Destination Highlights

Feb-2023 Japan’s Winter Wildlife Special Photography Tour

Japan’s Winter Wildlife – Photography Special

Tour Background:

Accompanied by photographer & Japanese language expert Kiran Joshi, we shall be exploring winter wildlife of Japan in the midst of winter to create stunning finest wildlife photographic images Hokkaido and the Japanese Alps.

Japan’s credentials as a wildlife photography destination are often neglected, however, apart from the glistening cities in Japan we can indeed experience the dreamy and heavenly wildlife of Japan where we can capture, . Furthermore, by travelling in winter, there are no end of wonderful images that we can capture Japanese macaques bathing in the hot springs of the Japanese Alps and stunning array wildlife ranging from Steller’s sea eagle, Red Crowned Crane, etc on sea ice off the coast of Hokkaido

The chilling winter conditions will be the best period where we can experience the best of the lights for shooting the exquisite images by adding wonderful color to our wildlife portfolios.

Our Japan’s Winter Wildlife tour is  perfect for those who are nature lover, travel lover & photography lover.

Upon arrival in Japan, we stay overnight to Nagano, to enjoy the iconic sight of Japanese macaques also known as snow monkeys bathing in natural hot springs at Jigokudani (Hell’s Valley).

Continuing our expedition we move to Hokkaido, Japan’s most northerly island which is covered with snow, the rivers frozen over, and the wintry countryside graced by the Japanese Reed crowned crane which are considered to be most auspicious and one of the endangered species, with its elaborate courtship rituals.

Then we, continue to search for seabirds on our further route i.e., Akkeshi Bay, Nemuro, Lake Furen, Rausu, Washi no Yado to find Steller’s sea eagles, attracted by the cold, rich waters of the Okhotsk Sea. We shall also search the snowy woodlands for another rare species, Blakiston’s fish owl, which hunts along the riverbanks.

Brief about the main wildlife species which we are going to experience:

Snow Monkey:

Snow MonkeyJapan’s most famous primates are the ‘snow monkeys’ of the Jigokudani hot springs near Yudanaka Onsen. These monkeys love to play in the natural hot spring baths. We can experience a very spectacular scene here; whole families of monkeys eat, wash, splash around and even have snowball fights.

 

 

 

Red Crowned Crane:

Red-crowned cranesThe tancho or red-crown crane are believed to represent longevity and have long played a special part in Japanese mythology. Due to urbanization this is one of the endangered species. We can spot them at Tsurui’s crane sanctuary, and this is a beautiful spot to experience the cranes’ famous mating dance.

 

 

 

Steller Sea Eagle:

Steller Sea EagleOn a bird watching trip to Hokkaido, we shall be tracking Steller’s sea eagles which can be seen from the Nemuro Peninsula. This is the largest eagle in the world weighing 5 to 9kg and the birds are known for their distinctive yellow beaks.

 

 

 

 

Blakiston’s fish owl:

Blakiston's fish owlBlakiston’s fish owl, the largest owl in the world, which feed on river fish nearby the Shiretoko Peninsula at Rausu.

 

 

 

 

 

If you are excited to experience magnificent Wild winters of Japan, we are happy to accommodate you for this amazing trip to witness wild beauty of Japan, so Contact us without any delay.

Book your seats to the extraordinary Winter Special – Photography, Wild Trip to Japan by The Lens India.

Contact us on +91-8308 80 9875 or mail us at contactus@thelensindia.com

What is included?
Below things are included with our tour package.
  • Accommodation in standard hotels (Twin Sharing)
  • Transport and excursions as per itinerary
  • Meals (As Specified in Itinerary)

Note:

Considering the Photography timing’s Breakfast is not included in package.

