Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen Access | How to get to Nozawa Onsen

Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen

Getting to Nozawa Onsen from Tokyo & Osaka

How to get from Osaka & Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen

Nozawa Onsen Access Guide

Welcome to the Nozawa Onsen Access Guide.

Getting from Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen and other major Japanese cities is quite straightforward via bus, train, car or shuttle.

Where is Nozawa Onsen?

Nozawa Onsen is located in the far north of Nagano Prefecture in central Honshu Island, Japan.  The area is easily accessed from both international airports in Tokyo (Narita & Haneda) by shinkansen (bullet train), airport shuttle, taxi, rental car or bus.

How long to get to Nozawa Onsen?

The total travel time from Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen is usually between 3-4 hours via shinkansen bullet train/bus or around 6 hours via airport shuttle. There are also several options from the international airports in Nagoya and Osaka (Kansai). This usually takes between 6-7 hours.

How to get toNozawa Onsen. A Nozawa Onsen access map
getting to nozawa onsen by train, tokyo to nozawa onsen

Search for Nozawa accommodation options

From Narita, Haneda & Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen

Via Shinkansen and Connecting Bus

Catch the train from Narita Airport or Haneda Airport to Tokyo Station (see here for full instructions).

Follow the green signs for the Hokuriku Shinkansen which usually leave from Platforms 22 or 23 at Tokyo Station (see map here). Take the shinkansen bound for Kanazawa and get off at Iiyama Station. IMPORTANT NOTE: Not all trains stop at Iiyama Station so check the schedule carefully. You can also alight at Nagano Station and switch to the local train (40 minutes) on the Iiyama Line or take an express bus to Nozawa Onsen. If staying overnight in Nagano City you can book hotels here.

The journey usually takes between 1.5 – 2.5 hours (average is just under two hours). The shinkansen service runs frequently until 10.00pm each day. The non-reserved cars are to the rear heading to Kanazawa (usually car nos. 1-3). All cars are non smoking. There are between 2-3 trains per hour. You can reserve your tickets using the Japan Rail online reservation system.

Here’s how you change trains to the shinkansen in Tokyo

Iiyama Station to Nozawa Onsen (via Nozawa Onsen Liner) The Nozawa Onsen Liner from Iiyama Station runs regularly (check schedules here) and the journey takes around 20 minutes. No reservation is required and tickets (¥600 adults / ¥300 children) can bought on the bus. The route to the bus stop is clearly marked. There are also public bus services available as well one service per day via Togari Onsen (see further below).
Nozawa Onsen Liner bus stop
Tokyo accommodation - get deals in Tokyo

From Osaka, Kyoto & Nagoya to Nozawa

nozawa onsen ski shuttle

Airport and resorts shuttles. Starting from only 5,900 yen. Book online!

There are three main choices for getting to Nozawa Onsen from Kyoto and Osaka.

1. From Shin-Osaka or Kyoto station, catch the Tokkaido Shinkansen to Nagoya (usual travel time is 40-55 minutes). Transfer at Nagoya Station to the Chuo Honsen line and catch the Shinano Limited Express bound for Nagano Station (normal transit is 3 hours) that travels through the scenic Kiso Valley. Keep your camera out as there is some beautiful scenery along the way. At Nagano transfer to the shinkansen or local line to Iiyama Station

2. Take the express train to Kanazawa Station and then change to the Hokuriku Shinkansen to Iiyama Station. This journey goes via the Japan Sea coast and is a more expensive option.

3. A direct overnight highway bus from to Nagano from Kyoto & Osaka is available from Alpico Bus Line. From Nagano you can connect to an express bus to Nozawa Onsen

Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen

Private transfer to Nozawa Onsen

For medium-large groups we can help organise a direct private transfer at reasonable cost from the airport to Nozawa Onsen (and/or return). A chartered direct service from the Tokyo airports or your Tokyo hotel to your most hotels in the area starts at 85,000 each way. Check here for more details. Taxi/charter journeys will usually take 4-5 hours depending on traffic and weather conditions. Comfort stops are included. Private transfers from Tokyo City and/or other Nagano resorts are also available. private nozawa onsen resort transfer, tokyo to nozawa onsen

Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen

Driving to Nozawa Onsen

Driving to Nozawa Onsen is a straightforward exercise. Follow the diagrammatic as below.

Nozawa Onsen Rental Car

If you are only intending to stay in Nozawa Onsen then there is no need for a rental car as getting around the village is easy. However if you want to head off to check out nearby resorts or perhaps some day tours it’s good to have a car.

There are now numerous companies offering Nozawa Onsen car rentals in English (as well as support in English), plus some cars can come with English GPS. Most major car rental companies have branches in Nagano and Iiyama but obviously can also only be found in major cities such as Tokyo or Narita. There is a far greater range of choice to be found in Nagano. Check the bottom of this page for tips on renting cars in Japan.

Your nearest rental points are Nagano and Iiyama Station. For ease of pre-booking a rental car online and great selection enter ‘Iiyama’ or ‘Nagano’ (wait for autocomplete) and your dates below and it will come up with a few options. Nagano has many more choices than Iiyama. Most rental shops don’t open until at least 9.00am so don’t enter an earlier time than this or it may show ‘no availability’.

Nozawa Onsen car rental Iiyama

Check for more Nagano and Nozawa car rental options here.

Nozawa Onsen to Togari Onsen

Nagaden is running a regular bus from Nozawa Onsen to Iiyama Station via Togari Onsen this season. So skiers have the opportunity for day trips to each resort. It operates daily from Saturday, December 23, 2023 to Sunday, March 24, 2024. Reservations are not required – just turn up and pay on the bus.
nozawa onsen to togari onsen bus
Fares and schedules for Nozawa Onsen bus to Togari Onsen and Iiyama Station

Tokyo to Nozawa Onsen: Video Explainer

Nozawa Onsen Access Guide. More info on getting to Nozawa Onsen soon!