6 independent reviews for Japan golden route vacation

These full and frank independent reviews are from travelers who have booked directly through Responsible Travel. They are not edited by us or any of the companies we work with. Find the real story, from real travelers below.


review 17 Oct 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Knowing that I was actually in Japan! Always dreamed of going.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

If you can, definitely go the self guided route. I was covering so much ground on a daily basis and it is so easy to get around. The people are very helpful too.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I believe so. I only used public transport throughout the vacations. Stayed in a family guest house and ate at family owned restaurants in areas such as Hakone.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

It blew away all my expectations in all honesty. I will definitely be booking my next trip through Responsible Travel again. The question is where to next??

review 25 May 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Staying in the traditional hotel ryokan with the onsen and experiencing the traditional dinner and breakfast. The fantastic rail network of shinkansen was fabulous.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

The package was very well put together, but do not try and do it all. There is so much to see, do and learn that I would advise to try and do less but in more depth. The information in the pack was useful and relevant and up to date, with lots of good ideas and tips. There was a lot of information on culture, local custom and practice and places to see and visit and I would recommend anyone to make use of the information to plan their day. We found the mobile WIFI dongle that we got at the airport very good and we had constant access to google maps, email, phone etc as often the WiFi in hotels is weak.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, we found all the hotels had 'green options' and locals were performing the various services that we had requested.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

We would recommend everyone to use this vacation provider for a first trip to Japan as the package was very well put together and executed. Everything was right, correct and we did not have any single disappointment. All the transport arrangements, tickets and timings were perfect. The hotels were cleverly chosen to reflect the various different specialties of the area, and were of a high standard at a reasonable cost. We did not find any language barriers, and even the private tour guides had outstanding English. There was always someone to speak to from the company if you needed any further assistance or advice. We found their advice and planning resulted in us having the best vacation ever.

review 11 Oct 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Two highlights - 1. taking a leisurely stroll from the 'Silver Temple' in Kyoto along the Philosopher's Walk where we met few others, totally peaceful and a lovely escape from the sightseeing crowds of Kyoto. Collecting my 'stamps' along the way when we did a tiny part of the Kumano Kodo 2. Walking between small villages where the villagers nod gently then carry on tending their smallholdings, then dipping into the shade of the forest for the next bit of the trek.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Use this tour operator to help you plan and guide you.....Tim made our trip so easy to navigate and we became increasingly confident using the the Shinkansen (bullet trains), local buses, trains and the subway and he had identified some great places to stop and explore so when time was tight we didn't 'dither' about what to explore.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We frequently used small local restaurants where the locals went to eat and chat therein supporting local business.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent and an experience we will remember for a long time.... we have told the Mume hotel in Kyoto ( super tiny hotel with 7 bedrooms and a fabulous owner and staff ) we will come back! Over 300 photos taken.... an indication of our enthusiasm to capture the glorious sights.

review 18 Sep 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

My visit to Japan has reset my stereotypical views of the Japanese people I am ashamed to say. My previous experience has been of the large groups that travel with tour operators all over the world and don't appear to interact with 'foreigners'. However, we found them to be so friendly, welcoming and helpful even when not asked! This was such a lovely thing to experience and I feel an apology is due. Aside from thisKyoto was wonderful and would have loved more time thereThe Shinkansen are such an amazing experience, quite easy to become a train spotter as witnessing their speed is spectacular

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Please use the public transport it is such an amazingly easy way to travel, seems daunting at first but will soon become second nature. Signs are in English, certainly in Kyoto, hakone and Tokyo. The equivalent to an Oyster card is amazing, can use on all the hundreds of vending machines and we emptied ours at the 'family Mart' at our final destination buying a sandwich

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Certainly we used all local services and businesses. Entrance fees of course continue to contribute to upkeep of historical sites

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Simply spectacular! So well organised, thorough guidance on itinerary and rail links, cannot fault it.

review 2 Nov 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Our time spent in Hakone. Despite not being able to see much due to a Typhoon the Gora Tensui was a fantastic Ryokan and great place to relax in a storm.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Leverage the baggage transfer service. It made traveling on the train much simpler as we could forward our large bags and use smaller suitcases for shorter 2 day stays.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes and taking the Shinkansen is a great way to travel.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent and good value for money

review 19 May 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

We enjoyed it all. The travel arrangements all worked perfectly. Hotels were fine. Amy at the tour operator was terrific.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

6 hour day tour of Tokyo was a bit stressful for seniors, in the amount of stairs and walking particularly between subways. The guide could have given us more options for traveling. Two tour guides to Geisha district were poor and overly talkative The tour and experience was great. The two tour guides in Tokyo and daytime Kyoto were wonderful.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent

Vacation Reviews

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Unedited reviews from other travelers

I am reborn! Simply the best vacation I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really
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