Walk Japan provides authentic and enjoyable tours to discover Japan, its people, society and culture. Beginning in 1992 with our innovative and best-selling Nakasendo Way tour, we were the first to successfully introduce the real Japan, geographically and culturally, that often remains inaccessible for most visitors to the country. Since then, Walk Japan has created more original tours throughout Japan and been widely recognised for its work, including selection by National Geographic as one of the 200 Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth.
Operator Type Local Specialist
Based In Japan
Specialization Walking Tours
A typical Walk Japan Tour Leader is aged 30-45, holding, at a minimum, an undergraduate-university degree and speak English at native or very high level. All our Tour Leaders have long experience in Japan and are proficient in the Japanese language. Our Tour Leaders are not traditional tour guides in the sense that they do little else besides lead tours: all have successful parallel or previous careers in journalism, translation, teaching, business, media, agriculture, social activity and academia amongst other occupations, adding a great deal to the quality of a Walk Japan tour.
The concept of vegetarianism and other dietary requirements is, contrary to popular belief, not widely understood in Japan. Specifically, the concept of strict vegetarianism and veganism until previously existed only at Buddhist temples, and this has only started to change recently. Our policy is to inform the accommodations and restaurants, who will then do their utmost to cater to requirements. Sometimes certain items will be substituted for those suitable for vegetarians and vegans, and sometimes this may not be possible. That said, meals on tour are usually very substantial: served in the multi-course style and made up of a large variety of dishes, many of which are suitable for vegetarians and to some extent, vegans. Almost all stock contains animal products, and vegetables, if prepared as tempura, will be fried in the same oil as meat and fish. Fish features quite heavily in Japanese meals, especially in the form of fish stock, which is used in most soups and sauces, while meat dishes are usually a lesser feature. If you would prefer to avoid eating these dishes, this is not a problem, and indeed not all dishes are not cooked in fish broth. If you are unsure as to what to avoid, your tour leader will be able to advise. In summary: because of the nature of food provision in Japan, we cannot absolutely guarantee to provide vegetarian, vegan, kosher or other specific meals. However, we do endeavour to cater wherever possible to individual requirements, and previous participants with similar food requirements have professed to have enjoyed our tours and the food on them. If you are particularly concerned about the food on tour, we recommend bringing some supplementary items just in case.
The majority of the nights on our tours is spent in Japanese accommodation, where meals, especially dinner, are nearly always Japanese. Breakfasts are usually Japanese but, depending on the establishment, a simple, western-style meal may be offered. Most accommodation will also provide coffee and/or English-style tea after a Japanese breakfast. On the nights when we dine out in restaurants, our meals are mostly Japanese but usually more eclectic in nature with the provision of some western-style dishes. Please note that the actual number of nights in Japanese accommodation varies from tour to tour. Details can be found in each tour’s itinerary section.
Our customers typically include couples and solo travellers ranging in age from mid-30s to mid-70s but also include younger and sometimes older people. They hail from many countries not limited to Australia, the USA, Singapore and the UK. If not retired, their occupations are many and varied. Regardless of the make up of a tour, we find the groups come together very well with plenty of interesting conversations not only about Japan but also on many other topics and many a friendship has been made.