Kyoto and Nara 2-Day or 3-Day Rail Tour by Bullet Train from Tokyo
Reviewed by: stormco, United States of America, January 2015
We only had a few days to spare in Kyoto so this trip was great for us. The tour allowed us to go to the "highlights" of the history of Kyoto and Nara. Even though the guide was not with us during our train trips, it was still effortless. They would bring us to the station and somebody will be waiting for us on the platform upon our arrival. We never had to wait for any tour guide, they where always there on time. They where all very professional and nice. If by chance your budget will still allow you to, Hotel Okura, while an older hotel, is awesome. The staff is so efficient and so nice. Highly recommend this trip.
Reviewed by: Ian B, December 2014
This was a great trip. Everything was included. The tour was flawless and when the representatives advised they would be in a certain place at a certain time, they were. Accommodation in Kyoto was great, much better then we expected from a tourist class hotel
Reviewed by: james S, December 2014
We really enjoyed the tour! We were well looked after and the travel was stress free. The tour guides were pleasant, knowledgable and entertaining. Their English was sometimes hard to grasp. The hotels and food were good and in general the tour was good value.
Reviewed by: Batara, December 2014
This tour was amazing!
Reviewed by: stephen h, November 2014
what a trip., from the time we met the guide and were escorted to our seats on the bullet train met a guide at Kyoto on the station the scenery was brilliant! and the Hotel we stayed at was great, the company was lively and we were given a beautiful buffet it was just so colourful and as it was a holiday and the people were all dressed up in national dress and looked proud of it . well worth the trip our favourite part of Japan thanks Viator great job
Reviewed by: Alexandra H, November 2014
Everything was great. The guide was knowledgeable and pleasant and the tour was well-organized. The only problem was that I missed part of the tour because I went to the Hamamatsucho Train Station instead of the Hamamatsucho Bus Terminal. Japanese don't speak English well and they directed me to the train station. You should put a warning in your promotional material that the meeting point is at the bus station not the bus terminal.
Reviewed by: SHUEN T, November 2014
The service is "excellent". They are a well-organized tour company. Every step of the way, there was a guide providing “clear” instruction of the next step. They did not try to go the cheap route to make few extra dollars. The bullet train ride was the fastest one, which took 2 hours and 20 minutes. 1st class seating is not necessary. (There are luggage compartment at the back of each train, so don’t worry about the note on the voucher about the day pack.) Day 1’s lunch buffet at the New Miyako hotel was fantastic; we were all well fed and were not rushed. All of our tour guides spoke good English. Upon returning to Tokyo, a guide greeted us at the platform. Each of us had a "limo" taxi taking us to our hotels.
New Miyako Hotel's location is more convenient than Rihga Royal Hotel. Rihga Royal Hotel Kyoto is only a 5 minutes’ walk from New Miyako, but it goes under a tunnel and at night, it felt a bit scary. (You can also access RRH from the north side of the station.) 1st class hotel in my opinion is not necessary. My standard hotel is Marriott or Courtyard. Both New Miyako and Rihga Royal Hotels’ standard room are nice and clean. The room size may be smaller than the US standard, but it is not cramp.
If you have time, I highly recommend the 3 day tour and use the last day to visit sites that are not included in the trip. Day 1 afternoon was Nara. Day 2 morning included Nijo Castle (my favorite), Kitano-tenmangu Shrine (was the alternative because Imperial Palace was closed on Sunday), Golden Pavilion, and afternoon included another shrine, Sanju Sangendo Hall, and Kiyomizu Temple. We walked from Kiyomizu to Gion. Don't eat meals on the Hanami-koji street...tourist trap. You will find much better quality food else where; just have snacks. Day 3, we went to the Imperial Palace, Nishiki Market, and Arashimaya for the bamboo groove.