Inside Japan Tours
Experiences and activities for all the family, with InsideAsia Tours
Encompassing Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Burma, InsideAsia Tours has a huge selection of trips to choose from, many of which are ideal for adventurous families. Get beneath the surface of these intriguing countries and find out which exciting activities are on offer, from cycling to caving, swimming to Samurai castles and white-water rafting to walking with elephants.
Here are just some of the fun and exhilarating family experiences available when travelling with the InsideAsia Tours experts; InsideJapan, InsideVietnam and InsideBurma:
With a fascinating and multifaceted culture, Japan is steeped in the deepest of traditions dating back thousands of years, plus the latest technological developments that constantly push the boundaries of the possible. Explore the old and the new starting with a trip to Yakushima Island, with its vast primeval rainforest, rare wildlife and empty beaches. Jump into an inflatable dingy and go white-water rafting in Minakami on the mighty Tone River. Plus, visit Himeji and Matsumoto, two spectacular Samurai castles, before summoning up the courage to venture to Fuji-Q Highland, an amusement park near the base of Mount Fuji. There, creep into the Haunted Hospital, the world’s second-largest ghostly attraction, if you dare…
A ‘Mountains & Culture Family Activity Holiday’ self-guided adventure, which showcases the original Samurai castles, costs from £5,180 for a family of four (based on two adults, one teenager and one child aged 6-11) and includes 12 nights’ B&B accommodation, some private guiding, most domestic transport and airport transfers. International flights extra. Call InsideJapan Tours on 0117 370 9733 (www.insidejapantours.com).
Known for its beaches, rivers, Buddhist pagodas and bustling cities, Vietnam is a country of breathtaking natural beauty with an incredible heritage. Make the most of its exotic nature and go swimming and kayaking in Halong Bay, known for its emerald water and thousands of towering limestone islands, topped with rainforest. For a more demanding experience, try caving in Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you will dive into water holes, balance on bamboo bridges and scramble over rocks. Head into Cát Tiên National Park and visit the wildlife sanctuaries, which take care of gibbons, bears and endangered Siamese crocodiles. Lastly, stop off at Mr Cu’s house and workshop in Hue, and learn how to make traditional kites in the shape of phoenixes, dragons and butterflies.
A ‘Highlights of Vietnam’ small-group tour (max. 14 people), which includes a cruise through the spectacular Halong Bay, costs from £6,380 for a family of four (based on two adults, one teenager and one child aged 6-11) and includes 11 nights’ B&B accommodation, the full-time services of a knowledgeable tour leader, all domestic transport and airport transfers. International flights extra. Call InsideVietnam Tours on 0117 244 3370 (www.insidevietnamtours.com).
With its orange-robed monks, hidden Khmer temples, lush rice paddies and delicious coconut curries, Cambodia is a small country with a big soul. Follow in the steps of Lara Croft, and explore Ta Prohm, a jungle-clad temple at Angkor (Siem Reap Province), which featured in the 2001 action film, Tomb Raider. Walk with elephants at the Mondulkiri Project, opened in 2013 to protect wild animals from poachers and the forests from logging. And travel to the supremely mellow riverside town of Kratie, to experience some of the best Mekong sunsets in Cambodia – and perhaps catch a glimpse of the rare Irrawaddy dolphin, too.
A ‘Grand Cambodia’ fully-tailored journey, where families can explore the remarkable temples of Angkor and potentially see the elusive Irrawaddy dolphin, costs from £9,000 for a family of four (based on two adults, one teenager and one child aged 6-11) and includes 14 nights’ B&B accommodation, some private guiding, all domestic transport and airport transfers. International flights extra. Call InsideVietnam Tours on 0117 244 3370 (www.insidevietnamtours.com).
Famed for its mountainous landscapes and crossed by the mighty Mekong River, Laos combines some of the best elements of Southeast Asia into one bite-sized destination. Kayak up the Nam Ou; one of the most important rivers in Laos, it runs 448 km from Phongsaly Province in the extreme north to Luang Prabang Province further south and, along with the Mekong, is the only natural channel suitable for large-draft boat transportation. Spot sambar deer, otters, tigers, pythons, porcupines, sun bears and many more animals on a Nam Nern night safari, which cleverly provides direct incentives for wildlife conservation by linking the revenue earned by 14 partner communities to the numbers of wildlife seen and recorded by tourists during each tour. Plus, learn traditional farming methods and get stuck in with sowing seeds and harvesting crops in the colourful city of Luang Prabang, in north-central Laos.
A ‘Laos Overland: Along the Mekong’ fully-tailored journey, which takes families through one of the world’s largest caves at Kong Lor, costs from £7,960 for a family of four (based on two adults, one teenager and one child aged 6-11) and includes 14 nights’ B&B accommodation, some private guiding, most domestic transport and airport transfers. International flights extra. Call InsideVietnam Tours on 0117 244 3370 (www.insidevietnamtours.com).
After decades of political isolation, the pace of change in modern Burma (also known by its official name of Myanmar) is rapidly building, making this a fascinating time to visit and witness the transformation first-hand. Hire a bike and cycle around Bagan, an ancient city located in the Mandalay Region of Burma and home to the largest concentration of Buddhist temples, pagodas, stupas and ruins in the world, many of which date from the 11th and 12th centuries. Meet the rescued elephants at Green Hill Valley in the Kalaw area, which is focused on protecting the local ecology, elephants and traditions of the nearby people. Stroll through the surrounding forest – alive with flora and fauna – accompanied by the elephants, before washing them in the cooling river. And relax at Ngapali Resort, the country’s premier beach getaway, complete with pristine white sands and clear blue water.
A ’Burmese Family Adventure’ fully-tailored journey, which incorporates a visit to the incredible pagoda-peppered plains of Bagan, costs from £6,980 for a family of four (based on two adults, one teenager and one child aged 6-11) and includes 13 nights’ B&B accommodation, some private guiding, all domestic transport and airport transfers. International flights extra. Call InsideBurma Tours on 0117 244 3381 (www.insideburmatours.com).
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