Tokyo is a wonderful city with its towering skyscrapers, neon-lit streets, and delicious cuisine. But as much as you love this metropolis, there might come a time when you crave for a change of scenery and a different side of Japan. That's why we've compiled a list of the top easy day trips from Tokyo to help you get away from the hectic pace and busy atmosphere and discover some of the best places to visit in Japan.
There are many trips you can take for a day from Tokyo when you need to find your zen. It's easy to enjoy a traditional onsen, a walk in the mountains or a breathtaking trip to see Mount Fuji. Less than an hour away you can see Kawagoe, an atmospheric Japanese town lined with machiya houses, or walk along the river in Todoraki Valley to be surrounded by nature.
Insider tip: If you're taking day trips from Tokyo as part of your Japan itineraries, make sure to have a JR Pass to save money on the trains. Don't forget to order your pocket wifi so you're connected while you travel.
Pack your day bags and get ready for day trip adventures! Here are my favourite Tokyo day trips I recommend to everyone who loves Japan.
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- Travel time: 2 hours from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: JR Tohoku Shinkansen, JR Nikko Line
- Nearest Station: Nikko Station
- Estimated cost: ¥6080
Take a trip to the beautiful city of Nikko, located in the Tochigi prefecture. Nikko has stunning temples and shrines, as well as its natural beauty, being home to the Nikko national park, as well as the breathtaking Kegon Falls and Lake Chuzenji, which offer stunning views of the surrounding mountains and forests.
One of the most popular attractions in Nikko is the Toshogu Shrine, which is the mausoleum of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the first shogun of the Tokugawa Shogunate. The shrine is renowned for its stunning architecture, intricate carvings, and the elaborate decoration that covers its buildings and gates. Don't miss the famous "Three Wise Monkeys" sculptures, which symbolize the Buddhist principle of "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil."
On your to the temples, you will come across the Shinkyo Bridge, which is considered one of the most sacred bridges in Japan. This bridge can only be appreciated from afar, as it is closed to the public. Historically, the bridge was reserved for the shogun and other high-ranking officials.
Any day trip from Tokyo to Nikko cannot be complete without trying the delicious Yuba (tofu skin) which is a local speciality, traditionally made by monks in the Nikko temples. We have tried Yuba for the first time in Nikko, and I am still in love with it. Go to the Nikko Yuba ZEN restaurant for some tasty Yuba dishes.
Visit the Watanabe Sahei Sake Brewery, for a sake brewery tour and sample delicious sake while the owner explains the traditional process of sake making. Reservations can be made in advance and an English-speaking guide is available. Please see more info on the brewery website in Japanese.
You can reach Nikko from Tokyo by train, and the journey takes about 2 hours. Take the JR Tohoku Shinkansen to Utsunomiya Station and switch to the JR Nikko Line.
➡️ Things to do in Nikko: Be sure to check out our best things to do in Nikko travel guide. It has all the information you need - like which attractions to visit, what and where to eat, etc. - to help you plan your trip.
⛩️ Day trip to Nikko itinerary: We wrote a comprehensive step by step Nikko itinerary to help you mazimise your time in Nikko. It includes info on transport options, buses and all Nikko passes.
- Travel time: 45 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Yamanote Line, Meguro Line, Ōimachi Line
- Nearest Station: Todoroki Station
- Estimated cost: ¥1000
Todoroki Valley is a picturesque and serene valley located in Setagaya Ward. The valley is known for its tranquil environment, which is surrounded by lush greenery and a babbling stream. It's one of the best places to visit during the autumn Koyo Season (Autumn Leaves Festival), as it looks so vibrant and colourful along the hiking trails.
This hidden gem is my absolute favourite place because it's so calm and beautiful. Technically, still within the city limits, Todoraki Valley is about 45 minutes away from the centre, and it's a really great place for a short day trip from Tokyo.
There are several temples and shrines located in the valley, including the Todoroki Fudoson Temple, which is dedicated to the deity of fire. You will also find a scenic view point at the end of the trail overlooking the valley.
