Posts Tagged ‘Nature’

Simply Perfect

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

Hi, We have just returned from our 18 day holiday in Japan.

I just wanted to let you know it was the perfect itinerary for us. Our wish list was all ticked off and we feel like our schedule was well planned and timed out for the days we had.

I was travelling with my two teenage girls and 10 yr old son, and we all agree it was truly memorable and great fun. Specifically, we loved the Dynamic Tokyo Tour. We saw so much more in one day than we could have in a much longer holiday or on our own. It was nice to be above ground on the bus for a change, as you see so much incidental scenery from the bus rather than popping out from the subway into a new realm. The Tokyo Dynamic Tour included a wonderful lunch, the yummiest teppanyaki we’d ever had, and wandering the gardens at both the lunch and tea ceremony sights felt like a privilege. All the staff we encountered were generous, caring and humorous. The Nakamise walkway up to Sensoji Temple was such a surprise and we wouldnt have gone if it wasnt part of the tour.

We enjoyed the Mt Fuji trip and agree with Clement that it was a good choice to make that our first day in Japan, I think we would otherwise have wasted a day acclimatising and wandering aimlessly. Being on tour for our first day, forced us out of bed early but more importantly gave us time to get used to the currency, weather, language and ask pertinent questions to a tour guide face to face.

We are grateful for your recommendation to stay at Biyu no Yado Ryokan in Yudanaka. The homestyle feel and traditional meals and accommodation were something we had never experienced. Very memorable for us all to sleep on futons and tatami, and the food surprised us so much. Some of it challenged us to try but everything was delicious (even the dried up salted looking fish that stared up at us from the plate), we agreed it was the best thing we ate all week. From here we enjoyed the snow monkey visit and found two staff; Daniel and Kaori, exceptional hosts.

Most importantly for me, I found all your notes helpful. Validating passes, locating reference numbers for bookings, phone numbers, meeting times etc- it was all so clearly laid out that I was able to enjoy the holiday knowing nothing would go wrong if I followed your instructions. So a big thank you from me, I enjoyed my kids company more for never having to “get stuck”.

Thanks Clement, should we be lucky enough to return to Japan, we will definitely use you guys again.

Warm Regards,
Jodi

Everything went without a Hitch

Thursday, May 31st, 2012
Hi Noriko,
 
Thank you very much for your contribution to our long awaited return to Japan.  Everything went without a hitch, and whilst we couldn’t do the trip down to Hiroshima this time, it was a wonderful visit yet again.
 
We spent 8 days in Sapporo with the family, (we hadn’t seen the kids for almost four years), then overnight in Hakkodate, down to Sendai where we were treated to a traditional sashimi dinner at a beautiful restaurant with nine old friends, all of whom had been terribly affected by the Earthquake/Tsunami.
 
They’re tough people,  and they’re recovering amazingly well.
 
The cherry blossoms were in full bloom in Hokkaido because it had been so cold so late.  We had one day where it was Minus One Degree – a little hard to take after an Australian summer.
 
I have hundreds of photo’s, and once I’ve had time to sort them out, I will send you some.
 
Many thanks again,
 
John and Sue
 
PS:  We are hoping to return to Japan  in October for two weeks (if finances allow), so expect to hear from us again soon.

A superb holiday

Monday, May 7th, 2012
Hello Yoko,
Well what a superb holiday it turned out to be. We hit the jackpot with everything. The weather was good (less 1 day) Cherry Blossom in full bloom. And Mt Fuji you couldn’t get it any better.
 
Our tour escort  Kierin words can’t describe him. Each night when we didn’t have anything planned for a meal he took those of us who wanted to go with him to a differently Japanese style meal. In Hiroshima he found one (okonomiyaki restaurant) that could do gluten free so I went  with the whole group. Enjoyed it so much I had 2 of them. 
 
