers, Jeju's recent title as one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature is bound to bring Jeju up on quite a few radars.

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.

Moji used to be an important international trading port with a number of well-preserved Western buildings. Several of these historic buildings can be seen along the attractive waterfront. Southwest of Moji , and part of the same city, is Kokura, the financial and business capital of the area. Kokura’s landmark is its castle, which has been beautifully restored. The remarkable garden located next to the main castle is not too far from the Manga Museum. South of Moji is the Hiraodai Limestone Plateau, Japan’s most representative karst plateau.
The small island of Miyajima (“The Shrine Island”) is known for the Floating Torii Gate, which is one of “The Three Most Beautiful Views” of Japan. Built in the water, the Torii Gate leads to the Itsukushima Shrine and at high tide it seems to float. The Torii Gate is one of the most photographed sites in all of Japan. There are many more shrines and paths on Miyajima that are inviting to walk. Mount Misen has a cable car leading partly up to the top with nice views and wild monkeys and deer roaming the trails.
On August 6, 1945, at 8:15 am, a massive chunk of metal known as Little Boy fell from an American plane, and the sky ignited and glowed for an instant. In that brief moment, however, it became as hot as the surface of the sun in Hiroshima, until then a rather ordinary workaday city in wartime Japan. Half the city was leveled by the resulting blast, and the rest was set ablaze. Rain impregnated with radioactive fallout then fell, killing many that the fire and 1,000-mph shock wave had not. By the end of this mind-boggling disaster, more than 140,000 people died.

Hagi is a former castle town located in the middle of Yamaguchi prefecture along the coast of the Sea of Japan. It is surrounded by the ocean, mountain and Abugawa River. Early in the 17th century, Terumoto Mori built Hagi Castle at the foot of Mt. Shizuki-yama, and the area served as the seat of the Yamaguchi prefecture government until the middle of 19th century. Around then, Hagi produced many capable men who played a leading role in the construction of modern day Japan, including Hirobumi Ito who became the first prime minister in 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.
The Oki Islands is an archipelago in the Sea of Japan, and is made up of four populated islands and more than 180 uninhabited islands situated in the Sea of Japan. 30,000 years ago, people were already living here, and during the Stone Age the volcanic rock obsidian was excavated and traded around Japan.  A landscape that provides glimpses of how the Sea of Japan formed, and an ecosystem that is full of mysteries, the Oki Islands are invaluable, even from a global perspective. People are only living in four islands such as Nishimoshima, Nakanoshima, Chiburijima and Dogo Island.
Maizuru port is considered as the gateway to the Japanese most popular historic city, Kyoto. Why don’t you relax on the coach to save your energy for your exciting day in Kyoto? Kyoto used to be the capital of Japan in the 8th century, and it was the centre for politics, economy and culture for more than 1,000 years. After capital functions were transferred to Tokyo in the middle of 19th century, luckily Kyoto did not lose its lustre. As soon as you step into the city, you will see how hard the local people tried to keep the atmosphere of the heyday.

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.
Sado is Japan’s sixth-largest island and depends mainly on fishing and agriculture. The island’s Tori Forest Park had been selected for the successful reintroduction of Crested Ibises into Japan –a bird that was down to what was believed to be a total world population of 12 birds in 1981. At that time the last five wild ibises found in Japan were taken into captivity on Sado and both Japan and China cooperated in a breeding programme for these birds. Fortunately the work has paid off and released Crested Ibises successfully nested in the wild again in 2012.
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.

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

Medallion Suite

408 ft² / 38m² including a private balcony

Waitlist

Veranda Suite

280 ft² / 26m² including a private balcony

Waitlist

Vista Suite

269 ft² / 25m²

Waitlist

View Suite

181 ft² / 16.8m²

From US$ 12,400

Explorer Suite

186 ft² / 17.3 m²

From US$ 11,200
Fares shown are per guest

included in the cruise fare

  • Personalised service – the best crew-to-guest ratio in expedition cruising
  • Butler service in every suite and stateroom – all guests are pampered equally
  • Open-seating dining options – dine when and with whomever you please
  • Beverages in-suite and throughout the ship – select wines, premium spirits, specialty coffees and soft drinks, plus your own tailored mini-bar
  • In-suite dining and room service – available 24 hours aboard Silver Explorer, and from 06:00 to 23:00 aboard Silver Galapagos and Silver Discoverer
  • Enrichment lectures by a highly qualified Expeditions Team
  • Guided Zodiac, land and sea tours, and shoreside activities led by the Expeditions Team
  • Gratuities always included in your fare
  • One hour free Wifi per day for all guests. Unlimited free Wifi for guests sailing on select suite categories

