Best Day Trips Out of Tokyo

Karin
2022/09/09

Want to get out of the city? Or explore somewhere new without using up your entire weekend? Or have extra time in the Tokyo area and want to expand your Kanto travels? Here’s a handy list of places of over 15 different places you can go!


Table of Contents

  1. Tokyo Day Trip
  2. Day Trip from Tokyo to Chiba
    1. Tokyo Disney Resort
    2. Other Amusement Parks and Facilities in Chiba
    3. Popular Activities in Chiba
  3. Day Trip from Tokyo to Saitama
  4. Day Trip from Tokyo to Kanagawa
    1. Yokohama
    2. Kamakura & Enoshima
    3. Other Day Trips in Kanagawa
  5. Day Trip from Tokyo to Shizuoka
    1. Gotemba Premium Outlet
    2. Mount Fuji and Its Surrounding Area
  6. Day Trip from Tokyo to Nikko in Tochigi Prefecture
  7. Day Trips From Tokyo Better for Overnight Stays
    1. Hakone
    2. Karuizawa
    3. Kusatsu Onsen
    4. Izu Peninsula
  8. Conclusion

Tokyo Day Trip 

Before deciding for sure to leave Tokyo, have you explored the outskirts outside of the 23 wards? There’s some great locations within the Tokyo Metropolis where you can spend a whole day in nature. 

These include

  • Ome
    • hiking at Mount Mitake
    • cycling
    • Mitake Shrine
    • Ome Railway Park
  • Okutama
    • hiking
    • fishing, swimming, rafting in the river
    • Lake Okutama
  • Mount Takao
    • hiking
    • Yakuoin Temple
    • Monkey Park

And all 3 have great hot springs you can visit to relax at the end of your day as well as local delicacies to enjoy - or you could make that the main purpose of your visit!

Day Trip from Tokyo to Chiba

Chiba is the prefecture to the right of Tokyo. Chiba is reachable from Tokyo directly through the Chuo, Sobu, Tozai and other lines. Or you could cut through Tokyo Bay via the Tokyo Bay Aqua Line from Kawasaki in Kanagawa Prefecture just south of Tokyo, depending on where in Chiba you want to go!

If you’re going to the further ends of Chiba from Tokyo, going by car is recommended to have more freedom to travel. However, if you plan carefully, going by train or bus is also doable - it just takes more time! Certain train routes only have one train per hour or so, so make sure you give yourself enough time to get back to the stations. 

Here are some of the popular destinations and activities for day trips in Chiba!

Tokyo Disney Resort

Yes, Tokyo Disney Resort is not technically in Tokyo, but it’s quite easy to get there, especially from Tokyo Station! Just take the Keiyo Line to Maihama Station. 

From there, you’ll either be heading to Tokyo Disneyland or Tokyo DisneySea

If it’s your first time visiting and you only have time for one, we recommend visiting Tokyo DisneySea. It’s the only Disney Park with this name and theme in the world, so there’s lots of new things to see and experience. However, it is known as the park geared more towards older teens, friend groups, couples and adults, as there’s more “aesthetic” areas for photos and they also serve alcohol in the park (for those age 20 and above).

On the other hand, Tokyo Disneyland is definitely recommended for families, especially those with young children. There’s a new Beauty and the Beast area, Star Tours, a Baymax ride, a Marvel themed area, and more! It also has the iconic Disneyland castle, this particular one being Cinderella’s! And visiting the park is extra special around Halloween & Christmas!

If you want to do both, there’s a variety of hotels, including ones in or right outside the parks, for you to stay in with guest perks.  

Other Amusement Parks and Facilities in Chiba

While Disney Resort is definitely the most famous amusement park in Chiba, check out these other fun places you may want to include in your trip!

  • Interacting with sea creatures at Kamogawa Sea World

  • Enjoying the attractions, food and sights at 「東京ドイツ村 Tokyo Doitsumura」 - Tokyo German Village

  • Playing with farm animals and enjoying seasonal landscapes at「マザー牧場 Mazaa Bokujou」- Mother Farm

  • Enjoying the waterpark and spa at Ryugujo Spa Hotel Mikazuki

  • Going shopping at Mitsui Outlet Park Kisarazu 

  • Challenging yourself on a treetop course at Forest Adventure Tarzania

Popular Activities in Chiba

You can combine these with any of the visits with places above for a fun day trip!

  • Surfing at Tsurigasaki Kaigan and other surfing beaches in Chiba

  • Going to the beach at Inage, Onjuku, Kujukuri, Moriya, Okinoshima, etc.

  • Hiking Mt. Nokogiri 

  • Fruits-picking year round - strawberries, blueberries, grapes, etc.

