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What They Said

We are often asked what to expect on our tours. We found our clients had the best answers. This is what they said about their experiences with Journey to the East tours…

What They Said are extracts directly from Journey to the East’s feedback forms

GSL-17

2017 Classic Route – Cherry blossom tour

Guest rated their tour: 

Value for money

"5/5"

Itinerary

"Being a small group with a guide was more efficient and informative than we could have done ourselves"

What did you like best?

"Learning about Japanese culture & way of life. Meeting friendly Japanese people. Seeing some amazing & beautiful places."

Overall

"This small sized group of a few couples permitted ease of transport under the guidance of excellent guides who were very competent in English.

The accommodation was first class especially the experiences of the roykans [Japanese Inn]. Food provided was excellent, plentiful and varied. Overall an excellent tour run by a very professional company."

March 2017

Peter & Olga Abrahams  – Vic, Australia

Christy-Fortunarto

GSE-17

2017 Early spring – Cherry blossom tour

Guest rated their tour:  

Value for money

"5/5"

What did you like best?

"Ha ha ha – Everything was lovely"

In summary

"Have been to many tours and this tour is the best so far. Worth the cost! Company was great, experience wonderful, have recommended it to friends and relatives – this is the best way to see Japan. Thank you Col and Yuki, you are great!"

Feb 2017

Christy & Fortunarto Abello – San Antonio, Texas, USA

GAE-16-Vivian-Hewitt-200x150

GAE-16

2016 Autumn Tour of Japan – Classic Route

Guest rated their tour: 

Value for money

"Terrific value, meals and accommodation were of a high standard and nothing was skimped on"

Travel arrangements

"The travel arrangements ran like clockwork, some small problems with Suica cards not always tagging on/off when they should have done. Amy did a great job solving any problems – after that we were much more vigilant in checking the balances on our cards."

What did you like best?

"Miyajima, and the food"

Would you recommend JttE?

"Absolutely"

In summary

"Had a fabulous time with a great group of people. I loved the country, the culture, the people and everything about the tour – hope to do another tour with JTTE – maybe Hokkaido or Kyushu next time 🙂"

Nov 2016

Vivien Hewitt, Western Australia

GAE-16-S-and-G-Moore-200x150

GAE-16

2016 Autumn Tour of Japan – Classic Route

Guest rated their tour: 

Closing Remark

"The tour was fantastic, just what we were after. It was very well organised. We are already looking at some of your other tours."

Travel arrangements

"Well planned and executed. Some got into trouble with their Suica cards, but the guides sorted things out. Good to travel on the bullet train and underground."

What did you like best?

"Miyajima, and the food"

Would you recommend JttE?

"Absolutely"

In summary

"This is a well organised tour and is very good value for money. The itinerary gives a good cross-section of Japan for those not wanting an “action-adventure” tour, and the food is worth going for by itself. The small group size makes it easy to get to know people and easy to get around. I highly recommend this excellent tour."

Nov 2016

Stephen & Gabrielle Moore, NSW,Australia

dee-mason-autumn-2016-iron-stomach-awardee-200x150

2016 Autumn Food Tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour: 

Award Winner

Journey to the East congratulates Dee Mason, the winner of the “Autumn 2016 Iron Stomach Award”

Value for money

"Definitely!"

Food

"The selection of places to eat was varied and interesting,  and it is always fun to try the different and, to us, unusual foods.  In spite of the fact that I ate vast amounts of food daily, I actually lost weight – which just goes to show that it’s not how much you eat, but what you eat that matters.  All the food was beautifully presented and it was nice on so many occasions to meet the chefs who prepared."

What did you like best?

"I have never been on a tour before when I didn’t know the people I would be travelling with and was a little apprehensive. However it all worked out and everyone got on well. I think the fact that it was a small group was important. We all enjoyed the Ryokans that we visited and the small family businesses where we met the owners and saw how they prepared their products."

In summary

"This was my first trip with JTTE and already I am looking at the program for next year thinking about another one. I liked the fact that it was a small group, the organisation was spot on and the food everywhere was outstanding."

Nov 2016

Dee Mason - NSW, Australia

GFA-16

2016 Autumn Food Tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour: 

The Guests

These guests have visited Japan previously with Journey to the East and again scored their tour 5/5

Food

"All included meals were of a very very high standard. I particularly enjoyed the Michelin restaurant, the Yatai & the yakitori wagyu, but the diversity of the food experiences was fantastic. Lunch and the hands-on sauce making on the Itoshima day  a pleasant diversion; we were made to feel very welcome."

What did you like best?