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

Silver Discoverer - Medallion Suite
Silver Discoverer - Medallion Suite
Silver Discoverer - Medallion Suite
Silver Discoverer - Medallion Suite
Silver Discoverer - Medallion Suite

dimension:

One bedroom: 408 ft² / 38m² including a private balcony

A mark of distinction. Sumptuous. Spacious. Rich textures and panoramic views surround you with distinguished luxury. The perfect summary of The Medallion Suite offered by the world’s best cruise line.

Fares from Waitlist

request a quote
9807 - Nagasaki to Niigata
  • Butler service
  • Refrigerator and bar setup stocked with your preferences
  • Pratesi® fine bed linens
  • Plush Etro® bathrobe
  • BVLGARI® bath amenities, plus a choice of other European brands
  • Umbrella
  • Direct dial telephone(s)
  • A choice of pillows
  • Personalised stationary
  • iHome Radio / Alarm charging station (with USB cable or QI wireless charging), NFC Bluetooth
  • 110-volt outlets only
  • Balcony with wooden parquet with floor-to-ceiling glass doors
  • Sitting area with convertible sofa that can accomodate an additional guest
  • Living room with sitting area and convertible sofa to accomodate an additional guest
  • Twin beds or queen-sized bed, including storage drawers
  • Marbled bathroom with walk-in shower
  • Hair dryer
  • Writing desk
  • Fitted wardrobe with personal safe
  • Unlimited WiFi Internet access
  • Laundry service
  • Dinner at officer's table
  • Illy® Espresso machine
  • Flat screen television with Interactive Media Library
  • Bose Sound Touch 30 with Bluetooth connectivity (use Bose APP or direct Bluetooth connection)

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

note: The difference between each single Suite is available in the deck plan of the ship.
Suite Location Fares (Per guest) Select your suite
Medallion View deck Waitlist request a quote
Silver Discoverer - Veranda Suite
Silver Discoverer - Veranda Suite
Silver Discoverer - Veranda Suite
Silver Discoverer - Veranda Suite

dimension:

One bedroom: 280 ft² / 26m² including a private balcony

A Silversea signature, complete with floor-to-ceiling glass doors that open onto a private balcony with patio furniture. Veranda Suites lavishly accommodate three guests.

Fares from Waitlist

request a quote
9807 - Nagasaki to Niigata
  • Butler service
  • Refrigerator and bar setup stocked with your preferences
  • Pratesi® fine bed linens
  • Plush Etro® bathrobe
  • BVLGARI® bath amenities, plus a choice of other European brands
  • A choice of pillows
  • Umbrella
  • Complimentary interactive mobile content
  • Personalised stationary
  • Direct dial telephone(s)
  • iHome Radio / Alarm charging station (with USB cable or QI wireless charging), NFC Bluetooth
  • 110-volt outlets only
  • Balcony with wooden parquet with floor-to-ceiling glass doors
  • Sitting area with convertible sofa that can accommodate an additional guest up to the age of 14 years old. (Veranda Suites 601, 602, 603, 604 only)
  • Twin beds or queen-sized bed, including storage drawers
  • Marbled bathroom with walk-in shower
  • Hair dryer
  • Writing desk
  • Fitted wardrobe with personal safe
  • Flat screen television with Interactive Media Library
  • Unlimited WiFi Internet access

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

note: The difference between each single Suite is available in the deck plan of the ship.
Suite Location Fares (Per guest) Select your suite
Veranda View deck Waitlist request a quote
Silver Discoverer - Vista Suite
Silver Discoverer - Vista Suite
Silver Discoverer - Vista Suite
Silver Discoverer - Vista Suite
Silver Discoverer - Vista Suite

dimension:

One bedroom: 269 ft² / 25m²

A quiet sanctuary. The suite’s sitting area has plenty of room to relax while on your cruise. Large picture windows frame panoramic ocean views. The perfect backdrop for breakfast in bed.

