When we initially met Koichi, he was just a guide. By the time we left Kyoto, he was a family member. Koichi is a kind, generous, and hospitable man who sees guiding as his calling. He met us at Ippudo and then we toured Western Kyoto (Arashiyama bamboo forest, monkey park, and boating on the Hozugawa river). I was struck by his genuine kindness. For example, when I mentioned I was afraid to feed the monkeys in Arashiyama, he bought apples himself and coaxed me to do so because he didn't want me to miss out on the experience. That night, he ate dinner with us in Gion at an okinomiyaki restaurant. He goes out of his way to make others comfortable and truly sees himself as an ambassador of his country. I was traveling with my father and husband and all 3 of us had infinite praise for him. The 2nd half day, we saw Fushimi Inari, another temple, and then he dropped us off at Kyoto station. He brought laminated papers to help orient us to the history and culture of Japan and was always on time and cheerful. I had 2 other guides on triple lights who were both professional and objectively good guides. Koichi gives you a taste of the hospitality and personality of the people of Japan in addition to being a guide. Koichi is now part of our family.
Hi! Divya san! Thank you very much for giving me such a wonderful review. I really appreciate you for taking time from your precious time and writing me such a good and kind reference. I am glad that I could share happy days in Kyoto, with you , your handsome husband, and gentle father. I really hope to see you again with your family members. By the way, Shall we eat "Daigaku-Imo" (= University Sweet Potato) once more at Fushimi Inari??? Koichi