The Todoroki Valley is a perfect day trip for families with kids. It's not too long, the walk is easy and fun for kids. Lots of green and open space. Tip: The small convenience store across Lawson at the Todoroki Ravine Entrance, right after the subway station, sells the best fruit jelly ever.
- Travel time: 55 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Yokosuka Line
- Nearest Station: Kamakura Station
- Estimated cost: ¥1900
Kamakura is a city situated on the coast, South of Tokyo, in the Kanagawa Prefecture. It was once the political and military capital of Japan from 1185 to 1333. The most popular attraction in Kamakura is the 13 m tall Great Buddha, or Daibutsu, which is a bronze statue of Amitabha Buddha located at the Kotoku-in Temple. The statue is considered one of the largest of its kind in the whole country.
Also in the centre, the old Komachi shopping street is the perfect spot for souvenir hunting, trying street food and Japanese sweets. Yum!
Make sure to also visit the other famous attraction, the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, which is considered one of the most significant shrines in Japan. The shrine is located in the city centre and is surrounded by a beautiful garden, which makes it a popular spot to relax and enjoy the scenery.
In addition to its historical and cultural sites, Kamakura is also popular because of its beautiful beaches and scenic views. The city is surrounded by hills and mountains, and is a great destination for outdoor activities such as hiking, surfing, and beach sports. Just a heads-up, this is quite a popular spot among both locals and people from Tokyo, so it may get a bit crowded on sunny days.
Kamakura is a popular day trip from Tokyo by train. Reaching it is a breeze with the JR Yokosuka Line, which provides a direct route from Tokyo Station. With a return fare of 1900 yen, this train journey only takes just under 1 hour.
Hakone & Mt Fuji
- Travel time: 60 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen
- Nearest Station: Hakone Station
- Estimated cost: ¥4500
Hakone is a scenic town located in the mountains of the Kanagawa Prefecture and a popular day trip destination due to its beautiful natural scenery, hot springs, and easy access from Tokyo.
The most popular attraction in Hakone is the Owakudani Valley, which is a volcanic valley with hot springs, stunning views, and the famous black eggs that are boiled in the hot spring water. Take a ride on the Hakone Tozan Railway that takes you through the mountains and forests of the national park. And if you are brave enough, ride the cable car over the Great Boiling Valley to see the sulphurous springs from above.
Take a boat ride on Lake Ashinoko and enjoy incredible views of Mount Fuji on a clear day. The boat ride typically lasts about 30-40 minutes, and you can see traditional Japanese temples and shrines that are perched on the hillsides and surrounded by lush forests.
Hakone is famous with day trippers for its many Japanese onsens. For first time visitors to Japan, Hakone is a great place to familiarize yourself with the Japanese onsen culture and soak and relax in the lovely hot water. Are you thinking of making Hakone into a weekend trip? Book a night in one of the ryokans with access to a private onsen, breakfast and dinner included.
➡️ Things to do in Hakone: Be sure to check out our best things to do in Hakone travel guide. It has all the information you need – like where to stay which attractions to visit, what and where to eat, etc. – to help you plan your trip.
- Travel time: 30-40 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Keihin-Tōhoku or Yokosuka or Tōkaidō Line
- Nearest Station: Yokohama Station
- Estimated cost: ¥960
Visiting Yokohama is a fantastic day trip from Tokyo, with a convenient 30-minute train ride from Tokyo Station to Yokohama Station. As one of the most important ports in Japan and the second-largest city in the country, Yokohama is a hub of cultural and economic activity.
One of the must-visit destinations in Yokohama is the Minato Mirai district, a modern, and bustling area with tons of shopping centres, restaurants, and various attractions like museums and galleries. Take the elevator to the top floor of the Landmark Tower, the tallest building in Japan, and enjoy the panoramic views of the bay from its observation deck, and, on clear days, stunning views of Mount Fuji.
