TravelerReviews

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun - Northbound

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harttauck

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

It provided an insight into the life and culture of the Japanese people. The hotels were excellent especially the Palace Hotel. The L'Austral was a disappointment! Small cabins & poor food! Not Tauck standard!!! Many excursions were fillers especially the "Flying Squirrel Temple and Naoshima. (Suggestion: Do your own itinerary on this trip.)

Most Memorable Moment:

Tokyo - It is a vibrant city -- we spent 4 days pre-trip & 2 days with Tauck at the Palace Hotel. Highlights were the Imperial Gardens, Nikko National Park, Mt. Fuji, Fish Market, Edo-Tokyo Museum, outstanding restaurants, & etc.

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dmh1943

Touring Japan

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

Trip was wonderful. Japan is an interesting country and the people are so nice and respectful. We were very surprised at how clean the country is. Our guide was fabulous and the touring spots were great.

Most Memorable Moment:

The most memorable moment was the young children that entertained us on the ship. They are delightful and very talented.

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jbgrimm

Japan

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

The cruise ship held 200 or so guests of which included three Tauck groups. Considering the individual tour choices and number of people involved it was difficult to get to know people well. Our guide was excellent. The one complaint I have is Tauck’s apparent policy change about off ship luncheons. Historically Tauck paid for a beer at lunch.

Most Memorable Moment:

We greatly enjoyed the Japanese people. We had an enjoyable visit to a Japanese high school. The kids were delightful.

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Voyager2018

Thoughts on Cruising the land of hte Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

The Tauck Tour, Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun, was an excellent tour. Tauck laid out a schedule that seemed to accommodate everyone. I especially liked the choices of the places we visited,including the afternoon lunches at selected local restaurants, and the mix of historic sites, art museums, gardens and shopping.

Most Memorable Moment:

Wanted to write more on pros and cons but no space on this review form. Too bad. Maybe on another site.

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Peter and Carol Karas

Japan Small Cruise

 

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

This was an excellent trip. The pace was fast paced, and we got to see a lot and get a wonderful appreciation of Japan. The two hotels Ritz Carlton Osaka and the Palace Tokyo were superb. The ship was fine a bit in need of some sprucing up..somewhat tired. The service by the ships staff was good. Food above average. Tauck Directors over the top.

Most Memorable Moment:

The entire trip was great..We really felt like we left Japan truly understanding the culture and the Japanese way of life.

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Marian Siegel

The Land of the Rising Sun -- Almost

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

This land/sea experience in Japan was not complete because it omitted the iconic Mt. Fuji and Hakone with its famous outdoor art museum. Hotel rooms at the Conrad in Osaka and the Mandarin Oriental in Tokyo were superb; mediocre food and cabins on the boat L'Astral were not up to Tauck's standards of excellence, surely disappointing!

Most Memorable Moment:

Hiroshima and the Nagasaki Museum with their vivid remains and omissions in history were positively shocking!

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lindashu

May be our Best Trip Ever!

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

The Emperor's Palace. Hiroshima - the destroyed city but also the Okonami momuren = crazy noodle pancake lunch. Naoshima, the art island .. we needed days there but had only a few hours. On Kagoshima, watching the volcano erupting from my cabin and later hiking below the volcano! Japanese gardens, all different. Shinto shrines + Buddhist Temples.

Most Memorable Moment:

Loved the private blessing ceremony at the Shinto shrine. Seeing the families with their new babies and sharing a very unique and sacred Japanese event. The entire trip was one unique experience after another..all different, all fascinating.

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JRanieri

somewhat disappointing

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

not up to the Tauck standards that I am familiar with. food experience on board were not pleasant. one had to make reservations for buffet dinner way in advance. the wine pairing dinner was awful:the starter, sashimi was so fishy that most people left it untouched. The staff at the front desk was not friendly,especially with old people.

Most Memorable Moment:

-not enough time in Kyoto, missed many places that were recommended by friends. -drum-playing and tea ceremony activities were pathetic -visiting a local high school,directly interact with local people was precious. -the fish market in Busan was impressive (I will recommend Tauck, but not this Japan trip to my friends.)

