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    Hokkaido Explorer Cruise

    From $2549 $798 taxes

    Diamond Princess is a treasure trove of exceptional delights waiting to be discovered. Dine on freshly prepared sashimi in Kai Sushi, watch street performers in the dazzling Atrium, or take in a lavish production show in our state-of-the-art theater. And for a unique treat visit the Izumi Japanese Bath, the largest of its kind at sea.

    Travel Best Bets Package Includes

    • Round trip airfare from Vancouver to Tokyo
    • 13 night cruise aboard Diamond Princess
    • Round trip transfers from airport to pier and pier to airport

    August 20 – September 4, 2018

    Inside Outside Balcony Taxes & Fees
    $2549 $3649 $3799 $798
    Victoria, Kelowna from $300 more

    Please call to inquire about other departure cities.

    Sailing Itinerary

    Map showing the port stops for Hokkaido Explorer. For more details, refer to the List of Port Stops table on this page.

    Date Port of Call Arrive Depart
    Aug 22 Tokyo (Yokohama), Japan - 5:00pm
    Aug 23 At Sea - -
    Aug 24 Kanmon Straits, Japan
    Scenic Cruising
    5:00am 7:00am
    Aug 24 Busan, South Korea 2:00pm 10:00pm
    Aug 25 Kanmon Straits, Japan
    Scenic Cruising
    5:00am 7:00am
    Aug 26 Yokkaichi, Japan 7:00am 4:00pm
    Aug 27 Tokyo (Yokohama), Japan 6:00am 5:00pm
    Aug 28 At Sea - -
    Aug 29 Kushiro, Japan 7:00am 5:00pm
    Aug 30 At Sea - -
    Aug 31 Korsakov (Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk), Russia
    Tender Required, Wheelchair Access Limited
    6:00am 6:00pm
    Sept 1 Otaru, Japan 8:00am 6:00pm
    Sept 2 Hakodate, Japan 8:00am 11:00pm
    Sept 3 At Sea - -
    Sept 4 Tokyo (Yokohama), Japan 6:00am -

    Yokohama and Edo began life as sleepy fishing villages. That changed in the early 17th century after Tokugawa Ieyasu became Shogun. Edo became the center of political power in Japan, a position the city retained even after the restoration of Imperial rule in 1866. Contemporary Tokyo may be the most astonishing city on earth. It’s a paradoxical mix of ancient tradition and postmodern culture. The Ginza – an international shopping mecca – stands near the serene grounds of the Imperial Palace, and the hyper-speed of 21st century consumerism is mysteriously reconciled with the elegance and serenity of traditional culture. Tokyo provides the traveler with a dizzying experience. With the Meiji Restoration of 1868, Edo was renamed Tokyo, the “Eastern Capital,” to distinguish it from the old imperial capital at Kyoto, the “Western Capital.”

    The second largest city in South Korea, Busan is your gateway to a fascinating land whose culture is a unique amalgam of old and new. Modern high-rise towers dwarf ancient Buddhist temples. The city’s bustling business district offers a stark contrast to the serene grounds of Yongdusan Park. In short, Busan is a microcosm of South Korea, a nation whose startling economic success often obscures one of Asia’s most sophisticated and venerable cultures. Busan was the scene of bitter fighting during the Korean War. The United Nations Memorial Cemetery marks the final resting place for the troops from 16 nations who gave their lives during the conflict.

    Overlooking the mighty Pacific Ocean in northern Japan, it should come as no surprise that this “town of mist” is a major Japanese fishing port. But although the freshly caught seafood served ashore is a highlight for many visitors, Kushiro has so much more to offer! Stroll through Kushiro Fisherman’s Wharf MOO, where a variety of coastal restaurants and boutiques delight tourists from all over. Or head inland to explore the natural wonders of this region, such as Kushiro Marsh, a lush national park and home to the country’s most extensive marshland. Break out your binoculars for close-up views of the rare and graceful Japanese cranes at Tancho Nature Park. And if you’re an architecture enthusiast, you’ll be fascinated by the unusual structure of the Kushiro City Museum of Art, which resembles the shape of a Japanese crane spreading its wings.

