Stride climate

65
Reviews of Hakone Tours
100% Recommend

4.8 out of 5
Excellent 50 Great 14 Average 1 Disappointing 0 Terrible 0
Value
4.8 Guide
4.8 Activities
4.8 Lodging
4.7 Transportation
4.8 Meals
4.7

A

Recommends

A great trip October 2018

5.0

Ancient & Modern Japan

A really enjoyable first experience of Japan. Cities, mountains, transport,
food & culture all there.
Probably reaching the summit of Fuji but the Mt Yari hike was more beautiful.
Bit unlucky with the weather on Yari.


Mayuko is an exceptional leader. She is all the things you would expect from
an exodus tour leader; well organised, patient, knowledgeable and in charge
of the group and the plan. Mayuko offers a lot more than that though. She
developed a real rapport with everyone in the group, she is engaging, funny
and opened a real window onto Japanese life. A gem.


Practice using chopsticks before you go! Luggage with wheels is very useful.
Be prepared for rain. The Mount Fuji jut is overcrowded and smelly.


Japan exceeded my expectations. Customer service is very good as is the
food.


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Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Ancient and Modern Japan October 2018

5.0

Ancient & Modern Japan

I really enjoyed the trip. Japan was everything I expected and more. So much
so that I want to return in the next couple of years. I loved the fact that
quite a few of the train journeys were made by bullet train. We were
fortunate to be in Tokyo whilst the Cherry Blossom was in flower. Big tick on
the bucket list.
I enjoyed Kyoto. One of the reasons I want to return to Japan is to spend
some more time in Kyoto. One of the highlights was the first sighting of
Mount Fuiji - from the bullet train. Don’t think you can get more iconic
than that. I enjoyed Matsumoto. I could have spent another day / half day
there. Standing in Hiroshima at the iconic site of the exhibition hall was
thought provoking. Takayama was good. Actually there wasn’t a location I
didn’t like. I omitted the trip to see the snow monkeys though, choosing to
spend a morning in Obuse instead to visit the Hokusai museum and wander round
the town before rejoining the group.


Misa was wonderful. So calm, patient and organised. Nothing was too much
trouble. She helped me plan out the train journey to Obuse. She did a good
job of herding us and keeping us together, especially in the face of one or
two individuals who didn’t always appreciate the importance of timing and
one who I think was seeking travel advice for an extended stay that was over
and above Misa’s remit.....


Enjoy!


Fantastic trip. Was a once in a life time for me but I would love to return.
Japan was everything I expected and more.


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Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Great Trip October 2018

5.0

Ancient & Modern Japan

We had booked this trip to mark our 40th wedding anniversary and it did not
disappoint.

The travel arrangements all worked very well and our accommodation was of a
very good standard.

We had a brilliant guide, who introduced us to a series of memorable
experiences, including our first taste of authentic Japanese cooking.

The trip lived up to our expectations and was very much in line with what had
been set out in the Trip Notes.
In no particular order......
Seeing Mt Fuji appear through the clouds
Travelling on the Shinkansen......seriously quick!
Seeing the contrast between the countryside and the built up areas as we
travelled around
Walking The Philosophers Path in Kyoto.....very peaceful
Seeing the macaques at Yukanada...the babies in particular were very
entertaining
Experiencing early morning rush hour on the Tokyo Metro
Appreciating the cleanliness of the country...no litter to be seen anywhere
Feeling welcome in a strange land


Misa is an excellent leader and nothing was too much trouble for her.
She went out of her way to make sure that we all enjoyed our time in Japan.
On arriving in our hotel room in Kyoto on the first evening, we found that
she had left us a card and gift for our anniversary.
The daily arrangements for travel were a masterclass in organisation, always
done with a smile.
Misa gave up her own time to make sure that we could all make the most of our
free days.
Some of the group found the food choices challenging, so Misa put a lot of
effort into finding dishes to suit their dietary requirements.
We learned a lot about Japanese culture and history from Misa and her charm
and grace was simply an extension of how we were received by Japanese people
in general.


Realise that the food in Japan is totally different from what you are used
to. Read the Trip Notes carefully and bring your own snacks and/or be
prepared to shop in the local small supermarkets. We had never eaten Japanese
before and found that most things were delicious.

