About a third of people on the tour travel alone. Single rooms are available! You won’t be left alone; the Travelrite International tour manager will be there to guide you. There will be group activities almost every day.
Michelle has always had a love affair with textiles. She has been a part of the Australian quilting industry for the past 29 years. She started as a sample maker for a fabric importer and her work was seen by magazine editors. This was to become the start of a long career working with Australian patchwork titles. For 25 years she has written regular columns, published hundreds of original quilt patterns. She has edited magazines, published four books, filmed 8 instructional patchwork DVD’s for Quilters Companion, designed 5 fabric ranges, taught workshops throughout Australia, and even in New Zealand. Currently she is expanding her range of templates and working on a new book full of stash and scrap quilts. Her quilts have won several awards at the NSW Quilt Guild Shows. She loves to travel, living overseas for 12 months as an exchange student at 16 gave her a passion to explore other parts of the world. She has been leading the Travelrite patchwork tours since 2008, enjoying exploring America, Japan, England, Canada, France, Vietnam, Belgium and other locations in Europe with her fellow quilters.VIEW ITINERARY
Day 1 Friday 15 April 2022 In flight
We depart Australia today on our flight to Japan.
Day 2 Saturday 16 April 2022 Tokyo
We arrive in Tokyo this morning, where we will be met by our coach. Tokyo is the political, economic and cultural capital of Japan. There are over twelve million people living in Tokyo and many millions more living within a radius of fifty kilometres. We will have a city tour of exciting Tokyo. We see the famous Ginza area and visit the Imperial Palace East Garden, which is still part of the Royal Residence. It is a superb example of traditional Japanese landscape design, which will be in glorious spring colours. This will be a highlight visit of the tour. We continue our day with a visit to Tokyu Hands Store in the Ginza district. This is a large department craft store, where you will be sure to find many enticing buys. We will check into our hotel late afternoon.
Day 3 Sunday 17 April 2022 Tokyo
We travel to Asakusa the heart of traditional Japan this morning. The main attraction is Sensoji, a popular Buddhist temple built in the 7th century. We will have time to walk along Nakamise-dori, the bustling market area, where we are able to buy souvenirs and wooden sandals. We visit Edo Shitamachi Traditional Crafts Museum. We see beautifully made handicrafts in wood, straw, ceramic and lacquer. Local craftspeople will demonstrate their expertise. We will enjoy an included dinner this evening.
Day 4 Monday 18 April 2022 Tokyo
This morning we travel to Nippori Textile Town, which is a mile long street with over one hundred fabric stores. A large variety of fabric ranging from silks to leathers and specialized sewing equipment, threads, ribbons and buttons can be purchased at very reasonable prices. Tomato is a six story store on the street, which sells the widest selections of everything fabric and fabric related. We continue with a visit to Yoko Saito’s shop, where we will be able to choose from a wide variety of fabrics, books and patterns.
Day 5 Tuesday 19 April 2022 Kawaguchiko
We are transferred to the railway station for our exciting “Bullet train ride” on the famous Shinkansen train to Odawara, traveling up to 270 kmph. After disembarking we are met by our coach and travel halfway up Japan’s highest mountain, Mt Fuji, to enjoy spectacular views from a height of 2,300 metres. In the afternoon, we travel through the Owakudani Valley and enjoy a ride on the Hakone Ropeway’s aerial cable car. This offers amazing views of nearby Hakone National Park. We will then enjoy a cruise on beautiful Lake Ashi.
Day 6 Wednesday 20 April 2022 Kawaguchiko
This morning we travel to visit Itchiku Kubota’s Kimono Museum. Everyone will be in awe of the beautiful fabric and the revived art of Tsujigahana dyeing used to decorate these garments. Many of the kimonos depict nature and the seasons. We continue with a visit to the Kawaguchiko Museum of Art, where we will see a gorgeous collection of paintings of Mt Fuji. In the Atae Building, we will see an amazing collection of dolls all showing various expressions made by Yuki Atae. There is a video of the doll making process.
Day 7 Thursday 21 April 2022 Takayama
We are transferred to the railway station for our rail journey to Takayama. Known for its merchant houses, temples and strong craft traditions this 16th century town is a delight.
Day 8 Friday 22 April 2022 Takayama
We will enjoy a walking tour with a local guide of Takayama this morning. We will walk along the traditional winding streets lined with old wooden houses in the Sammachi-suji district. We see traditional shops, restaurants and museums. We visit Fujii Folkcraft Art Gallery located in an old merchant’s house displaying folk art, ceremonial dolls, kimonos. and ceramics. We continue to Kusakabe Folk Museum located in a merchant and money changers house dating from 1890. Inside this gorgeous building, we will see a collection of folk art. This afternoon will be free for shopping or visiting museums.
