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Katherine Atkinson

I was born in England and raised for most of my life in a tiny village in rural Ireland. Since early childhood I always wanted to see what lay beyond the small area I grew up in, so when the opportunity arose for me to study in Japan, I couldn't pass it up!

Like many people my age I grew up with a mix of media coming from the US, the UK and Japan, and I became fascinated with the images of Japan presented by the movies, books, cartoons and games I consumed in childhood. As a child I imagined Japan to be like one huge metropolis filled with towering silver skyscrapers; the complete opposite of the area I had grown up in!

When I finally arrived in this amazing country I found that it was not nearly as different as I expected - though there were huge metropolitan cities such as Tokyo, I found that most of Japan was quite rural, and these areas and their communities were actually very similar in many ways to those in Ireland! But rather than feel disappointed, I fell in love with the most remote areas of Japan, and becomes truly passionate about this side of the country that visitors rarely see.

I have now lived in Japan for almost a decade, and I hope that I can introduce its most amazing places and experiences to visitors from all over the world!

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"I would say that our biggest speciality is in truly off-the-beaten track locations, which most travelers are not easily able to access. In particular I think everyone here in Kichi Japan has a deep passion for the small communities and unique cultures of the remote islands surrounding mainland Japan, as well as the remote spiritual retreats located deep in the Japanese countryside. "

How did you get involved in travel?

"I have always been passionate about travel, and several years ago I realized that I could make this passion my career. As I am also passionate about Japan and had already lived in Japan for several years, I decided that I wanted to specialize in Japan as a travel destination. "

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"I think this may have been spending the entire night in an 'onsen' (hot spring bath) located on Niijima, a remote island located off the coast of Tokyo. I spent the night with a stunning view of the beach, and gazing at the night sky above me - truly a phenomenal experience!"

Katherine is part of the following groups: Japan Travel Agents
Golden Route Japan
Explore the Golden Route of Japan - 12 Days

Equally known for its vibrant city life and mountainous beauty, Japan offers a well-rounded visit, filled with liveliness, adventure, and variety. On your 12-day journey, you will explore the high-energy tech and fashion trends of Tokyo, enjoy the breathtaking views and temples of Kyoto, and relax at a hot springs retreat in Hakone. Immerse yourself in Japanese culture, complete with the exceptional, authentic dining of Osaka.

The torii gates of the Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto
Classic Highlights of Japan - 14 Days

On this two-week journey to the four corners of Japan's main island, Honshu, you'll have plenty of time to enjoy its unmissable attractions. You'll visit sacred temples and shrines, go bike riding through the countryside, and roam around the capital's most famous neighborhoods. From the modern cities of Tokyo and Hiroshima to the island of Miyajima, the wonders of ancient Kyoto and beyond, there is so much to see, taste, and discover.