How to access to the newest World Heritage Tomioka Silk Mill

Kanto Area
The main entrance of Tomioka Silk Mill
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The main entrance of Tomioka Silk Mill

The main entrance of Tomioka Silk Mill

“The Tomioka Silk Mill and Related Industrial Heritage” is the newest World Heritage in Japan. It is listed in this year, 2014. It is not very well known for overseas tourist. Please refer the official site of Tomioka Silk Mill to learn more about this site.

There are several sites in this World Heritage. Most of these sites are not very accessible but it is very easy to access to the main part of this World Heritage, Tomioka Silk Mill and visit there as day trip from Tokyo very easily.

In this post, I would like to show you how to access there and I also explain about suitable deals for the trip to Tomioka Silk Mill.

Location and access

Please see the map below.

Access map to Tomioka Silk Mill from Tokyo (Click to enlarge)

Access map to Tomioka Silk Mill from Tokyo (Click to enlarge)

Joshu-Tomioka station is the nearest station to Tomioka Silk Mill. It take 15 minutes walk from Joshu-Tomioka station.

Joshu-Tomioka station has just been renovated in this past March. (C) Yazk-tna - 上信電鉄上州富岡駅3代目駅舎

Joshu-Tomioka station has just been renovated in this past March. (C) Yazk-tna – 上信電鉄上州富岡駅3代目駅舎

Joshu-Tomioka station can be accessed from Takasaki station by Joshin Railway. Takasaki can be accessed by Joetsu Shinkansen, Shonan-Shijuku line or Takasaki line from downtown Tokyo.

The trip times are the following:

Tokyo to Takasaki by Shinkansen — Appx 1 hour
Shinjuku to Takasaki by Shonan-Shinjuku line — Appx 2 hours
Ueno to Takasaki by Takasaki line — Appx 2 hours

Takasaki to Joshu-Tomioka by Joshin Railway — 40 minutes

You can get more info about Takasaki station at the post, Takasaki station guide. It’s junction to Nagano, Niigata, Kusatsu and Tomioka Silk Mill.

Fares and deals

If you use Kanto Area Pass, the trip to Joshu-Tomioka is covered fully without any extra charge. This pass issued by JR East but it covers Joshin Railway train as well.

If you use JR Pass or JR East Pass, you can take Shinkansen to Takasaki without any extra. Joshin Railway is not covered by both JR Pass and JR East Pass. But Joshin Railway sells “Tomioka Silk Mill round trip discount deal” at 1640 yen. It includes round trip to Joshu-Tomioka from Takasaki (1580 yen) and admission to Tomioka Silk Mill (500 yen). So it is 440 yen cheaper than regular fares. You can purchase this deal at Joshin Railway Takasaki station on the spot.

If you intend to purchase regular fare to Takasaki, you have choices Shinkansen or conventional line trains, Shonan-Shinjuku line from Shinjuku or Takasaki line from Ueno. If you take Shinkansen, you have to pay about 4500 yen for base fare and non reserved seat on Shinkansen for one way. But if you take conventional line trains, the fare is less than half, about 2000 yen. But travel time is double.


  1. Alan says:

    i walked from isobe and i use a coupon from seishun 18 for a trip starting from ueno. i was hoping there would be a bus from isobe station, but there wasnt, and the hike involved a small mountain but it is nice to explore some new area.

    • Hi Alan,

      Did you walk from Isobe onsen to Tomioka? What an experience!


      Takeshi / JP Rail

      • Alan says:

        I didnt aware it was an onsen area until i took my time to explore around the station on the way back. the hike was long but it was fun. i certainly was not aware that i had to hike across a mountain on my way there. once i got there, i decided the hike back was still manageable as i had a better sense of ehat to expect. i took my time to explore the things along the road.

        this is my way of travel. i walk a lot to save money. one time, i took a JR. train to nishimemabetsu and walk to memanbetsu airport as JR is 900 yen cheaper than the airport bus!

  2. Alan says:

    I walked from the nearest JR station, the hike is 8.1km one way. a simple map would do, one does need to across a small hill using one youth 18 ticket.

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