Hotels Stay (Names) are subject to change based on booking availability

What is NOT included?
Below things are NOT included with our tour package.
  • International airfares/Visa
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals and food not listed in itinerary
  • Portable Wi-Fi internet access
  • Beverages (alcoholic & non-alcoholic)
  • Personal spending money
  • Tips & gratuities (not expected in Japan)
  • Any other specific not included items

Tour Schedule

Tour Dates: 5th ~ 14th Feb 2023

(Refer Itinerary for details)

Summary of Placed visited

    1. Nagano (Yamanouchi) – Jigokudani
    2. Kushiro (Tsurui Village)
    3. Akkeshi
    4. Nemuro – Lake Furen
    5. Nemuro – Rausu
    6. Tokyo

Bullet train /Regular train / Private Coach / Taxi /Domestic Flight (Refer Itinerary for Details)

NOTE: Please note this tour includes extensive use of public transport and walking as main methods of transport. Refer itinerary for details

Small group photography tour

6 – 8 Pax

Moderate (Refer FAQ)

Tour Price: USD4,250 + Tax, if any (Ex.Narita)

Note: Prices are subject to change depending upon the change in Hotel/Domestic Airfare/Transport charges

Itinerary

Day-1: 5th Feb 2023

Tokyo-Nagano

  1. Arrive At Narita Airport
  2. Narita -Tokyo: (Express Train – Narita Express) (1:15H)

NOTE: REACH TOKYO BY 10:00AM

TOUR STARTS FROM TOKYO

  1. Tokyo – Nagano: (Bullet Train -Hokuriku-Shinkansen) (1H:36m) (11:24am ~ 12:51pm)
  2. Check-in Hotel: Hotel JAL City Nagano (6 Min from JR Railway station 550m)
  3. Sightseeing:
  4. @ 3:00pm Zenkoji Shrine (Walking 20Min 1.6KMs from Hotel)
  5. Tokagure Ninja Museum

(By Train 1H; By Car 30min: Optional Depend upon time.)

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-2: 6th Feb 2023

Nagano-Tokyo

  1. Check-out Hotel: Hotel JAL City Nagano

(Keep Luggage at Hotel Cloak Room)

  1. Sightseeing:

Nagano- Yamanouchi-Jigokudani Monkey Park

(Snow monkey Photoshoot 8:30 ~ 12:30pm)

(Leave by 7:00am by Car – 1Hr)- Car/Bus Booking

  1. Yamanouchi-Jigokudani Monkey Park – Nagano

(Leave by 2:00pm by Car – 1Hr) Car/Bus Booking

(Collect Luggage from Hotel by 3:00pm)

  1. Nagano -Tokyo: (Bullet Train -Hokuriku-Shinkansen) (1:36H)

(5:35pm ~ 7:12pm)

  1. Check-in Hotel: Tokyo (TBD) Stay overnight at Tokyo

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-3: 7th Feb 2023

Tokyo-Haneda-Kushiro-Tsurui

  1. Check-out Hotel: at Tokyo by 5:00am
  2. Hotel-Tokyo Stn to Handeda Airport

Train: Tokyo- Shinagwa-Keiyu Mainline-Haneda Airport(35min)

  1. Hande- Kushiro (Domestic Flight JL 541 8:05am ~ 9.40am)
  2. Kushiro – Tsurui Village (By Car)
  3. Check-in Hotel: Tsukushi Village (Located Near Otowa Bridge 1.7Kms)
  4. Visit Tsurui Village for Photoshoot of Red-Crowned Cranes (We can go to Tsurumi Dai for Shoot)
  5. Visit near river for photoshoot of Cranes
  6. Return to Hotel and stay at Tsurui

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-4: 8th Feb 2023

Tsurui-Akkeshi

  1. Early Morning Go to Otowa Bridge for Photoshoot of Red-Crown Crane(4:30am)

We can shoot at Otowa bridge or Tsurumi dai (550m.7min walking distn) depending on situation

  1. Check-out Hotel: Tsukushi Village

(Keep Luggage at Hotel Cloak Room)

  1. Shoot surround places till afternoon at Tsurui
  2. Quick Lunch (If Possible. Depend upon time)
  3. Move to Akkeshi Stn (2:57PM)

(We May Also See Ezo-Ural Owl Inside Forest on The Way)

-Hotel to Kushiro by Bus No.20 (1 Hour Journey)

-Kushiro Stn – Akkeshi Stn by Train

(Kushiro Nemuro-Sen 2H43min. 4.13PM ~ 5.07PM)

  1. Check-in Hotel: Seaside Inn Hotel Akkeshi

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-5: 9th Feb 2023

Akkeshi – Nemuro

  1. Check-out Hotel: Seaside Inn Hotel Akkeshi

(Keep Luggage at Hotel Cloak Room)

  1. Stop by Akkeshi Bay to Observe & Photograph for Swans & Ducks.

(Optional: Boat Cruise to Observe the Sea Birds.)