The Cup Noodles Museum is another popular attraction, dedicated to the history and culture of instant noodles. This museum features interactive exhibits and hands-on experiences that allow visitors to learn about the invention of instant noodles and the production process of Cup Noodles. You can even make your own cup noodles by choosing from a variety of ingredients and packaging designs.
Discover the city's largest Chinatown, which is a great spot for food and shopping. With its delicious street food, unique shops, and bustling atmosphere, Yokohama's Chinatown is a must-see place to visit during your day trip from Tokyo.
Head over to the Yamashita Park for a peaceful picnic or a relaxing walk and then board the NYK Hikawa Maru, the only existing cargo-passenger ship built in pre-war Japan, now converted into a maritime museum. Based on pre-war photos and materials, the interior of the ship was restored to its original appearance. Explore this historical ship and learn about its fantastic history.
- Travel time: 70 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Yokosuka or Tōkaidō Line, Shonan Monorail
- Nearest Station: Yokohama Station
- Estimated cost: ¥2280
Enoshima, located in Sagami Bay, is a small island that offers a wealth of outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, and swimming. The main attraction on the island is the historic Enoshima Shrine, said to have been built over 1,400 years ago and situated on top of a hill offering panoramic views of the bay. Held during the winter months, the Jewel of Shonan winter illumination is making the island a popular winter destination for day trips from Tokyo.
Visit the gorgeous Katase Nishihama beaches, a favourite spot for those looking to enjoy the water and soak up the sun. Families with kids will probably want to check out the Enoshima Aquarium nearby.
In the evening, take a long walk on the beach and sit down for a lovely dinner at one of the many seafood restaurants like the Red Lobster Enoshima or Watatsumi that also sells local beers.
✨ Guided tours: Check out Klook for tailored tours to Enoshima, covering visits to the island. Usually, these trips also include other locations like Yokohama and Kamakura.
- Travel time: 70 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Chūō Line until Takao Station, Bus 1 to Kobotoke
- Nearest Station: Takao Station
- Estimated cost: ¥2100
Mount Takao is a popular destination for those who love to spend time in nature and explore the great outdoors. This mountain is located just outside of Tokyo and is easily accessible via the Chūō Line, with a journey time of just 50 minutes from the city centre. Mount Takao is a great option as a day trip from Tokyo for those who want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and immerse themselves in the beauty of nature.
The mountain has several hiking trails that wind their way through lush forests and past waterfalls. The trails vary in difficulty, and length. Information is provided at the start of the trails. The summit of Mount Takao can be reached within about a 1.5 hour walk, and you will be treated to panoramic views of Tokyo, Mount Fuji, and nearby mountains.
If you're not fond of walking uphill, but still want to make it to the summit, I recommend you to take the cable car to Takaosan Station or the Chair Lift to Sanjo Station. From here, you can marvel at the views or continue your walk (on a much more level ground) to the summit. On your way, don't miss the Mt Takao Monkey Park & Wildflower Garden, which is a small zoo home to Japanese snow monkeys.
✨ Guided tours: Check out this really cool night hike to Mount Takao. Enjoy the beautiful night views and starry sky from the mountain.
- Travel time: 70 minutes from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Marunouchi Line, Tobu-Tojo Line
- Nearest Station: Kawagoe Station
- Estimated cost: ¥1220
Kawagoe is a short train ride away from central Tokyo and a good place to visit to see the well-preserved historical district. Also called Little Edo, Kawagoe has many machiya houses and shops from the Edo period. The old storehouses made of clay and thatched roof were once used by merchants to store their goods, and many of them are in great condition.
When you get out of the Kawagoe Station, walk along Kurazukuri Street until you start seeing the houses on both sides. You will notice when you arrive because of the large crows on the street. Turn right onto Kanetsuki Street and don't miss the wooden bell tower. Walking back to the station, take the Taisho Roman Yume-dori shopping street and stop for food and drinks along the way.
The station building also has some interesting restaurants and cafés, but don't expect much. This is a very residential area of Tokyo.
