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Japan Autumn Photo Tour

Updated April 24th, 2020

Japan 2020 – Autumn Photo Tour

Due to COVID19 this tour has been temporarily suspended

Stay tuned for updates

10 days in Japan with the colours of Autumn

Join Adam Monk for 10 days of photo tour adventures in the rich diversity that is Japan in Autumn.  From the bustling downtown streets of Tokyo, to the beauty of Japan’s natural wonder, and the serenity of the Kyoto temple gardens in Autumn, Japan is a wonderful mix of modern and historic places, stunning landscapes, culture and culinary delights.

Japan Autumn Photo Tour 2020 – Highlights

  • 10 full days in Japan.
  • Maximum group of 5 people.
  • Exclusive cultural shoots.
  • Tour begins Tokyo ends in Kyoto.
  • All your breakfasts and all dinners  on tour.
  • Travel on comfortable Japanese trains.
  • All your transport on tour included.
  • Native Japanese guides with extensive experience and excellent English.
  • Photo Tuition from a full time professional photographer.
  • Itinerary created by photographers, not a travel agent.
  • All locations have been scouted by us.
  • Extensive photography and Lightroom Notes to keep.
  • Dates: To Be Advised
  • Tour Price: TBA PP Twin Share
  • Single Supplement: JPY TBA

Downloads the pdf booking form.

* Why only in Japanese Yen (JPY)? We offer this tour in JPY only, as we pay our suppliers in JPY. This ensures our price remains stable, with no additional hidden payments due to currency fluctuations. Click
HERE for more information.

** The tour price is per person on a Twin Share (or double) room basis. To book the twin share rate you must specify a room partner, as we cannot pair you with others you don’t yet know.  The potential for snoring induced sleep deprivation discord is just too high!

Japan, the land of contrast

For this Japan photo tour itinerary we have created a fabulous balance of landscapes, historical urbanscapes, street photography, people and culture,  with lots of great Japanese food, music and sake thrown in.  

This Japan Photo tour is 10 days of stunning Autumn colours, history, culture and food in Japan.  This tour begins  in Tokyo and finishes in Kyoto, and the price is inclusive of all breakfasts and dinners, transport, accommodation, photography tuition and local Japanese guides.

Unique Japan

Japan is a country of over 400 inhabited islands – four large ones and over 6,000 small uninhabited ones. To the west and north are China, Korea and Russia, yet Japan’s unique culture has evolved over the millennium from prehistoric to feudal to a modern economy.  Fascinating ancient traditional elements live alongside modern rural and urban community life,  creating a wonderful melange of old and new, traditional and modern that is uniquely Japan.

The Important Details.

  • Dates: TBA
  • Total Tour Price: TBA* PP Twin Share**
  • Single Supplement: TBA
  • 11 days in Japan
  • Just 5 places

* Why only in Japanese Yen (JPY)? We offer this tour in JPY only, as we pay our suppliers in JPY. This ensures our price remains stable, with no additional hidden payments due to currency fluctuations. Click HERE for more information.

** The tour price is per person on a Twin Share (or double) room basis. To book the twin share rate you must specify a room partner, as we cannot pair you with others you don’t yet know.  The potential for snoring induced sleep deprivation discord is just too high!

What’s Included

  • Just 5 places available (Maximum number).
  • 11 days in Japan, full 10 days on tour.
  • Tour begins in Tokyo and concludes in Kyoto.
  • Comprehensive E-Book of Japan pre trip preparation notes.
  • All transport for the duration of the tour in Japan, including taxis, trains and ferries.
  • All entrance fees to Temples, gardens and national parks.
  • All you breakfasts & All your dinners, excellent local Japanese cuisine.
  • All your Hotel accommodation in Japan for the duration of the tour.
  • All photographic tuition and workshops for the duration of the tour.
  • Professional photographer to help you get the best photos.
  • Highly experienced local Japanese specialist guides.
  • Extensive 21 page Photography Techniques E-Book, with complete shooting workflow.
  • In depth 36 page Lightroom E-Book, with complete post processing workflow.
  • Custom made Japan Lightroom catalogue with all location Keywords & Smart Collections pre-loaded.

