We spent 6 hours (11a-5p) with Hiroko on our first full day in Kyoto, and I’m so glad we did it! She met us right at our Airbnb, which was great. We saw so many sights that would have taken my husband and I several days to see on our own. Our time with her was very productive, but also felt relaxed, and not too rushed. Hiroko was very knowledgeable and was able to tell us detailed information about everything we saw. She spoke great English, as she had lived and worked in New York for many years. Hiroko took us to a great “local” spot for lunch which we would not have found on our own. She kept an eye on the clock to make sure nothing closed before we saw it. I had specifically requested to see the Golden Pavilion at the end of the day, right before it closed, because I had read that was when it was the least crowded. I’ll never forget Hiroko and I running up the hill to the pavilion together, trying to ensure we slid through the gates before they closed. We made it with time to spare, and sure enough, we had the place almost completely to ourselves. This was during Golden Week! Our pictures (which Hiroko kindly took many for us all day) turned out amazing. The tour was officially over at the pavilion, when the clock struck 5. However, Hiroko made sure we made it back to our Airbnb okay, as there were several transportation options, all of which were confusing and crowded. Luckily for us, Hiroko was able to stay with us for almost an hour past our arranged tour time, because we all ended up taking the same bus/subway route to get back. Hiroko was a joy to spend the day with, and I would definitely book her again! I highly recommend her!
Dear Elizabeth, Thank you very much for your kind and generous review. Actually, I felt so fortunate to be a local guide for such a nice and beautiful couple like you and your husband Scott, and I really enjoyed being with you during the tour. I also will not forget our running together to the Golden Pavilion, which was fun in a way after all. Moreover, I am so grateful for your gift and note that you handed me at the end of the tour. I think about you when I look at them. It would be great if you would come visit here again to see and experience many more sometime in the near future. I will be here for you! All the best, Hiroko