Why can Walk Japan create an unforgettable bespoke tour experience that also meets my requirements?
For over 30 years Walk Japan has been pioneering off-the-beaten-track walking tours of Japan. We have an in-depth and broad knowledge of Japan and continue to improve this by investing in research of Japan and what it offers. With our Japanese skills we can access all Japanese-language materials, talk directly with the locals, and find out in person about any aspect of Japan. All members of staff at Walk Japan have a long association with the country and each brings a different set of experiences, skills and interests to Walk Japan. For example, one is a professor of Japanese history; another of Japanese social geography; one ran the Japanese subsidiary of a foreign corporation and now lives and works in a remote rural area of Japan; while another was educated at a Japanese middle school, worked in Japanese TV and lived for many years in Tokyo and Kyoto.
More information about Tour Leaders can be found in the 'About Us' section.
Please note that our custom tours are entirely subject to Tour Leader and accommodation availability.
What sort of groups does Walk Japan create tours for?
We create tours for families, friends, groups, societies and schools. Very rarely do we take very small groups or just one or two people on custom tours, due to the costs involved. Our customer service team can advise according to the size of your group and budget.
How much should we expect to pay?
The price will vary principally according to how big or small your group is, what you would like to do on your tour, the length of your tour, and the grade of accommodation used. Given that we usually run tours with up to 12 participants, generally speaking the cost per head may be quite high for a small group. Our customer service team will be happy to advise.
How long can we make our tour?
The minimum length of tour is four nights. This is because, taking travel times into consideration, we feel this is the minimum length of time required to fully enjoy the walk and immerse oneself in the experience. Again, this is subject to the availability of Tour Leaders and accommodation.
When should we start planning?
Japan is experiencing an unprecedented travel boom, such that the earlier we can make arrangements, the better our chances of securing a tour for you. The seasons for cherry blossom and autumn colours are our busiest, and we advise to start planning between 8-12 months prior.
Can we select which Tour Leader accompanies us?
While we endeavour to take our customers’ preferences into account, it is not possible to select a Tour Leader. A Tour Leader may already have been scheduled to lead another of our tours, or are engaged in other activities outside of Walk Japan, which makes it difficult to guarantee that any one individual will be able to lead your tour.
At Walk Japan we set very high standards for our Tour Leaders. At a minimum, our Tour Leaders are an undergraduate-university degree and speak both English and Japanese at native or very high level. All have varying careers outside of tour leading and therefore have something different to offer to the tour experience. We are confident that whoever may accompany you will deliver an excellent service and share with you their own unique perspective on Japan.
We are not strong walkers. Can we opt for a more leisurely tour?
Our customer service team will be delighted to give recommendations based on your desired length of walking each day and/or fitness level. It may be that certain regions or routes are not recommended due to their remoteness and lack of mid-way transfer options, and in this regard we will also be able to advise. Let us know what interests you and we will advise what is possible.
Can children accompany us on our tour?
Yes, we welcome children on custom tours. However, please make sure that your fellow travellers understand beforehand that children will be part of your group.
A person in our group has special needs. Can Walk Japan accommodate these?
We will do our best to provide whatever is necessary to allow everyone to enjoy a custom tour. Please note, however, that because of certain limitations in Japan such as lack of wheelchair access at traditional accommodation, we may not always be able to accommodate every requirement. Let us know what is required and we will advise on what we can do.
What is the best time of the year to visit Japan?
Japan has four seasons. If you include the rainy season – the Japanese do not count it as a separate season – five. The best season to visit Japan will depend on what you would like to do, where you would like to go, what you would like to see. Hokkaido in the north, for example, is snow bound in the winter but ideal for climbing mountains in the summer. Whereas, hiking in Kyushu, in the south, is best for walking in the spring and autumn/fall.
Please contact Walk Japan for further details.