The tour far exceeded what I thought it would be like. And I have recommended it to friends here since my return. An extra day or two in Tokyo as I had originally planned would be an idea for your tours as 1 day is not enough. And name tags as it is hard to remember everyone’s names. 
 
The tour was excellently organized. You just could not fault it anywhere. And I’ve had almost 30 holidays overseas.
 
And the tour guide—next time he goes on a tour let’s know.
Our whole group might go again.
 

Regards Graeme 

Kieran Okonomiyaki

Takayama – a great opportunity to experience a ryokan

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012
We felt blessed when we were greeted by the lovely guide at Osaka airport after a long queue for fingerprinting, face recognition etc. Of course we were weary, and it was a great luxury to be swept to the hotel in a very flash Toyota limo.

Hyatt very good. Room on first Japanese second floor, so a good view of the roof below, but it was very quiet and comfortable. By far the smallest of our three rooms, but great bed, bath and breakfast.

The bike tour was a huge success. Although we had a couple of rain showers we managed to visit all the temples/shrines/palace as well as stopping at a tiny ‘hole in the wall’ for noodles, which is what we had requested.

If you have any clients remotely interested in architecture or art I would certainly include the Miho Museum. It is absolutely breathtaking. Almost worth the trip to Japan, and made so much easier with the car. Again, the blossoms not out, but magnificent.

Cherry blossoms started to really bloom while in Kyoto, and being the weekend the Japanese tourists were out in force, quite a few in national dress.

Takayama – a great opportunity to experience a ryokan. That place also had a great onsen on the ground floor, and contrary to our expectations we were provided with three not one excellent dinners. The first in a private room of their main dining area, the second at Hotel Alice? where we were served slivers of the heavy duty cholestrol steak. Third night another private room in their sushi bar part of the hotel. I would certainly recommend that place. The town also features some very pleasant walks, and of course the famous floats.


Helen

JTB provided exceptional service

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012
Thank you for your greetings.  We did see loads of Cherry blossoms in Tokyo and had great weather.  JTB provided exceptional service and we are very happy to recommend this company and in particular this tour to anyone considering going to Japan.   Our tour guide, Kieren would have to be the best tour guide we have ever had.  Both of us have travelled extensively and this tour and this company exceeded our expectations.  Nothing was too much trouble, the tour was well planned and we saw a lot of things and then we relaxed on the train and watched the scenery go past.  All we had to worry about was having a great time.  Our tour guide really had a genuine desire for us to understand the Japanese culture and to have an overview of their landscape and cities.
 
Could you please provide our comments about Kieren to his manager.
 
All the best
 

David and Sandra 

Thank you for all of your work

Thursday, April 26th, 2012
Dear Eri,
I would also like to thank you for selecting such excellent hotels especially Keio Plaza hotel in Shinjuku (ichi-ban) because of the variety and best quality of food at the buffet restaurant –  and the quad room which we understand is very special size in Japan.
 
and Biyu No Yado with beautiful onsens and snow Monkeys were special and Yukki our host is so considerate of us.
 
We had such beautiful sunny weather and Cherry Blossoms were everywhere we went !!!
 
We have had a beautiful holiday and we managed to work out the trains and we just went where we wanted to and when we wanted to.
 
The only time we got lost was in the subway shops under Osaka Umeda station – that was very big – but we did take a compass.
 
Thank you for making all our arrangements,
everything went as booked and our family had a beautiful holiday.
 
Everyone in Japan was glad to see people starting to visit again after 2011.
 
Domo arigatou gozaimasu.

Peter 

Thanks for organising things for us

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012
Olivia,

We got back from Okinawa ok (just a little late due to fog in Sydney). For your interest I have attached the travel plans we put together for the trip. The version I have sent you has had minor updates, since we got back, to add in the things we found out while we were over there. eg. how to get to Hedo Misaki.

