How to Get to SHIRAKAWA-GO from Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Nagoya

The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Shirakawa-gō is one of the most picturesque destinations in Japan. Cradled in Gifu Region, often nicknamed the Heartland of Japan, this small, rustic village offers a break from the crazy, busy life in major cities like Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya.

The best time to be in Shirakawa-go is in winter. The spectacular view of the snow-capped mountains and traditional houses will leave you in awe for weeks. But the so-called Heartland of Japan demands a lot of effort. It’s not easy to reach. It requires HOURS of travel on multiple transportation modes from any major metropolis.

This post is brought to you by JetStar.
The closest major city — and by major city we mean one that is an international hub —- is Nagoya. Although there are alternative ways to get there, the easiest and most popular routes still pass through Nagoya.

In this article, we’ll share with you how to reach this historic village from Nagoya, Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka.

Shirakawa-go in Winter

From Nagoya

  1. From Nagoya Station, walk to Meitetsu BC Bus Stop.
  2. Buy bus tickets to Shirakawa-go via Gifu Bus.
  3. Alight at Shirakawago BT Bus Stop.

Travel time: 2 hours and 53 minutes.
Bus fare: ¥3900 ($35, P1,736)

The JR Pass is NOT accepted on this bus.

From Tokyo

If you’re coming from Tokyo, you don’t need to pass through Nagoya because there is an easier route, which is via Toyama.

However, reaching Shirakawa-go from Tokyo can be a long, expensive undertaking. If you have a JR Pass, however, you don’t need to worry about the Shinkansen leg of the journey because it’s covered.

  1. Take the Shinkansen Hokuriku to Toyama Station.
    Travel time: 2 hours, 5 minutes.
    Fare + Reserved Seat Fee: ¥12,520 ($111, P5542).
  2. Switch to Nouhi Bus and alight at Shirakawago BT Bus Stop.
    Travel time: 1 hour, 25 minutes.
    Bus fare: ¥1700 ($15, P752)

One-way travel from Tokyo to Shirakawa-go:

Total travel time: 5 hours (excluding the waiting time)
Total fare: ¥14,220

Shirakawa-gō Village House
Shirakawa-gō Village House

From Kyoto

  1. At Kyoto Station, take the Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen to Nagoya Station. Note that there are 3 trains: Hikari, Kodama, and Nozomi. The JR Pass isn’t valid on Nozomi trains but is accepted on Hikari and Kodama.
    Travel time: 34 minutes (Nozomi) or 54 minutes (Hikari).
    Fare: ¥2590 ($22, P1160)
    Seat Fee: ¥3000 ($27, P1350) if reserved or ¥2480 ($22, P1110) if unreserved
  2. From Nagoya Station, walk to Meitetsu BC Bus Stop and transfer to a Gifu Bus bound for Shirakawa-go. Get off at Shirakawago BT Bus Stop.
    Travel time: 2 hours and 53 minutes.
    Bus fare: ¥3900 ($35, P1,736)

One-way travel from Kyoto to Shirakawa-go if you’re taking an unreserved seat on Hikari Shinkansen:

Total travel time: around 4 hours
Total fare: ¥8970 ($80, P4015)

From Osaka

  1. At Shin-Osaka Station, take the JR Tokaido Shinkansen to Nagoya Station. Note that there are 3 trains: Hikari, Kodama, and Nozomi. The JR Pass isn’t valid on Nozomi trains but is accepted on Hikari and Kodama.
    Travel time: 48 minutes (Nozomi) or 69 minutes (Hikari).
    Fare: ¥3350 ($30, P1500)
    Seat Fee: ¥3000 ($27, P1350) if reserved or ¥2480 ($22, P1110) if unreserved
  2. From Nagoya Station, walk to Meitetsu BC Bus Stop and transfer to a Gifu Bus bound for Shirakawa-go. Get off at Shirakawago BT Bus Stop.
    Travel time: 2 hours and 53 minutes.
    Bus fare: ¥3900 ($35, P1,736)

One-way travel from Osaka to Shirakawa-go if you’re taking an unreserved seat on Hikari Shinkansen:

Total travel time: around 4 hours (excluding waiting time)
Total fare: ¥9,730 ($87, P4350)

How to Get to Nagoya

A well-connected prefectural capital, Nagoya has an international airport, Chubu Centrair Airport, so you’ll probably find a lot of options.

If you’re coming from Manila, the cheapest flights are offered by JetStar. One-way ticket from Manila to Chubu Centrair Airport is $105 (P5,500) while round-trip fare is $222 (P11,041). Travel time is 4 hours and 15 minutes. These rates can still go much lower when there’s a promo.

Jetstar - Manila to Nagoya One-way
Jetstar – Manila to Nagoya One-way
Jetstar - Manila to Nagoya Round Trip
Jetstar – Manila to Nagoya Round Trip

Special thanks to Mr. Tomoyuki Ozaki for taking care of us the entire Nagoya trip. He’s always running around to make sure we are on-time and our needs are taken care of.

Where to Stay Near Shirakawa-go

Toyota Shirakawago Eco-Institute

Check Rates
Fujiya

Check Rates

Where to Stay in Nagoya


Hotel Wing International Nagoya
1-4-11 Nishiki, Naka-Ku, Aichi , Nagoya Station

Check Rates

HOTEL MYSTAYS Nagoya-Sakae
2-23-22 Higashi-Sakura, Naka-Ku, Nagoya Station / Downtown Nagoya

Check Rates
Meitetsu Inn Nagoya Nishiki
Meitetsu Inn Nagoya Nishiki
3-3-22, Nishiki, Naka-ku, Nagoya Station / Downtown Nagoya

Check Rates

APA Hotel Nagoya-Nishiki Excellent
3-15-30, Nishiki, Naka-ku, Nagoya Station / Downtown Nagoya

Check Rates
Search for more: Nagoya Hotels


Watch our Latest Video!


Important Reminders


Comments

Leave a Reply