Day 9 Saturday 23 April 2022 Takayama
This morning we visit the local market. We continue with a visit to a Sashiko shop. They have a comprehensive collection of Japanese textiles, vintage Kimonos and many quilting patterns. In the afternoon we travel to Hida folk village. It is an open air museum with thirty typical massive farmhouses with thatched roofs called Gassho-zukuri houses.
Day 10 Sunday 24 April 2022 Kanazawa
Today we travel to Kanazawa, which means “marsh of gold.” Kanazawa draws its name from an old legend in which a Japanese peasant, digging for potatoes, found flakes of gold in the ground. Today the gold leaf is a major art form synonymous with the city, and even has a designated museum.
Day 11 Monday 25 April 2022 Kanazawa
This morning we will enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city, known for its intricate kaga-nui embroidery and delicate kutani porcelain, among other handicrafts, making it a shopper’s paradise! Once boasting geisha houses and a labyrinthine samurai village, the city was built around Kanazawa Castle. Fire destroyed all but a few small 16th-century castle structures - namely the elegant Ishikawa Gate and some watchtowers, which have become a focus of many photographers today. Just outside the castle park we visit the enchanting Kenroku-en Garden, one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan, and the home of the country’s oldest fountain. At this time of year the cherry and maple trees will have new green leaves.We will enjoy a tea ceremony in one of the beautiful pavilions within the garden. There will be time for tour members to rotate with a visit to the Ishikawa Museum of Traditional Arts and Craft, while others are in the garden.
Day 12 Tuesday 26 April 2022 Kyoto
We travel by train to the ancient capital of Japan, Kyoto today. Upon arrival we have an orientation tour of the city of Kyoto and will visit Nishijin Textile Centre. While there we can see a display of textile traditional crafts. We will also watch an elegant parade of kimonos, with gorgeous obis, obijime cords and different ways to “knot” the obis. Later we are transferred to our hotel. Those wishing to dine with the group meet in the lobby to go out for dinner.
Day 13 Wednesday 27 April 2022 Kyoto
This morning we will visit the Shibori Museum. We are able to try on Shibori Kimonos and the museum shop sells a variety of scarves, bags, fabrics and souvenirs at reasonable prices. We will screen print a scarf using the Shibori technique. We will divide the group, so that one group will print the scarf while the other group looks around the museum. We will visit the Kyoto Mueum of traditional Crafts “Fureakan” this afternoon. We will see a kimono and quality craft displays.
Day 14 Thursday 28 April 2022 Kyoto
This morning we visit the Kyoto Imperial Palace, completed in 1855 and home of the Imperial household from 1855 until the Meiji Restoration, when they moved to Tokyo. There is an attractive garden surrounding the Palace, where we will see stunning autumn colours. We continue our exploration with a visit to Ryoan-ji Temple, which has a famous rock garden. Attributed to the artist Soami, it was created in the 16th century in a space of thirty metres by ten metres. Following the waterless stream style, the garden is composed of fifteen rocks set into raked white gravel. We will visit the Yamamoto Roketsu Dyeing Studio, where we will undertake a class to experience the entire the roketsu dyeing process. The friendly owner has been a craftsman of roketsu dyeing for kimono textiles for over fifty years.
Day 15 Friday 29 April 2022 Kyoto
We continue our sightseeing of Kyoto today with a visit to the Kinkankuji Temple, also known as the temple of the Golden Pavilion. It was built in the late 14th century with three stories topped with gold leaf. It extends over a pond, which reflects the building and is surrounded by a beautiful landscaped garden. We also visit the Silver Pavilion and the nearby Philosophers Path, which extends along the river under cherry trees. This afternoon we visit the Kyoto Handicraft Centre where we see superb quality handicrafts including jewellery, dolls, carvings, art works, ornaments and Geisha kimonos’. After this visit we will point out the Misuyabari Needle Store. This 400-year-old family business selling exquisite handmade pins and needles is a piece of old Kyoto hiding away in the middle of a shopping strip. Group members will have time to shop here.
Day 16 Saturday 30 April 2022 Kyoto
This morning we visit Fushimi Inari, the most famous shrine dedicated to the Shino God of rice. It is most famed for its thousands of red torii gates, which straddle a network of trails behind its main buildings, offering amazing photographic opportunities. We will then return to downtown Kyoto for a visit to Nomuru Tailor, a large store with a wide variety of textiles. There will be free time for exploring in the later afternoon. This evening we will enjoy a Farewell dinner to say goodbye to other tour members.
Day 17 Sunday 1 May 2022 Departure
We are transferred to the airport for our flight back to Australia.
Day 18 Monday 2 May 2022 Arrival Australia
The tour group arrives in Australia and the tour concludes.
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You can stay longer in Japan for minimal additional cost. Please contact 1800 630 343 for more information.
Touring can involve a considerable amount of walking and stair climbing in the places visited and it is important that all tour participants have a level of physical fitness that allows them to take part in this activity without the assistance from others.
