How to Get to Toyama
As a stop on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line running from Tokyo to Kanazawa, Toyama Station is a convenient point from where to explore Central Japan. Located nearby the popular Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route and as an access point to Japan’s north coast including the beautiful Noto Peninsula, Toyama has a lot of offer. On this page you will find the following information:
Located nearby the popular destination of Kanazawa, Toyama tends to be overlooked by international visitors who flock to its more famous neighbour. Visitors who do make the effort to head to Toyama discover an energetic, modern city with lots to offer starting with its fantastic seafood. The topography of Toyama Bay creates a natural fish tank, as the sea floor drops away sharply, creating a submerged canyon which forms a natural boundary for sea life. Nutrients wash down from the North Japan Alps creating bountiful fishing grounds which feed the nearby coastal markets.
For visitors heading to the Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route, Toyama is the most convenient access point from the western side of the mountain range, while the popular historic old town of Takayama sits to the south, readily accessible using the Limited Express ‘Hida’ service. Nestled between the coast and Japan’s highest mountain range, Toyama has plenty to offer.
WHERE IS TOYAMA?
Toyama is located on Japan’s north coast, around 400KM / 6-hours to the north-west of Tokyo. Despite being located at quite some distance from the capital, as a stop on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line running from Tokyo to Kanazawa, Toyama Station is easy to reach – taking around 2.5 hours using the train. Located only a short distance from Kanazawa, Toyama is also within easy reach of more distant cities including Kyoto and Osaka thanks to the Limited Express Thunderbird service which runs to Kanazawa Station, from where its an easy and quick onward journey to Toyama. Best-known for its outstanding seafood – considered some of the best in Japan – Toyama is a great destination for foodies while also a convenient launching point from where to head to the nearby Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route, the historic old town of Takayama and explore the many attractions of Japan’s highest mountain range, the North Alps.
HOW TO GET TO TOYAMA
In this section you will find information on how to reach Toyama from the following starting points:
NAGANO CITY – JIGOKUDANI MONKEY PARK – KANAZAWA – KARUIZAWA – TOKYO – NARITA AIRPORT – HANEDA AIRPORT – TATEYAMA-KUROBE ALPINE ROUTE – SHIRAKAWA-GO & GOKAYAMA – TAKAYAMA – KAMIKOCHI – NAGOYA – KYOTO & OSAKA
We endeavour to keep this information as up-to-date as possible and in recognition that most international visitors will be using the train network to move around Japan, most directions are for using the trains. If there is alternative option i.e. express or local bus, that is notably faster or economical, we also include that information.
FROM NAGANO CITY / between 45 to 65 minutes
Nagano City is the most convenient access point for destinations in northern Nagano Prefecture. Toyama Station and Nagano Station are both stops on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line along with the following station`:
Tokyo / Ueno / Omiya / Kumagaya / Honjo-Waseda / Takasaki / Annaka-Haruna / Karuizawa / Sakudaira / Ueda / Nagano / Iiyama / Joetsu-Myoko / Itoigawa / Kurobe-Unazukionsen / Toyama / Shin-Takaoka / Kanazawa
There are four services on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line – the Kagayaki, Hakutaka, Asama and Tsurugi – however only the Kagayaki and Hakutaka services connect Toyama and Nagano. Using the Kagayaki, the journey from Nagano to Kanazawa takes 45 minutes / JPY7040 or 65 minutes / JPY6710 using the Hakutaka. For the daily train schedule, see our ‘Hokuriku Shinkansen Timetable’ page.
FROM THE JIGOKUDANI MONKEY PARK
To reach Toyama from the Jigokudani Monkey Park takes time but is relatively straight-forward when done via Nagano Station. From the park, you have the option of: 1. a direct express bus from the park to Nagano Station or 2. a local bus to Yudanaka Station followed by an express train to Nagano Station. Starting from the park, the express bus costs JPY1500 each way and takes 55 minutes to reach Nagano Station. In comparison, taking the local bus from the park to Yudanaka Station followed by the train, takes 15 minutes and costs JPY310 before the limited express train to Nagano takes 45 minutes and costs JPY1290 – a total journey of around 60 to 70 minutes and costing JPY1600. Once at Nagano Station, simply transfer to the shinkansen bound for Toyama.
FROM KANAZAWA / 20 to 25 minutes
Kanazawa is the northern terminus of the Hokuriku Shinkansen line, and as such, it’s quick and easy to move between Kanazawa and Toyama, From Kanazawa Station, take the Hakutaka or Tsurugi services – 20 to 25 minutes / JPY2860.
FROM KARUIZAWA / 90 to 95 minutes
One of Japan’s most popular mountain resorts towns, Karuizawa is also a stop on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line. To reach Toyama, take the shinkansen from Karuizawa Station to Toyama Station – 90 to 95 minutes / JPY9370 and follow the directions above.
FROM TOKYO / between 155 to 165 minutes
Most international visitors will spend at least some time in Tokyo during their visit to Japan, from where, it’s a easy journey to Toyama. Tokyo Station is the southern terminus of the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line, making it easy and convenient to travel from the capital to Toyama. Using the Hakutaka, the journey from Tokyo to Toyama takes 155 to 165 minutes / JPY12,430. For further details, see our ‘Hokuriku Shinkansen’ page and ‘Hokuriku Shinkansen Timetable’ page.
FROM NARITA AIRPORT / between 4 to 5 hours
Toyama can be reached in a two-stage journey from Narita via Tokyo Station. Two rapid train services connect Narita Airport to central Tokyo, from where you can use the Hokuriku Shinkansen line to reach Toyama.