What’s Not Included

  • Flights to Japan from your home port and return.
  • Japan Visa (if you require one, please check with your travel agent).
  • Initial transfer from the airport to the hotel in Tokyo.
  • Transfer to Osaka airport at the conclusion in Kyoto.
  • lunches on tour in Japan.
  • Travel insurance (required as a condition of booking).
  • Camera Insurance.
  • Alcohol and extra beverages.
  • Any extras you may wish to buy along the way.
  • Tips for local guides (optional).
  • Adobe Lightroom software subscription fees.

What to expect on our Autumn Photo Tour to Japan

Many people run Photo tours and there are just as many different ways to organise them. The tabs below explain how we run our Autumn in Japan Photo Tours and why we do it this way.

A tour created especially for photographers
The itinerary created by photographers

This Japan photo tour itinerary has been researched and created by us, by visiting and photographing each location. It’s not just about arriving in beautiful places, Japan is full of those, it’s about being there at the right time for the best light and the right cultural experiences.  

We never jam in loads of locations for each day. Rather we spend more time in fewer more unique locations and we give you time to explore them, allowing you to get the feel of a place, talk to some locals and get some great images that tell a real story. 

This requires on the ground practical research, something that can’t be done from behind a desk.

Small Group – Maximum of 10

Have you ever seen those tours that turn up at a beautiful place in a huge bus and an enormous group of people?

Our Autumn colours of Japan photo tour is not like that.

This tour has a maximum group size of just 5 people. That way you get to experience the life and culture of Japan more closely without intimidating the locals, and you won’t get in the way of each others shots.

With such a small group there is always plenty of opportunity to have time with Adam to refine your skills and get the level of tuition you deserve.

Transport on Tour – Legendary Japanese Trains

For this photo tour to Japan we travel on the awesome Japanese rail system. We love trains, and Japanese trains are the best we have ever used.  Always on time, clean, comfortable, quiet and relaxing.  Just sit back and gaze out the window as the Japanese countryside slips by.  Trains in Japan are awesome, they sure beat traffic jams.  

All of these trips are of course included in your tour, along with taxi rides around town and metro transport. We have it all sorted.

Great local Japanese guides
Great guides make for a great experience

We have no shortage of photography expertise or tour experience on this Japan photo tour. Adam is a full time professional photographers as well as highly experienced professional photography guide who has been to Japan and run tours there many times.

Our specialist local Japanese guides have a vast store of historical and cultural knowledge of Japan that they love to share. They have been working with us for many years and speak excellent English and have a thorough understanding of what photographers are searching for. And equally important, they are great people to spend time with.

Hotels on Tour

We choose our hotels based on their location and their quality, In most places we stay for two or more nights, allowing you to unpack and relax. After all, getting to know a culture is not just about seeing as many temples as possible; it’s about having time to contemplate the age of the temple and the people who built it, perhaps to even meet the people who maintain it.

Our hotels are 3-4 star and usually smaller boutique variety. We stay in a few Japanese Ryokan (traditional Japanese Inn) hotels along the way to give you a taste of the real culture of Japan.

The Ryokan experience is very much a part of the Japanese way of life. We feel that experiencing a little of the culture will help us to understand Japan better; and this in turn helps us to make images with more presence and feeling.

Food glorious Food!

We take you to a great variety of traditional and modern Japanese restaurants to sample the extraordinary cuisine of Japan. Food is a big part of Japanese culture so we have made it a big part of this photo tour. We love Japanese food, and we think you will too.

All dinners and breakfasts are included on tour, from dinner on the first night in Tokyo to breakfast the morning of our departure from Kyoto. We don’t include lunches as the choice of Japanese Bento Boxes is staggering, so why would you be happy with just our choice when there is so much variety to try?

No Hidden Extras

There are no hidden extras on this tour.  There are no breakfasts or dinners that are not covered or nights you have to find your own hotel. All your transport while on the tour, including local taxis, buses and trains are included along with all your entrance fees to temples, gardens and National Parks.

