Posted January 16, 2011 by Paul Stokes in News and Updates

BCI Grand Bonsai Tour Japan 2011 17-27 November 2011

This is a public service announcement showing ofBonsai Magazine’s support of the BCI – Bonsai Clubs International.

Posted here with permission of the BCI President, Robert Kempinski.

Join us for this one-off Grand Bonsai Tour timed to coincide with two fantastic bonsai events, namely the Asia Pacific Bonsai and Suiseki Convention and Exhibition and the Taikan-ten – western Japan’s biggest bonsai show. Enjoy beautiful maple leaf time in glorious Kyoto. An optional tour to Tokoname is also offered.

Ritsurin Garden (Takamatsu)

Ritsurin Garden (Takamatsu)


  • Attendance at the Asia Pacific Bonsai and Suiseki Convention and Exhibition in Takamatsu City
  • Visit the wonderful Taikan-ten- western Japan’s biggest bonsai show
  • Visit to Kinashi Bonsai Village – the largest bonsai village in Japan, with over 270 gardens
  • Visit to Korakuen – one of Japan’s top 3 most celebrated gardens
  • Guided tour of Kyoto
  • Travel on Japan’s famous Bullet Train
  • 10 nights hotel accommodation on a bed & breakfast daily
  • Welcome Dinner and Farewell Dinner
  • Airport transfers in Japan
  • Services of a knowledgeable Japan Journeys guide throughout

Day 1: Arrive in Japan (17 November 2011)
This tour is centred in Western Japan so the most convenient arrival airport is Kansai International Airport (Osaka) so we’d recommend you arrange your flights to land here. On arrival, you will be met and directed to the Airport train to Osaka, where you will stay 1 night on a bed and breakfast basis.

Day 2: Osaka-Takamatsu
You will depart early by private coach today for the journey to Takamatsu (where ASPAC is being held). Attend the Opening Ceremony of the Asia Pacific Bonsai and Suiseki Convention and Exhibition followed by lunch and demonstrations. We have arranged as standard a 2 Day Registration for this 4 day event. Check in to your Takamatsu hotel for 4 nights on a bed & breakfast basis. Attend the ASPAC  Welcome reception this evening.

Day 3: Takamatsu
Enjoy the day attending bonsai demonstrations and lectures. In the afternoon you can also attend a lecture on Suiseki. Visit exhibitions at Ritsurin Garden and Tamamo Park. When the sun goes down see Ritsurin Garden beautifully illuminated.

Day 4: Takamatsu
Take part in either or both of the morning and afternoon optional bonsai workshops. In the evening you may wish to attend an optional bonsai auction. (For 4 Day ASPAC Registration holders, we’d suggest you join the excursion to Kinashi Bonsai Village today).

Day 5: Takamatsu/Kinashi
Take a trip to the wonderful Kinashi Bonsai Village – the largest Bonsai village in Japan. (For 4 Day ASPAC Registration holders, visit Takasago-an Bonsai Garden in Niihama and the attend the Farewell Party in the evening).

Day 6: Korakuen to Kyoto or Nagoya
You’ll depart Takamatsu and take a beautiful train ride over the Inland Sea to Okayama. Visit Korakuen, a traditional stroll garden in Okayama and one of Japan’s three most beautiful gardens. In the afternoon, board the bullet train to Kyoto and check into your hotel for 5 nights on a bed and breakfast.

Optional Tour to Tokoname (including 1 night in Nagoya)
For those of you who choose this optional trip, you will visit Korakuen as above. Then instead of going on to Kyoto, you will head east on the Bullet train to Nagoya from where you’ll visit nearby Tokoname tomorrow. Check in to your business hotel for 1 night on a bed and breakfast basis.

Day 7: Kyoto at Leisure or Optional Tour to Tokoname
For those of you staying in Kyoto, spend the day at leisure. A rich history of religion, art and craft have combined to make this glorious city a spiritual home for the Japanese.

Optional Tour to Tokoname
Today you’ll visit this renowned ceramic town of Tokoname, one of the so-called “Six Old Kilns of Japan”. It has a history and tradition of that extends over 900 years and is the largest producer of bonsai pots in Japan. In the afternoon, board the Bullet train to Kyoto. Check in to your Kyoto hotel for 4 nights on a bed and breakfast basis.

Day 8: Kyoto
Kyoto full day sightseeing by coach. Today you’ll visit temples noted for their lovely autumn colours including Ginkaku-ji, Kiyomizu, Rengeji and Koto-In. Lunch at the Kyoto handicraft Centre is included today.

Day 9: Taikan-ten
Visit the Taikan-ten, the most prestigious bonsai show in Western Japan.

Day 10: At leisure
Today you may wish to return to the Taikan-ten or alternatively have a day at leisure in Kyoto. Farewell dinner

Day 11: Depart
Transfer to Osaka for your return flight.


  • 10 nights hotel accommodation at centrally located hotels with breakfast daily
  • 2 Day ASPAC Registration (Day 2 & Day 3 of your itinerary) for the Asia Pacific Bonsai and Suiseki Convention and Exhibition
  • Tickets for entry to the Taikan-ten Bonsai show on Day 9
  • Welcome and Farewell Dinners and lunch on Day 2, 3, and 8
  • Meet & Greet Service on arrival at Kansai Airport on 17 November 2011 and airport train transfer ticket for 17 November 2011 from Kansai Airport to Osaka (by Nankai Airport Express train)
  • Private air-conditioned coach tour of Kyoto on Day 8
  • Sightseeing and entrance fees to all named attractions on tour
  • Services of a knowledgeable Japan Journeys Guide throughout
  • Separate baggage transfer for one piece of luggage per person from Takamatsu to Kyoto


  • Travel insurance
  • Lunches and dinners (other than those mentioned above)
  • Bonsai workshops, optional and Night Auction on Day 4

Package Prices in (£) British Pounds (with approximate US$ prices)*

Early Booking Price (Before 23 March 2011) Price after 23 March 2011
BCI Grand Bonsai Tour (including 2 Day Registration to ASPAC) £1,535.00 (per person on a shared room basis) (US$2,495.00) £1,565.00 (per person on a shared room basis) (US$2,535.00)
Upgrade from 2 Day to 4 Day Registration for ASPAC Add £95.00 (US$ 155.00) Add £125.00 (US$ 205.00)
Optional Tokoname Trip (Day 6-7) Add £100.00 (US$ 165.00) Add £100.00 (US$ 165.00)
Single room supplement for Add £225.00 (US$ 375.00) Add £225.00 (US$ 375.00)

*N.B. Japan Journeys will debit your credit card in British Pounds and customers will be charged by their credit card company for the exchange rate at the time their transaction is made (thus the US$ prices listed
above are only approximate).

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