Boutique Tours Japan
Through the eyes of a local
I especially admired how she created an itinerary that avoided the crowds. There was never a question about Japanese culture that she couldn’t answer.
Kuroko's guided tours are the epitome of comfort and cultural enrichment. See Japan through the eyes of a local as your guide takes you through areas unknown to simple tourists.
Come home with tales of exquisite, untouched landscapes, humble smiles from Japanese locals, and intricate multi-course meals fit for a feudal lord.
Upcoming Tours, 2022
Sakura Nakasendo Tour
Date: April 22 - 29, 2022
This tour takes you on four easy to moderate walks including Kyoto’s most holly mountain, Mt. Hiei and trailing along Nakasendo in the middle of cherry blossom season. Follow some of the most beautiful and enjoyable parts of the ancient merchants’ highway that links Kyoto and Tokyo. We walk through rural countryside deep into the peaks of Japan’s Central Alps and explore well-preserved charming post towns.
Northern Paradise Tour
Dates: May 31 - June 8, 2022
Immerse yourself in a natural, cultural and food lover’s dream with this in-depth tour of Japan’s diverse northern region. On this tour, sip the local Sake at an old brewery, tread through hills carpeted with flowers, soak in natural hot springs, wander through a canal city, indulge at local fish markets, hike through peaceful forests and streams and more. This tour is for seafood lovers and travellers who like to go deeper, far deeper, than the normal organised trip. With walks in nature and incredible attention to detail, you can expect an authentic adventure into all things Japanese.
Autumn Art Islands Tour
Dates: October 15 - 25, 2022
Spend an unforgettable 11 days diving deep into the untouched part of Japan. Starting with island-hopping across Japan’s intriguing Seto Inland Sea filled with modern Japanese art meets meaningful cultural traditions. Expect landscapes curated with wild beauty, art that defies normality. As we drive into rural Shikoku, be intrigued by locals and their way of life. The wide range of dynamic sceneries from the window leaves a soft but beautiful imprint on your soul.
Hear from previous small group tours to Japan
Custom Photography Tour
I was very impressed by the diversity of locations, accommodations and experiences we shared on this trip. The food was outstanding and Rika took us to unique and fun places for lunches and dinners.
Leading a photo tour for a group of very seasoned travel photographers requires a confident, knowledgeable leader who can manage and meet the unique expectations of each photographer.
2017 Guided Tour
The highest compliment I can give Rika is that by the end of the trip she was another of our group of good friends and intrepid travellers, exploring together and having a great time.
She is smart, knowledgeable, efficient, responsive, thinks on her feet extremely well, is willing to make adjustments based on opportunities that present themselves and never loses her equilibrium and good cheer.
I can without hesitation powerfully recommended her to any individual or group who wants to have an experience that goes deeper into what Japan is all about.
I learned so much about Japan while laughing my way through the tour.
A large part of the success of this trip was Rika. I learned so much about Japan while laughing my way through the tour. Rika, you directed us like a well-oiled machine in a very positive way. You may see me at your yoga retreat!
She was warm, open and generous to all of us, and has a marvellous sense of humour.
Rika’s organizational skills and attention to detail is magnificent. All our travel by train, tram, bus, and taxi was smooth and well coordinated. She was always cheerful and attentive to everyone’s needs no matter how small. It made for a wonderful experience. I had one unfortunate incident where I forgot my camera battery and charger in Kyoto and realized after we arrived in Toyama. She instantly solved the problem and arranged for it to be delivered to our hotel by courier the next day. She was warm, open and generous to all of us, and has a marvellous sense of humour. I wholeheartedly recommend her tours.
Spending time with Rika on one of her Kuroko Boutique Tours was a joy and a delight.
Spending time with Rika on one of her Kuroko Boutique Tours was a joy and a delight. Rika was extremely well organized and she goes out of her way to make sure everyone’s individual needs are met. She is very accommodating and always has a smile on her face. Her English is impeccable. I would highly recommend her tours. Thank you, Rika!
I especially admired how she created an itinerary that avoided the crowds.
Rika made my third trip to Japan a delight. She packed our tour with great locations, but we never felt rushed - even while she led us through busy Tokyo! I especially admired how she created an itinerary that avoided the crowds. There was never a question about Japanese culture that she couldn’t answer. Arigato for a wonderful trip. I will always remember your laughter as you accompanied our group.
Want to see Japan from a different perspective?
Wow, where to start… from the moment I landed to my last steps in Japan, Rika ensured that my time was safe and memorable. Want to see Japan from a different perspective? Rika has a wealth of knowledge about Japan’s culture, history and landscape. Exceptional service, welcoming smile, memories galore. Arigato Rika
Your pride in your country shines through in everything you do.
Rika, our visit to your wonderful country could not have been the same without your thoughtful guidance. Your pride in your country shines through in everything you do. Japan is a beautiful country with interesting customs that we now appreciate because of your tutoring. The restaurants and food were fabulous and you made extraordinary efforts to ensure we ate like royalty. We would never have been able to enjoy these experiences without you! Thank you so much!