Fares from Waitlist

request a quote
9807 - Nagasaki to Niigata
  • Butler service
  • Refrigerator and bar setup stocked with your preferences
  • Pratesi® fine bed linens
  • Plush Etro® bathrobe
  • BVLGARI® bath amenities, plus a choice of other European brands
  • A choice of pillows
  • Umbrella
  • Direct dial telephone(s)
  • iHome Radio / Alarm charging station (with USB cable or QI wireless charging), NFC Bluetooth
  • Personalised stationary
  • 110-volt outlets only
  • Two large view windows
  • Sitting area
  • Twin beds or queen-sized bed, including storage drawers
  • Marbled bathroom with walk-in shower
  • Hair dryer
  • Writing desk
  • Fitted wardrobe with personal safe
  • Flat screen television with Interactive Media Library
  • Unlimited WiFi Internet access

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

note: The difference between each single Suite is available in the deck plan of the ship.
Suite Location Fares (Per guest) Select your suite
Vista View deck Waitlist request a quote
Silver Discoverer - View Suite
Silver Discoverer - View Suite
Silver Discoverer - View Suite
Silver Discoverer - View Suite

dimension:

One bedroom: 181 ft² / 16.8m²

Welcoming and comfortable, the View Suite provides a relaxing haven for even the utmost adventure-seeking guests. Complete a day spent exploring onshore with an evening unwinding in the comfort of your sitting area. Capture passing ocean scenes through your view window. Freshen up in your beautiful marbled bathroom before enjoying an elegant onboard dinner. Or cozy up under fine bed linens to watch an on-demand movie on the flat-screen television. Fall asleep easily, dreaming of the incredible experiences that await you the following day.

Fares from US$ 12,400 (Per guest)

request a quote
9807 - Nagasaki to Niigata
  • Butler service
  • Refrigerator and bar setup stocked with your preferences
  • Pratesi® fine bed linens
  • Plush Etro® bathrobe
  • BVLGARI® bath amenities, plus a choice of other European brands
  • A choice of pillows
  • Umbrella
  • Personalised stationary
  • Direct dial telephone(s)
  • iHome Radio / Alarm charging station (with USB cable or QI wireless charging), NFC Bluetooth
  • 110-volt outlets only
  • View window
  • Sitting area
  • Twin beds or queen-sized bed, including storage drawers
  • Marbled bathroom with walk-in shower
  • Writing desk
  • Hair dryer
  • Fitted wardrobe with personal safe
  • Flat screen television with Interactive Media Library
  • WiFi Internet access an hour per day

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

note: The difference between each single Suite is available in the deck plan of the ship.
Suite Location Fares (Per guest) Select your suite
View View deck US$ 12,400 request a quote
Silver Discoverer - Explorer Suite
Silver Discoverer - Explorer Suite
Silver Discoverer - Explorer Suite
Silver Discoverer - Explorer Suite

dimension:

One bedroom: 186 ft² / 17.3 m²

As spacious as a Explorer Suite, enjoy the passing scenery through two porthole windows. An enchanting retreat, Explorer Suites exude cosy opulence and a cushy seating area perfect for unwinding after a day of exploring ashore.

Fares from US$ 11,200 (Per guest)

request a quote
9807 - Nagasaki to Niigata
  • Butler service
  • Refrigerator and bar setup stocked with your preferences
  • Pratesi® fine bed linens
  • Plush Etro® bathrobe
  • BVLGARI® bath amenities, plus a choice of other European brands
  • A choice of pillows
  • Umbrella
  • Personalised stationary
  • Direct dial telephone(s)
  • iHome Radio / Alarm charging station (with USB cable or QI wireless charging), NFC Bluetooth connectivity
  • 110-volt outlets only
  • Two portholes
  • Sitting area
  • Twin beds or queen-sized bed, including storage draws
  • Marbled bathroom with walk-in shower
  • Writing desk
  • Hair Dryer
  • Fitted wardrobe with personal safe
  • Flat screen television with Interactive Media Library
  • WiFi Internet access an hour per day

SELECT YOUR SUITE AND REQUEST A QUOTE

note: The difference between each single Suite is available in the deck plan of the ship.
Suite Location Fares (Per guest) Select your suite
Explorer View deck US$ 11,200 request a quote
Fares shown are per guest

Silver Discoverer

Silversea's loyal following of adventure travellers can now explore the remote archipelagos of the vast Pacific aboard the sleek, 116-guest Silver Discoverer cruise ship. She's the perfect platform for viewing these untamed landscapes, with all ocean-view suites and plenty of deck space so that a breaching whale or a pod of dolphins is always within sight. Silver Discoverer’s shallow draft allows her to navigate closer to shore, and with a fleet of 12 Zodiacs, guests can land on isolated shores and explore wetlands and submerged ecosystems, up-close and in-depth.