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GauriWaingankar

Cruising the land of the rising sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

Great itinerary,tour director and cruise director who had great lectures. On board entertainment and origami instruction classes were good. Enjoyed the off shore lunches with local cuisine. Would’ve liked a choice of local cuisine on ships Did not like that the shore excursions were preselected, not by me. Preferred the Danube cruise method 2 days prior.

Most Memorable Moment:

Hard to pick one. Hiroshima Peace Museum, and Adechi gardens

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Iron Mike

Land of the Rising Sun: A great trip but. . . . . .

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

Although this was a well organized and memorable trip in many ways, I thought that it could have been better. We did not visit the Kiyomizu-dera and the Sannenzaka districts of Kyoto. We did not visit Kiyomidzu Temple, a world Heritage site. That was a mistake on many levels. Too much time in Osaka. Wasted time learning how to beat a drum. Silly.

Most Memorable Moment:

Our visit to Sanjusangen do in Kyoto

TAUCK RESPONSE

Thank you for taking the time to write a Trip Review. I have passed along your suggestions to our Operations team who is always looking to make enhancements to our journeys based on feedback from our guests.

-The Tauck Guest Relations Team

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LaVonneDrager

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2018

Again, from the beginning to the end of the trip, everything was excellent! Even the two days of rain and wind! Missed the peak of the Cherry blossoms because they were early this year, but with 600 different varieties of cherry blossoms, did see some gorgeous trees with blossoms! Japan is very clean, very gracious people! L'Austral ship great!

Most Memorable Moment:

Most memorable moment - MANY! I started a day early in Osaka to visit with my exchange student from 43 years ago! Busan, South Korea was most vivid in my mind.

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Jim Hamann

Cruising The Land Of The Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

Good trip with two exceptions. 1)Prestige Cabins on ship (L'Austral)were very small for two persons, ship was several years old in need of refurbishing. Not even close to Tauck standards. 2)Farewell dinner a disaster - 4 groups too many people, New Venue not up to it, No water on table, No open bar, Sat for 45 min before anything, Menu unacceptable

Most Memorable Moment:

Saw Sakurajima Volcano erupt as our ship pulled away. Fabulous gardens at Adachi Art Museum. Awesomeness of Tokyo.

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MarvinZ

very dissapointed

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

After hearing so many good things about Tauck we were looking forward to our trip. Our first stop was the Westin Hotel in Kyoto. It was not the quality of hotel I had heard about from my friends. And when I learned that we were one group of four I knew we had made a mistake. And finally when we boarded L'Aureal, Not enough room left ?!?!?

Most Memorable Moment:

The hotel in Tokyo

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Suedos

Great trip. Ship food needs a lot of help

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

I love Tauck and I love the ship but the food is mediocre and could use a lot of help. This is the fourth time on this ship line and I have decided that we won't use Tauck on a small ship cruise again if they continue to use this line. Japan is the cleanest country I have ever visited The country is magnificent and the people Very friendly

Most Memorable Moment:

The sites at both Atomic bomb museums. The parks surrounding and the displays. It was very emountional. The greenary throughout the country.

TAUCK RESPONSE

I am sorry you were disappointed with the food. I have passed along your comments to our Tauck at Sea team so that they can make sure the ship's dining is up to your standards.

-The Tauck Guest Relations Team

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MeeraBurman

Informative

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

Kyoto was really a beautiful place.The Tauck service was good.The tours all over were good and informative.Sometimes repetitive.The ship was good,some experiences were not so good-aboard the ship.Tokyo was a lovely place as well.The hotels were very good.The venues for the parties were amazing.

Most Memorable Moment:

Seeing the Cherry Blossoms!!Amazing.

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Snookie

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

Tauck has and did make us comfortable in Japan. The L'Austral ship was very comfortable, the crew made sure all was attended to: meals, cabins,itinerary, and overall experiences. Tauck Tour Directors, as always, made our vacation very memorable. We simply recognize our Tour Director as one of the best.

Most Memorable Moment:

All the cities we docked in were amazing because of our Tour Director and local guides. The local guides explained the history of the city and pointed out the current way of life. Japan is truly a fascinating country to visit. Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Korean War Memorial in Busan So. Korea are memorable visits we will never forget.

