How to Get to Zenko-ji
Whether you are staying in Nagano City or just passing through, Zenko-ji is accessible on foot, by public transport or taxi. The temple’s convenient location in Nagano City makes it the perfect destination to combine with other popular attractions. Most visitors will begin at Nagano Station.
For visitors starting their journey to Zenko-ji outside of Nagano City, please also refer to our ‘How to Get to Nagano Ctiy’ page for directions from other cities and locations.
Walking to the temple is an enjoyable way to take in the atmosphere of the city by following the historic ‘Omotesando’ or ‘Pilgrims Way’ from the station up to Zenko-ji. To do so, exit the station via the Zenko-ji Exit and cross the traffic lights directly in front of you. Once over the road, walk to your right and you will see a road on your left, with a 7-11 and Starbucks on opposite sides. Walk along this road and once at the end turn right. You are now on the Omotesando which leads directly to the temple. This historic thoroughfare includes many shops, restaurants, cafés and more making the 1.6km / 20 minute stroll to the temple an enjoyable way to approach the famous temple.
By Bus or Taxi
From Nagano Station you can also take the bus, train or private taxi. To use the bus, exit the station via the Zenko-ji Exit and head to bus stop no.1 on your left. A one-way fare costs JPY150 – purchased on the bus – and takes around 5 to 7 minutes. Disembark when you hear the driver announce the Zenko-ji stop. Taxis are also available from the station. Again, exit via the Zenko-ji Exit and you will see the taxi stand on your far left.
A good option for visitors purchasing the Snow Monkey Pass, the temple can be reached via Gondo Station when coming from Nagano Station, the monkey park or any other destination on the Nagano Dentetsu (Nagaden) train line.
To access the Nagaden line, exit the station via the Zenko-ji Exit and head down the escalator on the right. Once at the bottom, head to your left and you will shortly see the Nagaden ticket window. Snow Monkey Passes and train tickets can be purchased at this window with the platform accessible via the same spot.
For visitors heading to Zenko-ji from Nagano Station or on the way back from the monkey park or other stops on the line, disembark at Gondo Station. At Gondo, exit the ticket gates and go to your right and up the stairs. This will bring you to Gondo Dori, a covered shopping street. Walk to your right and follow the covered street until it ends at the Omotesando. Turn right and follow the street to the temple – from the station, approximately 10 minute walk.
From the Jigokudani Monkey Park, Obuse and Suzaka
Visitors using the train to access the monkey park will do so via Yudanaka Station. From Yudanaka, take the train to Gondo Station and follow the directions above. All services – both local and limited express – stop at Gondo Station along with Obuse and Suzaka.
Both Obuse and Suzaka are enjoyable morning or afternoon destinations and can be easily combined with visits to the monkey and/or Zenko-ji.
From the other locations outside of Nagano
To reach the park from all other destinations will require you to come via Nagano Station. To do so, please refer to our ‘How to Get to Nagano City’ page and once in Nagano, follow the directions above.