  • Riding Chiba’s local trains along the countryside - Kominato and Isumi Railways

For more of Chiba, check out our article Exploring Chiba Prefecture’s Finest Attractions.

Day Trip from Tokyo to Saitama

Saitama is just north of Tokyo, and there’s plenty to explore!

For nature, head to Chichibu via the Seibu Ikebukuro Line. You can: 

  • go hiking and soak in hot springs

  • go traditional river rafting in Nagatoro 

  • see the beautiful flowers at Hitsujiyama Park

For history and tradition, Kawagoe, also known as “Koedo” or Little Edo, is a popular spot. You can:

  • see historical buildings and townscape

  • admire the beautiful Hikawa Shrine, especially the wind chimes in summer (and buy good luck charms to have good relationships)

  • take part in the annual Kawagoe Festival (October)

  • eat all the local delicacies, especially sweet potatoes

For entertainment, head to

  • Seibu Yuenchi - a theme park set in the Showa Period of Japan (with a waterpark in summer)

  • Moomin Valley Park & Metsa Village - a relaxing theme park in nature based on the characters by Tove Jansson

  • Belluna Dome - watch a baseball game at the Seibu Lions’ home stadium

  • Sayama Ski Resort - ski or snowboard indoors

For more, check out 12 Things To Conquer in Saitama-ken, Japan.

Day Trip from Tokyo to Kanagawa

Kanagawa, just south of Tokyo, has many places one could easily spend a day. 

Yokohama Day Trip

The capital city of Kanagawa Prefecture, Yokohama is filled with places to go, things to do and of course, places to eat! It’s a popular spot to escape the day for Tokyoites, because although you can find many things shopping-wise in Tokyo, Yokohama being a harbor city has a different fun, freeing and romantic atmosphere. 

Check out:

  • Minato Mirai - an area with a huge Ferris wheel, cable cars, shopping complexes and more!

  • Yokohama Chinatown - one of the 3 Chinatowns in Japan, known for its good food

  • Red Brick Warehouse - historical brick buildings turned into a fun venue with small shops, eateries, and seasonal events like festivals, ice skating rinks, concerts, etc.

Read more about the history of and things to do at The Coastal City of Japan, Yokohama.

Kamakura & Enoshima Day Trip

Kamakura and Enoshima are two areas side by side along the southern coast of Kanagawa Prefecture. It’s a popular day trip to take from Tokyo, as it’s easy to access without many train transfers. 

Kamakura is an area with lots of history, so the shrines and temples scattered throughout the area are popular to visit. It’s also especially visited during hydrangea season. 

Must visit places in Kamakura include

  • Tsurugaoka Hachimangu
  • Komachi Dori
  • Hase Temple
  • The Great Buddha statue at Kotokuin Temple
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Kamakura and Enoshima are connected by the Enoden - a small electric train that runs from Fujisawa to Kamakura. The train itself is small and cute, and the views of it and the ocean in the background is picturesque, making it a popular subject in art, photography, anime, films, etc. 

They’re also both known for its beaches so you can get off the Enoden at various stops like Yuigahama, Shichirigahama, or Enoshima to find yourself at beaches. (Some may not allow swimming)

Enoshima is an island connected to the mainland by a long bridge. There’s plenty of things to do in the Enoshima area for a whole day, including swimming at the beach, exploring the island including the caves at the far end, going up the Enoshima Tower for an extra nice view, hiking all the way to the tower without taking the escalators, etc. Make sure to eat all the food, including the local delicacy shirasu. 

Other Day Trips in Kanagawa

Need more ideas? How about checking out:

  • Hakkeijima Sea Paradise - a large aquarium entertainment facility on its own small island

  • Yokosuka - enjoy this cozy harbor city with its delicious curry and maritime history

  • Miura Peninsula - have a refreshing day on the beach while enjoying some fresh tuna

For more food and travel locations, Get to Know Kanagawa Prefecture of Japan

Day Trip from Tokyo to Shizuoka

Shizuoka Prefecture is to the left of Kanagawa Prefecture. While some of the places on our list would be better explored over 2 days due to its distance from Tokyo and needing to factor in the return trip, they’re also doable in one day!

Gotemba Premium Outlets

One of the popular shopping trips to take from Tokyo, especially if you want to go to an outlet mall, is to go to Gotemba Premium Outlets. There’s direct buses leaving from many major stations in Tokyo, usually costing around 1800 yen one way, or 3300 yen round-trip.

You can get exclusive discounts on branded items while enjoying a beautiful view of Mt. Fuji in the distance! You can also have delicious meals - some inspired by Mt. Fuji itself! - drink delicious Shizuoka tea, and pick out exclusive souvenirs and gifts only found at the outlet!

