Kishore BubnaUnited States
We were thrilled to have Takaaki as our guide. He brought great energy, was full of information, and did everything he could to make sure we had a great time! My kids wanted to eat Ramen. But we are vegetarian. Takaaki knew of a place in that could make it happen. During the tour, we changed our plans & he adapted to them seamlessly. I requested he takes us to a river near the Arishyama Bamboo forest. He readily obliged. Boating in the Oi river was a great experience, and a nice capstone to our time.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Kishore! The boating experience was really fun ! Your wife's spontaneous input made your day :) I'm here to accommodate your request, this is a private custom tour, you can do anything you want. Next time you are around Kyoto, I'll be there to help you discover Kyoto deeper.
Kishore BubnaUnited States
We were thrilled to have Takaaki as our guide. We connected with him right away. He quickly adapted to our pace and took care of the subtlest of details in true spirit of Japanese Omotenashi. Takaaki brought great energy, was full of information, and did everything he could to make sure we had a great time! On our first day of the tour, we went to Gion. He knew exactly where to wait so we could spot a few Geisha. Lo and behold after about five minutes of waiting we saw about 20 Geishas!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Kishore! It is my pleasure to receive such a warm feedback. I had a great time with your family for the Gion evening tour and the 4-hour tour on the following day. Yes! We were lucky to be there to come across a troop of Geisha coming back from their show) ! ( this happens only in April and another venue will be used next year).
Vicki WarningORACLE, AZ, United States
Takaaki was at our hotel early. He spoke very good English and after greeting us, we asked for a change in the itinerary. He agreed and took us to the Ryoanji Temple via train. He explained the history of the very beautiful temple in detail and then took us by train for a walking tour of Gion. He then called for a reservation at a terrific tempura restaurant for lunch before taking us there and leaving us. A great way to spend 5 hours in Kyoto!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Vicki! I had a great time with you two during the tour, and I am happy you enjoyed Ryoanji-Temple and Gion district. We were lucky to have that beautiful weather. Next time you are around Kyoto, I will take you to another great places :)
We had a very interesting tour with Takaaki . We visited the silver temple in Kyoto and some beautiful gardens and walked along the philosophers path .Takaaki is very educated and willing to share his knowledge and insight .We learned a lot!!! He is patient and fun to spend time with.Highly recommended guide.Than you for a lovely morning-Danya and Denis
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Danya! We were fortunate in having that beautiful day, I was happy to share my knowledge with you. You had a great appreciation of Japanese garden and temples, the places we covered was just right for you !
Takaaki is an amazing and generous guide. He has a very deep knowledge of the culture and was very kind to answer all our questions. I strongly recommend to use him while visiting Kyoto.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Miguel! I had a gtreat time with you two during the tour. Starting the tour early in Arashiyama definitely gave us a great advantage :) I was also happy to show you books about Japanese typography/fontogtaphy. Have another great day and let your friends know about me :)
Jamie PharesUnited Arab Emirates
Takaaki was extremely knowledgeable about all areas: history, culture, gastronomy. Very friendly and very flexible. Ready to change the agenda at the last minute to meet our needs. I highly recommend him!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Jamie! Flexibility is the primary benefit that you can get from private tours. I'm more than happy to accommodate your needs on the fly :) I'm happy you had a great time at Koke-Dera (the moss temple).
Great walking tour with Takaaki around the back streets of Tokyo, we felt like locals! Thank you Takaaki!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Jo-Anne! I'm glad to hear you two enjoyed the tour. Yes! Now you know the way the locals see things around here :)
John BreitingerUnited States
Takaaki was extremely knowledgeable and answered our million questions about life in Japan and Kyoto. This was our first trip to Japan. He was enthusiastic and fun. Highly recommend.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, John! I had a great time with all of you, and was, as a local guide, proud to take you to a hidden Zen garden. It’s fun to have enthusiastic guests like you,too:)
Larry HayesUnited States
Takaaki was a great guide and was knowledgeable and it was extremely enjoyable.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Larry! We were quite fortunate to spot Geisha in Gion :) I’m happy to help you discover further next time. Please let your friends know about your experience !
Takaaki was very knowledgeable and kept us to time. He was well prepared with his information and presented another side of Kyoto you don't get to see in the brochures.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Gary! I was happy to take you a tour on your first day in Kyoto. We were lucky to have 2 sightings of Maiko ( apprentice Geisha) :)
A great "personalized" packed 4hours of shrines/ temples (Kinkakuji Temple & Zuiho-in Temple) & castles (Nijo Castle). Our guide Takaaki was really friendly & flexible with our itinerary to allow us to fit in as much! His sharing of knowledge of the places we visited made a huge difference to the enjoyment of the places! What we could not fit in he recommended how to fit it in before and after! We also experience the Gion Evening Tour w Takaaki, which we thoroughly enjoyed & recommend!!!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Catherina! I also enjoyed the time with you over the two tours. I was happy to share stories about Japan and Kyoto with you. We saw a lot in a small amount of time :) Next time you are around Kyoto, I’ll help you discover Kyoto deeper.