    Founded in 1853 as Sakhalin’s first Russian military post, Korsakov would later serve as a penal colony. Ruled by Japan between 1905 and 1945, and later reclaimed by the Soviet Union, Korsakov is the place where Japan and Korea left imprint of their sojourn here on Russian culture. Though its tumultuous history includes power struggles and forced labor, the town is the perfect picture of tranquility today. Being the south sea gateway of Sakhalin, Korsakov leads you to Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, the island’s administrative capital and popular tourist destination. Due to Sakhalin’s significant natural resources the city is surging with prosperity. Here, you can see a fascinating mix of modern buildings, museums and executive offices sitting comfortably with Russian and Japanese structures.

    In 1880, the first railroad line on the island of Hokkaido connected Sapporo, the prefectural capital, with the important port city of Otaru. Indeed, for most of the 19th and much of the 20th centuries, Otaru outshone Sapporo in importance. The city was home to a thriving herring fleet. Ships regularly plied the waters between the port and the then Japanese island of Sakhalin. Coal was mined in the hills, and Otaru even won a reputation for producing fine music boxes. It was the island’s industrial heart. Closure of coal mine in Hokkaido and downturn in demand of coal initiated a long decline that lasted into the 1950s. But Otaru survived – and has thrived. Japanese travelers discovered the city, drawn to its winter sports, its fine sushi, and its historic architecture. Otaru seemed like a portrait frozen in time. Today, international travelers have flocked to experience Otaru’s charms – including the scenic beauty of Hokkaido’s rugged west coast and its nearby national parks. The vast wealth accumulated by Otaru’s herring tycoons is displayed at their so-called “Herring Mansions.” One, the Nishin Goten, built in 1897, amply illustrates the state of 19th century society: the sumptuous ground floor housed the family while as many as 120 workers lived in squalor upstairs.

    It took Commodore Perry and American gunboat diplomacy to open Japan to the outside world after two centuries of self-imposed isolation. In 1859, the port of Hakodate became the first Japanese city fully opened to Westerners under the Treaty of Amity and Commerce. Foreigners soon flocked to Hakodate, and today visitors wandering the cobblestone streets of the city’s Motomachi District can view their Western-style frame houses. Hakodate, once a fishing port famed for its high quality fish and shellfish, quickly became Hokkaido’s largest city and one of Japan’s most important ports. The Great Hakodate Fire of 1934 dealt the city a near fatal blow – a blow from which Hakodate was slow to recover. Today the city is Hokkaido’s third largest – surpassed by Sapporo and Asahikawa – but retains its foremost position as the finest Japanese producer of sushi’s raw product: the high quality seafood caught in Hokkaido’s cold waters. It may not compare to Tokyo’s Tsukiji’s Fish Market, but at Hakodate’s four-block-long Morning Market, vendors offer a stunning array of fresh fish and shellfish prized for sushi including salmon roe, sea urchin, scallops and crab. Restaurants and food stands prepare a wide arrange of dishes including domburi topped with fresh seafood.


    Call for details: 1-877-523-7823


    Terms & Conditions

    All rates are per person, based on double occupancy in Canadian dollars (unless otherwise stated) New bookings only. Space and price may be limited and subject to availability at the time of booking.  Errors or omissions may occur on the above information with no guarantee of being honoured. Terms and conditions apply. Tax is not included in the above base fare. Above tax amount includes $30 per adult Booking Management Fee.  Not included in the above rates: Xpresspost fee, recommended medical, cancellation or baggage insurance. Child rate is applicable when travelling with 2 paying adults sharing 1 hotel room, using the existing bedding. Price Match Policy: Travel Best Bets makes every effort to remain competitive by offering our ‘Match or Beat Any Price’ offer however due to certain restrictions  there will be some product we cannot match or beat. Please note the star ratings found on www.travelbestbets.com are determined by Travel Best Bets based on a number of factors and may not match the star rating found in the Tour Operator’s brochure. Please view our star ratings by clicking here. Due to an increasing volume of disputed bookings, we will only accept payment for air only travel to India, the Philippines and the continent of Africa through the following means: book and pay cash in person or by direct deposit into our business account – once the transaction is verified and a copy of the receipt emailed or faxed to our office, we will confirm the booking. Please contact us for details on how to book using this method.Please note there maybe a tax increase when FREE connectors are added with Air Canada Vacations. Please contact [email protected] for photo credit information. BPCPA #3287