How to get to Takayama by a train and a bus

TakayamaChubu Area
Preserved path in Takayama. It is very popular tourist district in Takayama.
Takayama Old Town is very popular tourist district.

Takayama is one of the most popular destinations for overseas travelers. Especially spring and fall seasons are very popular since the festivals are held. This city is also known as the gateway to UNESCO World Heritage Site, Shirakawago.
I would like to tell you about the access to Takayama in this post.


Takayama access map. Click to view large. (C) JP Rail

Takayama is a small town but it is one of most popular tourist places in Japan in these days. The old preserved district is busy in all season. Please watch the movie below about this charming old town:

This town is located in the middle of Nagoya, Toyama, Kanazawa and Matsumoto.

Nagoya is most common gateway station to get Takayama. But there are some more ways to access to Takayama, such as Kanazawa, Toyama and Matsumoto. I would like to show you the ways to get Takayama.

Access from Tokyo, Nagoya and many other cities by the limited express Wide View Hida

Limited Express Wide View Hida at Takayama station

Nagoya can be reached by the Shinkansen from Tokyo, Shin-Yokohama, Kyoto, Shin-Osaka and many more stations on the Tokaido Shinkansen easily and directly. This route is fully covered by JR Pass.

Most of travellers take the limited express Wide View Hida from Nagoya to Takayama. Travel time is 2.5 hours to get Takayama from Nagoya. This train departs from Nagoya almost every one hour. Please see the post, below to find more information about the limited express Wide Veiw Hida:

And you can get more information about Nagoya station in the link below:

Access from Osaka by the limited express Wide View Hida

There is only one round trip to Takayama from Osaka directly. Please find the timetable in the link below:

Due to COVID-19, it may be operated on a schedule different from the normal timetable. Check the train schedule on Hyperdia.
Hyperdia perfect guide, train timetable and route search engine

If you can catch this train, it is convenient. But it is only one round trip a day. Most of travelers take the Shinkansen to Nagoya and transfer to the limited express Wide View Hida.

Access from Toyama by the limited express Wide View Hida

Gassho style housing in Shirakawago.

If you travel in Hokuriku region, you may get on the limited express Wide View Hida from Toyama. Travel time is 1.5 hours. However there are only 4 round trips a day. There are local trains too. But there is no local trains that connects Toyama and Takayama directly, And also it is very slow. Please check the timetable in the link below:

Due to COVID-19, it may be operated on a schedule different from the normal timetable. Check the train schedule on Hyperdia.
Hyperdia perfect guide, train timetable and route search engine

Access from Kanazawa or Toyama via Shirakawago by Nohi bus

Nohi bus has the biggest network in this area.

This route is not a train trip and is not covered by JR Pass. But Takayama Hokuriku Area Tourist Pass covers this bus service. This is very popular route because Shirakawago is located on the way. If you have a plan to go to Shirakawago, you may consider about visiting Shirakawago and Kanazawa. Please see the link below to find the timetable and the fare of Nohi bus:

Nohi Bus official site

The following posts also may help you to build your trip plan:

How to access to Shirakawago from Takayama, Kanazawa, Takaoka and Toyama.
How to access Kanazawa from Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Nagoya, Yokohama, Hiroshima, Hakata and many more places. Which route is the fastest and the cheapest?

Access from Matsumoto by bus

This route is not a train trip and is not covered by JR Pass either. But if you want to access to Takayama from Nagano or Matsumoto, you may use this route. This bus service is also operated by Nohi bus:

Nohi Bus official site

This route is not covered by Takayama Hokuriku Area Tourist Pass either.

I traveled from Matsumoto to Takayama via Shin-Hotaka by this bus. Please find my trip report in the movie below. You can find the interior of the bus, the scenery and the bus stops on the way.

Takayama station and Takayama bus terminal

Both the station and the bus terminal are located side by side.

Takayama station and Nohi bus Takayama Bust Terminal (behind the staiton building)

Takayama station is very small. It has only two platforms and three tracks. The station building is very small and it has only one ticket gate.

Please watch the movie below to see whole Takayama station and the bus terminal:

Overview of Takayama station

There are many bus services from Nohi Bus Takayama bus terminal. You can catch the bus to Shirakawago, Kanazawa, Matsumoto, Shin-Hotaka at this bus terminal.

Takayama bus terminal
Bus stops are located in front of bus terminal.
Ticket window in bus terminal
Convenience store is in the terminal building.

