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Welcome to discover Japan with ARNE & CARLOS!

We are delighted to invite you to experience the highlights of Japan with ARNE & CARLOS as your hosts! The designer duo ARNE & CARLOS are well known throughout the world for their famous knitting designs, but they are also very keen gardeners - they have created a lovely English-style cottage garden in their mountain home in Norway. Nature, flowers, and gardens have always inspired their design work greatly.

ARNE & CARLOS have a deep love for and a strong connection with Japan. They have traveled there extensively, have many Japanese fans, and their books are translated into Japanese. They became very familiar with this incredible country when they worked as designers for Comme des Garçons, a famous, high-end Japanese fashion brand based in Tokyo. In the years after the devastating earthquake and tsunami of 2011, ARNE & CARLOS spent a lot of time doing relief work in the Tohoku region of the country, which was severely affected. They also spent years working on different projects to revitalize this devastated area of Japan. Their deep respect and love for this country, with its fascinating culture, stunning traditions, incredible food and the Japanese people's warmth and graciousness, makes them constantly want to return to The Land of the Rising Sun.

The tour starts in Tokyo and will focus on Japanese gardens, culture and food. Japan - an ancient culture of emperors, fierce shoguns, samurais, and brutal martial arts. Yet it is also a place of gentle geishas, colorful kimonos, exquisite garden design, and Zen Buddhism.  The origin of the Japanese garden lies in simple, gravel-covered forest clearings where the gods could manifest themselves. Over the centuries the gardens have evolved into an idealized reflection of the natural landscape through the careful use of stone and water features, trees, plants, and moss. They are places of exquisite beauty, where the eye is led gently to perfectly framed views, often ‘borrowing’ a distant landscape as part of the picture being created. Trees and plants are carefully chosen for certain qualities of form, color, or texture, all of which combine to create an atmosphere of calm and contemplation. In early November the autumn foliage is in abundance. The focus will be on gardens, local arts and crafts, and delicious Japanese cuisine, with carefully chosen restaurants throughout. 


* Dazzling Tokyo – traditional, passionate, and busy!
* Riding the fast Bullet Train and enjoying a traditional Bento box lunch onboard
* The temples and gardens of Kyoto – probably the finest in Japan 
* Staying in a traditional Ryokan inn with hot spring baths
* Stunning scenery in Hakone, overlooking the iconic Mount Fuji
* Glorious autumn foliage
* Delicious and authentic Japanese cuisine



Scandinavians Arne Nerjordet and Carlos Zachrisson are highly regarded fashion designers, textile artists, YouTubers and authors. They are best known for their original, colourful and visually striking designs as well as their knitwear and their books. Their work is highly influenced by their Scandinavian background and their everyday life in rural Norway. They work under their artist name ARNE & CARLOS, which they established in 2001.

Read more about ARNE & CARLOS here.


B = Breakfast    L = Lunch    D = Dinner
Please note the program is subject to changes

Day 1        Arrival Tokyo, Japan, 4 Nov 2024

Arrival in Tokyo, Japan, from your home destination, by your own arrangement. Check-in at Keio Plaza Hotel, in downtown Tokyo.

Day 2        Tokyo                 5 Nov 2024 (B, L, D)

Our group will meet with ARNE & CARLOS after breakfast before today’s tour of Tokyo’s famous sights, gardens, and temples. Enchanting Tokyo dazzles with its traditional culture and passion for everything new. The city is constantly changing, and with a diverse collection of neighborhoods, giving visitors different experiences all the time. We will visit Asakusa, the city’s oldest Geisha district, and the home to Senso-ji, Tokyo’s oldest Buddhist temple. The streets around Senso-ji feature many traditional shops selling Japanese crafts and souvenirs and are a delight to wander through. Another famous landmark we will visit today is the Meiji Shrine, which is dedicated to Emperor Meiji (1852-1912) and Empress Shoken, who led Japan to become a modernized nation. The Shibuya crossing is very famous as the busiest intersection in the world, and we will walk around this area, and also in the Omotesando area which offers a more relaxed atmosphere, and is filled with high-end fashion boutiques, groundbreaking design houses, and perhaps the fanciest cafe culture in all of Japan. People watching is rather exciting in Tokyo! In the evening we will have a welcome dinner together in a traditional Japanese restaurant.