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AmaryllisWest

An Excellent Sampler for Japan--a Nice Balance of History and Modern Culture

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

Tauck gave a wonderful overview of Japan. We especially enjoyed the Japanese meals, which gave a little window into the culture. Food on L'Austral was average to very good, and the cabins were small but comfortable. The Japanese people we encountered were warm and welcoming. Excursions were great, although a couple seemed like filler.

Most Memorable Moment:

Too many to list, but a highlight was when a homeowner at the Chiran Samurai village spontaneously opened up her home for us. We were both touched and honored. The Adachi Museum of Art and the Edo-Tokyo Museum were both amazing, and worthy of much longer than the limited amounts of time we had to spend on them. We highly recommend this trip!

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AHiatt

My last trip with Tauck

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

This was my husband and my third trip with Tauck and it will probably be our last. The group was much too large. I felt like a sheep constantly being herded about. The tour guide was very nice and accommodating, but I felt that he was constantly speaking down to me. The ship was substandard. Food was below par, cabin was tiny.

Most Memorable Moment:

The most memorable moments were spent away from the tour on our own.

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msov

Japan-Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

We got a very good flavor of Japan's culture and people. We started in Kyoto, a city of many traditions. We then took a cruise and had the opportunity to see many cities in Japan, including the bustling city of Busan, South Korea. We ended our tour in Tokyo, truly one of the world greatest cities. Very cosmopolitan!!!

Most Memorable Moment:

just fascinated by the cleanliness of the country and the overwhelming hospitality of it's people!

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David Jungman

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

An excellent introduction into the history, culture and beauty of Japan. The hotels and food were excellent. The tour director and the local guides were friendly and informative. The cruise ship was good but not great, with small cabins and average to good food. My fellow Taucksters on the bus were friendly, intelligent and punctual!

Most Memorable Moment:

Difficult to say because there were so many great tours, meals and events. However, the floating shrine on Miyajima Island and the welcoming and farewell dinners stand out in my mind.

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Neena Chawla

Cruising the land of the rising sun - southbound

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

Our tour director was exceptional and made every outing special. However, I felt that the ship food could do with a lot of improvement. There should have been some focus on presenting the food of the local area. I also felt that there was too little time spent at some excursions. Some fillers should be taken out -eg. flying squirrel.

Most Memorable Moment:

Lots of interesting sites - but Tokyo was my favorite place.

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PenPen

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

Terrible trip. Poor itinerary. Too much filler time and travel on the bus to and from the ship. Way below Tauck standards. Too much time in Kyoto and too little time in Tokyo. Not enough time at war museums and too much time spent on lunches. Lunch and dinner menus off of the ship stunk!! No choices, all set menus. All were fish meals.

Most Memorable Moment:

Day in South Korea

TAUCK RESPONSE

I am sorry you were disappointed in this journey. I have passed along your comments to our Operations team as they are always looking to make changes to our journeys based on feedback from our guests.

-The Tauck Guest Relations Team

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Harry Haber

Small ships in Japan

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2017

This was my 16th Tauck trip and my 4th Tauck small ship cruise. Although we found Japan to be fascinating and beautiful, the A'ustral was terrible. I respect that the living quarters were small - we expected that. However the meals for a Tauck endorsed cruise and a French ship were horrendous. It's the first time I lost weight on one of these trips

Most Memorable Moment:

We loved the land tours and only wished we could have more lunches or dinners ashore rather than being bussed back for terrible food which also had no relationship to Japan. The few times they served sushi as an appetizer the fish was not fresh.

TAUCK RESPONSE

I am sorry you were disappointed with the food on the L'Austral. I have passed along your comments to our Operations team who is always looking to make sure the experience on our small ships is superb, which includes the dining.

-The Tauck Guest Relations Team

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ToddWalker

Beautiful Country

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: March 2017

This was supposed to be a once in a lifetime trip; however within 48 hours we were already discussing coming back. The beautiful countryside, the friendly people, and the incredible culture has to be experienced to be believed.

Most Memorable Moment:

The beauty of the Black Castle amidst cherry blossoms and the poignant visit to Hiroshima.

