2019 Japan Photo Tour with Mark Hemmings

PHOTO TOUR/WORKSHOP LOCATIONS – Tokyo, Nagano, Matsumoto, Tsumago, and Kyoto

UPDATE AS OF JULY 8: The Feb 11 – 17 2019 tour is full. We have a few openings remaining for Feb 3 – 9, 2019.

International travel photographer and workshop instructor Mark Hemmings is ready for his annual one week Japan photography workshop and tour, scheduled for February 3 to February 9, 2019, and February 11 to February 17, 2019. We will also be photographing the world famous Japanese Snow Monkeys in Nagano.

Please view the Japan Photo Tour & Workshop video below to get an idea of what you may encounter on this photography trip. Please keep in mind that this was the 2017 photo workshop promo video, and the 2019 schedule is slightly different. Please scroll down on this page for the accurate 2019 itinerary.



The one week workshop includes all meals, all subways and taxis, all accommodations, all teaching time, and all admission fees. Exceptions are mid-meals snacks/drinks/alcoholic beverages, and return airfare from your home city to Tokyo Narita or Haneda airport. This all-inclusive full package is $4,950 USD for a double occupancy room. For single occupancy, please add $400 USD.

Please contact Mark for further details about this workshop: mark@markhemmings.com (FaceTime enabled). 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.

DAY 1 (Either February 3 or February 11 depending on which week you chose) – Most international flights arrive at Narita Airport around 5pm, and similar times at Tokyo Haneda airport. Feel free to choose either Haneda or Narita airport. If you arrive in Japan today, you will be picked up at the airport by Mark or one of his associates, and delivered to the workshop hotel. If you arrive in Japan earlier than today you will be asked to purchase your own bus or train ticket into Shinjuku, Tokyo. When we are gathered as a group at our hotel we will go out for dinner. After dinner we will practice night street photography in Shinjuku.

DAY 2 – This morning is our day of exploring the fascinating sub-cities of Tokyo, traveling along the Yamanote train line. We will be learning about architectural photography, urban/street photography, and techniques for great travel photos.

DAY 3 – After  breakfast we will get on the famously fast and comfortable Japanese bullet train (Shinkansen) for our journey to Nagano. 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.

DAY 4 – 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 shoes 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. After photographing the snow monkeys we will eat lunch at a local cafe, and then head back to Nagano Station to get a train to Matsumoto. We will stay in Matsumoto and photograph the historic Matsumoto Castle.

DAY 5 – After breakfast at our Matsumoto inn we will go straight to the stunningly beautiful Edo-era historic town of Tsumago. When we are done photographing in Tsumago we will get back on the train and go straight to Kyoto. We will spend our evening in the Gion district, looking to photograph Geisha as they go from tea-house to tea-house.

DAY 6 – Today is our full day in Kyoto, exploring the many photogenic sites that make it a world-class destination.

DAY 7 – Mark will be taking everyone back to Tokyo today for their flights home. If you are staying in Japan longer, Mark will make sure you get off the bullet train at the appropriate 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.


If you would prefer a private photo tour, we have the answer for you!

Tokyo Photography Tours with Jeff Austin