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Plan a trip to Japan with a local guide


by GoWithGuide travel specialist:Kenzia V.

Last updated : Apr 28, 20227 min read


I think we can agree that it can be very difficult and tiring to plan a great trip and make sure everything goes well even on your trip. So, what should you do to make it easier?


It's actually easy to find the answer to your question with the available information on the internet. 


In this article, I'm going to tell you how and why planning a trip to Japan with a local guide is beneficial,  what you should look for in a guide, where to easily find one, and other recommendations. Keep on reading!  

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How a guide can help make the most of your trip

Traveling is fun but can be very challenging at times especially if you are traveling to a country with a totally different language and culture. If you are planning to visit Japan, and want to make the most of your trip, hiring a local guide is definitely helpful.



Planning ahead of your trip is always a good move. However, it can be very challenging and troublesome to do so, especially in Japan if you are not used to the language. Japan has a lot of complicated station and place names, there are also lots of exits in a station, so it is easy to get lost and end up wasting time.  That is when a local tour guide can be very helpful to make your trip easier, more meaningful and hassle-free. 

What kind of guide should you hire?


To make your trip a more valuable experience, it is important to find the right guide. It can be difficult to find the right one, as they need to match your preferences and needs, so here are a few tips you should know when hiring a guide.

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A great guide will be able to accommodate your travel needs. They will be able to recommend you places worth visiting during your planning and make sure that the trip plan or itinerary is the best possible arrangement for you according to your needs and regarding the route, cost, and time efficiency.

Experienced and knowledgeable

A great guide should understand the places well. They will be able to tell you everything about the places you are visiting and answer questions you have about the destinations. It is easy to memorize facts and recite them, but a great guide will also be able to even give you local insights and teach you the local tradition and culture.


A great guide should be prepared and punctual. They should have a great sense of direction in the places you are visiting with them. A great guide should always put your needs first.

Kind and engaging

A great guide should be engaging by making the tour enjoyable and not make the tour feel like a teacher-student class session. You should feel comfortable around them to ask questions as tours are not one-man shows. They should be friendly and show the right amount of enthusiasm so that your tour is not boring.

Why you should hire a guide in Japan to help you plan

blog imageWhen planning, it is quite difficult to make sure that the route of your trip is efficient, strategic, and even economical. With the help of a guide, they can make sure that your trip is the best arrangement for you so you can save time and visit more places.


There are services that make itineraries or plan a trip for you, but you need to follow the trip plan by yourself, which does not cut the odds of getting lost. With a guide, essentially, you only pay for the tour-guiding service and get the trip planning service for free. If you plan a trip with a guide, they can make sure that your trip is more economical as they can arrange the route so you don’t have to go back and forth through a certain place. 

More advantages of hiring a guide in Japan

Wait, there's more:

It is definitely advantageous to hire a guide in Japan and plan your trip with a guide because they can make planning easier and more efficient for you. If you plan your trip with a guide, they can give you recommendations of places worth visiting and plan the trip according to your needs and preferences. They can help you uncover the lesser known places which are worth visiting, and even give you access to places you otherwise would not have. The guides can give you local insights and help you understand the culture and context of the places you are visiting, allowing you to learn while traveling. 


If you are planning your Japan trip with a guide, you do not have to worry about language difficulties. This is also especially important if you have some restrictions, but could not understand the language. You can just communicate with your guide about your needs and restrictions, and they will tend to them. Local guides in Japan can help you fully experience the journey, adding more value to your trip. 

How you can hire a guide in Japan

blog imageThere are many places where you can hire a guide, but few let you know the personality of your guide beforehand. That's why I recommend GoWithGuide, where you can watch guide's introduction videos beforehand. They connect you to many professional guides all across Japan to make your trip more valuable. All you need to do is just open the GoWithGuide homepage, by clicking here select the destination you want to visit and options of many professional guides are available for you to choose from. They carefully select the guides through a screening process and instruct each of the guides in their website to make sure they are the ideal guides for your needs.


If you are ready to plan your trip in Japan with a guide, you can look for Tokyo tour guides here, for Kyoto tour guides here and Tour guides in other areas of Japan

Here are some useful links if you are looking for private tours:

Tokyo private tours

Kyoto private tours

Private tours in other areas of Japan


Cherry blossom tours

One day bus tours

Multiple Day Package Tour Tours 

Other benefits of hiring a local guide in Japan

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Still not convinced?

By having your own Japan travel concierge, not only you will be able to save time and add more value to your trip, you will also be able to see the travel spots from another angle. By hiring a guide in Japan and let them help plan your trip in Japan, you don’t have to worry about getting lost or accidentally disrespecting the local culture as they got you covered. You are being looked after at a professional level, by someone who understands the culture, language, and direction. 


Compared to group tours, hiring a local guide in Japan can be more beneficial. When comparing the price of hiring a local guide or joining a group tour, the costs are probably the same or even less. You can be more flexible with the schedule and be able to enjoy the destination fully as you are not restricted by time. You can personalize your trips according to your needs.