Day 3        Tokyo          6 Nov 2024 (B, L)

Another day of exploring mangnificent Tokyo and today's tour will take us to the Imperial Palace Gardens and to one of Tokyo's most beautiful gardens, the Rikugien Gardens, which were created around 1700 as a strolling garden. The quiet grounds depict many scenic spots and offer beautiful views from every angle. We will visit the famous Tsukiji Outer Market, a very lively community of merchants, and some of Tokyo's best restaurants can be found here. Todays's tour will also take you to the fashionable Ginza district where you will have time to do your own exploring. We will have lunch together during the tour, and the evening is at your own leisure.


Day 4        Tokyo - Hakone         7 Nov 2024 (B, D)

After a taste of Tokyo, the tour continues to Hakone, to get a glimpse of the majestic Mount Fuji. This is an area of forested mountains and deep ravines, and a popular hot springs destination. The views are dominated by Mount Fuji, the highest peak in Japan, 3776 meters (12 000 ft) above sea level.  After an exciting ride on the Owakudi ropeway (cable car), we will visit the Hakone Open Air Museum with its impressive Picasso collection. The museum is an outdoor sculpture gallery which plays with nature and has beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. Early afternoon arrival for our overnight in a Ryokan, which is a traditional Japanese inn, with its own ‘Onsen’ - hot spring baths. Dinner together at the Ryokan.

Day 5       Hakone – Kanazawa    8 Nov 2024  (B, L)

After breakfast at the Ryokan, the luggage will be picked up and delivered to Kanazawa. Today’s adventure is the Shinkansen bullet train ride from Odawara station to Kanazawa. Onboard, we will enjoy a traditional Bento box lunch - a truly Japanese experience! After check in at the hotel, there will be a walking tour of the Nagamachi district. Dinner will be at your own leisure this evening, and there are good restaurants in the hotel which has an excellent location, and also within walking distance from the hotel.

Day 6        Kanazawa     9 Nov 2024 (B, D)

Kenrokuen in Kanazawa is justifiably classified as one of Japan's three most beautiful landscape gardens and one of today's highlights. The spacious grounds used to be the outer garden of Kanazawa Castle and were constructed by the ruling Maeda family. It features a variety of flowering trees giving the garden a different look for each season. The Seisonkaku Villa is one of the most elegant samurai villas in Japan. The Omicho Fish Market is very lively, and we will stop here, before we make our way to the Yachiya Sake Brewery, where we will learn all about the traditional drink, and of course taste it!  Dinner in a local restaurant near the hotel.

Day 7     Kanazawa – Gokayama    10 Nov 2024 (B, L) 

Today's tour will take us to Gokayama which is a remote mountain village with traditional gassho-zukuri farmhouses. These centuries-old abodes, which translates to ‘hands in prayer’, have triangular thatched roofs. We will enjoy lunch together in Gokayama. A local craft in Gokayama is the making of paper and we will have a workshop here and make paper the traditional Japanese way.  On our way back to Kanazawa we will visit The Gold Leaf Museum. Enjoy the last evening in lovely Kanazawa, at your own leisure.

Day 8       Kyoto             11 Nov 2024 (B, D)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

Today we have a long drive from Kanazawa to Kyoto, it is time to relax in the bus and enjoy the scenery. Along the way there will be rest stops and this is a little adventure on its own, and a delightful Japanese lunch can be bought here, the selection is vast and of very high quality. It is also a good place to find gifts to take home.

Kyoto is the old capital and the spiritual heart of Japan, as well as its cultural capital - with thousands of temples and the most sublime gardens in the country. The most important temple is Tenryu-ji in the Arashiyama district. We will of course visit the famous Arashima Bamboo Grove – one of Kyoto's most iconic sights, a popular and busy attraction during the autumn color season. The Tenryu-ji garden is centered around a large pond and designed to reflect the changing seasons, and this garden is believed to be the least changed and is considered one of the most exquisite of Japan's traditional landscaped gardens. Dinner together in a restaurant near the hotel.

Day 9        Kyoto                12 Nov 2024 (B, L)

Today’s exciting tour of Kyoto includes a visit to one of the most important temples in Japan, the Nansen-ji temple, which is a perfect introduction to Kyoto's traditional dry landscape gardens. In our tour program today is also a craft museum, and the Heian Shrine with its imposing torii gate. Lunch together in a local restaurant, and the rest of the day at your own leisure. Our hotel is very well located near Gion, which is the geisha district, a lively part of the city with all its lavish tea houses. Kyoto’s Nishiki Market (Kyoto’s Kitchen) is a real highlight and worth a visit, the culinary scene in this city is amazing.

