An unparalleled exploration of Japanese art, culture and the soul of craft with Heath Ceramics.
An unparalleled exploration of Japanese art and culture
Sold OutSeptember 12 - 20, 2022 with Robin Petravic & Cathy Bailey
Sold OutOctober 6 - 14, 2022 with Robin Petravic & Cathy Bailey
Sold OutMay 15 - 23, 2023 with Tung Chiang
The very best of Tokyo, Naoshima and Kyoto
You stare at sapphire waters through a darkening haze of wildflowers, shielding your eyes against the blaze of the tangerine-and-pink setting sun. Stars will be out soon, shining bright and close as an art installation. And maybe they are. After all, you’re in Naoshima, the famed Japanese art island nestled in the heart of the Inland Sea, a place where each field and slope is just another canvas for some of the world’s greatest art. You took a train, a bus, and ferry to get here, and there’s plenty of exploration still to come. But for right now, just breathe it all in.
Your companions on this nine-day journey are the creative forces behind Heath Ceramics. The iconic San Francisco pottery house is famed for making beautiful things slowly and painstakingly, producing some of the world’s most highly regarded ceramic home goods. In May, we’ll travel with husband-and-wife owners, Robin Petravic and Cathy Bailey. In June, Heath studio director Tung Chiang will accompany us. On both departures, we’ll explore the materials and techniques that make Japan a deep and ongoing source of inspiration for Robin, Cathy and Tung.
If you possess a boundless passion for art, design and cultural exploration, this trip is for you. If you’re fascinated by ancient rituals and generations of artisans who’ve been perfecting their craft for centuries—and believe that every second of every day should be filled with adventure and moments of quiet wonder alike, join us in Japan.
Connect with Japan’s world-class art scene and some of its most inspiring working artists and craftspeople.
Honor the grace and beauty of an ancient civilization, from monumental shrines to artful tea ceremonies.
Iconic museums, Naoshima art installations, ancient kilns firing ceramics since the Middle Ages.
“It’s inspiring to see so many small businesses in Japan that do not compromise on their craft. The beauty in the objects they create is simply understood.” —Cathy Bailey
“Japan is a lesson in balance. Modernism and craft coexist. Technology is so advanced, yet tradition is deeply woven in.” —Tung Chiang
A collection of expertly curated experiences to the world’s most inspiring destinations. Designed to broaden your perspective, expand your exploration and connect you to a community the world over. Travel deeper with AFAR and Modern Adventure.
We’ll experience Japan in good company. In May, we’ll be exploring with company owners Robin and Cathy, while in June we’ll travel with Studio Director Tung Chiang.
Our September 2022 and October 2022 departures are with Robin and Cathy, the husband-and-wife owners of Heath Ceramics. They travel the world in search of inspiration, always looking to further refine their objects, materials and techniques.
Our May 2023 departure is with Tung Chiang. A gifted designer and ceramist, Tung's career spans graphic design, advertising and industrial design and ceramics. He's constantly moving toward a fusion of thinking, designing and making.
Japan leads the world in thoughtful design, and its hotels are no exception. Each of our hotels is a work of art unto itself, perfectly blending modern aesthetics with traditional hospitality.
It's among Tokyo’s top hotels, a five-star icon famous for its starring role in the film Lost in Translation alongside Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. The service is flawless, the design modern and elegant, the rooms as luxurious as you'd expect. Added bonus: the views of Mount Fuji and one of the world’s most atmospheric cocktail bars.
In September and May, we will be spending Day 4 and Day 5 at the Benesse House. For our October departure, we'll be spending day 5 there. Few experiences in life can prepare you for staying at Benesse House, a breezy, light-filled gallery space that just happens to moonlight as one of the world’s coziest, most luxurious hotels. The brainchild of architect Tadao Ando, its expanses of concrete, glass, and wood are designed to showcase one of the world’s most stunning indoor-outdoor art collections, the perfect foil to the gently sloping meadows and azure sea just beyond.
On Day 4 in October, we will be staying at the JR Clement Hotel. Look north for scintillating views of the Seto Sea or south to downtown Takamatsu, a port city famous for its teahouses and architecture. Or slumber in luxury in ultra-modern rooms—all imbued with a Japanese simplicity and inviting decor.
For our May and October departures, we'll be staying at the Park Hyatt Kyoto. Luminous with minimal touches and tamo wood floors and windows for walls, each room at this modern, stylish hotel aims to provide uniquely sophisticated service of ryokans to each and every guest. It's located in the Higashiyama hills, literally steps away from Kyoto's iconic stone-paved slopes and narrow alleys.
In September, we'll be staying at the Mitsui Kyoto. An ode to ancient Japanese tea ceremonies, each room translates centuries of tradition into quiet luxury—spacious bathrooms carved with stone and artisanal cypress accents flow into the hotel’s majestic courtyard and breathtaking spa. A true sanctuary in the heart of Kyoto, the historic Nijo Castle is just across the street.
That’s OK, we have answers. Read our FAQs below or call +1 (267) 668-0057 to ask us any questions you have. We're here weekdays 8am to 5pm Pacific time.
Eight nights at unique five-star accommodations; private travel for all day trips and excursions; departure airport transfers; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive VIP access and tastings; guided activities, adventures and expeditions; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, many lunches and most dinners; local beverages with meals; gratuity for local guide and tour leader.
International roundtrip airfare; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s starting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service and hotel bar tabs; food and beverages not included in itinerary; gratuity for tour leader.
For all departures, our adventure begins at 9am at the Park Hyatt Tokyo hotel, in Tokyo, Japan. The closest airports are Tokyo's Haneda Airport (HND) and Narita International Airport (NRT). We recommend arriving on or before our first day to ensure you're at our starting point on time. On our last day, the closest airport is Kansai International Airport (KIX). Your flight home should be scheduled to depart at 2pm or later from KIX.
US citizens are not required to have a visa for tourist visits to Japan for visits under 90 days, however are required to show a valid US passport. It is recommended that your passport is valid for six months after your travels are over.
For solo travelers, there is a $3,000 single-supplement fee—paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. If you would like us to pair you with a roommate of the same gender, that option may be available upon checkout—these spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Our adventures typically have between 10 and 18 guests, and our Modern Adventure Team. Our experiences are fun and inclusive and you can expect to be joined by a diverse group in terms of age, background and interests—including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This adventure is for travelers age 18 and above.
This trip is led by an expert Modern Adventure Trip Leader. They're an experienced travel guide, a representative of Modern Adventure and your go-to person for questions or concerns on the trip. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.
For all departure, you may cancel up to 120 days of travel and receive a full refund, minus a $500 per-person service fee. Within 119 days of travel, there is a 50% cancellation fee; within 60 days of travel, there is a 100% cancellation fee. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or of the trip being canceled for unforeseeable reasons (see our Terms and Conditions for full details). Please note that for guests who are transferring trips or traveling on rescheduled trip dates, your cancelation terms will vary from the above, and are generally non-refundable. Please refer to your correspondence from our Customer Experience team for specific details.
We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement for your trip costs; if your trip plans change for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to get medical help, emergency transport, and for theft, loss or damage of items while traveling. For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most 'Cancel For Any Reason' policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.