Everything but lunch

The only meals not included are lunches.  Most days we eat lunch on the go, in a cafe or a Bento Box on the train.

Tour beginnings and endings

The tour begins in Tokyo and ends in Kyoto, so you just have to make your way to our Tokyo hotel and back home at the end from our Kyoto hotel. Hotel/Airport transfers are very simple in Japan, and we will ensure you know how to get there well before the tour begins.

Extensive Pre trip notes
What you need to know before you go

The best way to ensure you enjoy this photo tour to Japan is to be fully prepared before you leave. What weather should to expect, what clothes are appropriate, both for the climate and to be culturally sensitive? What is the exchange rate, how is the tour organised and what about camera gear?

All these and just about any other questions you can think of are clearly answered in the pre trip notes we will email out to you. If you have questions after reading the notes we are always available via email or over the phone to help out.

The better prepared you are the more fun you will have and then the more fun we will have.

Japan Photo tour with Adam Monk and Robert van Koesveld

Should you go on this Japan Autumn Photo Tour?

Is this Japan Photo Tour right for you, does it meet your needs and fulfil your expectations? What is the ideal age group and what is the level of photographic experience? These and similar questions are answered in the tabs below.

A love of new cultures, adventure and photography
Photography in Japan

This photo tour is for anyone enthusiastic about photography and with a love of exploring new cultures.  It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned professional or a complete beginner, all levels of photographer are welcome. In fact the diverse experiences of the members of the group are an integral part of what makes these photography tours so much fun.  

Our group size is kept small (just 10 people) so you are always assured of personal interaction and tuition, whatever your needs.

Physical Fitness
Plenty of walking, but no hiking

A basic level of walking fitness is essential, but this tour is not a hiking nor a trekking tour so nothing extreme will be required of you.  We have a few scenic walks in nature planned, lots of urban exploration, and visits to many stunning temple gardens, but all have well maintained pathways.  The hardest physical test will be to climb some stairs occasionally.  Just let us know if you have any health issues or doubts and we will work around them.

Non Photographers on tour?
Non photographers & partners are welcome on this tour

Non-photographers are very welcome on this tour, whether as a partner to a keen photographer or someone who just loves the slower pace of travel that this photographic tour provides.  

Japan is an intensely beautiful place with deep rich culture in architecture, history, dress, language, religion and food, so there is never a shortage of things to do or explore.  One great thing about photographers is that we aim to be at the beautiful locations at the best times to see them.

We must warn you though, an obsession with photographing beautiful places and interesting people is highly addictive. You may begin as a non-photographer thinking it’s not for you, but by the end of the tour this may well have changed…

Tour Age Group
You’re only as old as you decide you are

The age group for our Japan photo tours is varied, we have people from 30 years old to 76 years old on the same tour. Experience tells us that the more diverse the age group on tour the better.

Photography is one thing that is not limited by age, you simply adjust the way you shoot. At 25 you may want to hang upside down off a balcony (we don’t recommend this) to get the perfect shot. At 50 that probably won’t seem such a great idea any more. That doesn’t mean you won’t get that perfect shot, it has just matured.

Provided you can get around unassisted carrying your own camera gear and enjoy a bit of walking, you will be just fine on this photo tour to Japan.

Photo Tuition and Camera Gear

What level of photography experience is required to participate in this Japan photo tour and what level of tuition can I expect? What sort of camera gear is suitable and will I need anything special? See the tabs below to find answers to all these questions.

Photography tuition on tour
Our priority is you

Our extensive experience running photo tours has shown us that providing a wide range of photography tuition works best, with some formal workshops and many casual group or individual discussions.

We will run some more formal sessions on such things as lighting, shadows and composition, particularly during our session with the Geiko and Maiko in Kyoto. As this is often out of the comfort zone and guidance is always available. It’s surprising how often photographers start out being uncomfortable photographing people and end up creating amazing portraits.