Day 10       Kyoto - Ohara        13 Nov 2024 (B, D)

It is time to learn more about Japanese crafts, and in the morning we will have a tour to Ohara, where we will learn about the traditions and intricate culture behind the indigo color and dying. We will also have a workshop that includes the indigo dyeing experience.

One of Japan's most important temples, is on our program today - the Kodai-ji Temple, dating back to 1606. The temple complex features a combination of architectural styles, including Zen temple structures, tea houses, and a beautiful Japanese garden. The architecture reflects the Momoyama period's lavish style, characterized by intricate wooden carvings, gold leaf decorations, and ornate sliding doors. Kodai-ji Temple is renowned for its stunning Japanese garden, which was designed by renowned landscape architect and tea master, Kobori Enshu. The garden features meticulously landscaped ponds, stone lanterns, winding paths, and seasonal flora, creating a serene and picturesque setting for contemplation and relaxation. The temple has several tea houses, which provide a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of Japanese tea culture. In the autumn, the gardens are illumiated to enhance the beauty of the autumn foliage, which will be an uforgettable experience. We will see the temple and the gardens in the evening, and have dinner together nearby in the Gion area.

Day 11        Kyoto - Osaka      14 Nov 2024 (B, L)

It time to leave Kyoto, and head for the last stop of our tour - Osaka. Whilst Kyoto was the city of nobility, Tokyo the city of the samurai, Osaka was the city of the merchant class. Osaka is Japan’s third largest city and has a lovely river running through its center. Fun fact – the city’s slogan is ‘eat until you drop’! Entering Osaka, we will visit the most famous attraction in the city - Osaka Castle - which is not only a symbol of Osaka's rich history and heritage but also a popular tourist destination that offers visitors a glimpse into Japan's feudal past, stunning architecture, and natural beauty. The castle dates bach to the 16th century and is set within a vast park-like area known as Osaka Castle Park. The park features lush greenery, cherry blossom trees, and scenic walking paths, making it a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. After our lunch, we will proceed to the hotel for check in. Afterwards we will visit the very lively and colourful Dotonbori area. An explosion of neon and entertainment, Dotonbori is Osaka's Times Square, filled with towering neon signs, clubs, bars, and restaurants serving up local specialties. Both sides of the Dotonbori River are filled with eating and drinking establishments. Walk the promenade to find the famous Kani Douraku restaurant, which prominently displays an enormous crab above its entrance. Dinner at your own leisure - maybe try Osaka's famous okonomiyaki - or savory pancake - and takoyaki, cooked batter-balls stuffed with octopus.

Day 12      Osaka      15 Nov 2024 (B, D)
Today we will get to know Osaka and its surroundings better, during our tour which will take us to Saki City and the Daisen Park Gardens. The city of Sakai has a rich and colorful history. It was a prosperous merchant town and trading port in the 16th century. Today Sakai is renowned for its craft cutlery industry (Sakai knives are much sought after by chefs) and precision bicycle manufacture, and has museums devoted to both. Its most remarkable claim to fame, however, is the site of one of the largest mausoleums on the planet. We will visit the Sakai Traditional Crafts Museum and Daisen Park Gardens, which was designed to symbolize the history of Sakai. We will be dropped off at the famous Shinsaibashi  shopping area, for you to have lunch and do some last minute shopping - this is only a 15 minute walk from the hotel. This evening we will enjoy a lovely farwell dinner together, in a traditional restaurant near the hotel.

Day 13    Osaka – end of tour        16 Nov 2024
Check out and depart for your home destination, by own arrangements.



TOKYO - Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo

The Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo is a renowned hotel located in Shinjuku, one of Tokyo's bustling commercial and entertainment districts. Situated in the heart of Shinjuku, the Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo offers convenient access to various attractions, shopping centers, restaurants, and transportation hubs. It's within walking distance to Shinjuku Station, one of Tokyo's major train stations, providing easy connections to other parts of the city and beyond.

The hotel features a wide range of guest rooms and suites, catering to different preferences and needs. Rooms are elegantly designed and equipped with modern amenities to ensure a comfortable stay for guests. Some rooms may offer stunning views of the Tokyo skyline. Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo boasts an extensive selection of dining options, including Japanese, Western, and international cuisine. The hotel is home to several restaurants, bars, and cafes, each offering a unique culinary experience. The hotel offers a range of facilities and services to enhance guests' comfort and convenience. These include a fitness center, swimming pool, spa, beauty salon and business center.

