I’m so very sorry to take so long to get back to you. This term has been crazy with sports, exams and the like, I literally haven’t had a moment to sit down.
I wanted to thank you so much for everything, Japan was amazing and we loved every minute of it. The initial train ride (from the airport) was a shock but we managed to get into the groove and work out our way around, so it was easy after that. Loved Hakone, would have liked to stay there a bit longer as I really wanted to see the lake etc. but after heading out to Yunessan onsen (where you can wear your bathers), we didn’t get much time to anything else as we spent an afternoon out there. In hindsight, we should have left some baggage at the train station and just taken overnight bags as it was difficult lugging everything there and back. But it’s all a learning curve!
Kyoto was lovely, really enjoyed it there and Osaka wasn’t bad as well but even though I liked it, probably my least favourite. Universal was a nightmare, thank goodness we had the Express Passes as we probably would have got on one or two rides max. I’ve since learnt that school groups head there on a Monday, so it wasn’t ideal. The school kids would line up and then during the course of the queue, let in another 20 or so of their friends along certain points which made it a really long line for each ride. A couple of people complained but there wasn’t much done about it. DisneySea on the other hand was a much nicer experience, we managed to see a lot there, obviously a lot quieter but I really enjoyed it so much more.
The Hiroshima tour was ok, we didn’t see as much as we should have as it was a really windy, rainy day (the only one we had which was just bad luck), but the tour guide was fairly ancient (lovely, but wasn’t able to move that quick), and in fairness, she largely ignored us because we were a younger group and she was focused on the oldies. All fine, but I would probably look at doing this a different way next time or just head there on our own. I loved the Miyajima portion of this too as we got to do a bit more of our own thing.
The hotels were great, neat and tidy mostly (although the Osaka one hadn’t been vacuumed under the bed for a while by the looks – dirty tissues, old slippers etc, it was pretty revolting). I really appreciate you choosing ones for us that were easy to get to, it made a huge difference.
Other than that, it was all great. The girls had an amazing time, and we walked a lot, tried different foods, did a little shopping. Would definitely head back there again. Thanks so much for all your assistance and advice, putting together our trip, it really made it a great holiday, and I have no doubt we will head back there sometime soon with the boys in tow.