Check out other shopping options in our article Shopping in Japan: Where to Go and Tokyo Recommendations

Mount Fuji and Its Surrounding Area

While you can’t really expect to climb Mount Fuji and return on the same day, especially as a beginner, there are so many other activities around Mount Fuji to enjoy for a day trip.

People try to find the best places to get a great view of Mount Fuji. One of the most famous is Arakurayama Sengen Park. You’ve probably seen the photos of the pagoda with Mount Fuji in the background! Others include finding Mount Fuji’s reflection in one of the Fuji Five Lakes. There’s many camping grounds (better suited for weekend getaways), lakeside activities, shops and galleries to enjoy. Mount Fuji also borders Yamanashi Prefecture so there's also nice places in Yamanashi to visit as well.

Or you could go to Fuji-Q Highland, an amusement park with some of Japan’s (and the world’s!) most extreme roller coasters. It takes about 2 hours by train or bus from Tokyo, and like Gotemba Premium Outlets, there’s highway buses leaving from many major stations in Tokyo. 

Check out our detailed article Fun Activities Around Mount Fuji and Admiring Fujisan from Afar.

And for more details about the prefecture itself, read Touring Kanagawa’s Neighbour: Shizuoka Prefecture

Day Trip from Tokyo to Nikko in Tochigi Prefecture

Nikko is a very popular destination for all ages. Many students in Tokyo visit for school trips during elementary and middle school after learning about its history. Adults often visit not just for the historical aspect but to also relax in nature and the hot springs.

Places to check out in Nikko:

  • Nikko Toshogu - a famous shrine dedicate to Tokugawa Ieyasu, one of Japan’s most famous and influential persons in history

  • Kinugawa Onsen - a popular onsen town on the Kinugawa River

  • Tobu World Square - a theme park with over 100 miniatures of famous buildings and structures from around the world

  • Edo Wonderland - a theme park based on Japan during the Edo Period, complete with ninjas and samurai

Read more about The Wonderful Sights of Nikko.

And if you’re traveling by car, you can drop by Utsunomiya on the way back to Tokyo to eat some delicious gyoza dumplings that the city is famous for!

More information here at Tochigi Prefecture: Strawberries, Flowers, Gyoza and More

Day Trips From Tokyo Better for Overnight Stays

And there’s plenty of places where you technically could just head there early in the morning and come back at night, but we recommend staying a night to really relax and get the full experience. This is because most of them are hot spring zones with many things to do in the area and traveling there will also take some time. 

Hakone (Kanagawa)

Hakone is probably the most popular onsen town for Tokyoites to escape to, thanks to its easy access. However, there’s so many things to do in Hakone - from taking the Hakone ropeway, riding a pirate ship on a lake, visiting an open air museum on top of soaking in the baths - that while taking frequent one-day trips is fine, staying a night will provide a more relaxing experience. 

Read more about Hakone, Charming Getaway from Tokyo

Karuizawa (Nagano)

Karuizawa is a popular getaway especially in the summer, as the temperature is cooler than in Tokyo and it’s located only an hour away via shinkansen. You can go shopping, hiking, cycling, and enjoy some good food including soba in the midst of nature. People also head there in the winter for some skiing.  

More details at A Recreational Getaway at Karuizawa, Japan

Kusatsu Onsen (Gunma)

Like Hakone, Kusatsu Onsen is one of the famous onsen areas in the Kanto region. There are buses that will take you there from Tokyo, but it’s about a 4 hour trip. It’s about 2.5 hours if taking the shinkansen and train, but more expensive. Thus, many people opt to stay a night, especially if it’s their first time. 

Kusatsu has a very traditional ritual to cool the hot water, which many people visit to see, and a very traditional townscape. The free public footbaths in easily accessible locations are also quite popular. 

Read more about Kusatsu Onsen here

Izu Peninsula (Shizuoka)

Izu Peninsula has many charming towns where people go for weekend getaways to go to the beach, eat good seafood and soak in the hot springs. Popular locations in Izu include Atami, Ito and Shimoda. Atami is especially popular among the three because you can get to it directly by shinkansen. You can enjoy a quiet relaxing time away from big crowds. 

More information here at Some of Japan’s Best Onsen, Beaches and More in Izu Peninsula.

Conclusion

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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There’s plenty to explore in the Greater Tokyo Area and Kanto Region! We hope this gives you many ideas for where to take your next day trip out of Tokyo!

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Writer

Karin
Born in Japan, grew up in Los Angeles, living in Tokyo. Love: Movies, (mostly pop) music, hunting for good Mexican food. My kryptonite: 漢字&期間限定 (kanji & limited time offers)

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