We enjoyed this tour, although it got off to a shaky start as we had e-mail confirmation that we would be collected from our hotel, which did not happen. We therefore had to get a taxi to ensure that we did not miss the entire two days. We received no apology for this and in fact, despite our written instructions, it was intimated that this failure was our fault, which was frustrating. However, once we left Tokyo, our guide, Taki, was very informative and enthusiastic. Unfortunately heavy snow meant we weren't able to do some of the activities, but this was more than compensated for and it was clear in the description that this might be the case, therefore we were not disappointed. Lunch on Day 1 was simply a feast for the eyes. We were very lucky to get a view of Mount Fuji, as we understand the chances of this at any time of year are only 30%, so we were well pleased. The Bullet Train was a fantastic experience and we were met and guided at each stage of the tour by representatives from the tour company. We had paid extra for a 1st class room at Kyoto - this was disappointing. The room was cold and the bed uncomfortable. The staff were not very hospitable and we weren't made to feel very welcome, in fact, we were turfed out of the bar in mid-drink! The 2nd day touring temples, palaces and shrines was fascinating and we would recommend this part of the tour to anyone. The journey home by bullet train was fast and efficient and we were dropped off at our hotel at the end of the day. As the tour is quite expensive, we felt that just a little more attention to detail would have enhanced the experience for us, but overall, it was a trip to remember.
We really enjoyed this tour. Our host, Meg, was very knowledgeable and took us to eateries we would definitely not have visited without her guidance. Her command of a range of languages and her understanding of Japanese culture meant our first evening in Tokyo got off to a really good start and answered many of our initial questions. Her enthusiasm for her work was apparent and we would definitely recommend this tour to others who have little knowledge of Japanese food and culture.
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