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Yokohama day trip ideas for Spring | Cherry blossom viewing and sightseeing.

Travel Japan
Category : Travel Japan未分類

What are your plans for cherry blossom viewing? The cherry blossom or Sakura viewing season in Tokyo begins in late March that lasts till early April. Yes, now is the time of the best season. Recently, the Tokyo area has more cherry blossom spots that have newly popped up in addition to famous spots, making us a good problem to select the best place to go and see. For those visiting or staying in Tokyo during cherry blossom season, here is a day trip idea that combines sightseeing and cherry blossom viewing. The area suggested here is Yokohama. The plan includes shopping, dining, sightseeing, and cherry blossom viewing at an authentic Japanese garden.

Tourist attractions in Yokohama

Yokohama is a port city located in the south of central Tokyo. It has a prosperous history as an international city centered on the trading port of Tokyo Bay. The tourist attractions are mostly gathered along the bay area, which comprises the modern district Minato Mirai 21 and the historic neighborhood of Yamashita Park dotted with classical buildings.

Minato Mirai 21 district
Minato Mirai 21 district (©Yokohama Visitors Guide)

Yokohama day trip ideas for spring

Most people who visit Yokohama by train start their trip from Sakuragicho Station or Minatomirai Station. However, highlighting the cherry blossom viewing in spring, the travel suggested here begins from Negishi Station that goes as follows.

  1. Take a bus from Negishi Station to Sankeien Garden. Enjoy the cherry blossoms and the Japanese garden
  2. After the sightseeing at Sankeien Garden, catch a bus for Motomachi and Chinatown districts to enjoy a city strolling and lunch
  3. Walk toward Yamashita Park and visit an attraction
    Aka-Renga Soko (Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse)
  4. Take a boat trip around the port of Yokohama

Yokohama image map
An image showing some tourist spots in Yokohama. Most attractions are located in the zones circled in orange.

First – Take a bus from Negishi Station to Sankeien Garden. Enjoy the cherry blossoms and the Japanese garden

From Negishi Station on the Negishi Line, take a bus (City bus No. 58 or 101) bound for Honmoku 本牧, which will be a 10-min ride. (Fares can be paid by IC card; Suica, PASMO )
Get off the bus at the Honmoku stop and walk about 10 minutes along the narrow road with cherry trees that leads to the main gate of Sankeien Garden.

Sankeien Garden三溪園
Sankeien Garden is a Japanese garden created by Hara Sankei, a successful entrepreneur who was also a tea master. As many as 17 buildings, including historic buildings relocated from Kyoto and Kamakura, are arranged on the site of the vast garden. Adding to the harmony between the garden and the wooden structures in the traditional Japanese style, varieties of cherry blossoms provide gorgeous colors in spring. The scenery is reminiscent of Kyoto.

Sankeien Garden in Yokohama
Three-story pagoda of the former Tomyoji temple (built in 1457), an Important National Cultural Property in Sankeien Garden.

Sankeien Garden (with multilingual pages)
Admission fees and opening hours may vary depending on the events held. For de details, check the official website.

Second – After the sightseeing at Sankeien Garden, catch a bus for Motomachi and Chinatown district to enjoy a city strolling and lunch

After enjoying the cherry blossoms at Sankeien Garden, take a bus to the Motomachi and Chinatown district neighboring Yamashita Park. From the bus stop Sankeien Iriguchi 三溪園入口 about a 5-minute walk from Sankeien Garden, you can take a bus (City Bus No.8 or 168, bound for Yokohama Station East Exit 横浜駅) to reach the district with a 15-minute ride. Get off at the stop Motomachi-Chukagai Station 元町・中華街駅 and begin your strolling there.

*On Saturdays and Sundays, a special bus called Burari Sankeien Bus is available between Yokohama Station and Sankeien Garden through Sakuragicho Station. This special bus leaves from the parking lot near the main gate of Sankeien Garden.

Motomachi and Chinatown Area
The Motomachi and Chinatown areas are one of Yokohama’s busiest districts. The Motomachi has exclusive shopping streets lined with stylish shops and cafes, which look like a townscape in a European country. In Chinatown, more than five hundred restaurants serve authentic Chinese cuisine.

