Ronald M

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Ronald M

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Apr122013

Tour/Activity

Mt Fuji, Lake Ashi and Bullet Train Day Trip from Tokyo

Tokyo, Japan

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

There is no substitute for seeing Mt Fuji in person. The photos and pictures of this incredible icon of Japan come nowhere close to seeing this magnificent mountain in person. After seeing Mt Fuji, you will understand why the Japanese people revere this mountain. Until this tour, I hadn't realised how accessible Mt Fuji was from Tokyo in one day. I also hadn't realised that the lakes around Fujiyama had so much to offer. I had limited time and could only spare a day but managed to see an incredible amount in a short time. Also, the tour guide provided a fantastic description of Japanese culture on this trip between the sights. Here's a few tips when you're deciding whether or not to do this trip. First, the visibility of Mt Fuji is best in winter and not so good in summer, with a pretty good chance of seeing it in spring and autumn. Remember, no one can control the weather! I was really lucky as I got the most breathaking views of probably one of the best things I have ever seen in my life. However, if I was touring this area again, I think I would increase my chances of seeing Mt Fuji by taking one of the two or three day tours offered on this website instead. (I did four tours in Japan from Viator within two weeks and all, without exception, were excellent). Also, there is so much to see and do in ths area, if I had more time, I would have loved to see these things. However, if you were like me and had only had one day, I would highly recommend this tour as you get to see so much of the countryside as well as Japan's much loved icon.

Apr112013

Tour/Activity

Tokyo Skytree, Asakusa and Central Tokyo Sightseeing Tour

Tokyo, Japan

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Contrasting the fantastic old with the amazing new in 'must sees' in Tokyo is the theme of this tour. The temple and shopping at Asakusa are absolute 'musts' in Tokyo, especially if you don't have the time to get to Kyoto when you are in Japan. I know lots of business and conference visitors have very little time for sightseeing, but this is the beauty of this tour: you get to see ancient and modern Japan in a very short time and still have plenty of time for those fantastic souvenirs. The temple at Asakusa is amazing, and the guide provided great background information which really introduced you to the culture and religions of Japan. Near Asakusa, is a great, very old shopping strip full of very good quality souvenirs. There is your usual tourist souvenirs, but if you want that high quality Kimono at a teasonable price, you'll find it here in no time. Everything was of excellent quality. After seeing the old and ancient Japan, you get to see the amazing Tokyo SkyTree. If you went by yourself, you could wait a very long time in queues, but the beauty of this tour, is that you don't wait long at all, as they have a group booking. This is really great when you are on a tight schedule. The view from the SkyTree is amazing, and the building itself is a wonder of Japanese design, technology and engineering. The guide on this tour also provded ,any insights into Japanese culture durimg the tour, and was very pleased to answer all of your questions about Japan or where to buy that special item. If you only have an afternoon to spare in Tokyo, this is the tour for you!

Apr092013

Tour/Activity

Kyoto Cooking Class, Sake Tasting and Nishiki Food Market Walking Tour

Kyoto, Japan

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

You can learn a lot from a country from it's food and from this point of view, this tour is a window into Japanese culture that would be hard to look through in any other way. The first part ofthe tour in the Nishiki Food Market provided an eye openning expereince to the diversity of Japanese food, not only for the beginner, but for the more experienced foodie. There was plenty of time to check out all of the stalls, and the guide for this part of the tour was extremely knowledgeable and could talk about all of the types of foods in any detail that you would like. Absolutely incredible variety, with plenty of opportunities to taste great food, including extreme food tasting for the adventuresome!

The second part of the tour involved a visit to a saki brewery followed by an introduction to sake with tastings. I wasn't sure waht to expect but was pleasantly surprised. The cooking part of the tour was expertly done and I won't tell you what we cooked and ate as i don't want to spoil it for you, but just to say, that I learned so much and had a great time. There were some in the group who were not so experienced cooks, but there was no pressure and everyone really enjoyed it. A wonderful way to spend an afternoon with insights into Japan that would be otherwise hard to come by.

My Photos

  • The finished product...
  • Learning to make Japanese food...
  • The Nishiki Market Biscuit Man, Kyoto Japan.
  • Kyoto Market People
  • Kyoto Tempura at Nishiki Market
  • Japanese Pickles at Nishiki Market

Mar292013

Tour/Activity

Tokyo Studio Ghibli Museum Afternoon Tour

Tokyo, Japan

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

This was a wonderful tour in terms of quality, time saving and convenience.
Sometimes, these tickets are hard to get if you do not speak Japanese, and also they are hard to get for the time you want when you travel ahead of time. This tour solved this problem immediately by just selecting your date and having the ticket ready for the day and time you wanted! Also, the museum is in a suburb of Tokyo ahich would be tricky to find if you're not used to Japan, and again this problem is solved as you meet in an easy to fine location in Tokyo first. Also, even if you can get the ticket yourself, it is only for a certain time and if you're not sure how to get there you might waste some of your ticket time. Also, not only for convenience, but in terms of enjoying the museum, the guide was wonderful. She was happy for you to see the museum yourself, but I strongly recommend that you listen to the guide first, The guide pointed out the main features of the museum so you didn't miss anything and then left plenty of free time for you to explore by yourself before guiding you home. Don't get put off by the pictures used in advertising as no pictures from inside can be used - there is no photography allowed in the museum so that your visit is a complete surprise to you - and it's wonderful. This tour is tops in terms of quality and a real time saver if you are on a schedule. This is how tours should be run. PS when you're there, check out all the little details - ride in the elevator, go to the toilets etc - I know it sounds weird, but it's all wonderful!

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