General comments on the trip

  • Sue and I had a good time in Okinawa and feel it was a worthwhile trip.
  • If we had another two days we would have included Tokashiki Island and checked out Shikina-en Gardenand Sefi-Utaki. Maybe even a stay in the Nago or Cape Manza area if time permitted.
  • Okinawa is an entirely different place to the parts of Japan that we have been to before. We would not recommend Okinawa as a good place to get started in Japan. We would however recommend it as a place to visit for someone already familiar with other parts of Japan
  • The basic 3 day package in your advertised offer would not have satisfied us at all. Extending the trip and including the stay in Okuma worked well.
  • Nahana Hotel was fine, although the first room had a damp smell to it (possibly due to the high humidity on the island). Service & Breakfast were good.
  • JAL Okuma Resort was outstanding. The service, the accommodation, meals and the  facilities were all of a very high standard. Being a resort and a bit far away from alternative restaurants meant you were pretty well locked in to dinner there (unless you felt like walking the 1.3km to an alternative).  Dinner at the resort worked out about 4000¥ per person.
  • There was nothing complicated about the express bus 111 to Nago or the bus 67 to Okuma Beach. The usual Japanese bus ticketing system applied. Although we had worked out which stop we had to get off at Okuma, the driver made sure we knew when to get off. The bus to Cape Hedo was more of a problem to work out in advance, but we did get a timetable from the Tourist information at the Yuiyui Road House and the lift to Hentona bus depot by the resort made finding the required  bus terminal easy. We would have liked to do more in the Cape Hedo area but the restricted timetable and the fact that bus stops (aside from the one at Cape Hedo) were not easily identified or marked on a map meant we had to be conservative to make sure we got back to Okuma ok.
  • Finding places to eat in Naha was not a problem. Okinawa has it’s local food variations, but we didn’t mind that. It can be confusing choosing from the many restaurants in Kokusai-dori but there are some restaurants in the area around the Hotel Nahana which are a bit quieter. Another good place to eat was in a shopping centre near the Prefectural Museum in Omoromachi called “Naha Main Place”.
Comments on the Shurijo Castle World Heritage Tour
  • Doing the tour allowed us to see a number of things in the limited time we had but the flip side is that we always seemed to be rushing through things.
  • Looking at the map it seemed there was a lot to see in the area around the castle and we guessed we would not get much time on the tour. We made a point of spending time ourselves in the area surrounding the castle on the day before and focused on the “paid area” including the Seiden during the tour. There wasn’t a lot of point following the guide around listening to explanations in Japanese. As it was we just had enough time.
  • The audio guide could only be used while on the bus and had a lot of good information on most things but was light on in some things. eg. Himeyuri Kaikan
  • We could have done with a lot more time at the “Cornerstone of Peace”  and time to visit the nearby “Okinawa Peace Prayer and Memorial Hall” which we only saw from a distance.
  • Okinawa World consisted of a walk through a very long limestone cave with a walk back through a shopping area. We would probably trade this with more time at previous stop.
  • Lunchtime meal was good.

Comments on the Northern Okinawa Tour

  • The guide on this tour did an excellent job and worked very hard, providing commentary, telling jokes (which we couldn’t understand but got the crowd laughing) and even singing traditional songs. Even though we couldn’t understand a lot we appreciated the amount of effort she put into it.
  • We liked Ryukyu Mura better than Okinawa World from the previous day. At least it was laid out as a village and you could see the traditional architecture as well as the artisans at work. We gave the Habu Show a miss.
  • Ocean Expo Park and Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium were very good. It would have been worth staying overnight in the area so we could spend more time there.
  • Nago Pineapple Park didn’t really have much to see as a park. The highlight was the tastings of all the pineapple and tropical fruit products. Mind you they did have some nice fruit wines, juice cordials and cakes. 
  • Lunch was good.

