Makoon is unbelievable! As you might expect, he’s extremely knowledgeable about Kyoto and runs a very professional operation. He’s a tour guide trainer, so he really sets a high bar, and his English is flawless as he studied and lived in Canada.
Some things you might not expect: some tours with other guides might be a bit stiff, with a lot of canned knowledge and set routes. Makoon however, is accommodating and likeable. He’s very genuine and everything feels spontaneous. He easily handled questions about a range of topics unrelated to the tour. You can tell he’s sincerely interested in many subjects and has much more than surface-level, academic knowledge.
In terms of itinerary, we did the Fushini Inari shrine, followed by Higashiyama, then Gion, before ending around Nishiki. It was 5 hours, a nice mix of the old and the new, the well-traveled and the underground. Despite doing so much, it didn’t feel rushed at all. Makoon knew that Fushimi Inari would be packed so made sure we started that early. I highly recommend doing a tour with Makoon.