"There was a great diversity of experiences- all enjoyable. The former Takatori  Residence, the cable car ride next to Mt Unzen & shopping for ceramics after visiting the Gen–emon Kiln were perhaps most outstanding."

In summary

"Journey to the East delivered a special and exceptional  tour ; definitely  ‘True to Label’."

Nov 2016

Jude & John Wingfield - Qld, Australia

Rex and Eve Burchell

GAN-16

2016 Autumn Food Tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour:

The Itinerary

“Our train travel maximised our exposure to the Autumn colours and enabled us to see so much varied landscapes. City time was plenty to enjoy the sights – Well planned.

Overall Assessment

"Being a small group only added to our feeling of being so well guides and supported. Excellent. The bonding of our group was exceptional."

What did you like best?

"The opportunity to experience some of the real Japanese culture. The glorious scenery (Oirase river & Naruko gorge) Visits to the wonderful shrines and temples. The food – so good & so exquisitely presented."

In summary

"We highly recommend ‘Journey to the East’ as a tour company specialising in showing small groups the real Japan. All the travel arrangements, accommodation, food and value for money far exceeded our wildest expectations."

Nov 2016

Rex and Eve Burchell - Vic, Australia

GAL-16

2016 Autumn Leaves Tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour:

Would you recommend JttE?

"We would recommend your organisation and this tour extremely highly to anyone wishing for a wonderful introduction and enjoyment of Japan and its culture"

What did you like best?

"The opportunity in a small group to see aspects of Japan and its people in some depth with the magnificent guides who at every place gave us time and information  to open our eyes to a different world, its order, cleanliness, warmth and above all respect for others."

What should we change?

"Just a tiny bit more time at leisure to digest all we were experiencing."

In summary

"We cannot praise enough our Journey to the East Tour. The organization, facilities, hotels, food and the fantastic quality of the guides provided all combined to make this a never to be forgotten experience."

November 2016

Trish and Rob Ennever - NSW, Australia

GAL-16

2016 Autumn Leaves Tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour:

Guides

"All of them were Terrific"

Food

"I loved the Japanese meals; my wife less so. That’s life! We appreciated being introduced to local cuisine in the various regions that we visited. On occasion we could have had simpler dinners (tempura for example) rather than a complete banquet. But no real complaints here."

Travel arrangements

"Excellent. Luggage forwarding was great!!"

What did you like best?

"A very nice blend of rural and urban experiences; Public transportation which let us get to see life as it is in Japan; Well organized with excellent guides and well-planned luggage transfers and overnight stays; Excellent hotels overall; A good deal of walking which we enjoy!"

In summary

"Thank you and your staff for a spectacular, glitch-free trip. We had a superb time and our little group of 10 got along famously! Ann and I generally do not travel on tours, but this one to Japan was excellent for several reasons:

  • a very nice blend of rural and urban experiences;
  • public transportation which let us get to see life as it is in Japan;
  • well organized with excellent guides and well-planned luggage transfers and overnight stays;
  • excellent hotels overall;
  • a good deal of walking which we enjoy

Overall you and your organization get an A+ from us for the tour."

November 2016

Richard & Jane La Frenz - California, USA

GAW-16

2016 Autumn tour of Japan – ‘Wild West’

Guest rated their tour:

Itinerary

"Being away from e.g Kyoto was a positive. Toyama, Gokayama etc. really gave us a good look at Japanese culture – A great experience. Not that Kyoto should be missed but it is overrun with tourists we can see anywhere"

Travel Arrangements

"Use of the public transport was brilliant and kept us in touch. Maps of JR (Japan Rail) and Subway would help us understand the two systems better. Providing JR pass and the Suica (smart card) very useful"

What did you like best?

"Toyama/ Alpine walk/ Gokayama

* Kanazawa – Art in all its forms – Fantastic

+ The small Group"

Would you recommend JttE?

Yes BUT – Make sure it is clear that Autumn colours cannot be guarranteed.

October 2016

Catherine and Barry Smith – Hamilton, New Zealand

Jim Sharpe and Jennifer Ashmore– VIC, Australia

2016 Private (custom built) tour

Guest rated their tour:

Value for Money

"A great experience that was affordable… We were not looking for a budget holiday. JttE met and/or exceeded our expectations."

Overall Assessment

"This private tour with guides was an excellent taste of Japan for us. Organization of the itinerary was flawless and we encountered no hiccups along the way"

Would you recommend JttE?

"Absolutely… In fact we engaged JttE on the recommendation of friends who had previously travelled with JttE and who have re-booked for another tour."