Trip Highlights

  • Shurijo and surrounding area 
  • We enjoyed the walk to Hiji falls and the Ufugi Nature Museum.
  • Cape Hedo and the view along the bus route of the more rural areas of the island.
  • Naha Prefectural Museum. The history museum needs a fair bit of time. The Art Gallery is not very large.
  • Himeyuri Kaigun and Cornerstone of Peace. Very Reminiscent of the peace parks and museums at Nagasaki  and Hiroshima.
  • Tsuboya Pottery District and museum
  • Lacquer ware Shop (Kakuman) in Kokusai-dori
  • Kokusai-dori was an interesting street to walk along with the shops and arcades. We walked the length of it several times over the duration of the trip.
I have some photos of bus stops, the hotels and strategic intersections I can send you for reference if you like. We have excess pamphlets from some places and the tours so I will probably drop them in to you at some stage for your reference. They might be useful if you get any enquiries.

Anyway thanks again for organising things for us. Aside from the glitch at the Stamford, things went quite well and we were able to enjoy ourselves.
Regards,
Tony & Sue 

The organisation of JTB is nothing short of superb workmanship

Monday, April 16th, 2012
Hello Yoko,
How many people come to Japan hoping to see Mt Fuji as we did. And the cherry blossom in full bloom. The weather has been good with only 1 day of rain & a bit of a sprinkle yesterday morning.
Keiran is a wonderful tour host give him more trips & I’ll go on them in actual fact we all will.
The different foods he has introduced on most of the free nights. And he has helped me no end with my diet. The tour escort Akiko Shimada in Tokyo was excellent too.
She also gave me “No Wheat” written in Japanese that I have used when eating by myself.
Hotels are wonderful & the welcome dinner was the best i’ve ever had inc 3 who didn’t want to stop drinking the sake by the bottlee.
How they woke up in the morning I don’t know.
The organisation of JTB & Keirin’s is nothing short of superb workmanship.

Regards Graeme 

Amazing, as simple as that .. "perfect

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Firstly let me say that the trip to Japan was completely amazing, as simple as that .. “perfect”. I will break down my feedback into sub headings to ensure that I cover all points.

Flights and organization at airport.

Fortunately we were not affected by the customs strike and had not problems at all. On arrival at Tokyo airport all went very smoothly with the funniest thing being that we were met by our Japanese guide as “Stefan XXXX and Party” (He is the 20 year old). this “giggle” continued as everywhere we were booked in and met with “Stefan XXXX and party”.. he was most impressed. This did not cause any problems at all for us, so please do not worry.

Hotels- satisfactory

Keio plaza- lovely thank you. would stay there again. excellent location, staff very helpful etc. Non smoking room was a true non smoking room. Graham found bed far to hard.

New Miyako- sorry never again. The location was excellent but the entire place wrecks of cigarette smoke and made us all feel really unwell. We are avid non smokers and there is no way it was a non smoking room, really horrible. Coughed all night.

Hiroshima-Granvia, no problem would stay again. (small thing is that restaurants and food areas closed a lot earlier in Hiroshima than anywhere else e.g. 8pm so can be tricky to find somewhere to eat after that..which lead to an hilarious evening of drinking sake and eating Hiroshima oysters with a charming (albeit very drunk) Japanese Doctor who loved “Australia”.

Osaka- Granvia only place with comfortable beds during the whole trip. This did not worry me at all but Graham has a bad back and all the rest of the hotels have rock hard beds. Had to laugh bed was great but they put the boys in a room miles from ours! Best of all the hotels though.

Travelling within Japan

very comfortable vans

excellent drivers

trains all worked like clockwork only got mildly lost once

really no problems

train from Osaka to Kansai airport perhaps you should recommend not travelling with luggage in peak hour but .. it all adds to the atmosphere

Tour guides

our guides

Noriko – Tokyo

Yumi- Kyoto and Osaka

Akiko- Hiroshima

were in one word – exemplary. It was a delight to meet such wonderful people, their knowledge, friendliness, professionalism was faultless. I’d like to highlight two charming instances .. one was Noriko making us sing Japanese folk songs to take my mind of my major fear of heights on the cable car.. the second was Yumi travelling back to see us on our last day at Osaka because she wanted to bring gifts to us and to make sure we got the right train!