HAKONE - Hakine Kowakien Ten-yu

Hakone Kowakien Ten-yu Hotel is a luxurious hot spring resort located in the scenic Hakone region, known for its natural beauty, hot springs, and views of Mount Fuji. Nearby attractractions are Lake Ashi, Hakone Shrine, and the Hakone Open-Air Museum. The hotel offers upscale accommodation options, including Japanese-style rooms and suites with modern amenities. Rooms often feature traditional Japanese design elements such as tatami mat flooring, shoji paper screens, and private outdoor hot spring baths (rotenburo) with panoramic views of the surrounding nature.

Onsen (Hot Springs): One of the main highlights of the Hakone Kowakien Ten-yu Hotel is its natural hot spring baths. Guests can enjoy a variety of indoor and outdoor hot spring baths, including gender-segregated communal baths and private baths for couples or families. The mineral-rich waters are believed to have therapeutic properties and provide a relaxing experience amidst the tranquil natural surroundings.

KANAZAWA - Kanazawa Tokyu Hotel  

Kanazawa Tokyu Hotel is centrally located in Kanazawa and has two restaurants and a spa.  Rooms at the Tokyu Hotel Kanazawa include complimentary tea, Japanese tea, and coffee. Nagamachi Samurai District is just a 2-minute walk from the hotel and Kenroku-en Garden is less than a 10-minute walk. Restaurant Marais d'Or offers a buffet-style breakfast and French course menus while Kincharyo serves a Japanese-style breakfast. Drinks are available at the lounge bar.

KYOTO  - Higashiyama Hotel Kyoto

The Higashiyama Hotel Kyoto is a traditional Japanese style hotel located in the historic Higashiyama district. The hotel offers guests the opportunity to experience traditional Japanese culture amidst the charming streets, temples, and tea houses of Kyoto. It is within walking distance to several famous landmarks such as Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Yasaka Shrine, and the Gion District. The hotel has a fitness centre, garden, a terrace and restaurants, and air-conditioned rooms with a private bathroom and free WiFi. Guest rooms in the hotel are equipped with coffee/tea, a flat-screen TV and free toiletries. 

OSAKA - Osaka Tokyu Hotel

The Osaka Tokyu Hotel is situated in the heart of Osaka, providing convenient access to major attractions, shopping districts, dining options, and transportation hubs. The hotel offers a range of comfortable and stylish guest rooms and suites designed to meet the needs of various travelers. Rooms are well-appointed with modern amenities such as flat-screen TVs, complimentary Wi-Fi, minibars, and comfortable bedding. Osaka Tokyu Hotel features multiple dining options, including restaurants serving Japanese, Western, and international cuisine. Guests can enjoy a diverse range of culinary delights, from traditional Japanese dishes to international favorites, prepared by experienced chefs using high-quality ingredients.




Your tour leader for the journey will be Githa Kristensen from Aller Travel. Githa has been arranging knitting and garden tours with ARNE & CARLOS for several years. Githa has worked in the travel industry always, as a tour leader, on cruise ships, and as a travel agent. For the tour in Japan, Githa will meet you at the hotel in Tokyo  - together with ARNE & CARLOS, and she will be assisting the group with all practical matters throughout the tour. Githa is also a keen knitter, and even though her garden by the fjord in Norway is very 'natural', she has an interest in gardens as well as arts and crafts. She has traveled extensively in Asia and is fascinated by Japanese culture and traditions. 

The price includes:
  • 12 nights’ accommodation incl breakfast
  • All transportation according to the tour program
  • Guided tours, garden visits, and workshops as specified in the tour program
  • Dinner and lunches as specified in the tour program
  • ARNE & CARLOS as your tour hosts
  • Tour leader from Aller Travel is Githa Kristensen
The price does not include:
  • Travel insurance (not compulsory but recommended)
  • Meals not mentioned in the program

    Prices in USD

    Price per person in a shared twin or double room:            NOK  72 000,-     (USD 6900) 
    Price single use/single room:                                                NOK  87 500,-     (USD 8300)

    Travel Terms and Payment Conditions

    Terms and Conditions Aller Travel AS

    The terms and conditions of this contract apply to all products or services of any kind whatsoever provided for or arranged by Aller Travel. These terms and conditions represent the entire agreement and a binding contract between Aller Travel AS and the customer.

    The terms and conditions of this contract are drawn up in accordance with the Package Tours Act, and the regulations laid down by the Norwegian Ministry of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion. However, in case of conflict between this contract and Package Tours Act, this contract shall take precedence.


