How to get to Nikko

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JR Trains (Shinkansen + Nikko Line)

If you have a Japan Rail Pass this is the best train. Take the Shinkansen train from Tokyo Station. After 45 minutes get off at Utsunomiya Station. Here take the local train on the Nikko Line for another 45 minutes or so.

Only take these two trains if you have a Japan Rail Pass, as the one-way ticket costs 5680 Yen.

JR E 205 kei for JR Nikko line 02

Fortew F, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

JR East and Tobu

The train departs from Shinjuku (it also stops at the JR Ikebukuro station) and is operated by Japan Railways in cooperation with Tobu, in fact the train runs partly on the JR line and partly on the Tobu line. The one-way ticket costs 4090 Yen. The Japan Rail Pass only covers part of this train.

On the outward journey there is only 1 direct train to Nikko (Tobu station) at 7:31 and 3 trains that go to Kinugawa instead, if you take the latter you have to get off at Shimo-Imaichi station and take a local train to Nikko, the price is the same as the direct train and the journey time is about 10 minutes longer.
The return train from Nikko leaves at 16:39. On some days there is an additional train both on the outward and return journey.

If you have one of these regional passes (JR Tokyo Wide Pass, JR East Nagano Niigata Area Pass, JR East Tohoku Area Pass and JR East South Hokkaido Pass) this train is included.

JR East 253-1000 OM-N01 Nikko 1go 20110604

駅弁, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Tobu Nikko Line

The Tobu train leaves from Asakusa station and arrives in Nikko in about 3 hours with several changes. It is the cheapest train, in fact the one-way ticket costs 1400 Yen. There are also express trains that take 105 minutes. The ticket costs 3050 Yen.

The first direct train is the Revaty Kegon 1 that leaves at 6:30am from Asakusa station and arrives at Tobu-Nikko station at 8:25am.

At this link you can find the timetable.

170824 Kita-Senju Station Tokyo Japan06n

Photo by 663highland, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Nikko Pass All Area

4780 Yen from 20 April to 30 November, 4160 Yen from 1 December to 19 April + 3300 Yen for return express supplement (optional)

The Nikko Pass All Area includes round-trip ticket to Nikko, use of buses and connection to Kinugawa Onsen.

The Limited Express train supplement is not included.

Valid for 4 consecutive days.

Nikko Pass World Heritage Area

2120 Yen + 3300 Yen for return express supplement (optional)

Nikko Pass World Heritage Area includes round-trip ticket from Asakusa to Nikko, Nikko bus pass and other discounts in shops, restaurants.

The Limited Express train supplement is not included.

Duration is 2 days.

If you want to use the buses and do not have one of the Tobu passes, you can make several passes to get around the city and its surroundings.

The basic pass costs 600 Yen and lasts 1 day (World Heritage Tour Ticket).

There are also various passes covering the areas of Yumoto Onsen, Chuzenji Onsen, Senjogahara, Kirifuri Kogen, Ozasa Bokujo and Kirifuri no Taki. The price ranges from 600 Yen up to 3000 Yen.

For more information, see the official website.

Useful links