I cannot sing their praises enough. Having the guides enhanced our experience of Japan enormously. I intend to write thank you letters to their companies as well.

in terms of the tour guides and drivers I had wished in retrospect that I had brought more thoughtful gifts rather than the mundane soap and books we gave them so perhaps this is a good hint to others as their service was wonderful. In general too I had only very small things for the drivers and would have loved to have given them something better too.

Weather and food

perfect weather only one wet day in Hiroshima which added to the ambience

food – fabulous as we love Japanese food, we would have been happy not to have bothered with the western meal at Miaggio and to have had a Japanese meal but not a problem and the buffet was very good. we did pay for one meal that we thought was included but this wasn’t a bother either. the highlight in terms of arranged dinning was the meal in Osaka with Yumi so much fun!

Timing of trip

originally I was disappointed to miss the Sakura when the first trip had to be canceled but the timing was perfect as it was between seasons so to speak (after the Cherry Blossoms but before the Autumn leaves) which meant very few crowds. all tour guides remarked that we had been extraordinarily lucky with how easily we got around the often crowded areas e.g. Golden Pavilion.

Other highlights apart from the planned itinerary

we were invited to join a wedding party in Kyoto- seriously

we saw a traditional Shinto wedding

we were 2 metres from the Crown Prince who we saw twice in an excited throng at Kyoto station

we met and talked with two (young) sumo wrestlers

we saw many many many ladies in Kimonos

..where do I stop!

Overall, a wonderful holiday that exceeded our expectations and Graham and I will book another trip soon…

we also plan to go with “empty bags” next time as the clothing and shoes etc were wonderful as was the art work. (we purchased some incredible original contemporary wood block prints and three fabulous antiques)

I will be in touch!

thank you again

Sue

thanks again for your exceptional service

Monday, October 17th, 2011
Hi Olivia,
 
We had a great trip and as this was our first to Japan really appreciated the work you did to set it up for us.
The Airport Limousine was easy to find, clean, friendly and efficient, dropping us off right at our Hotel door. very much appreciated after the long haul from OZ!
The flexibility of the package was great and being able to change the Tokyo half day tour meant we could spend a day with a long time Japanese friend.
The JR pass was just brilliant. As well as the usual Shinkansen between cities we also used it to get around Tokyo. We did a day trip to Nikko  from Shinagawa. While in Hiroshima we used it to get to Miyajima including the ferry! And in Kyoto we did a trip to Saga-Arashiyama to the Sagano bamboo forest, all this at no extra cost!
We found booking seats very easy and loved the huge space and comfortable seats on Shinkansen. Everything was spotless, efficient, friendly and well run.
After the structured part of the trip we used JR pass to get from Kyoto to Hachinohe to visit our son.
Finally we travelled from Aomori to Narita before overnighting and flying back to OZ.
We were overwhelmed by the Japanese people who were always friendly and generous and never gave up trying to understand our lack of Japanese.
Our Hotel in Tokyo (Takanawa Prince) was fabulous, with views of Tokyo tower and we loved the huge garden area. We also liked the Granvia in Hiroshima, very convenient location and great views. Our Kyoto Hotel was a good location but not as clean or modern and no views. It was below the standard of the other 2 hotels we stayed at and a pity the JR station was quite far away from the city centre but otherwise acceptable.
We had to check out early to catch our train to Hachinohe (seven and a half hour trip)so the hotel made us up a breakfast box to take with us.
The Shiatsu you recommended was excellent. It was only 5 mins walk away from our hotel and it was clean, friendly and my Therapist spoke some English. I can thoroughly recommend this for anyone who wants to experience a genuine Shiatsu. The therapist had great touch knowing exactly when to use deep pressure and when to ease off. She found all of my aches and injuries without any help from me. She even found some I was not aware of. I had the 90 minute session costing 9000 yen …
money well spent. A 60 minute session costing 6000 yen is also available. They are open until 11pm and you can pay by credit card. I will definitely go back on my next trip.
We had a range of weather from hot and humid in Hiroshima (30+) to cold and snowing at Lake Towada in Aomori Prefecture.
It would be fair to say that we were generally disappointed by the food (there were some exceptions) although it was always fresh and well prepared, we just found it rather boring.
We also found the hotel rooms to be very hot and had some trouble sleeping.No amount of tweaking seemed to cool it.
 