- Travel time: 1.5 hours from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Hokuriku-Shinkansen
- Nearest Station: Kawagoe Station
- Estimated cost: ¥8140
Nagano is a great choice if you are seeking a change from the fast-paced city life in Tokyo. The city is easily accessible for a day trip from Tokyo, and it's proximity to the Japanese Alps makes it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure seekers. With its stunning mountain ranges, lush forests, and clear streams, Nagano offers a breathtaking landscape that is perfect for skiing, snowboarding, hiking, and more.
In addition to its natural beauty, Nagano is also rich in cultural heritage, with many historic temples, shrines, and castles that provide insight into the region's fascinating history. One of the most notable sites is the Zenko-ji Temple, a historic temple that dates back to the 7th century and is considered one of the oldest in Japan.
Another popular attraction in Nagano (and a half a day trip on its own) is the Jigokudani Monkey Park, which is home to a large population of Japanese snow monkeys. You can see them bathe in the onsen while in their natural habitat and take adorable photos of them.
If you also want to enjoy the onsen, head to Yudanaka, a hot spring town with well-preserved traditional buildings.
Of course, a trip to Nagano wouldn't be complete without trying the local cuisine, which features fresh, seasonal ingredients and traditional dishes that have been passed down through generations. From soba noodles to miso soup, there is no shortage of delicious food to sample in Nagano.
➡️ Things to do in Nagano: Be sure to check out our best things to do in Nagano travel guide. It has all the information you need – like which attractions to visit, what and where to eat, etc. – to help you plan your trip.
- Travel time: 1.5 hours from Ikebukuro Station
- How to get there: Seibu Chichibu Line
- Nearest Station: Seibu-Chichibu Station
- Estimated cost: ¥1800
Chichibu is a small city located in Saitama Prefecture, just a short train ride away from Tokyo. The main attraction is the Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park.
If you are visiting in the spring, don't miss the Chichibu Spring Flower Festival at the Hitsujiyama Park. From late April to early May, visit the Pink Moss Hill where the pink moss blooms covering the whole hillside with pretty pink flowers.
If you are visiting Japan in winter, the Chichibu Night Festival takes place in December at the Chichibu Shrine.
Families with kids will want to add Chichibu Muse-Park and the Forest Adventure Chichibu to their list of things to do. Both places are great for kids. Lastly, the Observation Platform at Chichibu Muse-Park gives you stunning views of the mountains, parts of Tokyo and, in clear weather, Mount Fuji. It's a short track from the station, really worth taking.
✨ Guided tours: Check out this private walking tour to Chichibu which includes a visit to the Chichibu Shrine and a 250 year old Sake Brewery.
- Travel time: 2.5 hours from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Chūō Line, Fujikyuko Line
- Nearest Station: Kawaguchiko Station
- Estimated cost: ¥5000
Lake Kawaguchiko is one of the five lakes surrounding Mount Fuji and one of the most beautiful places to visit from Tokyo. The lake is on the North Side of Mount Fuji, and it's less touristy than Hakone. In my opinion, the views of the mountain are better from this side, but I might be biased.
For the best views of Mount Fuji, you can cross the Kawaguchiko Bridge or walk along the lake shore to the northern shores of the lake. I especially recommend that you visit during the cherry blossom season, as the surrounding hills and mountains are all covered in Sakura blooms.
Alternatively, take the Mt. Fuji Panoramic Ropeway to the observation deck for an even more epic view of Mount Fuji. Remember, only if the weather is not cloudy; otherwise, you won't see much.
Once you have taken enough pictures, visit the Yamanashi Gem Museum and marvel at this fantastic collection of crystals from all around the world. It's only a 45 mins visit, but they have some really cool crystals and gemstones. You can also purchase some of the stones in the store.
After the long walk, pick your favourite Tempura or Teppanyaki restaurant and sit down for a nice dinner before heading back to Tokyo.