Adam is always available for impromptu “back of the camera” inspiration and technical help as we proceed through our days. We also delve into the more technical areas such as downloading images and post production techniques.

Adam has a wealth photographic expertise to offer, and with our small group and relaxed pace you will get exactly the personal interaction and photographic tuition you want. It really is up to you how much help you prefer.

Adam will be shooting a few images along side you, but your images, your tuition and  your experiences will always be the priority.

What about Camera gear?
Your Camera Gear

There is really no limit to what camera gear you take other than your ability to carry it. Everything from Digital SLRs, mirrorless, point and shoot, even medium format digital and film. Adam has been shooting professionally for a long time, so chances are, whatever gear you have, Adam will have experience with it. 

After you book the tour we will send out a detailed recommended gear and packing list including extensive discussion around camera equipment. If you still have doubts we are always happy to discuss your camera gear you have and how to best make it work for you.

Any Special camera gear?

No special or exotic camera gear is required for this photo tour, it’s not great cameras that make great images after all; and we are big fans of getting the most out of what you already have.

Photography Notes and E-Books
Photography & Lightroom E-Books to keep

In the months leading up to the tour we will send you out all the information you will need to prepare for the adventure ahead. This includes several comprehensive E-Books on photography techniques & workflow, plus an in depth guide to using Lightroom to manage and edit your images.

We will be running workshops as we go and often use Lightroom to demonstrate post processing tricks and techniques. These E-Books help cement this knowledge and are yours to keep.

Lightroom Catalogue with keywords
Nobody likes keywording!

Just before tour departure we will send you a fully functioning Lightroom catalogue (you will need to have your own Lightroom software) with a complete set of Smart Collections and Japan Keywords including all the complex spellings for locations – already loaded. Since keywording is rather boring (but important) having keywords already installed makes the job very quick and easy so you can get on with the fun and creative stuff.

Even if you already have a Lightroom catalogue, it’s easy to merge catalogues together combining the new smart collections and keywords into your existing catalogue. How to achieve this is set out in our Lightroom E-Book.

What if I use Capture One?

Don’t worry if you use Capture One instead of Lightroom, we also give you the keyword file that can be easily imported into Capture One. Adam has been using Capture One extensively for years, so he can help you with this too.

Photo tour to Japan November 2018 with Adam Monk and Robert van Koesveld

Like to enquire about this tour?

  • Dates: TBA
  • Total Tour Price: TBA* PP Twin Share**
  • Single Supplement: TBA
  • 11 days in Japan
  • Just 10 places

* Why only in Japanese Yen (JPY)? We offer this tour in JPY only, as we pay our suppliers in JPY. This ensures our price remains stable, with no additional hidden payments due to currency fluctuations. Click
HERE for more information.

** The tour price is per person on a Twin Share (or double) room basis. To book the twin share rate you must specify a room partner, as we cannot pair you with others you don’t yet know.  The potential for snoring induced sleep deprivation discord is just too high!

Your Photo Guide – Adam Monk
Photo tour leader Adam Monk Portrait

Adam is a landscape and travel photographer with a long standing passion for the natural environment, people and culture.  He has been travelling and photographing the worlds wild places and exotic cultures for over 30 years, and the enthusiasm just continues to grow. Adam has been based out of his own landscape photography gallery in the port city of Fremantle Western Australia for the last 13 years. His images can be found in hundreds of private and corporate collections all over the world.  

For the last 11 years Adam has been organising and running photography workshops and photography tours to some of the world’s wild and beautiful places such as The Kimberley, the Pilbara, Tasmania, Cambodia, Iceland, Greenland, Bhutan and Japan.

Japan Colours of Autumn Photo Tour – Logistics

All of our tour logistics, Hotels and transport, are researched, booked and managed by Kuroko Boutique tours. Kuroko’s founder, Rika Nishimura was born and raised in Japan before emigrating to Perth, Australia 14 years ago. Having an understanding of both Japan and the western worlds, Rika very effectively bridges the cultural gap, and gets us exactly the balance we need for this tour.

Japan Photo tour - Shibuya crossing in Tokyo
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