The Perfect Itinerary

When planning a holiday itinerary, how do you go about it?  What do you include and what do you leave out?  Do you run around trying to fit in everything, take each day as it comes or have a mix of both?  Especially when you only have a limited amount of time.
Because I’ve been to Japan before I had a pretty good idea of the things I might like to do again and the things I wanted to do last time but didn’t get around to.  I definitely didn’t spend enough time shopping last time (I didn’t buy any clothes!  Can you believe that?). I didn’t bring back anything quirky. I didn’t try Kyoto’s specialty Tempura or Tokyo sushi. I didn’t get to go for a Sumida River boat ride or see the Imperial Palace. I didn’t go to Golden Gai.
I know I want to get around by myself as much as possible, except for where a tour stands out as something I wouldn’t do by myself or where there would be a benefit to being guided by an ‘insider’.  So I think I have a good mix of tours and solo time and hopefully I have completed the ultimate itinerary for my trip.
“You will never get this day back again, so go out there and see everything you want, take all the photos you can, do something out of your comfort zone, shop up a storm, engage with other people and taste all sorts of foods.  Most of all – don’t be shy”
The main thing I didn’t do enough of last time, was taking photos – no photos of vending machines, not enough streetscapes, no quirky people.  I guess I was pretty busy looking at maps to make sure we were going in the right direction, but I know that a lot of it comes down to me being shy.  So I’m either going to have to down a few drinks before I go out (thank goodness for vending machines) or learn a few phrases that allow me to engage with people a little more (or maybe a mixture of both).
I can visualise everything in my head and am feeling comfortable with the itinerary I have put together, but I just hope I don’t freak out when I get there and that I remember to make the most of every day. 

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