If you are visiting Japan, hiring a guide can be really beneficial and helpful. Not only it will be more convenient, letting a professional help plan your trip can really help add value to your trip and make it more meaningful.  I hope you have a great time in Japan! 

Gifu Tour Guide - Akiko W.

Akiko W.

5.00 / 5
(8 reviews)

Hello! My name is Akiko from Gifu prefecture. I am a National Government Licensed Guide Interpreter. I like going out with my family, talking with my friends over coffee at a cozy cafe, reading books, baking bread and cake when I have time. I passed the national tour guide test in 2017 and have worked as a guide since then. I have guided in Gifu city, Seki city, Takayama city, Shirakawago , Mino city and Nagoya city. I have lived in Gifu for more than forty years. Gifu prefecture is rich in nature so you can enjoy the rural atmosphere. Gifu city has a beautiful river 'Nagara river' and Mt.Kinka which has Gifu castle on the top. You can go up the mountain on foot or use a ropeway. The view from Gifu castle is so fantastic. At the foot of the mountain , there are many places to visit such as parks, a temple having a big image of Buddha, and a street preserving the historic atmosphere. At Nagara River, you can enjoy seeing a traditional way of fishing ‘cormorant fishing’ which is thought to have started 1300 years ago. Many cafes have unique service called 'morning service' in Gifu along with Aichi In the morning (until about ten thirty or eleven) when you order a cup of tea or coffee, they serve toast and salad ! Near Gifu park , you can find a nice Japanese style cafe where you enjoy good coffee and seeing a Japanese style garden. Seki city is a small city but so famous for its cutlery. At Japanese sword museum in Seki, you can see authentic Japanese swords! Mino city next to Seki city is well known for its hand made Japanese paper 'Hon minoshi' designated as intangible cultural asset by UNESCO . Until recently it was not easy to guide guests because of COVID-19 pandemic; however the situation is getting better. Some strict rules about COVID-19 have been lifted. Please visit Gifu. I am looking forward to seeing you. Please feel free to ask me when you need information about Gifu. Thank you for reading my introduction.                                                                                                                                 

Shimizu Tour Guide - Sayori H.

Sayori H.

5.00 / 5
(2 reviews)

Hello, I can show you the real Japan. You can taste, see and feel the country. I'd like to show the beautiful culture for you to experience. I can organize the day tour from Shimizu port for Cruise customers. Tea ceremony, strawberry picking experience, anything you are interested, I would love to help you plan your tour. I can communicate in both English and Japanese. I look forward to welcoming people from different parts of the world. Thank you                                                                                                                                 

Shiga Tour Guide - Koichi W.

Koichi W.

4.94 / 5
(51 reviews)

Hi! I'm Koichi. I was born in Osaka, I studied in Kyoto when I was a university student. Now I live in Shiga next to Kyoto. I am a national government licensed tour guide. I have been guiding about 160 groups over the past twelve months. I usually guide my customers mainly in Kansai region including Kyoto, Nara, Osaka, Kobe and Shiga by public transportation systems. Well, I am curious about Japanese history, especially the history of Japan's ancient times since I was raised next to the world biggest mausoleum of the ancient Emperor called "Nintoku" in Sakai city Osaka which has just become one of the world cultural heritage sites. I dug out some ancient earthen ware vessels around there when I was a primary school student like the adventure archaeologist “Indiana Jones" (It’s our secret!!). That was my hobby. Now, one of my hobbies is outdoor activities such as mountaineering, kayaking, skiing and others. So I would like to take you to some good places where you can enjoy Japanese unique nature. I love to guide foreign visitors from all over the world. I think it is my calling or heavenly given job. Let's go and enjoy together! I hope to see you soon.                                                                                                                                 

Okinawa Main Island Tour Guide - Tateo U.

Tateo U.

4.99 / 5
(68 reviews)

My name is Tateo. I am officially registerd English tour guide and introducing about Okinawa's history,culture, and nature.I am elderly person but have gone through lots of expericences that happened during US occupation after WW2. For the example, change of monetary system(US dollar to Yen),Change of traffic regulation(driving vehicle from right to left).The reversion of Okinawa to main land Japan was biggest historical event.The US administered Okinawa for 27 years. As a result, thing were Americanized in many aspects. Historically, Okinawa was once independent nation until 1872.During Kingdum era, Okinawa actively traded with China, South Asia Countries, Korea, and Japan. In the end, our culture is quite differ much from main land Japan. For instance, architectural technique, daily customs, and culture are also unique. Okinawa is the only prefecture belong to subtropical climate zone. Even winter time, it's neither hot nor cold. People can enjoy marine sport all through the year.Canoeing, Kayaking, Diving, and Snorkeling are popular. Besides, beatiful white sand beaches and attractive coastline are abundant. Green sea water and blue sky have been lured people from all over the world. Traditional music and dance are worth seeing. Please visit Okinawa and enjoy extraordinary trip. I will be looking forward to seeing you soon.                                                                                                                                  

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