Suites

Silversea's oceanview suites are some of the most spacious in cruising, and all include the services of a butler. Select your suite and Request a Quote - guests who book early are rewarded with the best fares and ability to select their desired suite.

Restaurants

Discover our collection of onboard venues where you'll enjoy spending time with like-minded travellers and of course, our personalized all-inclusive service.

Public Areas

Renowned for culinary excellence and innovative spirit, Silversea's luxury cruises offer a choice of open-seating dining options throughout the fleet, as well as several specialty venues aboard all non-expedition ships.

Your expedition will lead to one discovery after another. A complimentary programme of unique, small-group shore experiences, led by team of expert guides and lectures, allows you to fully experience the lands you'll visit.

voyage highlights

Day 1- Nagasaki, Japan   

Embark Silver Discoverer and depart on your exciting Silversea Expedition – “Journey in the Land of the Rising Sun”. After settling in you will attend a safety briefing and be introduced to your Expedition Team.  Weather permitting we will have a Sail-away Cocktail on deck.

We invite you to familiarise yourself with your new home away from home, meet some of your fellow travellers and enjoy the first of many memorable meals in The Restaurant. An aperitif will permit you to relax after your travels towards Silver Discoverer.

Day 2 - Jeju, South Korea

Located off the south coast of mainland Korea, Jeju Island’s natural, geological and cultural attractions are well known in Japan and Korea. One of the options is to climb part of the dormant volcano Hallasan which stands 1,950 meters above sea level and is a UNESCO Biosphere reserve containing a crater lake, alpine plants, woodpeckers and butterflies. One can use coastal trails around much of the island, including to reach the sea over strange rock formations and see the caves that islanders were forced to dig by Japanese occupiers to hide weapons. Dry-stone walls protect fields from storms. Around the year 1750, masons started carving rocks into forbidding black "grandfather stones" to scare off invaders. Forty-five of these massive statues still exist. The stones remain a symbol of a distinct ancient culture furnished with many gods and legends. One of the excursions visits the Geumneung Stone Park with its 3,500 stone statues of a more modern type. When we arrive in late March the yellow canola flowers should form spectacular sceneries, although it might be a little too early for the cherry blossoms to flower fully.

Day 3 - Busan, South Korea

Today one of the choices is to visit Gyeongju, 1.5 hours north of Busan. The modern city of Gyeongju is often called “the museum without walls”, and its historical area is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here the southern part of Korea was first unified under the Silla Kingdom and many archaeological remains can be seen in the area. First we stop at the Bulguksa Temple, a grand centrepiece of a religious architectural complex of exceptional significance. Bulguksa is considered a masterpiece of Far Eastern Buddhist Art and has been inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List since the temple complex is both an outstanding example of religious architecture of the region and the material expression of Buddhist belief.
After lunch at a local hotel we continue to Daeneungwon. This is a Tumuli Park with more than 20 tombs from the Silla period. Most of the tombs are grass-covered mounds, creating a spectacular scene which resembles a small mountain range. Depending on the season, the park’s mounds take on different colours. One of the burial mounds can be visited and one can appreciate the painting of a heavenly horse that was found during the tomb’s excavation. We will also visit the Geongju National Museum.

Another choice would be to visit Busan, South Korea's second largest city. Sites of interest will be the APEC House, the Busan Museum, the Haedong Yonggungsa Temple -located next to the sea it is considered one of the special shrines in Korea- and the Jagalchi Fish Market, South Korea's largest seafood market.

A half day excursion to Gamcheon Village and the Gukje Market will allow to eventually explore Busan on your own during the afternoon. 

Day 4 - Moji, Japan

From Moji we will drive to the Hiraodai Limestone Plateau, Japan’s most representative karst plateau. Approaching the area one could mistake the pure white limestone scattered throughout the landscape for sheep grazing in the grass. A “Natural Treasure” the plateau has underground caves as well. We will explore Hiraodai Senbutsu Cave accompanied by local guides. To get deep into the cave you will have to walk in the stream running through the cave.