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DChung

Cruising the land of the rising sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: March 2017

This was the trip over 50 years in making. You started the perfect itinerary as I have envisioned. I have been in big cities in Japan such as Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka, but always wanted to cruise along the Sedo Naikai. You also included many cities along the way which was certainly an extra bonus. Visiting Busan was good, too.

Most Memorable Moment:

So many but the Black Castle surround with fantastic cherry blossom was breathtaking. We were so lucky to have perfect cherry blossoms. I will remember that for long time.

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Randall and Donna Lau

Fantastic Voyage to A Fascinating Land!

 

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2016

It was a fantastic voyage to and through the Land of the Rising Sun! From the very beginning to the very end, it was a great look at a fascinating people and a beautiful land of contrasts and peace. The people are very polite and friendly, and the food is an experience worth exploring and trying.

Most Memorable Moment:

Wrapping up our trip going northbound and finishing up at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Tokyo was the only way to do this look into Japan.

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Kliu

Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun, April 11th, 2016 – Southbound

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2016

This was my first trip with Tauck, and I was quite pleased by the experience. Our tour director was very attentive and always there checking to make sure everyone was doing well. The local guides were very informative and added greatly to the tour. Also, the information they provided was invaluable when I went off exploring on my own.

Most Memorable Moment:

It is hard to think of the 'most' memorable moment. Kagoshima and Sakurajima at sunset, perhaps. It was quite lovely.

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AEWishard

Seeing Japan from the bus...

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2016

The countryside is gorgeous and we got to appreciate it quite a trip traveling the same roads four times in a day - why return us to the ship for lunch and sentence us to four hours on the bus instead of two? Very disappointing. I paid to experience Japan, not their modes of travel.

Most Memorable Moment:

Falling in love with Tokyo. We snuck off on our own and had lunch at Daigo - a Michelin two star serving Buddhist vegetarian cuisine on the grounds of a temple. Very serene, private rooms, and, of course, delicious.

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DHeath

Review of Land of the Rising Sun

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2016

This trip was interesting but not real enjoyable. Many of the places visited were essentially tourist traps which were way overcrowded. The crowds pushed you along and you could barely see the ground. The hotels were terrific, but the ship experience was poor with second rate food. We will never go on a Ponant ship again.

Most Memorable Moment:

We enjoyed seeing the Hiroshima area and museum. Also going to S. Korea was interesting and memorable.

TAUCK RESPONSE

Thank you for taking the time to write a Trip Review. I have passed along your comments to our Operations team who are always looking for ways to enhance our tours based on feedback from our guests. We hope you will consider travelling with us again in the future.

-The Tauck Guest Relations Team

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Joe Noma

An unique all inclusive cruise

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2015

We have had more than 6 cruises in the past 8 years with other cruise providers but none can match the excellent experience we have had with Tauck approach in removing all the hassles with meticulous details from the first welcoming at the airport. All tours and sightsees were also well planned without tiring the passengers . A most memorable exper

Most Memorable Moment:

Our visit to the Hiroshima Atomic Memorial especially for us who have lost relations in the bombing - extremely moving

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wbarish

The Tauck Cocoon

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2015

We felt well-cared for and safe within the Tauck cocoon. Occasionally it meant that we didn't get as close to the Japanese culture as we would have liked though we were exposed to crafts, music, and once in a while, the Japanese cuisine. The tour is rigorous and should not be taken by those with physical impairments. l'Austral's food is not great.

Most Memorable Moment:

Okonomiyaki lunch was fabulous and authentic.

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DOW

Great experience

Overall Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Verified Review

Travel Date: April 2015

My wife & I, very recently returned from this small ship Japan trip, wanted to share that this was a terrific experience. Japan is a fascinating country & culture (including some unusual food for our Western tastes) that we'd recommend to anyone. I want to make special note of our tour director who was outstanding.

Most Memorable Moment:

We loved the cherry blossoms in Kyoto! And, while I know Tauck will fine tune this trip (we were on the inaugural run), each stop offered great sights & memories (even if a bit more rain than we hoped for)

TAUCK RESPONSE

We are so glad you enjoyed your cruise to the magical country of Japan! Thank you for your patronage.

-The Tauck Guest Relations Team

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