I consider that when I “Googled” “photo tours in Japan” it was one of my luckiest days as it gave me the details for one of the best tours I have ever heard about – well, that I could afford at least. Also who wants to take a tour with a foreign based tour company when you can do it with a home grown Australian one who knows exactly what Australians want and like?
Originally I had the thought that we might be able to combine a visit to our grandson who is studying furniture design in Japan with something close to our hearts, photography. The above tour more than filled the bill and had been devised by our Tour “Master”, Julius Pang who turned out to be just as organised as a Japan Railways timetable but with a capacity for flexibility as well. Throw in a cheerful, endlessly patient, unflappable nature and you have the perfect tour leader.
I must admit that sometimes during a 10-14 hour day we would feel tired and slightly petulant but we knew that it was Julius’ desire for us to see and experience as much of the wonder and beauty of Springtime Japan as possible. We must have seen and experienced things that the average Japanese only dream about or perhaps never knew existed and we owe it all to Julius and his experience of living in Japan plus his talent for co-ordination of all manner of transport and timetables.
Although the exact bloom time of the Japanese Sakura or Cherry Blossom is totally dependant on the fickle weather, it only lasts for approximately 10 days and so must change from year to year. But somehow Julius managed to begin our tour at the time of partial bloom, extending to full bloom and then the post bloom period as well when the Sakura petals fall to the ground like falling snow. We saw it all and it was magical.
A huge bonus was that Julius only takes tours with a maximum of 8 participants which ensures that there is a minimum of stress for everyone. He always knew where to go at the best possible time to photograph something of wonder and beauty, eg castles, temples, gardens, streets, canals, architecture et al.
I’m sure that his Autumn tour would be just as fascinating and enthralling as the Spring version and we hope to undertake this as well in the not too distant future.
Thank you Julius, we will always be eternally grateful for your good nature and assistance.