Thank you for the excellent tour of Japan. This was one of the best holidays we have ever been on. This was not only due to the amazing weather, the unexpected surprises around every corner and how welcoming we found the people and food but to the effort, you made to make us all feel welcome. As a group, we all got on well and with time we became friends. There were plenty of highlights and these were often the unexpected things that happen when you are in a strange land. The Autumn colours and light were stunning. The food was far better than our expectations. For 2 weeks, we were completely immersed in Japan, its people, culture and heritage. Without Rika, I am sure that our holiday would not have been so rich or complete.
Saw places and things that we would not have found.
We have just returned from a marvellous holiday in Japan with Rika. The whole experience was absolutely wonderful. Rika's planning and guidance through the 14 day tour was first class right down to accommodating the special needs that most of our party of 5 required. We went to and saw places and things that we would not have found by ourselves. Rika's attention to detail together with her friendly nature makes touring with her very special. I can thoroughly recommend Kuroko Boutique Tours!
Culture, food, sightseeing, and lots of fun.
Definitely 5 star service. Rika fine-tuned and honed a tour that offers a unique opportunity to experience Japan on so many levels. Culture, food, sightseeing and lots of fun being part of a special group of people. Well done Rika and Kuroko Boutique Tours.
Travelling with Rika in her native Japan was an opportunity for a cultural experience like no other.
Imagine having a friend who seamlessly moves between two languages and who is able to help you interpret the traditional and contemporary customs of the Japanese way of life. Rika brings a quiet, respectful and unassuming demeanour to her responsibility as a guide and helps the mystery of Japan unfold.
I have now done two of Rika's tours to Japan. Both have been a delight and I think a third will take me back to Kyoto to indulge in a longer stay. I enjoyed her very professional weaving of nature and culture and particularly the incredible choice of venues for such a wonderful variety of Japanese style cooking and meals. I really felt so well looked after. Any special request she willingly obliged. Which made the tours special just for me. A private tea ceremony, a fun experience of elegant entertaining geisha, and traditional wagashi sweet making class. I highly recommend Rika and her tours to everyone.
Our tour to Japan was the best and most stress-free holiday we've ever had.
It was exceptionally well-organised by Rika. We learnt so much of Japan. I have always been a bit wary of tours. In fact, this was my first. It was small and personal, very much boutique style, very much my style. Rika actively sought out our wishes and preferences before and during the tour and where possible, built them in. It was fabulous having Rika there to sort out the arrangements, to smooth the way, to translate on-the-spot and to be a delightful and engaging part of the group. It was so relaxing and a lot of fun. All I dream of now is our next Japanese adventure. Next destination? Kyoto, 2018, here we come.
I have joined Rika's guided tour. Her service was exceptional. It was the best trip ever and such a luxurious way to enjoy Japan. She took me right down to the core of Japanese culture. I felt like I was a part of their culture. It was magical. Also, she really knows where to go for good local food. I highly recommend her tour especially to people like me want to travel in own pace and don't enjoy seeing only touristy sights. Thank you, Rika for your wonderful tour and I am sure I will join you again.
Rika had a sixth sense as to where to bring us to capture iconic as well as unique images of the country and its people.
I just returned from a two week customized photography-centred tour of Japan with Rika and a small group of photography friends. Although not a photographer herself, Rika had a sixth sense as to where to bring us to capture iconic as well as unique images of the country and its people. She also ensured that we experienced the culture through stays at such places as a boathouse in a remote fishing village and in a World Heritage site monastery in Koyasan. She is a warm, funny and lovely person filled with enthusiasm for her work and a passion to make sure her clients are always satisfied. I recommend her highly.
More than a holiday.
Our Shikoku tour, led by Rika was more than a holiday, it was a unique insight into the Japanese people, their culture and the warmth of their hospitality. Surrounded by magnificent scenery in changing Autumn colours, and the freshness of the air was to experience an enduring state of tranquility.
All of our tours are boutique and in small groups, with a maximum of 8 guests. All accommodations, activities and meals are lovingly curated to assure the best experience possible. We keep it small so that we can try to personalise the tour as much as possible to make it YOUR tour. Not other way around.
More About Our Guided Tours
- Travel groups are typically for 5–8 people, making the experience intimate and personalised.
- We are bilingual Japanese with experience living abroad. Your point of view is understood and catered for.
- There’s no need to learn Japanese as we provide your very own interpreter.
- Tour extension service: We design your extension plan to best complement your tour.
- Unlike other boutique services, we are small and personal. We keep costs reasonable through our network of contacts and our small team.
Previous Tour Photos
Head to our gallery for a peak at what's in store. All photos are taken by Kuroko or our customers while on our guided tours.
Thank you for your interest in our Guided Tours.
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