I hope this post helped you to build your trip plan to Takayama.


  1. Jess says:

    Dear Takeshi san,

    I’m traveling to Tokyo → Kamikochi → Kanazawa → ShiragawaGo → Tojinbo → Tokyo between 11Nov to 17Nov, and followed by Nikko area.

    I’m contemplating to get the 7Days JR Hokuriku Arch Pass for the first 7days. There’s few point I wish to get some advice from you:

    1. How could I check or which website could i check if this pass cover the local train from tokyo to takayama, Kanazawa to tojinbo etc.?

    2. I read from the JR website it’s not specifically mentioned Limited Express Wide View Hida is covered by the JR Hokuriku Arch Pass. Is Wide View Hida covered by JR hokuriku Arch Pass?

    3. If Wide View Hida is not covered, is the other option to travel on takayama line, from toyama to takayama via inotani station? I understand that this route would be an hour more as compared to Wide View Hida.

    4. I read from websites that there’s discounted return bus pass between takayama↔ kamikochi, and, Kanazawa ↔ ShirakawaGo, and the return bus ticket the purchased at takayama / Kanazawa train station a day in advanced. Any advice for this as I’m abit concern if I could secured a seat during that period.

    Many thanks in advance.


  2. Hi Takeshi San,

    I am travelling with a grp of 4 Adults and 2 kids (Ages 14 and 7).
    Our plan is as follow;
    15 Dec Reach Kansai airport stayed at Tengachaya for the night.
    16 Dec From Tengachaya to Takayama (2 nights)
    17 Dec to Shinotaka Ropeway/Okuhida hot spring/Osaka Fall
    18 Dec to Shirakawa-GO and travel to Nagoya
    19 Dec From Nagoya to Gifu area (Mino Washi Japanese Paper)
    20 to 21 Dec Travel around Nagoya
    22 Dec From Nagoya to Tengachaya (Osaka)
    23 to 24 Dec in Osaka

    Can trouble you to advice me whether to get 5 days JR Takayama-Hokuriku Area Tourist Pass for the above will be good and cheapest transport?
    The transport in Nagoya – any JR packages or single trip, the best transport to travel around Nagoya?
    From Nagoya to Tengachaya (Osaka), which is the cheapest and fast way of transportation?
    The transportation that you will recommended within Osaka.
    Thank you

  3. Hi Takeshi San,

    I’m planning to take a trip from Tokyo to Takayama > Shirakawago > Hirayu Onsen + Shinhotaka Ropeway. Below is my travel plan based on research. Kindly advise if this is the cheapest and best way to travel. Thank you!

    Day 1: Tokyo – Nagoya – Takayama (stay in Takayama 2 nights)
    – Take JR Tokaido Shinkansen to Nagoya, change to JR Hida limited express train to Takayama
    – Total duration/cost = 4.5 hours/JPY14,000

    Day 2: Shirakawago
    – Take Nohi Bus. Round trip per pax = JPY4,600

    Day 3: Hirayu Onsen + Shinhotaka Ropeway (stay in Hirayu 2 nights)
    – I read from Nohi Bus website that they offer a 2-day 「Okuhida」 Marugoto Value Ticket which includes unlimited travel between Takayama and Shinhotaka Ropeway plus Ropeway ticket @JPY6,000 each

    Day 4: Return to Takayama (covered by 2-day Marugoto pass) and take Shinkanzen back to Tokyo (another JPY14,000 per pax)

    Total fare for the 4-day trip is JPY38,600.


    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of
      Takeshi / says:

      Hi Wong san,

      If you take a reserved seat on both Shinkansen and Wide View Hida, it costs almost 15,000 yen for one way. As a result, round trip fare is more than the price of JR pass 7-day at 29,100 yen. If you make some more trips before/after this trip by train, JR pass gives you a bigger saving.

      JR pass does not cover Nohi bus. So you have to add these fares to Shirakawago and Shin-Hotaka anyway.


      Takeshi /

  4. Shelly says:

    Hi Takeshi
    Can you please advise me what is the best way to get to Osaka from Takayama? I read that there is round trip service depart from Takayama (limited express wide view Hida) but it is a bit late arrive at Osaka. I stay near Namba subway station.

