We had a great trip. The organisation was excellent, as was all the accommodation and provided meals – we especially loved the traditional evening meal and breakfast at Yoshike Ryokan. We enjoyed the varied experiences – traditional/modern, old architecture/new architecture, urban areas and rural, coastal/inland.
We were very happy with the location of all of our accommodation as we had easy access to eating areas (loved all the little restaurants and cafes everywhere!) and were in close proximity to other things to do and see in our spare time (e.g. shops, markets, the Rail Museum in Kyoto, river/canal walks, public transport etc.
Carol and I especially liked the varied use of public transport and trains (the best way to travel and see the countryside!) and liked the smaller motor coaches and their huge legroom! Carol and Alexander particularly liked the huge variety of food we could experience and I liked the fact you could get a cold beer on tap even in the smallest of Ramen eateries. We were all moved by the Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum.
The use of the Suica card was great. For example, in Tokyo after our organised trip to Shibuya and Harajuku we used it to circumnavigate Tokyo back to our hotel after stopping to visit the museums on the way. We used it in Kyoto and Osaka during “free time”.
A special mention should be made of Maya. She is a great guide. She is well organised, effectively managed our travel group, gave precise and clear instructions, got us onto and off trains quickly (especially the Shinkansens), had good information leaflets and maps and looked after individual needs as they arose. She did it all calmly and with a sense of humour. Her knowledge was excellent and her local advice (where to go, what to eat, what to see etc) in local areas was spot on. We can’t commend her highly enough.
So thanks to you and JTB for the trip. It was truly excellent and we realise now too short. We will have to go back and see some of the north of Japan including Hokkaido.