Everywhere you go, the toilets are spotless. Most do not have hand dryers or
paper towels, so do as the Japanese do and carry a small towel or flannel
with you for hand drying.

There is quite a bit of walking and steps, so make sure you have your walking
legs on!


It’s a great experience, well worth trying.


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Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

An unforgettable holiday October 2018

4.0

Ancient & Modern Japan

I loved this trip! We have seen a variety of places and we have learnt learn
so much about the Japanese culture.

Overall this trip is well organised and I thing that there is a good balance
between free and organised time.
I really enjoyed staying at the ryokans, the meals we had there and the onsen
experience.
The most memorable temple was Daishō-in on the island of Miyajima. The
atmosphere was amazing and it felt very spiritual.
I found the visit to Hiroshima and the Peace Memorial Park and Museum very
touching
It was great to be able to see the snow mountain monkeys and spot Mt Fuji
from our hotel room window in Tokyo!
I loved all the food that we have been able to try
Last but not least I loved the kindness and the composure of the Japanese
people, their respect towards other people and nature, the technology, the
cleanliness ... In a nutshell, I will treasure every moment.


Misa is very organised, knowledgeable, kind and patient. She was very
attentive and always made sure we were all right. She has given us very good
tips of what to do in our free time. One evening, when she should have been
free to rest, she has accompanied me and my husband to the district of Gion
in Kyoto's as we had not been able to go with the rest of the group on the
previous evening due to personal commitments. She also accompanied the group
to Hakone for a day trip on her free day.
She has definitively go out of her to ensure all the participants had a good
time and has thought us a lot of the Japanese culture.


In our group there were people with very specific dietary needs. I think that
they have found it a bit difficult at times to find the right food for them.
People with special dietary needs (e.g. vegan, vegetarian, coeliac) might
find it a bit challenging to find the right food for them at all times.


I would love to go back one day!


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Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

The serene and the frantic October 2018

5.0

Ancient & Modern Japan

A good balance of the ancient and modern, as the trip title suggests.
Travelling by public transport helps to convey the flavour of "normal" life
in the country rather than a whistle-stop tour of "tourist" destinations.
The overall sense of order and respect for others, even in crowded city
centres. The attention given to presentation - of food and everything else.


Ayaka took great trouble to ensure we optimised our time by being fully
prepared: helpful annotated maps, advice on tickets, and so forth. She took
us to a variety of types of restaurant for the optional meals, which are not
in the programme, but where in fact the majority of the group chose to eat
together. And she was great fun !


Don't worry about whether it's cherry blossom time: there are plenty of
beautiful sights anyway. Be prepared to pay cash for meals if the group eat
together.


The first ryokan didn't quite live up to expectations; it was in a more urban
environment than we'd imagined.


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Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

A great experience, a wonderful country and an amazing tour leader. October 2018

5.0

Ancient & Modern Japan

A fantastic tour with so much to see in such a short time. Our group leader
(Ayaka Tsukamoto) kept us informed of historical and cultural details
throughout the tour and she also went out of her way to ensure that
everybody was able to get what they wanted from the free time available..
It is difficult to choose any single inspirational moment from the serenity
of the temples when you got away from the crowds, the friendliness of the
people or the rush you feel when bullet trains go shooting through the
stations at high speed. However, we were lucky to have fantastic views of
Mount Fuji on a fun jaunt around Hakone on the various modes of transport.


Ayaka Tsukamoto was a brilliant tour leader who was tireless in her
enthusiasm and commitment to ensuring we had a fantastic and fulfilling tour.
Even on our free days she helped by ensuring we used the most effective
transport to maximise our time and in recommending places to visit and where
to eat. She took us to restaurants that we would not normally have chosen and
these were some of the best restaurants that provided us with great
experiences along with the authentic cuisine.

Throughout the tour she kept us informed of historical and cultural details
and amused us with her anecdotes that gave us an insight into growing up in
Japan.


This is a tour with lots of walking and some long days so that you get the
most out of your time on holiday. Using public transport gives you more
contact with the friendly Japanese people and is much more ecological than
using coaches.


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Operator Exodus Travels

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