In Summary

JttE designed, organised and delivered a private tour of Honshu that met and many times exceeded our expectations. Our brief was for a tour of major gardens and historical sites with private guides and four-star
accommodation. We are not shoppers or foodies. Will we visit Japan again? Absolutely! Would we use JttE again? Absolutely! They know and understand Japan and have a very good network of guides who are great company, knowledgeable and who communicate well.

June 2016

Jim Sharpe and Jennifer Ashmore - VIC, Australia

GGA-16

2016 Gardens & Art Tour

Guest rated their tour:

Liked best

"Gardens; art galleries; food,;ease of train travel;  small number in the group; getting away from the cities & seeing the countryside.
Didn’t understand before that being Japanese is all about ceremonies and would not have missed it for the world"

Overall assessment

"Very pleased, enjoyable and gave us all the the culture from all aspects"

May 2016

Helen Andrews - NSW, Australia

GGA-16

2016 Gardens & Art Tour

Guest rated their tour:  ++

Overall Assessment

"I have never done a group tour before and this one exceeded my expectations.  It was immaculately planned and gave us an excellent mix of experiences.Loved the small group and the way we felt looked after the whole way.  The size of the group meant that we saw and experienced things that would not be accessible to larger tours.
However, it’s not a tour for the faint hearted – it can be quite physically demanding with lots of stairs, slopes and walking. But that’s much better than sitting around!  And we all slept well at night so we were ready for the next exciting day!"

Meals

"The food exceeded expectations.  I wasn’t expecting so many fabulous traditional meals, so beautifully presented.  Highlights of the planned meals were the wagyu beef teppanyaki style high above Kanazawa and the dinner in the Michelin starred restaurant. Also liked the opportunities to sample local cuisine ourselves.."

Value for money

"Such good value"

In summary

"Journey to the East’s Garden and Art Tour far exceeded my expectations. I was blown away by the gardens, museums and galleries we saw – and by the mix of city and country experiences that we were offered. Japan is a stunningly beautiful country, and its people take great pride in conserving their ancient culture while embracing today’s fast moving world. Thank you Journey to the East for introducing me to Japan!"

May 2016

Sue Montague - Vic, Australia

Gil Caufman

2016 Custom built tour

Guest rated their tour:

Overall Assessment

They simply said "6 out of 5!"

What did you like best?

"It is like asking who your preferred child is. We liked everything."

In summary

"This wasn’t our first journey to the far east, but it surely was different to everything we have seen. At first we had some worries about using an Australian company, especially because of the distance between Israel and Australia, and the communication difficulties that could be a result of that. We were happy to learn that we were wrong about worrying and it has all turned out perfect. The itinerary was picked carefully to suit us, and everything was like we have planned.
The hotels were picked perfectly, all placed in good locations. The guides were full of knowledge, very nice and helpful.
We would definitely recommend the JttE services to anyone who is thinking about making a journey to the east!It was above and beyond anything we would have expected,
Thank you Journey to the East!."

May 2016

Iris and Gil Caufman - Israel

Erridge Group
Erridge Group

2016 Custom built tour

Guest rated their tour:

Overall assessment

"5+ Thanks to the detailed and pre agreed variations to our itinerary to accommodate special requests the tour was every bit as good as anticipated and sometimes greater… thanks"

In summary

"Well done JttE on an excellent organised and arranged private vacation. We experienced all as pre planned with Col & Yuki and were fortunate to have enjoyed a never ending display of colour across the Country. From day 1, when met at Narita airport Tokyo, ’til day 18 when our final guide placed us on the Shinkansen from Osaka back to Narita and wished us a safe trip home, all ran like clockwork and was an excellent and trouble free way to enjoy Japan. The accommodation/guides and prepared foods all a delight…well done and we shall look forward to enjoying our next arranged Japan vacation with you."

April 2016

Barry & Lynne Erridge and Jim & Diane Sutton - Queensland, Australia

Thilini De Silver – Dubai, UAE
2016 Custom Built Tour

2016 Custom built tour

Guest rated their tour:

Overall assessment

"Let me start by saying, the two weeks I spent in Japan will go down in my history as two of the best weeks in my entire life. Hopefully, life permitting, I will get another chance to visit Japan and till such time, I shall cherish the out of this world experience had the first time. Having said that, without any second guessing, I most certainly will recommend Journey to the East to anyone planning a trip to Japan. Not only did you folks arrange for the trip, but also, saw us through the journey – highly praiseworthy.…."