  1. Move to Nemuro Stn (4:50PM)

-Hotel to Akkeshi Stn by Walk (15min)

-Akkeshi Stn – Nemuro Stn by Train

(Nemuro-Sen 2H43min. 5.07PM ~ 6.49PM)

  1. Check-in Hotel: Sanyokan

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-6: 10th Feb 2023

Nemuro -Rausu

  1. Check-out Hotel: Sanyokan
  2. Move to Lake Furen for Bird Watching

(Take a Private Bus/Car)

(Steller Eagle/White Tailed Eagle)

  1. Continue Moving towards Rausu

On the Way, Stop by Notsuke Peninsula for

the Observation and Photograph Ezo Sika Deer,

Ezo Red Fox & Ducks. In the Evening, Observe and Photograph One of

the Endangered Species, Blakiston’s Fish Owl At [Washi No Yado – Hide]

  1. Check-in Hotel: Washi no yado

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-7: 11th Feb 2023

Washi no Yado – Kushiro

  1. Check-out Hotel: Washi no Yado
  2. (Take a Private Bus/Car)

Early Morning Take the Drift Ice Cruise.

See the Sunrise from Kunashiri Island, Observe

and Photograph Steller’s Sea Eagle &

White-Tailed Eagle.

Then, Visit Rausu Visitor Center, Which Introduces

the Natural Resources of Shiretoko Peninsula.

  1. Check-in Hotel: at Kushiro

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-8: 12th Feb 2023

Kushiro – Tokyo

  1. Check-out Hotel: Kushiro
  2. Move from Kushiro – Haneda (JL-540 10.30am ~ 12:15pm)
  3. Check-in Hotel: Tokyo
  4. Go To Skytree/Asakusa/Rainbow bridge

(Free Time for all)

  1. Stay overnight at Tokyo

Lunch: No, Dinner-Yes

Day-9: 13th Feb 2023

Tokyo- Narita

  1. Morning Free Time
  2. Check-out Hotel @ 11:00am

Tour End

  1. Move to NARITA
  2. Check-in @ NARITA

Lunch: No, Dinner– No

Day-10: 14th Feb 2023

Narita- To your Destination

1. Check-out NRT

2. Board Flight to Return

Book Now!

To book your place on the FEB 2023 A magnificent Wild winters Trip to Japan: +91-8308809875 or mail us at contactus@thelensindia.com and proceed for booking amount through bank transfer or google pay.

Call Us
+91-8308809875
Mail Us
contactus@thelensindia.com

Booking & Payment Schedule: 

1st Installment (Booking Amount): USD 250

2nd Installment: USD 2,000 On or before 31st Oct 2022

3rd Installment: USD 2,000 On or before 30th Nov 2022

CANCELLATIONS (Applicable for only this tour)

In the event you may have to cancel your Booking or are unable to make the payments in accordance with Booking & Payment Schedule specified we reserves the right to charge the following cancellation fees:

Numbers of Days before

Tour Start Date                        Cancellation Fee as a % of Tour Price

60-48 days                                Deposit plus 10% Tour Price

47-35 days                                Deposit plus 20% Tour Price

34-22 days                                Deposit plus 30% Tour Price

21-14 days                                Deposit plus 45% Tour Price

13-8 days                                  Deposit plus 75% Tour Price

7 days or less (or no show)      Deposit plus 100% Tour Price

Check with your travel insurance provider in the event you need to cancel. You may be entitled to reclaim these charges. Claims must be made directly with your insurance provider.

The date of cancellation shall be decided on the written notice given to the us by You detailing the cancellation request.

Tour price is based on land arrangements only arranged by the us. Flight cancellation charges will be at the discretion of each individual airline. You should be aware of all flight cancellation policies before making payment to any airline.

Cancellations due to airport closures in your country or Japan due to a natural disaster will be handled on a case by case basis where an alternative cancelation policy may become in effect. If you are able to fly the day after your original departure date or 2 -3 days later, your tour can be altered to suit your arrival date at no extra charge. In all cases, booking deposits are non-refundable.

