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Japan was been one of the economic powerhouses of the 20th century and despite struggling with ongoing recession throughout the 90s and the first years of the 21st century, is still the world's second biggest economy. Japan's wealth and economic might has been built around manufacturing and industry; high tech products such as computers and scientific instruments have flooded into the West; Japanese car makers dominate the world motor industry; and the petrochemical industry has helped deliver the refined oil that has powered the economic miracle.

But before industrialisation towards the end of the 19th century Japan was an agriculturally based economy and once you get outside of the cities and industrial heartlands of the eastern seaboard, this is still true today. Ask any Japanese businessman their dream and 90% of them will respond "to buy a small house in the country with some land and farm". Perhaps this reflects some desire to get back to nature; to reconnect with the land having been squashed into tiny apartments in the massive urban centres. Whatever the case agriculture and farming is still a very important part of the Japanese psyche.

There are many opportunities in Japan to experience both sides of Japan's economic activity. Whether you wish to see the high-tech robots of car manufacturing or pick shitake mushrooms in the mountains of the Izu peninsula, there are experiences available. In this section we will be presenting up a selection of those experiences for you to select from.

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Tokyo's G-can flood surge tunnels

As featured on the BBC's 'Mega Cities' with Andrew Marr, Tokyo's colossal underground flood surge tunnels are an incredible engineering feat and strangely beautiful too.

We can arrange for you to join a tour of the tunnels giving you a unique insight into underground Tokyo. Known as the G-can this network of tunnels is over 4 miles long and features super-powered pumps and huge tanks - all dedicated to keeping Tokyo dry during the rainy season and in case of overflowing rivers.

Construction started in 1992 and the complex is still growing. The main tank is often likened to an underground temple and has been used as an atmospheric backdrop in various films and dramas. This giant metal fish bowl measures 25.4m X 177m X 78m, is supported by 59 gargantuan pillars and has seventy-eight 14,000 horsepower pumps to force water back into the Edogawa river.

The tour is in Japanese and it is mandatory to have a translator with you and so our package includes the services of an English speaking licensed guide who will accompany you for the visit underground and is at your disposal for a total of 8 hours.

Our package costs £85 per person based on 2 people travelling and including the guide service for 8 hours. The tour can also be incorporated into any Self-Guided or Fully Tailored visit to Japan or can sometimes be included during a Small Group Tour.
Tuesday to Friday, 3 tours a day.

50 metres underground! The meeting point is at the Ryukyukan Showa drainage pump station in Kasukabe, Saitama, just outside Tokyo. The nearest train station is Minami-Sakurai (about 60 minutes from Ueno station) from where it is a 10 minute taxi ride. Your guide will meet you in Tokyo and make sure you get there in good time. 

Local transport is not included and will cost approximately 1,300yen per person (round trip).   

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Plan your trip

Many thanks for taking the time to browse our web-site. We very much hope you are enjoying the site we have put together and that it has inspired you to contact us and take the first steps towards your holiday in Japan!

There are many things to consider when planning your Japan trip: time of year you wish to travel; how long you have available; where in Japan you want to go; the things you wish to experience; what budget you have available to name but a few.

Our Tailored Trip Enquiry Form is designed so we can get as clear an idea as possible as to what will make the perfect Japan trip for you.

After we have received your enquiry, one of our Japan-expert travel consultants will get in touch to discuss your trip in more detail so as we can out together a proposal for you. We don’t ask for any money upfront to put together a quote and most importantly, every quote we do is 100% tailored for you.

Click for the Tailored Trip Enquiry Form

Don’t have time to fill in our Fully Tailored Trip form? Submit a quick Email Enquiry instead.

Inside Japan Tours - Independent British Travel Awards 2011 - Best Tour Operator To East and Central Asia
The Guardian, The Observer - Travel Awards 2010 Winner - Best tour operator (small)
Inside Japan Tours - Silver at the British Travel Awards 2009