➡️ Things to do in Lake Kawaguchiko: Be sure to check out our article about visiting Lake Kawaguchiko. It has all the information you need – like which attractions to visit, what and where to eat, etc. – to help you plan your trip.
Hitachi Seaside Park
- Travel time: 2 hours and 10 mins from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Hitachi and Tokiwa JR Line to Katsuta Station, Bus
- Nearest Station: Kawaguchiko Station
- Estimated cost: ¥5000
Hitachi Seaside Park is a large public park located in Hitachinaka, Ibaraki, about 150 km North of Tokyo. The park covers a large area and is known for its stunning flower gardens, wide lawns, cycling and walking trails.
The park features a variety of seasonal flowers, including over 4.5 million nemophilas (baby blue eyes) in the spring, as well as tulips, daffodils, roses, sunflowers, and cosmos, which bloom in different seasons. In the autumn, the kochia shrubs turn a stunning red.
In addition to the flower gardens, the park also has a forested area with walking trails, an amusement park with rides and games, and a barbecue area for picnics. There is also a large lake in the park where visitors can rent paddle boats and enjoy the scenery.
The Hitachi Seaside Park is open year-round. This day trip from Tokyo is most popular with families as most of the attractions are child-friendly.
The par is located about 2 hours away from Tokyo by train. Once at Katsuta Station, transfer to a bus that takes you directly to the park entrance.
✨ Guided tours: Direct bus tour from Tokyo to view the blooming nemophilas in spring, or day-trip from Tokyo that includes the Oarai Isosaki Shrine, the park, and more.
- Travel time: 30 mins from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Keihin-Tōhoku Line or Tōkaidō Line
- Nearest Station: Kawasaki Station
- Estimated cost: ¥310
Kawasaki city is part of the greater Tokyo metropolitan area, sandwiched between Yokohama and Tokyo. It is easily accessible by train in just 30 mins from most Tokyo stations. Kawasaki is known for its industrial heritage and cultural attractions, which include traditional Japanese shrines and temples, as well as modern museums and galleries.
One of the most popular cultural attractions in Kawasaki is the Kawasaki Daishi Temple, a large Buddhist temple complex that dates back to the 12th century. The temple is famous for its Goma fire ceremony, which is performed daily and is said to purify the soul.
An unconventional attraction is the Kanamara matsuri, which is a Shinto Fertility Festival held in Kawasaki. During the festival, participants carry large phallus-shaped objects through the streets in a parade, as well as offering prayers for fertility health. One of the most fun things to do at the festival is to go to the various food stalls and order phallus-shaped foods.
Kawasaki is also home to several museums, including the Kawasaki City Museum, which showcases the city's history and culture, and the Fujiko F. Fujio Museum, which is dedicated to the creator of the popular Japanese manga series, Doraemon.
If you visit Kawasaki for a day trip from Tokyo, you will have a wide range of shopping and entertainment options to pick from. The city is home to many large shopping malls, including the Lazona Kawasaki Plaza and the Kawasaki Le Front, as well as many restaurants, bars, and nightclubs.
✨ Guided tours: Check out Viator for tailored tours to Kawasaki, covering walking tours, private photo sessions, and more.
- Travel time: 15 mins from Tokyo Station
- How to get there: Keiyō Line or Musashino Line
- Nearest Station: Maihama Station
- Estimated cost: ¥220 + Entrance Fee
Tokyo Disneyland is the first Disney theme park to be built outside the United States. It is divided into seven themed areas: World Bazaar, Adventureland, Westernland, Fantasyland, Toontown, Tomorrowland, and Critter Country. Each area is designed to transport visitors to different worlds and experiences, ranging from classic Disney fairy tales to thrilling adventures.
One of the unique features of Tokyo Disneyland is its attention to detail and the incorporation of Japanese culture into the park's design. For example, the park's Cinderella Castle has a more subtle and traditional Japanese-inspired design compared to other Disney parks, and many of the attractions and food options have been adapted to appeal to Japanese tastes.