    Your contract partner is Aller Travel AS. When used in this contract, «you,» or «customer» means each person whose name appears on the face of the ticket and/or who uses the ticket for passage on the tour described in the ticket.

    When you book travel with us, this contract is regarded as binding once Aller Travel AS receives the first payment of the deposit. Aller Travel AS is then responsible for delivering the products/arrangements you have booked while you are financially responsible for the booking. The moment you make a booking you are confirming that you have the authority to accept these terms and conditions on behalf of yourself and any travel companions. You accept responsibility for payment to us for all customers in your booking. The customer is solely responsible for ensuring that the actual reservation corresponds with the booking made.

    As the person making the booking, you are also responsible for ensuring that the names on all documents are correct and in accordance with the passports of all customers for whom you are making the booking. As the person making the booking, you will also be responsible for ensuring that all travel companions in the booking are kept fully informed of what was booked and any changes that may arise.


    Any disputes and matters of whatsoever nature between the customer and Aller Travel AS shall be governed by Norwegian law. Such disputes and matters shall be litigated in and before a court of law in the city of Oslo, Norway.


    Aller Travel AS at all times provides the statutory guarantee for package tours from:

    The Norwegian Travel Guarantee Fund
    Post box 227

    4. PAYMENT

    Payment of deposit NOK 3000 per person is due immediately for all bookings.

    The full amount due must be paid at least 8 weeks before departure.
    If the booking is made less than 8 weeks prior to departure, the full amount is due immediately.

    If you fail to make any payment by the date on which it is due under this contract, Aller Travel AS reserves the right to cancel the booking, keep the deposit and demand a cancellation fee.

    For online purchases made by credit cards, Aller travel follows the EU regulations which require 3D Secure banking system for credit card transactions.
    In order to pay by credit card, please check the following:
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    •         Check that your bank and credit card are enrolled in the 3D Secure banking system

    5. PRICES

    The tour fare set forth in this contract is stated Norwegian kroner (NOK), which is per person based on double occupancy. The fare does not include items of a personal nature, including but not limited to, laundry, liquor, beer, or wine. The full and correct price of the trip is given before a booking is confirmed, except as set forth below.

    The tour fare includes all applicable and known taxes, surcharges, and government-imposed fees.


    We recommend that all passengers purchase a travel protection plan to help protect you and your trip investment from unexpected events such as cancellations, delays, and medical emergencies. Please read the cancellation policy below.


    You or anyone in the booking have/has the right to cancel the booking at any time. All cancellations must be done in writing by the person who has made the booking. The cancellation is effective on the date that Aller Travel AS receives the cancellation request.

    Cancellation fees are calculated according to the following schedule:

    Number of days prior to departure

    Cancellation fees

    Less than 30 days before

    100 %

    30 – 89 days before

    50 %

    More than 91 days before

    Deposit is non refundable



    Aller Travel AS reserves the right to cancel any booking without liability or compensation to you, provided such cancellation is due to circumstances that are beyond Aller Travel’s control, including but not limited to acts of God, war, piracy, terrorism, civil strife, labor conflicts, weather conditions, perils of the sea, mechanical breakdown, or collisions («force majeure events»).

    Aller Travel reserves the right to omit, alter, or curtail any tour excursions at its sole discretion. If a change to a tour is minor, of a kind that the customer should have anticipated occasionally occurring or the occurrence of which is beyond Aller Travel’s reasonable control, then Aller Travel shall have no obligation to pay a refund to the customer. If a deviation is not minor, or Aller Travel cancels a tour, a full refund will be given to the customer.


    Prior to traveling, you must notify us of any medical condition for which you or any person accompanying you may require either medical attention or accommodation during the tour, including but not limited to food allergies, or for which the use of a wheelchair is required. The customer assumes all risks arising out of the customer’s personal medical condition prior to the tour, whether or not that condition is disclosed to Aller Travel.


    Your specific passport and visa requirements as well as any other immigration requirements are your own responsibility and you must clarify this with the relevant embassies and/or consulates. We do not accept any responsibility in situations where you cannot travel because you do not meet the latest requirements.


    Aller Travel AS
    PB 1169 Sentrum

    0107 Oslo, Norway

    TEL: + 47 917 93 754

    Githa Kristensen

    Departures & booking

    DateMeeting pointDestinationDurationSpots leftFrom price

    November 2024

    4/11Meet at Keio Plaza Hotel TokyuARNE & CARLOS' JAPAN13 daysSold outNOK 72,000Book on waiting listMore information