Sunday, January 27, 2013

Volunteer Tour Guides in Japan

If Japan is one of the countries you have long wanted to visit, but you are intimidated by the difference or language and culture and reported high cost, you may be pleased to learn that in many parts of Japan you can find volunteer tour guides who know your language.
These guides, who are mostly retirees, students or housewives, will take you on pre-arragned walking tours in some large cities such as Tokyo, or if you contact them far enough in advance they will try to tailor a tour to your specifications. The guest is responsible for paying any admissions or transit fares for the guide, and for any meals or drinks.
The Japan National Tourism Organization ( has a list on its Website of the cities where this service is offered, and of the pre-set tours that occur at specific times in big cities. To me, this sounds like a great way to meet some locals and learn a little bit about the area you are visiting.
I am certainly going to check into this service when I finally visit Japan. That may be fairly soon--I recently learned that the number of Aeroplan ( miles needed for a flight from Canada to Japan has increased from 60,000 to 75,000. If I don't go soom, I may not have enough miles.


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