Some of the most popular attractions at Tokyo Disneyland include Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, and Pirates of the Caribbean. The park also has a variety of shows and parades, including the popular "Dreamlights" electrical parade, which features brightly lit floats and characters.
Tokyo Disneyland is an ideal family-friendly destination that is best enjoyed over a couple of days. To ensure a smooth experience, it's recommended to book tickets in advance, especially during peak season when the park can get quite crowded. Getting to the park from anywhere in Tokyo is quick and easy, so there's no need to book accommodation nearby.
As you can tell, there are so many cool day trips from Tokyo for whenever you feel the need to explore fields of flowers, see gorgeous mountains or walk on traditional machiya lined streets. If you're planning a visit to Tokyo, you can easily add some exciting day trips to your itinerary to delve deeper into Japanese culture and savour a diverse range of delicious cuisines outside the capital city.
If you are looking for more Tokyo information, I've got you covered, as this is my favourite destination in the world. Check out where to stay in Tokyo and don't forget to go through my 7 day Tokyo itinerary. I've prepared a whole article on things to do in Tokyo. Finally, don't forget to check my most comprehensive Japan guide, which provides all the information and articles you need to plan the best Japan trip ever.
Frequently Asked Questions
What would be best for a day trip from Tokyo?
The best and most popular day trip from Tokyo is visiting Hakone and Mount Fuji. It's quick and easy to access, there is a lot to see, and it's suitable for all types of travellers.
- The most popular: Hakone & Mt Fuji
- Best for the seaside: Kamakura
- Best for nature: Nikko
- Best to visit during spring: Hitachi Seaside Park
- Best for autumn foliage: Mount Takao
- Best to visit during winter: Chichibu
- Best for skiing: Nagano
As you can see, there are many options to pick from. If you are a first-time visitor to Japan, check our Japan itinerary that can help you make the most of your trip.
Is Hakone a day trip from Tokyo?
Yes, Hakone is the best and most popular day trip from Tokyo. You will see Mount Fuji (on clear days) and the area has many attractions to keep you entertained for a full day.
Accessing Hakone is easy, it only takes 1.5 hours from central Tokyo by train to get there. It's the most frequently recommended day trips from Tokyo.
Is Kyoto a good day trip from Tokyo?
Kyoto is a popular tourist destination, known for its rich cultural heritage and many temples and shrines. However, Kyoto is located about 450 km (280 miles) away from Tokyo, and it takes around 2 hours and 40 minutes to travel between the two cities by bullet train (Shinkansen).
While it is possible to visit Kyoto as a day trip from Tokyo, it would be a very long and tiring day, with a lot of travelling involved. You would have limited time to explore Kyoto's many attractions, and you would likely feel rushed.
If you have limited time and cannot spend the night in Kyoto, it may be better to prioritize the top attractions that you want to see and plan your itinerary accordingly. Alternatively, you could consider spending at least one night in Kyoto to fully experience its beauty and culture.
While it is possible to visit Kyoto for just 1 day from Tokyo, it may not be the most ideal way to fully appreciate all that the city has to offer.
Can Osaka be a day trip from Tokyo?
While it is possible to make a day trip from Tokyo to Osaka, it would be a very long day with a lot of travel time involved. Osaka is located in south-western Japan, and Tokyo is in the north-east, so the distance between the two cities is significant.
The fastest way to travel between Tokyo and Osaka is by the Shinkansen, which takes approximately 2.5 hours one way. This means that you would need to spend at least 5 hours on the train alone if you were to go to Osaka and return to Tokyo on the same day.
Once you arrive in Osaka, there is plenty to see and do, including visiting Osaka Castle, the Dotonbori entertainment district, and the Osaka Aquarium. It would be difficult to see all the major sights in one day, especially if you also factor in travel time to and from the train stations, getting around the city, and meal breaks.
If you're interested in visiting Osaka but are limited on time, it may be better to consider spending at least one night in the city to allow yourself more time to explore and enjoy the sights.