Chinatown, Yokohama
Chinatown (©Yokohama Visitors Guide)

Yokohama Chinatown
Motomachi Shopping Street

Third – Walk toward Yamashita Park and visit an attraction

After lunch, walk toward Yamashita Park, about 5 minutes from Motomachi-Chukagai Station. Getting closer to the port, you will see a view of the bay spread out in front of you.

Yamashita Park, Yokohama
A view of Yokohama Port from Yamashita Park

When you reach Yamashita Park, walk a little further and visit Yokohama’s new attraction, the GUNDAM FACTORY YOKOHAMA. This Gundam-themed anime facility is home to a huge 18-meter-high statue of Gundam. It is another type of “very Japan-like” attraction comparable to Japanese gardens. The Gundam statue may be seen from Yamashita Park, but it will look small far in the distance. For a better view of the gigantic statue, enter the facility and look up from the front. GUNDAM FACTORY YOKOHAMA is about a 7-minute walk from Motomachi-Chukagai Station. Check the official website for more details, admission tickets, and opening hours.

*The facility is only open for a limited time and is scheduled to close on March 31, 2024. (Info as of March 2023)

Aka-Renga Soko (Yokohama Redbrick Warehouse)
Another suggestion for those who say “No thank you” about Gundam is a relaxing time on the seaside at Aka-Renga Soko. Walking about 10 minutes from Yamashita Park, you will be at a pier with the old brick building Aka-Renga Soko or Yokohama Redbrick Warehouse. This redbrick warehouse is literally a former warehouse that has been fully renovated inside while keeping its classic appearance. Aka-Renga Soko today is a complex facility like a shopping mall with various stores such as shops selling unique imported goods, cafes, and restaurants. In the open café at the Aka-Renga Soko, relaxing and having a coffee while feeling the sea breeze will be nice.

Aka-Renga Soko

Aka-Renga Soko
Aka-Renga Soko (Yokohama Redbrick Warehouse) The public square in front of the building often holds events and a market. (©Yokohama Visitors Guide)

Forth – Take a boat trip around the port of Yokohama

The waterfront district has wharves serving water buses and sightseeing boats. The sea bus service SEA BASS operates between wharves behind the Aka-Renga Soko (Pier Aka-Renga) and Yokohama Station East Exit (Yokohama Bay Quarter,) so you can enjoy a little “sea outing” and the view of Yokohama. The SEA BASS operates one or two services per hour, and the fare for the route between these wharves is 800 JP Yen one-way, with a 15-minute ride. (As of March 2023) The fare can be paid by IC cards – Suica, PASMO.


Sea Bass
The view of Yokohama from the sea is exceptional. (©Yokohama Visitors Guide)

The port of Yokohama is known as one of Japan’s best night-view spots. You may not miss the night view from a sightseeing boat if you are still in Yokohama after dusk. Although sea buses do not operate in the evening, various sightseeing boat services are operated by some companies. The services vary depending on the businesses, from large or small boats, with advance booking or without booking, on weekends only, etc. You can consider these options when making up a trip plan to Yokohama.

SEA BASS Illumination Cruise

Yokohama port
Yokohama port night viewing (©Yokohama Visitors Guide)

Getting to Yokohama by train from Tokyo Station

From a large station in central Tokyo, you can take a train that runs to major stations in Yokohama in a consolidated/joint operation. For example, taking a train on the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line connected with the Negishi Line enables you to reach Negishi Station directly from Tokyo without transferring the train. Check the destination when getting on the train. The Negishi Line trains basically depart from Yokohama Station, and only some trains on the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line are in that integrated operation.

Travel time:
Tokyo sta. to Yokohama sta. by JR Yokosuka Line train bound for Zushi: 32 minutes
Tokyo sta. to Negishi sta. by JR Keihin Tohoku Line train: 54 minutes

Shinjuku sta. to Yokohama sta. by JR Shonan Shinjuku Line train: 30 minutes
Yokohama sta. to Negishi sta. by JR Keihin Tohoku Line train: 12 minutes
Yokohama sta. to Motomachi-Chukagai sta. by Minato Mirai Line train: 8 to10 minutes
Yokohama sta. to Sakuragicho sta. by J R Keihin Tohoku (/Negishi) Line train: 3 minutes

Extra info:
New attraction in Yokohama!
Ropeway transportation between Sakuragicho Station and Minato Mirai 21 district
First in Japan & World’s Most Advanced Urban-Type Circular Ropeway

Yokohama : access

Related Information Sites

Yokohama Convention & Visitors Bureau

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