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Japan is finally easing foreign tourism ban

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By Shella Artillero - - 5 Mins Read

The land of the rising sun has finally reopened to foreign visitors after imposing some of the strictest travel restrictions during the pandemic.

Travelers from a list of 98 countries designated "low risk" will be authorized to visit Japan under the first stage of the loosened criteria. However, according to JTA regulation, visitors must be accompanied by local tour operators and wear face masks for the duration of their stay.

"At each point of the journey, tour guides should remind participants of important infection control measures, including as wearing and removing masks," according to the JTA. "In instances where people are chatting in close proximity, masks should be worn even outside."

Visitors from the list of low-risk nations, which includes Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, China, and South Korea, must wear face masks indoors and maintain social distance when removing their masks in public settings, according to Japanese travel standards.

The historic Higashiyama district in Kyoto.

Japan’s Tourism Minister Tetsuo Saito said that knowing and following the principles will lead to the "smooth restart" and increase of inbound tourism.

"Inbound tourism will restart smoothly and contribute to a further increase in visitors if travel companies and others follow the instructions," he said.

Travelers will also need to get private medical insurance in case they contract coronavirus during their stay, according to local officials. Anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 while in the nation will be transferred to a medical facility. They will also be required to report back within seven days of returning home if they test positive.

On June 10, the first phase of the reopening will begin. Travel agencies in Japan will plan trips that avoid busy places and choose hotels and attractions that adhere to strict coronavirus guidelines. According to reports, several test trips were undertaken prior to the announcement.

Tourists who want to visit Japan must declare that they will follow the rules, or the tour operators will refuse their booking.

The most excellent tour selections in Japan

Tourists have been reminded that guided tour spots will be exceedingly limited, so they should book early. The Travel + Luxury team has handpicked four notable options to aid with your search.

Shibuya crossing in Tokyo

Wendy Wu Tours

Wendy Wu Tours has already begun accepting bookings for its fully escorted adventures, such as its popular Jewels of Japan group tour, which is providing an exclusive early departure to Japan for $9440 per person.

The program includes visits to Tokyo, Mt Fuji, and old Kyoto, as well as the Hiroshima Peace Memorial and Miyajima, a sacred island.

Walk Japan

Small guided group excursions to Kumano Kodo, Kunisaki, and Oita, East Hokkaido, Central Japan's Snow Country, the Izu Peninsula, Shikoku, Tohoku, and Yaeyama are available through Walk Japan.

Physical exertion varies each tour, ranging from short walks to treks. Each trip has a maximum capacity of 12 people. The average cost per person is roughly $3800.

JTB Luxury travel

JTB Luxury Travel organizes exclusive 1 day excursions and extended tours throughout Japan, presenting the best of Tokyo and Kyoto as well as Japan's traditional customs.

JTP luxury travelers have access to Japan's finest accommodations in the city's center. Prices for each tour are available on the agency's website upon request.

Torii gates at the Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto, Japan.

Silversea Cruises

The Silver Shadow will start guest operations in Japan in October, marking the return of the whole Silversea Cruises fleet.  The cruise line provides firsthand accounts of Japan's oldest customs, such as a day in the life of a Geisha and the philosophy behind its zen gardens.

Following a thorough refit in 2019, the Silver Shadow cruise now delivers an ultra-luxury product.

The project involved the building of a new Atrium area as well as significant improvements to numerous public locations, such as a refurbishment of the La Dame restaurant, the Connoisseur's Corner, and the Casino.

The ship's staterooms and passageways were also renovated from floor to ceiling, with new lighting, carpets, and headboards, as well as refurbished bathrooms. Prices for each experience  is accessible upon request.