Cancellations due to force majeure: unforeseen events preventing travel to Japan such as; terrorist activity, industrial dispute, natural or nuclear disaster, adverse weather conditions, fire, flood, epidemic, closure of airports or airspace, civil unrest, war, or any other event outside of our control, are considered outside our  control. Regretfully, the we cannot hold any liability in these circumstances. Any changes to the obligations under our contract with you, will be treated on a case-by-case basis.

Got a question?

Frequently Asked Questions

How many years’ experience in photography is required?
No matter what your current photography level is. We can accommodate beginners as well as advanced photographers alike. As we have small group sizes, we can provide individual and personalized attention for each person and help you improve your photography at whatever level you are at. Our one of the main objectives is experience sharing at all levels and grow together.
What will I learn on your tours?
The aim with our tours is to improve your photographic skills, creativity understand and learn different culture and give our participants unique lifetime experience with good memories.
We design our tours to guide you to the best of locations and experiences in the best light where possible. Together with our teaching and feedback, you will learn how create great travel images. If you are beginner you will learn how to visualize a scene better before capturing the moment, explore the environment you are capturing, understand cultural considerations, and develop your own personal style. If you are already master, you will add to your experience and will certainly have exchange of information.
Can a non-photographer attend our tours?
Certainly Yes.
Although our tours (our Photography Tours) are specifically designed for photographers. Since everyone brings a camera with them on vacation nowadays and will take photos for their memories. So even if you don’t have a specific interest in photography, anyone can still be free to join our tours, but since the focus of our Tours (not to discriminate) is on photography first and foremost, so you will have to give consideration to the photographers’ needs first.
One great benefit of our Photography Tours is we spend a lot longer time at specified locations as compared to usual tours, and at the best times for photography where possible. This means you will get enough time to see destinations and sights when they are visually more appealing and can be relaxing for you in real terms, also you don’t have a rushed sightseeing experience or hoping tour experience that is so common among typical group tours.
Wherever possible, we will also recommend a range of activities for the non-photographers in our tour if at all non-photographers prefer to have free time in lieu of visiting a location together with the photographers.
What camera and equipment’s should I carry?
We usually recommend DSLR or Mirrorless cameras, but a digital compact camera or point and shoot camera is also adequate. Based on your photography taste you can also carry different lenses depending on the tour; the full tour itinerary and preparation information will provide recommendations, or just connect with us for further information.
If you have yet to get a camera or are looking to purchase a camera or other photography equipment before taking a tour, please feel free to contact us for any purchasing advice.
Wherever possible we can also recommend you to, go for rental equipment if required.
What is the difference between your and other tours?
Our Photography Tours are best described as great travel experience. We design our Photography Tours in such a way so that you don’t have to worry about logistics once you arrive on tour and can focus fully on photography as we take you to the best locations to shoot. Our tours provide a great mix of photography learnings, multiple opportunities to create great images, and great travel fun among a group of like-minded people.
Particularly our Photography Expeditions are designed to explore different locations trips to learn about new destinations. We would like to run Tours to in future, to visit specific events and festivals, and to look for unique photo opportunities. Additionally, our Expedition have a more flexible itinerary than other tours wherever possible as we assess each location/attraction/weather and spend as much, or as little time as required to achieve our photographic aims.
Our Photography Tours are known for a classic sightseeing experience.
Can you customize tours for us?
Yes, we can. We can customize tour for your subject to max 7 people in a group so that we can give personal attention to every individual during tour to best possible extent. If there are larger groups then, we will recommend a second leader in the tour to join the group. For custom tour pricing, please contact us.
We plan for destination you would like to visit of your choice. If you are interested in one of our standard photography tours or expeditions but want to adjust the itinerary, we can certainly do that. If you’d like to do this, please contact us to discuss things in more detail.
Are there any additional costs?
Wherever possible price covers all accommodation, some meals, most entrance fees, and the domestic travel costs in the Tour country. However, you will still need to pay for your own international flights, visas, and insurance and some places which are not specifically mentioned in inclusions. Apart from this, souvenirs, tips, personal snacks, and optional activity fees are additional costs. For further information, please visit our Tours section and read the Inclusions and Itinerary sections for the Tour you are interested in.
Can you organize my flights, insurance, visa and other travel planning?
No, however our travel booking partners will be able to help you with flight arrangements and travel insurance.
In case if our travel booking do not have their office at your location, then you will need to arrange your own visas, and we strongly recommend contacting the Tour country’s local embassy or consulate for further information.
You will also need to arrange your own vaccination and any travel medication that you may need.
Can you accommodate special dietary requirements on your tours?
This can be discussed case-by-case basis. If you have or on special diet (e.g. vegetarian, vegan, lactose intolerant, gluten free etc.), you will need to contact us before booking to find out if we can accommodate you. For our Japan tours, we are able to accommodate vegetarians. Contact us regarding other special diets.
What about refunds or cancellation policy?
All cancellations must be received in writing. No refunds will be made for unused services, regardless of the reason. Cancellations are subject to the following cancellation fees applied per person, per confirmed booking from the date the written cancellation is received: Please refer the policy below
46 days or more prior to arrival date in Japan: no penalty
45-31 days prior to arrival date in Japan: 10% of the tour price
30-15 days prior to arrival date in Japan: 20% of the tour price
14- 8 days prior to arrival date in Japan: 30% of the tour price
7 – 3 days prior to arrival date in Japan: 50% of the tour price
Less than 3 days prior to arrival date in Japan: 100% of the tour price.
Cancellation of any third-party suppliers’ arrangements will be subject to fees charged in accordance with that supplier. Refunds will not be given for unused or cancelled services after your arrangements have commenced.
Our cancellation policy indicates the fact that we have to make payments to our suppliers and comply to their booking conditions. It is a condition of attending our tours to have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place. In case of force majeure, no refunds available.

