'Ninja' bus tour set to kick off in Tokyo

AFP
A member of pantomime group Gabez clad as a ninja performs in a sightseeing bus in Tokyo on July 16, 2014
A member of pantomime group Gabez clad as a ninja performs in a sightseeing bus in Tokyo on July 16, 2014 (AFP Photo/Yoshikazu Tsuno)

Japan's biggest travel agency is launching a bus tour with some decidedly homegrown touches -- a flying ninja and sword-carrying samurai.

The one-hour "Samurai & Ninja Safari" tour around the Japanese capital features a bilingual guide pointing out key sights and then a roll around the historic Asakusa district where streetside performers jump out of the shadows.

When the tour launches next month, visitors will be treated to some mortal combat between the all-in-black ninja and his samurai rival, according to travel agency JTB and partner event-planning firm SGRS.

"As the samurai and ninja battle in Asakusa, passengers can enjoy it from inside the bus -- it's a moving theatre," Kazuhiro Kumade, deputy president of SGRS, said before a media preview Wednesday.

Tickets for seats with the best view of the action cost 6,900 yen ($68) apiece.

The ride is loosely modelled on New York's popular The Ride bus route, which bills itself as "equal parts theatrical show and immersive tour".