1 / the Narita Express (NEX) runs from Narita to Tokyo Station. It takes 55 minutes to reach Tokyo Station (depending on the service) and costs JPY3070 with trains departing every 30 to 60 minutes. Once at Tokyo Station, follow the directions above.
2 / the Keisei Skyliner runs from Narita to Ueno Station. It takes between 40 to 55 minutes to reach Ueno Station and costs JPY2520 with trains departing every 30 to 40 minutes. Once at Ueno Station, transfer to the Hokuriku Shinkansen bound for Toyama.
FROM HANEDA AIRPORT / between 3.5 to 4.5 hours
Toyama can be reached in a two-stage journey from Haneda via Tokyo Station. Two train services connect Haneda Airport to central Tokyo, from where you can use the Hokuriku Shinkansen line to reach Toyama.
1 / the Tokyo Monorail connects the airport to Tokyo Station via Hamamatsucho Station in around 30 minutes. From the airport take the monorail to Hamamatsucho Station (20 min/JPY170) and then switch to the JR Yamanote Line or JR Keihin-Tohoku/Negishi Line Rapid bound for Tokyo Station (5 min/JPY160) – a total journey of around 30-minutes / JPY660 one-way. Once at Tokyo Station, follow the directions above.
2 / the Keikyu Railway connects the airport to Tokyo Station via Shinagawa Station. Take the Keikyu Airport bound to Shinagawa Station (approx.11 min/JPY300) and transfer to the Yamanote Line bound for Osaki to reach Tokyo Station – 13 min / JPY170 or a total journey of around 30 min / JPY470. Once at Tokyo Station, follow the directions above onto Toyama.
FROM THE TATEYAMA-KUROBE ALPINE ROUTE / approx. 60 minutes
The Toyama Chiho train line connects Tateyama Station – gateway to the Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route – with Dentetsu-Toyama Station, a brief walk from Toyama Station. Taking approximately 60 minutes, regular services run to and from Tateyama.
FROM SHIRAKAWA-GO & GOKAYAMA / approx. 60 minutes
The Nohi Bus company also operates several daily services from Ogimachi – the main village of the Shirakawa-go and Gokayama grouping – to Toyama Station. This bus service also continues on to nearby Takayama. It takes approximately 60 minutes to reach Toyama from Ogimachi. Adults should expect to pay around JPY1730 one-way or JPY3120 return. See the following page for information including timetables and fares to and from Toyama.
FROM TAKAYAMA / approx. 90 minutes
Takayama is one of Central Japan’s most popular destinations and located with easy reach of Toyama. Most visitors choose to use the Limited Express ‘Hida’ on the Takayama Main Line from Takayama Station to Toyama. Covered by the Japan Rail Pass, this train line is particularly beautiful making the journey itself part of the experience. Taking approximately 90 minutes, there are only two or three convenient services each day and the line is popular with tourists, so if you have the chance to book ahead it can be helpful.
FROM KAMIKOCHI / between 3 to 4 hours
To reach Toyama from Kamikochi you must first head to Takayama. From the Kamikochi Bus Terminal, take the bus to the Hirayu Onsen Bus Terminal – 25 to 30 minutes – and then switch to the bus headed to Takayama – another 60 minutes. See the following page for information including timetables and fares to and from Takayama. Once in Takayama, follow the directions above.
FROM NAGOYA / approx. 4 hours
Nagoya is the largest city in Central Japan. The Limited Express ‘Hida’ service runs from Nagoya Station to Toyama. It takes approximately 4 hours and costs JPY7260. This is a beautiful train journey through the forests and mountains of Central Japan. The train stops at Takayama, making it worthwhile to spend at least one night in the historic town from where you can also easily visit Shirakawa-go and Gokayama along with Kamikochi, before heading onto Toyama.
FROM KYOTO & OSAKA / between 125 to 155 minutes
From Kyoto and Osaka, take the Limited Express ‘Thunderbird’ service to Kanazawa Station and then switch to the Hokuriku Shinkansen bound for Toyama. Frequent services run between the cities and involve the following travel times and costs: 150 to 155 minutes / JPY7260 from Osaka and 125 minutes / JPY6490 from Kyoto. Once in Kanazawa, follow the directions above to reach Toyama.
25 THINGS TO DO AROUND TOYAMA & WHERE TO STAY
Though easy to get to using the Shinkansen / ‘Bullet Train’ network, the port city of Toyama is often over-looked by international visitors. That’s a mistake. Located nearby Toyama Bay, the city and region are known throughout Japan for its fantastic seafood – best enjoyed at a coastal market or at one of the city’s many restaurants. The city itself is modern and energetic and an ideal launching point from where to access the Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route, Takayama and the North Alps. For tips and suggestions of what’s on offer, see our ’25 Things to Do Around Toyama’ page.
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Central Japan offers many, many reasons to visit. Operating all year round, we are Nagano’s No.1-rated tour and charter operator, offering a range of services including group tours, private tours and charters. We can arrange transport including a private vehicle and driver, to transport you to, from and between any regional destination including Toyama and beyond.
Our drivers and vehicles are fully certified, allowing us to transport you to and from your preferred destinations in combination with any activity that suits your schedule. All vehicles are fitted with a protective screen – separating the driver from passenger and luggage area – and our drivers wear protective masks, allowing you to move between your destinations in comfort and safety.
We can arrange both private tours with an English-speaking guide or a private charter, including a private vehicle and driver but without a guide. We’d love to be part of your adventure in Central Japan and help you discover even more!
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