2017 Japan Photo Tour with Mark Hemmings

PHOTO TOUR/WORKSHOP LOCATIONS – Tokyo, Nagano, Kanazawa, and Kyoto

International travel photographer and workshop teacher Mark Hemmings is ready for his annual one week Japan photography workshop and tour, scheduled for January 22-28, 2017 & February 5-11, 2017. We will also be photographing the world famous Japanese Snow Monkeys in Nagano.

UPDATE AS OF SEPTEMBER 21: The January Photo Tour is now full. There are a few spaces remaining for February.

UPDATE AS OF OCTOBER 3: We have created a one-day photo workshop just for the Snow Monkeys. Click here for information.

Please view the Japan Photo Tour & Workshop video below to get an idea of what you may encounter on this photography trip:



The one week workshop includes all meals, all in-country transportation, all accommodations, and all admission fees. Exceptions are alcoholic beverages at meals which are the responsibility of the participant, and return airfare from your home city to Tokyo Narita airport. This all-inclusive full package is $3,950 USD for a double occupancy room. For single occupancy, please add $300 USD. For the newly created three-day mini photo workshop with just the Snow Monkeys, the base price is 59,000 Yen, or about $575 USD. For more information about this mini workshop, please visit www.snowmonkeyphototours.com

Please contact Mark for further details about this workshop: 1 506-721-8284 (Canadian phone number) or mark@markhemmings.com. Also, CBS News did a report on the Japan Photo Tours, specifically the visits to the Snow Monkeys. Press play on the video below to watch the episode.


“Snow Monkeys” (CBS Sunday Morning, Feb 2016) from Randy Schmidt on Vimeo.


Since 2005 Mark Hemmings has been leading photography enthusiasts throughout Japan, taking them on an enlightening tour of a visually and aesthetically rich country.

SUNDAY – Most international flights arrive at Narita Airport around 5pm, and similar times at Tokyo Haneda airport. When we are gathered as a group, for those at Narita we will board the Narita Express train for our trip into Shinjuku, Tokyo. We will check-in to our hotel and go out for dinner. After dinner we will practice night street photography in Shinjuku. For those arriving at Tokyo Haneda airport (preferred airport), we will also meet in Shinjuku as a group.

MONDAY – This morning is our day of exploring the fascinating sub-cities of Tokyo. Before we leave the hotel Mark will do an instructional slideshow on how to create great urban/street photographs. This interesting lesson filled with real-world examples will lay the foundation for the rest of the day. After the slideshow lesson we will hit a lot of the cool locations on the Yamanote Line, the train system that stops at all of the major Tokyo locations. We will be learning about architectural photography, urban/street photography, and techniques for great travel photos.

TUESDAY – After  breakfast we will get on the famously fast and comfortable Japanese bullet train (Shinkansen) for our journey to Nagano. We will have lunch with friends at a Ueda, Nagano restaurant, and then continue to Nagano Station. After a coffee break at Nagano Station we will then board a mountain train for our final destination, Shiga Kogen. We will be staying in a beautiful and authentic traditional inn called a ryokan. For those who like natural hot springs, there are plenty in this village and in the inn.

WEDNESDAY – We will be getting up early today for a wonderful hike into the mountains to photograph the world famous Japanese Snow Monkeys. The path that we take into the mountains is all uphill, but at a slight incline, so it is not too strenuous. Please pack a pair of water resistant hiking boots as their will be a lot of snow in the mountains. We will remain photographing the monkeys until everyone feels that they have taken all of the photos that they need. We will then all hike downhill back to our inn, passing through interesting Japanese villages. If open, we will tour a traditional sake brewery. The late afternoon and evening is our first free-time break, which will probably be needed because of all of the walking from the last few days of touring. This is the time to soak in the natural hot springs and let your muscles relax!

THURSDAY – After a traditional Japanese breakfast at the inn we will get back on the mountain train to return to Nagano Station. We will be boarding an Ishikawa-bound bullet train, stopping in the famous historic city of Kanazawa, with our destination for the night in Kyoto. We will spend our evening in the Gion district of Kyoto, looking to photograph Geisha as they go from tea-house to tea-house.

FRIDAY – Today is our day in Kyoto, exploring the many photogenic sites that make it a world-class destination.

SATURDAY  – Mark will be taking everyone back to Tokyo today, for their flights home. If you are staying in Tokyo longer, Mark will make sure you get off in Tokyo Station, while the rest of us continue on to either Tokyo Haneda or Narita Airport.


Follow Mark’s board Japan Photo Tour & Workshop on Pinterest.