Cruise only (Please call for flight options)
Setting sail from Osaka
Osaka, Japan's third largest city, is a pulsating commercial hub, famous for its food and its fiercely independent spirit. This is where the conveyor-belt sushi restaurant was first invented, and the cityscape rivals Tokyo for neon-lit futurism. If you need respite from the urban sprawl seek out Osaka Castle and the surrounding Nishinomaru Garden, a particularly pretty spot during the cherry blossom season.
Shimizu is one of the most spectacular ports in Japan, a sweeping bay in the shadow of the iconic Mount Fuji. You can spend some time admiring the views and wandering through peaceful pine groves, or visit the unique Shimizu Sushi Museum at the S-Pulse Dream Plaza shopping mall.
In a state of constant renewal and forever looking to the future, densely populated Tokyo is a dazzling introduction to Japan and its utterly unique culture. With more neon than Las Vegas and more Michelin stars than Paris, it’s a real assault on the senses.
Situated at the southern tip of Hokkaido, Hakodate was one of the first Japanese ports to open up to international trade in the 19th century, and a scattering of European-style buildings remain. Take a ride on the historic streetcar, tuck into delicious seafood or enjoy a revitalising dip in an onsen (hot spring).
Japan: Shiretoko National Park
Wakkanai is Japan’s most northerly city, home to hardy fishermen and surrounded by volcanic mountains, wetlands and wild beaches. It’s a short drive out to Cape Soya, Japan’s northernmost point, and the road signs in Cyrillic script are a reminder of the city’s proximity to Russia.
Japan: Kutsugata (Rishira Island)
Arriving in Otaru
The charming port town of Otaru, on Japan's northernmost island of Hokkaido, is a common start and end point for cruises visiting both Japan and the Russian Far East. The town has a notable history, playing an important role in the herring trade during the 19th century, and this is reflected in the stone warehouses alongside the picturesque canal. It's only a small place, so if you run out of things to do then the city of Sapporo is just a half-hour train ride away, or you can explore the wild and beautiful landscapes of rural Hokkaido.
Here’s a weird thing – there is a thriving Venetian glass industry here, dating back to the need for glass fishing floats.
Your home from home
Get set for the arrival of Crystal Endeavor in 2021, the world's largest and most luxurious expedition yacht.
What we love
This is the coolest expedition operation yet. On board is the ultimate in luxury at the Crystal level we know so well, but even more exciting is what is going to happen off the ship, as they navigate first year ice in the polar regions and follow the route of migrating whales.
A wealth of extraordinary toys including submarines, helicopters and remote operated vehicles will ensure that a Crystal Yacht Expedition creates the most extraordinary memories even for the most jaded of travellers.
|Style||The ultimate in luxury expedition cruising.|
Tailor-make your trip
Where to stay in Otaru
If you’ve always wanted to stay at a ryokan, Ginrinso could be a great choice – expensive, but pretty special.
Take a tour of Otaru
A local tour by ebisuya (rickshaw) is easy paced with a great guide thrown in.