How to Get to Yuzawa
Yuzawa – sometimes referred to as ‘Echigo-Yuzawa’ – is a popular hot spring town located in Niigata. Best-known as a winter destination due to the surrounding ski resorts, Yuzawa is easy to access using the Joetsu Shinkansen running from Tokyo to Niigata via Echigo-Yuzawa Station.
Yuzawa has long been known for its heavy snowfall, and as such, is traditionally at its busiest during winter. Over recent years however an all-year-round to events including Japan’s largest music festival, Fuji Rock, and the increasingly popular Echigo Tsumari Art Field draw more and more visitors to the region, most of whom do so via Echigo-Yuzawa Station.
To discover just what’s waiting for you in the area, please refer to our ’15 Things to Do in Yuzawa & Niigata’ page.
We hope that the following information is of assistance when planning your visit to Yuzawa and Central Japan. Echigo-Yuzawa Station can be reached from the following:
From Nagano Station, take the Hokuriku Shinkansen to Takasaki Station – 45 to 50 minutes – and transfer to the Joetsu Shinkansen bound for Echigo-Yuzawa – 30 minutes – a total journey time of between 80 to 110 / JPY8250 (depending on the specific schedule).
From the Jigokudani Monkey Park
To reach Yuzawa from the Jigokudani Monkey Park is relatively straight-forward. 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 Nagaden local bus from the park to Yudanaka Station – 15 min / JPY310 – followed by the Nagano Dentetsu Line to Nagano Station – 45 min / JPY1290 = a total journey of around 60 to 70 minutes and costing JPY1600.
Once at Nagano Station, follow the directions above to reach Yuzawa.
For visitors heading to Yuzawa directly from Takasaki Station, it’s a simple and quick journey – 25 to 30 minutes / JPY3560.
For information regarding how to reach Tokyo from either Narita Airport or Haneda Airport, please refer to the relevant page.
Niigata Station, take the Joetsu Shinkansen bound for Echigo-Yuzawa Station – 40 to 50 minutes / JPY4950.
From Kanazawa & Toyama
As stops on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line, reaching Echigo-Yuzawa from both Kanazawa and Toyama is straight-forward, via Takasaki Station.
From Kanazawa Station, take the Hokuriku Shinkasen to Takasaki and transfer to the Joetsu Shinkansen bound for Echigo-Yuzawa – 160 to 200 minutes / JPY14,640 (depending on which service you choose).
From Toyama Station, also take the Hokuriku Shinkansen and transfer to the Joetsu Shinkansen at Takasaki, bound for Echigo-Yuzawa – 145 to 170 minutes / JPY13,330 (depending on which service you choose).
To reach Yuzawa from Matsumoto requires visitors to come through Nagano. From Matsumoto Station, take the Limited Express Shinano to Nagano Station. There are many services every day including the Limited Express Wide View Shinano – taking around 50 minutes / JPY2370.
Once in Nagano, follow the directions above to reach Echigo-Yuzawa.
Reaching Echigo-Yuzawa from Takayama takes time and is most easily done via Toyama and Takasaki.
For visitors heading to Yuzawa from Kamikochi, take the bus from the Kamikochi Bus Terminal to Shin-shimashima Station and transfer to the Kamikochi Line bound for Matsumoto Station – this takes around 2 hours.
Once in Matsumoto, follow the directions above to reach Nagano and onto Echigo-Yuzawa.
From Shirakawa-go & Gokayama
Visitors travelling from the villages of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama to Echigo-Yuzawa have the option to do so via Toyama, Kanazawa and Takayama. We recommend doing so via Toyama.
To do so, take the bus from Ogimachi – the main village of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama – to Toyama Station – around 60 minutes / JPY1730. Please see the following page for information including timetables and fares to and from Toyama.
Once in Toyama, follow the directions above to reach Echigo-Yuzawa.
From the Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route
When heading to Echigo-Yuzawa from the Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route, it will be most convenient to ascend on the Nagano-side of the mountain range to Ogizawa Station. From Ogizawa Station, the Alpico Bus to Nagano Station – approximately 100 minutes journey time. Once at Nagano, follow the directions above to reach Echigo-Yuzawa.
While we recommended following the directions above to reach Yuzawa via Ogizawa and Nagano, it is also possible when coming down the Toyama-side of the Alpine Route. For those who choose to do so, take the Toyama Chiho Railway from Tateyama Station to Toyama and transfer to the Hokuriku Shinkansen at Toyama Station, bound for Takasaki. Once at Takasaki, follow the directions above to reach Yuzawa.
Once at Tokyo Station, follow the directions above and transfer to the Joetsu Shinkansen bound for Echigo-Yuzawa.
From Kyoto & Osaka
Both Kyoto Station and Shin-Osaka Station are also stops on the Tokaido Shinkansen line, making it easy to get to Yuzawa. The journey takes around 130 minutes / JPY13,320 from Kyoto and 150 minutes / JPY13,870 from Shin-Osaka.
Once in Tokyo, follow the directions above and transfer to the Joetsu Shinkansen bound for Echigo-Yuzawa.
The Option of a Private Charter or Tour
Based in Nagano City, we operate a range of vehicles that can be privately chartered to transport you to any regional destination, including the Jigokudani Monkey Park.
We can also provide charters to any destination, with customised itineraries to suit your travel needs and interests. We have the expertise and experience to help you get the most out of your time in the region, including transport to and from the monkey park along with any regional destination.
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 interests and schedule.
For visitors in winter, we can provide pick-up and drop-off at any regional ski resort, including transport of ski and snowboard gear
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 that experience and help you discover even more!
Why choose us?
Awarded a 2019 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Award for our 1-Day Snow Monkeys, Zenko-ji Temple & Sake Tour – recognised as one of the Top 10 Experiences in Japan – we have the local knowledge and experience to help you get the most out of your time in Nagano.
Got a question about visiting Central Japan? Feel free to contact us at email@example.com and let’s get planning together!