Joelle HorcaUnited Kingdom
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Joelle ! Thanks to a private car, we covered well including the vibrant Fushimi Inari Shrine given the rather-limited 4-hour tour. Please let your friends know about my service :)
Tour was great! Takaaki was very friendly and also well prepared. He is also very kind; the weather was quite cold, and he brought hand and foot warmers for us on the second day!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Oliver! It was so freezing , but we were fortunate to see even more beautiful scenery with snow flurries falling on and off. If you have any friends who are planning to come to Japan, please let them know about my tour ;)
Karla MihmUnited States
We booked a 1/2 day walking tour and Gion Night Tour with Takaaki on November 26. Takaaki gave us a great overview of Kyoto and took us to well known sites as well as some off the beaten path places. Taka is very knowledgeable and approachable and we learned a lot from him in terms of history, culture, religion and every day customs and behavior. I would recommend spending time with him to get the most of your visit to Kyoto. His English is excellent!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Karla! I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed the two tours. We were lucky to see beautiful Autumn colours in maple trees at Kitano Tenmangu Shrine and had a serene moment at Daitokuji Temple. This is only the beginning , let me help you explore Kyoto even deeper next time .
Alyse CourtinesUnited States
We had a great day with Taka, who accommodated our needs to be flexible as we had a very short time and a very small child! We prioritized and also adapted on the fly where we needed to and had a very thorough and excellent view of some key sites in Kyoto in just a 4 hour tour. He maximized our time and our daughter's attention span to make sure we were able to appreciate each location and the history. He gave just the right amount of knowledge and was able to answer all of our questions. Great day!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Alyse! I wanted your child to feel included. I’m happy all of you had a good time during the tour. It would be great for your son to come back to my tour when he grews much older ;)
Cyndi J.United States
Takaaki was a great tour guide. He was knowledgeable and professional. He was an excellent communicator, both before and during the tour. He was flexible when we made a change to the proposed agenda. He also made great recommendations for restaurants for the duration of our trip.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Cyndi! I enjoyed the time with you two during the tour. It was your precious and limited time during your stay in kyoto , I was happy to make the changes to incorporate what you wanted to do. Next time I will guide you and your children around Kyoto !
Leonie McConvilleUnited States
Takaaki was on time, polite, and extremely helpful. His knowledge of history and art made his tour exceptional and our experience in Kyoto even more worthwhile. If we find ourselves in Kyoto again, we will not hestitate to book him for another fabulous tour.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank, Leonie! I'm happy you two enjoyed the tour. It was a great experience visiting a serene Zen temple and having a short meditation time. Next time you are around Kyoto, I will help you discover Kyoto even further.
Vanita KontrakulUnited States
Takaaki is a great and very knowledgeable guide. He showed me places where I would never be able to find on my own. He even suggested a few more areas to visit after our tour ended depending on how much time I had left before going back to Tokyo. If you need a guide to show you around Kyoto, I highly recommend him.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Vanita! You are fortunate to be around Kyoto this time of a year, I was quite happy to show you some part of the annual Gion festival. I think we covered a lot with a 4-hour tour, I will make sure to take you to off-the-beaten-path next next time.
Diane KyriakedesUnited States
Takaaki was a great tour guide. Very informative. Flexible and a great source of Kyoto knowledge My family and I enjoyed spending the tour with him.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Diane! I'm happy that all of you enjoyed my tour, Next time you are around Kyoto, let me help you discover more!
Karen WarnerUnited States
We really enjoyed our tour with Takaaki! He was incredibly knowledgable and friendly -- perfect for our group of four experiencing our first trip to Kyoto. He was eager to answer our many questions, and designed the day's tour to suit our schedule and our interests. I highly recommend Takaaki to other travelers!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Karen! I'm happy you four enjoyed the tour. Given the limited time, you covered a lot and the travel went smoothly. Also, we got to see a lot of interesting places. I'm glad you liked it :)
Adam GiermaszUnited States
Friendly, professional, efficient and very knowledgeable! I strongly recommend! Ive been to Kyoto many times, but with this tour discovered a lot and learned a lot!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, Adam! I hope to see you back in Kyoto!
Takaaki was fantastic! He was so eager to share his knowledge and so pleasant to spend time with. Takaaki's English was very good so there were no problems with the language. We loved our time with Takaaki and learned so much. I would highly recommend this tour guide. Thanks again Takaaki:)
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your wonderful review. I was happy to create a tailor-made tour with a combination of must-see sites and off-the-beaten-path. We were incredibly fortunate to see a maiko making the rounds of places, greeting clients and local shop owners as part of the ceremonial debut. There are more to see in Kyoto, I'm sure I will help you discover further.