Overall it was a great holiday and thanks again for your exceptional service.
 
Regards
 

Tony and Barbara 

How magnificent!

Thursday, May 12th, 2011
Dear Olivia,

Could you please pass the message on to Takeda San.

The taxis were waiting for us at the right time at Toya Station, the weather was brilliant, the scenery was magnificent and the accommodation (Kohantei) was superb. We all tried the onsen and some of us were able to sit in the rotemburo and gaze out across the lake at Yoteizan. How magnificent! We were all tired out from all the walking we did yesterday (some walked about 20kms) exploring the various walking trails in the area. We could have spent another day there.

Thank you very much for all the organisation especially the taxis at the last minute and insisting on sending us to Kohantei.

The weather tomorrow (Friday 13th May) will be cold with a maximum of 7 degrees, but we are all prepared for that. Today is a rest day in Obihiro, although most of the group have gone out exploring as soon as we checked in. We have a very genki group.

Also it looks as though the Sakura will be following us around. It was in full bloom in Hakodate, and is just coming into bloom in this area.

Thank you for all your organisation. With a start like that, the rest of the trip will be magnificent I’m sure.

Kindest Regards,

Lorraine

Home after a fantastic trip to Japan

Friday, May 6th, 2011

Hi Clem
We are back home after a fantastic trip to Japan and a bus tour of Taiwan. Everything worked exactly as planned. First let us compliment you on the level of accommodation chosen for us. The Nagoya’s “Marriott Associa Hotel”, once we found it, was very up market for our normal level, the Matsumoto “Tokyu Inn” was satisfactory and the Ryoken in Yudanaka was an extremely pleasant experience even though we only stayed at the “Biyu-No-Yado” for only one night, as they had no other guests they closed the Ryoken for maintenance and moved us to other Ryoken where the accommodation and food was just as excellent, unfortunately we never found out the name of this Ryoken as nobody could speak English and only Japanese identification was evident. The Takayama Ryoken “Hotakasu Yamano Iori” was not as spectacular as the other two but more than satisfactory. From there on the Quality of accommodation in Kanazawa, Kyoto, Hiroshima and Osaka was of a great standard.

Your recommendations of sightseeing and transport option were excellent. We did improvise some train travel and incorporated more stops particular a Cherry Blossom stop in Hikone and Himejei. Travel by train was on the whole easy except getting lost in the huge station like Nagoya and the Osaka subway system. On our arrival at the Nagoya Station, it was late evening, we got hopelessly lost and only through numerous enquiries did we found the Marriott hotel. The following day our tour guide, Sumiko Fukami, gave us an orientation tour of the station even though it was not on our itinerary and way past her tour time. This basically set the tone of the whole trip, every time we were lost or looked confused somebody was always ready to help even with the language barrier. A good example I like to recall: we decided to take the train from Yudanaka to Takayama via Nagano, Naoetsu, and Toyama. The Journey through the mountains was fantastic and once we arrived in Naoetsu the conductor from the previous train made sure we were at the right platform and than shepherded us to a warm waiting room and only than did he leave us.

Japan is a country of Temples, Shrines, Castles, Fantastic Landscapes, Cherry blossoms, Beautiful Customs and History. We thank you for giving us the opportunity to experience this extraordinary country and welcoming people.

