Official meeting point is Asahikawa Airport in Hokkaido. Participants should book a flight with the destination to Asahikawa Airport via Haneda (Tokyo). We will pick you up at Asahikawa Airport and all participants will stay in a hotel in Asahikawa after a brief meeting about this tour that will kick off next day.
In the morning, we will drive through the amazing snow-covered hills of Biei and photograph very beautiful and artistic minimalist winter landscapes. We might encounter with foxes on the hills. Biei is full of minimal landscapes and every corner is picturesque. After sunset, we will arrive at an illuminated frozen lake, Blue Pond. Artificial lights illuminate the trees sticking out of the surface of the frozen lake. After we are happy with our photos, or when we can not stand anymore the freezing temperatures, we will go back to our hotel to have dinner and bathe in a hot spring to warm up our bodies and prepare for the next day.
After breakfast, we will visit a stunning Blue Waterfall. It is a good place to shoot motion pictures or drone as well. Then, we will return to the hills of Biei to make more good pictures of the beautiful minimal landscapes with different weather and light. Driving through endless winter landscapes, we will arrive to a town where we will stay tonight.
In the morning we will explore the snow covered Tokachi rancho area and look for interesting snow landscapes. In the afternoon we will go to photograph the Japanese red-crowned cranes in the wildness, one of the greatest attractions of Hokkaido for wild life lovers.
We will wake up before dawn to photograph picturesque landscape with red-crowned cranes in the river covered with the reddish mist just before sunrise. It all depends on the weather condition, but we will try to capture this amazing romantic moments. After this rising sun hour shots, we will go back to our hotel to have breakfast and have a hot spring bath to warm up our bodies. Then, we will check out from the hotel and will start looking for interesting winter landscapes. If we were lucky enough we will be able to find owls in the winter forest.
After breakfast, we leave to an amazing frozen lake to photograph the landscapes around the lake. The lake is also famous for whooper swans on the shore where hot springs are coming out. If you want, you will be able to bathe in an outdoor hot spring bath just in front of the shore with the swans! Then, we will visit the most sulfurous mountain in Japan. Columns of smoke rise from the rocky ground despite the snow, and the smell of sulfur permeates everything. It is a surreal and mystical place. Then, we will approach to one of the most beautiful lakes in Japan. Tonight, we will sleep at one of our most favorites hotels in Japan with great outdoor bath long the river and great food.
After breakfast, we head to Shiretoko Peninsula. We will photograph a fishing port filled with drift ice and dramatic icy waterfalls. Before sunset, we take a pleasant walk in the snow forest.
Today we will look for lonely minimal winter landscapes in a small peninsula. For sure, we will come across with foxes and deer. In the late afternoon we will move to the town of Rausu in Shiretoko Peninsula.
At dawn we will catch a boat that will take us to the sea filled with drift ice with rising sun. We will photograph the landscape of Shiretoko Peninsula from the ocean. We will be also able to photograph white-tailed eagles or Steller’s sea eagles on top of the ice. After the cruise, we will go back to our hotel for breakfast, then we will go to the Nakashibetsu airport in Abashiri to catch a flight back to Tokyo. The tour ends here at Nakashibetsu airport. For participants who go back to their country without stopover in Tokyo should get a return flight ticket from Nakashibetsu Airport to your airport in your country via Haneda Airport (Tokyo). If you want to stopover in Tokyo, and want us to look for hotel, please let us know.
During our photo tour we will combine nights in ryokan and western hotels. Whether they are traditional Japanese inns or western hotels, all of them are mid class and mid-high class with good reputation or selected by tour leaders from their experiences.
The rooms will be twin room (with two beds), so participants who come alone will share a room with another single participant. If you wish to stay in a single room for the whole trip, you have to pay a supplement. But single room might not be available in some of the accommodations, and you have to share a twin room with another participant.
In this tour, all breakfasts and dinners are included. Any lunch is not included. For lunch, we will go to the same restaurant together, and you choose what you want to eat and you pay for it. Each lunch normally costs about 2,000 yen (about 15€ or $18).
If anybody has allergy or food intolerance problems, or is a vegetarian, we will try to make the necessary changes in the menus when it is possible.
*The tour price is fixed in Japanese yen (￥). When you make a payment, depending on the exchange rate with your currency, tour price in your currency will change. The approximate price in Euro and US Dollars above are calculated based on the exchange rate of 1 euro = 130 yen, 1 US dollar = 110 yen
For the trip to be carried out, there must be at least 4 participants (maximum of 6 participants). For this reason it is recommended to consult the occupancy of the trip before buying the international flight if the flight ticket requires cancellation fees.
It is mandatory to have comprehensive insurance cover for cancellation, medical expenses, personal accident, emergency evacuation, repatriation of remains, dismemberment, and accidental death. You have to give us a copy of travel insurance before the trip.
If the cancellation is made more than 61 days before the start of the tour, deposit will be refunded in full only if the place(s) is/are filled with another/other participant(s). Deposit will not be refunded if the cancellation is made within 60 days before the start of the tour. For more details of cancellation and conditions of refund of the balance due after 60 days, please read our terms & conditions.
The drifting ice and wildlife can not be guaranteed in any case. Drift ice comes and goes each year depending on the currents, the temperature, and many other factors that cause this natural spectacle. Sometimes we find wild animals very easily, but other times it is difficult to find them. It is important to keep it in mind that the organizers will not have any responsibility if there is no drifting ice or wildlife during the specific dates of the tour.
If you have more doubts about any topic related to the photo tour to Japan, send us an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Documentary photo project on Japan by Toru Morimoto and Tina Bagué
Photo agency that deals with exclusively works of Toru Morimoto & Tina Bagué
Restaurant & Photo Gallery in Barcelona, where the works of Toru Morimoto and Tina Bagué are exhibited permanently.
Passatge Tona, 8, 08023 Barcelona