After lunch at a local restaurant we will see  Kokura, the financial and business capital of this area. Kokura’s landmark is its castle, which has been beautifully restored. In addition to Kokura Castle, we will stroll the small but remarkable garden located next to the main castle. Some of the best photos of the castle can be taken from this garden.

For those who want to see Kokura Castle and still explore Moji on their own, a morning visit of the castle and the TOTO Museum will be followed by lunch at a local restaurant and free time in Moji, walking back to the pier. 

Day 5  - Miyajima and Hiroshima, Japan

In the morning, visit the small island of Miyajima (“The Shrine Island”) and get to see one of “The Three Most Beautiful Views” of Japan: the Floating Torii Gate. Built in the water, the Torii Gate leads to the Itsukushima Shrine and at high tide it seems to float. The Torii Gate is one of the most photographed sites in all of Japan. To reach the shrine we will have to walk as a group for slightly more than 1 kilometre. There are more shrines and paths on Miyajima that invite  you to walk. Mount Misen has a cable car leading partly up to the top with nice views and wild monkeys and deer roaming the trails.
During the afternoon, we will visit Hiroshima, a name linked to the dropping of the Atomic Bomb and the end of World War II. We will drive to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park in central Hiroshima. The area where the park lies was Ground Zero for the Atomic Bomb on August 6, 1945. The park is dedicated to those who lost their lives in the attack. The park has many memorials and monuments, and we will stroll through it before we visit the Peace Memorial Museum. The museum surveys the history of Hiroshima and the advent of the nuclear bomb, focusing on the events of August 6 and the human suffering as a result of the bomb.

Day 6 - Hagi, Japan

From the port we drive to Hagi’s “Old Town.” The tour will take you to Shizukiyama Park and Hagi Castle. Based around the ruins of Hagi Castle there will be some 600 Yoshino cherry trees in bloom. After the park and castle ruin visit we will reach a Samurai Quarter, which preserves the traditional style Japanese houses and old-fashioned streets. You will be taken to one of the old houses and will see how the Japanese lived in traditional ways. The house shows the typical interior of a Japanese residence. You will also have free time in the area, to wander around this charming district on your own.

After visiting the Samurai quarter, the next stop will be at Tokoji Temple. This is a temple of the Obaku-shu school of Zen Buddhism and is the resting place of the two first Mori daimyo -a family of powerful and territorial pre-modern Japanese lords. The main gate, the triple gate, the bell tower and the main hall have been listed on the National Register of Important Cultural Properties. Yoshinari Mōri and all odd-numbered generations of Mōri lords up to the 11th generation, their wives, children and those close to them in life are buried in the cemetery of the Mōri clan behind the main hall building. Facing these tombs stand more than 500 stone lanterns, donated by later generations of the Hagi Clan.

Day 7 - Sakaiminato, Japan

Inland from Sakaiminato the towns of Matsue and Yasugi offer very different, yet in their way traditional experiences: Matsue is known as the “Town of Water” next to scenic Lake Shinji and Lake Nakanoumi. Matsue has one of the very few wooden castles that still remain in Japan. Apart from touring the castle and enjoying magnificent views of Lake Shinji you can also use the opportunity to do a boat ride on the Horikawa River and the castle’s moat.

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 will show different scenarios depending on the season. Under the motto that “the Japanese garden is like a living picture” these gardens have been selected as ‘Japan’s best garden’ for several years. On the return to the ship the Yushien Garden, famous for its ginseng and peonies, will be visited. 

Day 8 - Oki Island, Japan                                                                                        

The Oki Archipelago consists of about 180 large and small islands. Many Japanese visit these romantic islands because of the historic places and old tradition. There are two excursions that will visit Yurahime Shrine, known as a guardian of the sea. When the goddess Yurahime-no-mikoto was crossing the sea in a tub and washed her hands with sea water, a squid bit her hand. Since then, a large school of squids surge to the seashore before the shrine in autumn to express their regret. Squids swimming in the sea are depicted on the upper wall of the main hall of the shrine, an object d'art of squid is in the precinct and telephone boxes of squid-form are along the approach. Squids are everywhere in the shrine.

