As we trudge through the winter, I’ve been busy planning our March Break travels. The planning for March Break 2023 actually began back in March 2022, as I wanted to lock in some flight bookings for my family of five, which isn’t always an easy task.
Japan has been on my bucket list for a while, and although its borders were still closed to foreigners at the time, I was hopeful it would reopen by next year. Aeroplan still had its free change policy back then, too, which also helped make my decision easier.
Finally, news came out that Japan would reopen to free, independent travel on October 11, 2022. I couldn’t help but share my excitement, and before I knew it, I had five other friends and their families who were coming along for the ride.
In total, there will be 26 of us, including 12 adults and 14 children ranging from 1–11.
Planning a group trip has its challenges, especially when it comes to accommodating everyone’s needs, preferences, and schedules. I also had to take into consideration that not all my friends were avid points collectors. 😱
Here’s some insight into how I approached this complex trip.
The last time I was in Japan was when I was a child, and to be quite honest, I don’t remember much. I recall a lot of hustle and bustle in Tokyo, and spending a night in a ryokan around Mount Fuji.
Now, almost 30 years later, it’s time to refresh those memories and create some new ones with my kids.
Spring is a great time to visit Japan, as it’s neither too hot nor too cold. Normally, I’d consider going somewhere warm and sunny for March Break, but with average temperatures of around 10 degrees in Japan, it still beats the single digit temperatures here in Canada.
If we’re lucky, we may even catch the beginning of the cherry blossom season.
With two weeks of March Break, it gives us adequate time to explore the major destinations in Japan: Kyoto, Osaka, Nara, and Tokyo. We plan to enjoy some great food, immerse in some cultural experiences, and visit some historic sites and theme parks.
We start off in the historical and cultural city of Kyoto for a few nights. Kyoto is a great place to introduce the kids to the traditional Japanese culture.
They can dress up in kimonos as we walk down the traditional streets of Gion or Higashiyama and partake in a samurai and ninja experience. There are a few temples and castles to visit, as well as…