Hi! Welcome to Japan. My name is Shoji Kitamura, a licensed English-speaking tour guide. Please call me Shoji that is the same sound as a sliding screen made of wood and paper you may have seen in a traditional Japanese room.
I was born and raised in Yokohama next to Tokyo but lived for work in several beautiful and historical cities such as Nikko, Hiroshima, and Ise which have world heritage sites and/or national park. I fully enjoyed the nature, culture and lives in each city where I lived.
I retired after 36 years with a national research institute of fisheries in 2016.
During my career, I visited 5 continents except Antarctica, more than 20 nations for attending international scientific conferences, conducting collaborative research or teaching some technologies, etc. In Japan, I often took foreign scientists and government officers sightseeing. I had great times in these opportunities.
Such experiences made me decide to become a licensed English-speaking guide interpreter after retirement to introduce Japanese nature, culture, foods, etc. properly to many tourists coming to Japan from all over the world.
For more than 20 years I’ve been living in Nikko, which is located about 150km north of Tokyo, and designated as a World Heritage site and a National Park. If you consider a day trip from Tokyo, I strongly recommend coming to Nikko by 2-hour train ride from Tokyo. I am looking forward to showing you around in this historical and beautiful town.
Besides Nikko, I can also guide you in Yokohama, my home town, and in neighboring city such as Tokyo and Kamakura.
The prices below are for a private tour for you and your partner, family or friends.
Up to 5 people
For each extra person
* Duration: 2 hours minimum and 12 hours maximum per day.
* People: 9 maximum
Yes! If you need to make changes such as removing or adding someone to your booking or changing the date or time of your tour, contact us by phone or email
After you secure your booking, the starting and ending points of your tour can be customized to your convenience (ex.: your hotel, nearby stations, etc.). Don't worry, we will take care of you! Some tours may have an extra fee for this service, make sure to check the tour page.
After booking a tour, the guide will accept (or decline) your booking within 24 hours. Then you will be noticed by email from Triplelights.
The price is charged per group. Which means that you make a one-time payment for your entire group and the price will not change if it is less or more people.
Some guides accept extra people (more than the specified number) for an extra charge. Please check for the extras on the tour or booking page, or contact your guide directly to clarify.
No. Your tour is private, only for you and your family or friends, there will be no other group of tourists together in your tour.
Yes, but there will be additional charge for that and it is not by car. The guide will go pick you up using public transportations. For further details, please contact your guide directly.
Yes, you can and you may be able to get a discount if you are traveling alone. Price depends on which guide you choose.
Shoji was a great tour guide. He showed us things we needed to see all over Tokyo. He covered a lot of ground and taught us how to use subways, pray at the temples, and order at restaurants. He was nice and fun. Some other tour guides may be better at knowing the history of places and symbolic significance. But if those things are not important to you, Shoji knows the city well and how to navigate it.
Thank you very much for your kind words that really encourage me. I had quite a fun time with you. I hope we can meet again in Japan or Texas some time soon.
Shoji san was a fantastic guide and great company. He his very knowledgeable, friendly, flexible and professional. We had the most wonderful day in Nikko thanks to Shoji san and would love to return. We are a couple from the UK.
Thank you so much Udara, for your kind words. I am very glad you enjoyed Nikko. Nikko has a lot of wonderful places. Please come back again to Nikko in another season.
I gave Shoji quite an ambitious list of sights that roughly followed his Shimizu Tour #2. In order to try and get us everywhere, he came to pick us up at the cruise terminal 20 minutes early in case we could debark early, which we were able to do. All during the day he made sure we were comfortable and happy. He arranged all kinds of little side trips and experiences once he discovered that we were interested in doing things off the beaten path. He is an excellent and experienced guide. I and my friends are well travelled and generally hire guides and private cars wherever we go. Shoji is one of a kind. You will not he disappointed if you hire him!! I wish I could have taken him with us as we continued our travels in Japan.
After doing the main sightseeing during previous days, we have asked Shoji to take us through new places. He was very helpful in customizing the tour for us. We were delighted and surprised by what seen (esp. Hamarikyu Gardens).
Thank you for your kind words, Fabio. I am very glad to hear that you enjoyed the tour. I look forward to seeing you again someday in Japan.
I hired Shoji to tour my son around Tokyo as I attended business meetings with my client. I speak for my son, 'Shoji was the best tour guide ever' and our family has had many tour guides! Shoji gave so much of his time and energy for my son and he was genuinely helpful - the tour even went over an extra 1.5 hours than scheduled! When we return next year, no doubt, we will gladly request another tour with Shoji.
Thank you Jeffrey for your kind words. They encourage me greatly. I hope I will see you and Spencer again sometime in Japan.