I cannot say enough good things about Akita. Me eating up with him was a cinch, he was right where we could find him and very punctual. His English was excellent, his knowledge of Tokyo phenomenal. I think we taxed him to the max with our expressed desire to buy Washi paper, but he located a historic shop that included a museum and art gallery and expertly guided us there. Then we taxed his English skills to the max by wanting information about the art and artists exhibiting in the gallery. But he more than adequately communicated advance artistic concepts and terminology! I was so impressed by this knowledgeable, cooperative, kind man who really took the time and made an effort to introduce us to his city and culture. We wanted to be able to negotiate the Tokyo subway and metro system, and by the time he left us we felt completely able to find our way on our own. He aided us to experience ramen in a typical ramen cafe, what a wonderful meal that was! He also took us to the Meiji shrine and introduced us to the Shinto faith. A beautiful experience of a truly beautiful and peaceful place. I would recommend Akira as a guide to Tokyo with absolutely no hesitation. WELL WORTH the price we paid, which was certainly more than reasonable. We were with Akira for seven hours and it cost us LESS than it would have to use the shuttle bus from pier to our hotel that was offered by our cruise line. Put on your walking shoes and let Akira show you around Tokyo.
Dear James, So nice to hear from you. Thank you so much for the great review. I am very happy to know that the time we spend together made a good introduction to Tokyo. Also, I am so happy that you enjoyed the places we went. People with good heart like you brings good things and it happens like coincidence. Yes, the ramen was good and I knew it was good since I have been there many times. But what I surprised was that we didn't have to stand in a long queue which is not as is always in that restaurant. Washi place was wonderful, I knew you would like it (and you did) and there was another surprise there. Lucky her that we had a chance to enjoyed the special exhibition and talked to some of the artists who is an expert of Japanese paper and pigments and techniques. Personally, I, too, really enjoyed the day witnessing those coincidence and two of you having good time. I hope there will be another chance to explore my loving city together. See you next time. Dewa Mata Akira