The shortage of tourists made our trip even more memorable as we were often the only foreigners in restaurants and at sightseeing spots, however the opposite is true for Taiwan which is being over run by main land Chinese whose behaviour of pushing and very loud behaviour is opposite to the more refined Japanese people behaviour.

One note of something you were probably not aware of, the Free Novotel Shuttle bus in Taipei does not operate between midnight and 6:05, we just had to wait for over an hour for the shuttle.

The Taiwan bus tour was well conducted and delivered everything its promised but after our own sightseeing in Japan it came a bit of a shock by the tour leader always pushing and given time limits on sightseeing some times not even enough time to take a decent photo. Such are group tours.

I am starting to ramble on so to close off again we are very glad we did visit Japan and maybe one day in the future we are able to see more of the fascinating country and helpful friendly people.
Thank You Clem and JTB.
Many Regards
Erich & Rebecca

Had an amazing time

Monday, December 13th, 2010

Hi Jacqueline

Had an amazing time, so want to go back right now. The Hilton was awesome 26th floor and the people in Japan are so so beautiful.

Kyoto was very beautiful and interesting, those maple trees are truly beautiful with all the different colours, orange, yellow and bright bright red.

Will email you some photos as soon as I get my computer up and running.

PS I think I lost 5 kg walking, never walked so much in my life

Thanks for everything
Regards
Teresa

We had a wonderful time.

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Hi Lily,

We are back safe and sound and happy. We had a wonderful time. I would go back to Japan tomorrow if I could I took about 700 photographs or so!

Tokyo is an enormous city, however for the massive population it didn’t feel crowded where we were and the transport system ran like clockwork. There was a lot of English in Tokyo, signage and on the trains, and we managed quite well I thought. Loved the hotels and locations we stayed in, and the Nozomi was fabulous.

The autumn leaves were AMAZING!

We were lucky to see a Shinto wedding, on a Friday, at the Meiji Shrine. Also lucky to see lots of little girls and boys in very special Kimonos for the name day festival, after the15th, when it is less crowded. The parents are very happy for you to photograph their kids in their special Kimonos and the traditional boy’s outfits.

The Ghibli Museum was also a highlight, for me and Calem. So pleased didn’t miss out. Calem wanted to live in a house like that. Really beautiful stained glass windows and interesting objects all around.

After seeing Enkoji Temple, a group of young women – students, with bicycles actually walked us the short distance to the bus stop, as it was getting dark around 4.30 pm! Can you imagine any where in Australia where that might happen?

Overall we had a ball in Kyoto, though there was less English and the trains and buses seemed more complicated, we adapted fine. We saw 3 Maiko, only quick enough to photograph one. Butterflies of the night indeed.

However there was no photo opportunity with the Maiko after the show on the tour we did, the guide didn’t know about it? Overall the Tea Ceremony and walk through Gion was another highlight for us, we both really loved it.

Qantas was great, really good service and yummy food. We didn’t sleep well, but that’s to be expected.

Next time I’d love to see more of Japan, Hiroshima, Mt Fuji (only saw it from the plane), Nara, Osaka, Takayama and Kyoto again.

Thank you for your kindness when my Mum rang up during our holiday.

Thanks so much again Lily,

Warmest regards,

Kate

What a fantastic trip we had to Japan

Monday, October 18th, 2010

Hi Lily,

Wanted to let you know what a fantastic trip we had to Japan. Everything worked well and we loved everything about the Country, the people, the food, the Cities, the Temples, gardens etc.

Our escort Eiji was very professional and helpful and our tour leaders outstanding.

We have told all our friends what a wonderful trip we enjoyed and already a couple of friends are making inquiries for next year. Their names are Mr. & Mrs. Huxtable.

Thank you for arranging such a wonderful trip.

Regards, John & Leone