In summary

"Let me conclude by saying, I wish everyone in this world was like the Japanese. That level of respect they have towards one another, their culture, their inheritance, I have never seen in any other place. I considered it nothing short of a privilege to have had the opportunity visit Japan. What a treat it was and thank you for helping to put it altogether for me.

A huge thank you to the Journey to the East team who worked on our tour/itinerary, especially to you. Wish you all the best."

April 2016

Thilini De Silver - Dubai, UAE

MJ Tracey Group

2016 Custom built tour

Guest rated their tour:

Rating

"A definite 5 out of 5. I cannot begin to tell you what a fantastic holiday we have had in Japan and how glad I am that I found JttE when researching Tours to Japan on the net."

Value for money

"Absolutely worth the money.  Stopped searching for small group tours to Japan when I found JttE on the internet. Thank you JttE for putting together an effective private tour for our group of 6 which allowed us to cover many of the experiences were hoping for in Japan. Thank you also for your flexibility, no addition or change to our itinerary was ever denied to us."

In summary

"Our 17 day private group tour has been a phenomenal experience.  JttE delivered all the expectations of our brief - Cherry Blossoms - every day for 17 days - unbelievable but true. An immersion into Japanese culture tasting new and unusual foods, visiting Temples and Shrines offering prayers. Castles, samurai and geisha districts.  Ryokans, Kaiseki dinners and onsens. Visiting Shirakawago. Who would have ever thought that following all of this our good fortune would continue with magnificent views of Fuji-san.  This holiday has been an experience of a lifetime. I highly recommend Journeys to the East to anyone wanting to experience Japan… Yuki and Col will look after you!!"

April 2016

Mary-Jane and Greg Tracey - NSW, Australia

GSE-16

2016 Cherry Blossom tour of Japan - Classic Route

Guest rated their tour:

Itinerary

"Comprehensive & balanced, providing many interesting fact of Japanese custom and culture"

Value for money

"Definitely - So much covered for the overall price"

April 2016

Dr. Geoffrey and Valerie Glassock - NSW, Australia

2016 Cherry Blossom tour of Japan - Classic Route

Guest rated their tour:  ++++

Value for money

"i didn’t always like the meals – but loved the fact we were introduced to so many national dishes. Iwaso was the most difficult. However, many meals just blew me away"

Travel arrangements

"The excellent & smooth way everything was handled, from the first email to the finish of the tour."

Itinerary

"This was an outstanding tour, well planned and well organised from beginning to the final moment. There were surprises along the way including a wondeful chat with a monk in a Zen Buddhist temple and a blow away farewell dinner"

Date

Cecelia Maclean - Sunshine Coast, Queensland Australia

2016 Cherry Blossom tour of Japan - Kyushu

Guest rated their tour:

Liked best

"Liked: Hot sands [‘sand bath’], hot springs at onsens, Nagasaki, Tenjin, petty much everything.
Unlike: Can’t think of anything"

Travel arrangements

"Found the Cherry Blossom tour well researched, very well organised, thoughtfully arranged regarding places visited. (would not recommend the tour for anyone on a diet!)"

April 2016

Jan McWhirter & Kees Vrolyk - NSW, Australia

2016 Spring food tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour:  ++++

Travel arrangements

"Well organised – Would never have been able to do it ourselves! 5/5 for value"

Overall

"Amazing variety of food, culture, people and landscapes in such a small area of Kyushu with hardly another tourist to be seen. Congratulations Jtte for organising this wonderful food tour"

March 2016

Victoria and Richard Casey - Western Australia

2016 Spring food tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour:  ++++

Value for money

"Superb tour"

Service

"You are the champs for (going) the extra mile"

Overall

"This is our second tour with Journey to the East. You have exceeded our high expectations. A wonderful tour – a delight from beginning to end"

March 2016

Bill and Catherine McCourt - Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

2016 Spring food tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour:

Value for money

"Amazing – great tour, will highly recommend"

Service

"A delightfully imaginative, cultural foodie tour of the best standard. Wonderful experience. Thank you JttE"

March 2016

Stuart Verman & Jann Tully - Perth, Western Australia

2016 Custom built tour of Japan

Guest rated their tour: ++

Summary

"We are now at our airport hotel ready to fly back to the Uk tmw. We think this hotel does the job really well. Score 5 As we have been away 6 weeks we will be pretty busy after we land so I’m sending you this email.
The holiday was a great success. You organised everything really well and your choice of hotels and restaurants were excellent"

Overall

"We would highly recommend Jtte to organise a tour in Japan. Their choice of hotels, guides and restaurants were excellent. Their attention to detail in the travel arrangements were exceptional and we felt relaxed and well looked after the whole 2 weeks.
All the guides were excellent and did their jobs really well. Travel arrangements were fantastic.
I think that’s it. Again many thanks for doing a really great job and we will be passing on your details to our friends so I hope you get lots of UK bookings in the future."