Laura BohlsUnited States
We really enjoyed our tour of Kyoto with Takaaki. He arrived promptly to our hotel with a map and suggestions for our tour based on information I had previously provided him via email. He was very flexible and accommodating and we found him to be a wealth of information. We felt like we gained a great deal of knowledge about Kyoto and Japan in our four hours. At the conclusion he recommended a restaurant for lunch and we were most pleased with his suggestion of a local place with delicious sushi.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your kind words. I’m happy you enjoyed seeing some of Kyoto’s many Japanese gardens. The sushi place I recommended is definitely authentic one, I’m glad you enjoyed it :)
Craig ShoreUnited States
Takaaki was great. He was personable and informative. My wife and myself enjoyed our four hours. He seemed to mix a perfect blend of walking while teaching us history while at times stopping at beautiful gardens and temples - all the while giving us information about the history and culture of Kyoto. He had a great sense of humor. We couldn't be more pleased or enjoyed ourselves more. Thank you so much Takaaki! Highly recommended!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your a wonderful review. I enjoyed your sense of humour and I’m happy you had a great time. There are so many other good places in kyoto, you will discover more next time you are here.
Fran ShalomUnited States
Takaaki was absolutely terrific!! We -- me, my husband and our 24 yr old son--met him at Airbnb and at the last minute decided we wanted a walking tour of our neighborhood (the Gion. He was knowledgeable, articulate and fun to be with. He gave us insights that would have been impossible to garner on our own. We are so thankful that we could spend time with him and recommend him without reservation!!!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your kind review. I’m happy you enjoyed the laneways and off-the-beaten-track places. May is the best time to appreciate the beauty of green moss in Kyoto. Please tell your friends about you fun experience here. Maybe I can guide them too in the future ;)
Peter B.United States
Excellent half-day tour with Takaaki. Very personable and thoughtful to visit highlights in limited time. Takaaki met us at our hotel and we took subway and taxis to optimize the time. We requested the Golden Pavilion and are glad we saw it, despite the crowds. We enjoyed the beautiful Murin-An garden and tea, the walk on Ishibeikoji lane, past Hokanji, other places along the way, and Gion. Takaaki's detailed description of Gion was excellent. We regret we did not have more time in Kyoto.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your positive feedback. It’s not unusual that travellers need to make changes on the day, it’s nature of a trip :) I’m happy to fine-tune the itinerary on the day. I’m glad you enjoyed the contrast between the hustle and bustle and more peaceful places. Please come back to discover more of kyoto!
Shin NakazawaUnited States
Nick FussellUnited Kingdom
This was a great tour. Takaaki was friendly and helpful, as well as full of historical information about the castle and shrine we visited. He was also happy to share his personal perspective of life in Japan and of living in Kyoto. Our kids loved him too.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you so much for your warm review. Shraring my city is the best part of being a local guide. I’m glad all of you (including your kids!) enjoyed my tour of Kyoto. Next time you come back, I will take you to more off-the-beaten-track places.
Very good guide, that really tried his very best to tell us inteersting stories about what we were seeing! Loved Kyoto
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your warm review. It’s very rewarding to hear you enjoyed the tour! Kyoto has a full ofcharms and your explore will be never ending. Please come back to kyoto for another discoveries!
Catherine YoungerUnited Kingdom
We had a great day with Takaaki. He was totally flexible and made a perfect itinerary for us based on our time available. We saw the main sites as well as the off the beaten track routes. Great English too.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your warm review. The golden pavilion looked particularly beautiful today, I was happy you were able to experience that. I enjoyed the lively conversation and I'll definitely buy and read your husband's book! I hope I have the chance to guide you again in Kyoto!
A most delightful and knowledgeable guide, very keen to enthuse his love of Kyoto. Take his advice and enjoy the more non touristy areas.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you very much for your kind review. I truly enjoyed every part of the tour with you two, both on the day and pre-trip phase. I'm happy to introduce you to nice off-the-beaten-path and am glad you really appreciate the peaceful Zen garden. Please recommend me to your family and friends and come back to Kyoto to continue your discovery of the ancient capital Kyoto.
Takaaki was brilliant. He was responsive & customized our tour. We were only in Kyoto for a day & wanted to visit a few places in particular. Not only did he help us plan but also made sure that we covered as much as possible. Aside from being a really nice person, he was also very knowledgeable about Kyoto & Japanese history. His English was excellent & he brought up stories about Kyoto & Japan that he shared with us in transit.You can't get that from a guidebook. Great experience. Highly recommended.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Hi Tanya, thank you for such a wonderful review! I love sharing my knowledge with guests as an local ambassador. I’m well aware that your time is precious especially for you two who were making one day trip from Tokyo. Please recommend me to your family and friends ;)