"Shugaku ryoko" is a big event for Japanese elementary school, junior high school, high school students. They go for a trip once with friends of same grade in each school days in order to learn historical places for a few days. Since I have lived in Tokyo, I went to Kyoto and Nara (Kansai, west area of Japan) at junior high school days. I learn and feel Japanese old culture. It takes about two hours by Shinkansen (Super express train). People who lived in other prefectures go to the place that is far from the their area. For example, students in Osaka go to Tokyo or other area but Kansai.
Shugaku ryoko is very fun for almost students. They can travel with classmates and have free time to walk around the city or town as one group. We often meet these groups of students in Tokyo in spring or autumn season. They seems to be fun smiling and finding the way on a map.
I have good memories of Shugaku rhoko. I think Shugaku ryoko is a school custom of only Japan. It is very instructive for young students to visit historical places and learn own history and cooperation with other students.