Yokohama Travel Information

Mother Earth Travel > Japan > Yokohama > History

Most travelers begin their visit at Yokohama Station, where the JR Tokaido Line joins with seven other railways running northeast to Tokyo and south and west to Ofuna, Kamakura, Nagoya and beyond. Here you will find helpful travel insights at the JR Travel Service Center and the Yokohama City Air Terminal (YCAT) Information Office. You will also discover the largest commercial zone in the city, a shopper's delight with Takashimaya, Mitsukoshi, and Sogo department stores, plus Porta Shopping Plaza, surrounding the mammoth intersection of tracks. Numerous banks, the Yokohama Central Post Office, two busy expressways, the municipal subway, dozens of tall office buildings and an array of fine hotels make the station area the right stop for business travelers as well as tourists.

Take note, however: The JR Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen "bullet train" does not stop at Yokohama Station. That terminal is Shin-Yokohama Station, roughly three miles north of the city center, where Yokohama Arena and a new complex of offices and hotels are to be found.

To most Yokohamans, the real heart of the city is the waterfront district, Kannai, where the port authority, customs house, municipal and prefectural government offices are located. Adjacent to Kannai Station on the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line, is Yokohama City Hall and Yokohama Stadium. A stroll towards the bay will bring you past Yokohama Park to the Silk Museum and the Yokohama Archives of History. Then, along the water's edge you will encounter a number of grand hotels, the famous shoreline park Yamashita Koen, and such landmarks as Marine Tower (built to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the port), Osanbashi Pier with its many huge ships, the blue-lit Yokohama Bay Bridge stretching 860 meters toward Tokyo, and the old Red Brick Warehouse area (often used as a historic location by filmmakers). If you head inland from Kannai, you will also have the opportunity to see a mile-long greenbelt known as Odori Park, resplendent with its many trees and flowers, as well as sculptures by such famous artists as Henry Moore.

A bit further on from Kannai, near Ishikawacho Station, is the Motomachi Shopping Center, with its fashionable shops, trendy restaurants and tea salons. Once there, you will be just a few minutes' walk from Japan's largest Chinatown district, chukagai, where the main attraction is more than 160 restaurants serving food that rivals the best of Shanghai, Canton and Beijing. When you take time to rest your taste buds, you are bound to be amazed by the variety of curio shops, herbalists, and import boutiques that teem the streets, too, between the four huge gates that mark the boundaries of Chinatown proper. Gaijin Bochi, the "foreigners cemetery," is also in the Ishikawacho/Chinatown vicinity.

Natural points of interest on any tour of Yokohama are the bluffs and lush parks which surround the city, such as Harbor View Hill Park for the perfect night view, the 170,000-square-meter Sankei-en with its 500-yearold pagoda, and Nogeyama Park, which features its own zoo, library, swimming pool and observatory.

No visit to modern Yokohama would be complete, however, without spending time at the Minato Mirai 21 Area. Located on the bay just between Yokohama Station and Kannai , it has, in just a few short years, become one of the city's most popular attractions. This is the site of the stunning Landmark Tower, noted for its avant-garde architecture as well as its colossal size (at 70 stories, it is the nation's tallest building). Serving this futuristic zone are three top-class hotels, the convention facilities of Yokohama Pavilion and the Pacifico Exhibition Complex, a national auditorium, the Yokohama Museum of Arts, and one of the country's most popular amusement parks, Yokohama Cosmo World. Come here to ride the world's largest Ferris wheel, Cosmo Clock or to tour the Nippon Maru exploration ship. You will want to allow an entire day for this "Harbor City of the Future."

With all these attractions in mind, you are beginning to understand why Yokohama residents feel little need to travel across the Kanagawa River to Tokyo. Every convenience of a world-class city--the culture, the shopping, the services, the recreation--exists right here in their own back yard.

Weather

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Avg. High 49° 49° 54° 64° 72° 76° 82° 86° 79° 69° 61° 53°
Avg. Low 33° 34° 39° 49° 57° 64° 71° 74° 67° 56° 47° 38°
Mean 41° 42° 47° 57° 65° 70° 76° 80° 73° 63° 54° 46°
Avg. Precip. 2.1 in 2.9 in 4.7 in 5.8 in 6.0 in 8.6 in 5.3 in 5.8 in 7.7 in 6.9 in 4.1 in 1.9 in

Fahrenheit temperature scale is used.