NOTE: ABOVE IS GENERIC POLICY. HOWEVER TOUR SPECIFIC POLICY WILL SUPRSEDE THIS GENERIC POLICY

How about bad weather or seasonal variations?
This is something which is beyond our control. All though we assess weather forecast adequately so that we can capture the targeted season, however, but some of the best travel photos have been taken in less than ideal shooting conditions. Certainly, your safety is our priority hence, we won’t venture out in dangerous weather conditions.
Seasonal variations due to weather change may have effect Tours such as our Japan Cherry Blossoms or Autumn Colors Tours. It’s impossible to predict with accuracy month/date in advance for both the cherry blossoms and autumn colors for their peak bloom periods but our tours are usually planned based on typical average opening to peak times for these phenomena.
How much luggage should I carry?
Lighter the better. For our Photography Tours and Expeditions, we strongly recommend keeping your luggage lighter and bear minimum required items in your baggage as our tours run in different locations in different seasons and may have adverse weather conditions.
Do you follow strict tour schedule?
Our tour schedules are generally strict, so that we can get good light and place to capture good images. but the timings are such that there is room for flexibility depending on the shooting conditions and how quickly a shooting session finishes. Our tours also have free time scheduled in to do your own thing or to simply rest and relax if required.
How many people are accommodated in a group tour?
For our Photography Tours, the group size is limited to 7 participants max.
Smaller the group better is the engagement with each other.
What about the fitness requirements on your tours?
Our Photo Tours are suitable for people 15 years and older with a moderate level of fitness and involves plenty of walking each day and you will need to be able to carry all your own camera equipment by yourself too.
Please let us know if you have any special needs due to physical limitations or any other challenges. We will assess people with special needs on a case-by-case basis so that appropriate guidance or alternatives can be provided.
Considering the above fact, please keep your luggage as light as possible so that you will be able to manage and handle this completely on your own as we move between our accommodation.
Can you accommodate people with special diets and/or food allergies?
For our Japan tours, generally we can manage as vegetarian options are available and we can have various source to buy limited options from the convenient store which are open 24x7.
But If you have a dietary restriction like vegan, halal, gluten free, allergies, etc then please discuss in advance before booking the tour. and are interested in booking a tour with us, please contact us first so we can discuss your needs because depending upon the location where we are going situation may differ. Unfortunately, for those with too many food restrictions (e.g. vegan, halal) and severe food allergies (e.g. peanut), we are unable to cater for your needs on our Japan tours and you will not be able to book onto our regular tours.

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