Tour Operator: Travelrite International Pty Ltd (ABN 64 005 817 078) is the tour organiser. All passengers must complete and sign a Travelrite International booking form.
Deposit and Payment:
A deposit of $900 per passenger should be sent with a completed Travelrite International booking form. A tour confirmation advice containing all details will be emailed to the client. Final payments are due to be paid to Travelrite International 62 days prior to the commencement of the tour. A 1.5% administration fee will be added to payments by credit card.
Cancellation Charges: * Cancellation conditions don’t apply for clients with future cruise/tour credits. Cruise/tour credits are non-refundable. Cancellation over 62 days before tour departs will incur a loss of deposit. Cancellation under 62 days before tour departs will result in a loss of all monies paid.
The tour is based on arrangements which do not allow for any refunds in respect to sightseeing, accommodation, meals or other services not utilised after the tour has commenced.
Travel Documents: All passengers will require a valid passport with six month validity. If not an Australian passport holder check with Travelrite International for visa requirements.
Travel Insurance: Adequate travel insurance is highly recommended to cover cruise members for the consequences of unforeseen events during the cruise and for cancellation fees which could result from events such as illness, accident, death etc.
Baggage: Passengers qualify for a 20kg free baggage allowance on flights to join or return from the tour.
Minimum Tour Numbers: The fly/tour arrangements have been made on the basis of a minimum number of passengers travelling. In the event that less than the required number of passengers have confirmed their booking 62 days from the date of departure, Travelrite International reserves the right to cancel the tour, giving a full refund of monies paid, or offer arrangements to proceed with the tour at a modified fare.
Children under 5 years of age are ineligible on coach & cruise tours. Children under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. Passengers with disabilities are welcome on Travelrite & Cruise Offers tours provided they are accompanied by a companion capable of providing all necessary assistance, and do not require special assistance from Travelrite & Cruise Offers personnel. Travelrite and Cruise Offers reserves the right to refuse to carry anyone if it is felt the individual cannot cope with the requirements of coach & cruise tour travel and who may require services and facilities that Travelrite & Cruise Offers cannot guarantee will be available. You agree to not hold the Travelrite & Cruise Offers responsible for any decision made by any of them or any service provider to refuse to carry you, provide any facilities or accommodation to you or to provide any service to you.
Responsibilities: Travelrite International Pty Ltd ATAS accredited A10538 is the tour organiser. Travelrite International Pty Ltd, its agents, officers, affiliates, and/or suppliers of services pursuant to, or in connection with this tour, shall act only as agents for the passenger in making arrangements for hotels, transportation, including transportation by ship, restaurants, or any other service and do not assume any liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, death, loss, accident or delay to person or property due to an act of negligence or a default of any hotel, carrier restaurant company or person rendering any services included in the tour, or by act of God. Further no responsibilities are accepted for any damage or delay due to sickness, pilferage, labour disputes, machinery break-down, quarantine, government restraints, weather, terrorism or other causes beyond their control. No responsibility is accepted for any additional expense, omission, delays, re-routing or acts of any government authority. The passage contract between the carriers concerned, when issued, shall constitute the sole contract between the carriers and the purchasers of this tour and/or the passengers. The right is reserved to withdraw any tour and/ or make such changes in the tour as may be found desirable or necessary for the convenience of the parties and the proper carrying out of the tour. This contract shall be construed in accordance of the laws of the State of Victoria, Australia and any legal action must be taken in the State of Victoria.
Delays AND Unforeseen Events:
You engage Travelrite to book this tour on your behalf and you acknowledge that Travelrite acts as your agent for the purpose of making contracts between you and the various providers of accommodation, transportation and other services that comprise the tour. Travelrite may without reference to you provide or make available to you, or may as your agent engage any third party to provide or make available to you, any good or service which Travelrite reasonably believes is necessary for your benefit to maintain the tour itinerary, repatriate you or otherwise accommodate, transport or sustain you in circumstances in which the tour itinerary fails wholly or partly for any reason. You appoint Travelrite your attorney for this purpose. You agree to pay Travelrite any cost thereof and you indemnify Travelrite in respect of any cost it incurs in this regard. Travelrite advises you to obtain travel insurance generally including in respect of the risk that any such good or service may become required
How to Book: Bookings can be made by sending full names and addresses of intending tour members with a deposit of $900 for the Quilters Companion Quilting tour.:
Travelrite International Pty Ltd
423 Whitehorse Road Balwyn, Victoria 3103
Further information can be obtained by telephoning
About Travelrite International: Travelrite International Pty Ltd (ABN 64 005 817 078) is a well-established family-owned business that’s been operating in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs for more than 35 years. Travelrite International is a full member of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), is fully Accredited with ATAS (A10538) and IATA. As such they directly represent the major airlines of the world and all major domestic and international hotel, tour and transport operators.
“The best Tour Manager I have ever had over all tour companies.”
“Michelle puts a huge amount of eﬀort info making our trip as good as it can be. Wonderful!”