After making a photo stop at Akao Lookout, you will then be transferred to Matengai Cliff where you start a 2 km hike along the coast or just enjoy the panoramic views. Matengai Cliff is a sheer cliff rising 257 m above sea level. The cliff top is a smooth meadow with a well-maintained walking path. If you decide to walk, you will enjoy the magnificent view of Kuniga Coast.

Returning to the ship after excursions, you can also enjoy a scenic cruise along Kuniga Coast.

Day 9 - Maizuru, Japan
Today we will drive inland toward Kyoto, renowned for spectacular architecture. Our first visit will be Arashiyama, a pleasant district in the western outskirts of Kyoto. Okochi Mountain Villa consists of several beautiful gardens and buildings, including living quarters, tea houses and a Zen meditation hall. Take a walk through Arashiyama’s famous bamboo groves, which are particularly attractive when there is a light wind and the tall bamboo stalks sway gently back and forth. Here we will visit the famous Tenruji Temple, the first among Kyoto's five great Zen temples and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

After enjoying a special Japanese lunch at a restaurant owned by the Tenruji Temple, you will be transferred to Kyoto's most famous landmark, Kinkakuji Temple (Golden Pavilion). Built by Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu as a villa in 1397, the three-story home was converted to a temple by Yoshimitsu's son. The Golden Pavilion is positioned at the edge of a tranquil pond. The three-story Chinese-influenced Golden Pavilion has delicately curving roofs, with the walls and eaves of the second and third stories covered in shimmering gold leaf. View the exterior of the pavilion and walk through the peaceful gardens, marveling at the mirror reflection of the temple on the still pond. While in Kyoto we will see that this is the peak for the cherry blossom in the city’s gardens and parks.

The last highlight of the day will be Nijo Castle, a fortification of cypress wood built in 1603 as the residence of the Tokugawa clan. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the castle is protected by a moat, stone walls, and ingenious nightingale floors, which chirp like a bird when walked upon to alert the guards of potential intruders. Despite its defensive elements, the castle was primarily a home. It is adorned with wooden carvings, artistically painted sliding doors and expansive tatami rooms.

Day 10 – Kanazawa, Japan 

Art in various forms will be today’s theme, as Kanazawa is known for its lacquer ware, Kutani-style pottery, gold-leaf workmanship and delicately painted silk kimonos. In addition to these purchasable products, Kanazawa has “Kenrokuen,” one of the most famous gardens in Japan. Located next to Kanazawa Castle, “Kenrokuen” is classified as, “One of the Three Gardens of Japan.”

There are two options during the morning. One tour will head for the Shirakawa-go mountain village, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the other will start with a visit to the Omi-cho Market with its many lively local seafood stalls, before taking time to walk through “Kenrokuen.” 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. Both excursions will return to the ship for lunch.

In the afternoon a visit to the Higashi Chaya Gai Geisha District (designated a National Cultural Asset) will permit us to see the biggest of the Geisha district 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.

Day 11   - Sado Island, Japan

Sado is Japan’s sixth-largest island and depends mainly on fishing and agriculture (rice-production). Today will be a day of unusual highlights as we will visit Tori Forest Park to see the successful “reintroduction” of Crested Ibises into Japan.  The ibis species was believed to have a total world population of 12 birds in 1981. At that time, the last five wild ibises found in Japan were taken into captivity on Sado and both Japan and China cooperated in a breeding programme for these birds. Fortunately, the work has paid off thus far, and released Crested Ibises successfully nested in the wild again in 2012.

Before we return to Silver Discoverer the Sado Gold Mine can be visited. For the adventurous a descent into the deep tunnels will show the conditions under which gold was extracted for almost 400 years.

Day 12   - Niigata, Japan   

                                            
After breakfast disembark Silver Discoverer.


Please Note: Expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather and wildlife activity. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.

GEAR UP

Not sure what to wear while onboard? Visit our shop and gear up. We've got layers to keep you dry and warm, breezy wear to keep you covered and cool, and accessories to keep everything packed up and ready to go. So, no matter the weather, you'll be better prepared for your expedition.

Our Gear Shop has an expert outfitting staff and features all the essentials:

Clothes for all types of weather, boot rentals, accessories and more »

Packing List »

Make sure you get all your essentials today. We offer packages or individual items, for your convenience, and recommend you place orders at least 30 days before your embarkation date.