    Takayama 15:38 -> 17:36 Gifu 17:43 -> 19:17 Kyoto 19:18 -> 19:44 Shin-Osaka 19:45 -> Osaka 19:50

    What other option that I can reach Osaka earlier?

  5. Riagrl says:

    Hi takeshi,

    Can we book online in advance bus tickets from takayama to shirikawa go vv.?

  6. Dear Takeshi San,
    How do i purchase the Hida Wide train ticket from Takyama to Gero and back (i.e. return)?
    Planning to go in January 2018 and i see that the train ride would be a fun thing to do while staying warm.


    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of
      Takeshi / says:

      Hi Robyn san,

      You can book a seat and purchase a ticket at any major JR stations. You can purchase it at Takayama or other JR stations throughout Japan. Unfortunately online reservation is not available. You have to go to the station to get it.


      Takeshi /

  7. Dear Takeshi-san,

    I have bought the 5 Days JR Takayama-Hokuriku Area Tourist Pass to go to Shirakawa-go from Shin Osaka for 2 days on my 4th and 5th day of our trip.

    Here’s my plan and please advise if needed :-
    14/12 – use 5D JR Pass from Shin-Osaka to Kanazawa for few hours sightseeing, then take Nohi bus to Shirakawa-go after lunch. We will stay over night in Shirakawa-go.

    15/12 – Depart from Shirakawa-go to Takayama (by Nohi bus??) for few hours walking tour the back to Shin Osaka by 5D JR Pass.

    Please advise if I need to buy any additional pass in order to get to all these destinations that wanted.

    Thank you very much.

    Jaycelyn Ho

    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of
      Takeshi / says:

      Hi Jaycelyn san,

      You have to add a bus fare in Kanazawa. Most of the tourist spots in Kanazawa, such as Kenrokuen, Kanazawa castle, are a bit away from the station. Please see the link below to find more info:

      When you go back to Shin-Osaka, the common route is taking Wide View Hida from Takayama to Nagoya, and then taking Shinkansen from Nagoya to Shin-Osaka. But Takayama Hokuriku area pass does not cover Nagoya to Shin-Osaka by Shinkansen. If you want to go back to Shin-Osaka by this pass without any extra charge, you have to take same route on Dec 14, or taking Wide View Hida from Takayama to Toyama, taking Hokuriku Shinkansen from Toyama to Kanazawa, and then taking Limited Express Thunderbird from Kanazawa to Shin-Osaka.


      Takeshi /

  8. Lee San says:

    Hi Takeshi san,
    I am planning to purchase the 5 Days JR Takayama-Hokuriku Area Tourist Pass for my coming trip. Would you please be so kind to confirm if all the routes that I am taking will be covered by this pass. I am just not sure if it covers the Nohi bus from takayama to Okuhida onsen (Hodakaso Yamano Hotel) to Shinhotaka Ropeway ?

    Day 1 – Nagoya station to Takayama taking Limited Express ‘Wide View’ Hida train
    Day 2 – Takayama to Shirakawago by Nohi bus
    Day 3 – Stay in takayama
    Day 4 – Takayama to Okuhida onsen to Shinhotaka Ropeway by Nohi Bus
    Day 5 – Okuhida onsen back to takayama by Nohi Bus and Takayama to Nagoya by Limited Express ‘Wide View’ Hida train

    Greatly appreciate your confirmation. Thanks
    Lee San

  9. Phyllis says:

    Am i able to purchase Shinkansen ticket from Takayama to Tokyo from Takayama Station ? I am thinking to only purchase the tickets when i reach Takayama as I will not be staying in a hotel.

  10. Deffenie says:

    Dear Takeshi San
    Kindly advise which passes best suits our 2weeks schedule for Dec 2018:
    18/12 — Kansai airport to Kyoto 2nite — Kyoto to Kinosakionsen 1nite back to Kyoto 1nite — Kyoto to Matsumoto 2nite — Matsumoto to Takayama 2nite — Takayama to Hiroshima 2nite – Hiroshima to Osaka 3 nite — head for kansai airport.
    (1) Will the 14 day JR pass covers all the areas mentioned (worth it)?
    (2) or should we just get Kansai Wide Area Pass together with
    (3) Kansai Hiroshima Pass?
    If we were to get (1)&(2) passes, what pass is good for (4) Kyoto-Matsumoto-Takayama-Hiroshima via Nagoya
    Pls advise, we are lost in fixing item (4).
    Thank you Takeshi San

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