Our guides' experience, dedication, and enthusiasm make them ideal ambassadors for your destination. They chart the course, finesse the details, and speak the language (English, as well as the local language). They also possess a truly rare skill, knowing when to let serendipity and inspiration take the lead.
Kana Hattori was born in Nagoya, raised in Kobe, and studied in Kyoto and the United States. A student of the traditional Tea Ceremony and the philosophy of Zen, living in the moment has been always a core tenet of her life. Kana loves to sing, regularly giving concerts, and is passionate about Japanese traditional culture. She looks forward to sharing her extensive knowledge with our guests through her guiding.
Originally from Nagano, Fumiko Koike has a degree in English literature and lived in Australia after being employed in a Japanese stockbrokerage firm. Earning a teaching certificate, Fumiko taught Japanese language and culture to Australian high school students and continues to teach English to Japanese, both young and old. Through her experience in Australia, she came to be interested in introducing Japanese culture to the people of various countries.
Miho Nakamasu was born and raised in Saitama and although her family was not interested in travelling, she was, planning her first tour at the age of 11 to Tokyo Disneyland! She has lived in the United States (as an exchange student before studying comparative cultures at university), Hong Kong, and Malaysia, and has led tour Japanese tour groups throughout Europe, South America, and Africa. Returning to Japan full time to raise her twins, she became a licensed National Guide and has since been able to live her dream of introducing her home country to visitors with all her heart and soul.
Although born and raised in Tokyo, Masayo Uchimoto is intimately familiar with western Japan, especially the Kyoto and Osaka areas, where she currently lives. A valued member of the Sagano guiding group, Uchimoto-san is not just a wonderful guide, she also enjoys meeting new people and providing them with memorable experiences.
Kaoru Tejima was born in Kyoto, moved to Osaka, and, after 10 years living in London acting as a tourist, student, amateur flautist, and Japanese language tutor, she returned to Japan and currently lives in Nara. She has been guiding on a volunteer and professional basis for many years and considers the revered Tea Ceremony a valued hobby. In addition, she continues to teach Japanese and enjoys Latin dance.
Born on the island of Kyushu, Japan, Kozue Hisaoka lived in the United States as an exchange student in high school and now resides in Tokyo. Kozue managed to plan and execute an impressive around-the-world trip with her family, fulfilling her passion for travel and exploring the cultures (and cuisine, especially!) outside her native Asia. When not introducing the nature and culture of Japan to visitors through her guiding, she enjoys cooking, cycling, gardening, and flower arranging.
Yoko Ozawa has lived all over the world, including years spent in Australia where she taught Japanese language and culture to local students. She has also lived in the UK and the US. Her many experience taught her the importance of understanding not only the differences but also the similarities between Japanese and Western cultures, a topic she is passionate about sharing with her guests when guiding.