March 2016

Danielle & Terry Astin - U.K.

2015 Private (custom built) group tour

Guest rated their tour:

Summary

"Couldn’t have been better organised. Didn’t have to worry about anything, therefore stress free. Just loved this trip"

Overall

"This is a great company to work with.

The whole trip was organised perfectly and the itinerary was excellent. Stayed in wonderful hotels in wonderful cities and our guides were excellent as well as being fantastic people!

I just loved Japan"

Dec 2015

Carlie Broun - NSW, Australia

2016 Early Spring (and Cherry Blossom) Tour

Guest rated their tour:

Overall

"David and I are having a fabulous time. Absolutely loving everything about the tour. The food, the culture, the hotels and the locations. Can’t speak more highly of the level of service also. Ours guides have been wonderful. We will certainly be recommending to all the travellers we know and I will put a good report on TripAdvisor too. We are definitely foodies so the cuisine has been right up our ally. Please thank Yuki also.
Regards"

March 2016

Karen Moore and David Dodds - Australia

2015 Autumn tour - Wild West

Guest rated their tour:

Value for money

"5++++ This tour was as close to perfect as a tour could be. It exceeded our expectations by far. How do you do it?"

Travel arrangements

All of it. The autumn leaves were at their best, so weren’t we lucky. The Hakone outdoor museum was a complete surprise, a sculpture park and art gallery, wow. We visited a fantastic art gallery and garden in Tokyo , can’t remember the name, but loved it. The building had won an architecture award. John loved the Toyota museum and could have spent more time there. We enjoyed the company of our fellow travellers. Loved trying the different food.

Itinerary

"This was our first trip to Japan, and we couldn’t have chosen a better company than Journey to the East to take us there. This is by far the most outstanding tour company we have ever travelled with. The accommodation, food, guides and travel arrangements were beyond any expectations. Thank you JTTE."

Nov 2015

John and Judith Ruperto - NSW, Australia

2015 Autumn tour - Wild West

Guest rated their tour:

Value for money

"After having truly experienced the some of the Sights/Culture and Food of Japan, I feel that Journey to the East provided us with an appreciation of Japan that we did not previously have.
The small group approach to travel is great and allows some flexibility. Tour guides were very good and knowledgeable on the areas they took us to, While the Accommodation Food and Travel arrangements were excellent at all places we stayed. GREAT value for money
I will be recommending your organization to my friend’s."

Nov 2015

Mike and Libby Wilson - Vic, Australia

2015 Autumn tour - Wild West

Guest rated their tour:

Itinerary

"The organisational underpinning of this tour was stunning in its effectiveness. We saw a cross section of the Japanese way of life as well as an enchantingly wide variety of gardens, temples, shrines & many, many, other places of interest.."

Guides

"All of the guides were polite & efficient & could not seem to do enough to ensure that we felt safe, happy & unworried."

Summary

"Journey to the East provided near perfection in their choice of hotels, things to see, travel arrangements, guides & of course the wonderful variety of food. It was a wonderful trip with a small group of people who quickly became friends"

Nov 2015

Jude & John Wingfield - Queensland, Australia

2015 Autumn tour - Wild West

Guest rated their tour:

Value for money

"Excellent, bit expensive, but certainly 100% value for money."

Overall

"Outstanding! I have travelled extensively around the world, this tour – best yet"

Nov 2015

Barry Collins & Jennifer Shepphard - Victoria, Australia

2015 Autumn tour - Wild West

Guest rated their tour:

Value for money

"Kamikochi, Tateyama-Kurobe alpine route & many more wonderful experiences."

Overall

"More time to spend in the local shops especially the woodcarver’s village"

Nov 2015

Helen Cliffe - Victoria, Australia

Diana Moffa

2015 Autumn tour - Wild West

Guest rated their tour:

Overall

"The Wild West Japan tour is aptly named with dramatic untamed landscapes with brilliant colours.
The contrast with the usual gentle, typically manicured Japanese scenes and the head turning rugged natural ones, were unexpected and breathtaking.Not a newcomer to Japan I was nonetheless surprised by the wide variety of off the beaten track locations on this trip. A well thought out itinerary filled with places that the average tourist would be unlikely to see. The experiences we had topped the traditional tourist locations of Tokyo and Kyoto.A truly unique Japanese experience which exceeded our expectations."

Nov 2015

Diana Moffa - Queensland, Australia