Overall the trip planned was a bit touristy. We like getting a feel of the people in different countries and expressed this to our planner. We were still sent to "tourist trap" areas. On the other hand, they were able to set up a few great experiences we would have never found on our own.
The travel company planned outings were amazing one on one time with local Japanese woman from the Kyoto area. They took time to teach us language basics, great traditions and show us around.
We would cut down on private tours, and not go to Takayama. It was touristy and we went there for the hot springs bath experience and stayed somewhere with no hot springs bath.
TRAVEL COMPANY COMMENTS:
Thank you for your feedback, we appreciate you taking the time to do so. We're sorry to hear that Takayama felt like a tourist trap. This smaller town in the Northern Japan Alps has certainly become more popular in the past few years, so has more amenities for travelers, and sees for tourists, but we feel still has a lot to offer including it's well-preserved old-town district, morning market, local sake production, and beautiful scenery we feel still make it worth the visit. Again, we apologize if that was a letdown but we were happy to hear you enjoyed Women's Association of Kyoto (they are sweet) as well as some of the more off the beaten path programs we arranged for you.
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