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.

Overview

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.

Comments

  1. Lucy says:

    Hi
    Am planning on a trip from Tokyo to Tatemaya Kurobe Alpine, Shirakawago n Kanazawa in end of June. I nite stay at Shirakawago n day trip to Kurobe n back Tokyo
    Pls advise how should I go about making thi best of this trip using the public transport
    Thku heaps.

  2. Mag says:

    Hi
    We’re arriving Nagoya Airport at 8:40am and would like to take a bus to Takayama at around 11:00am.
    Please advise what other bus service besides Meitetsu (which departs around 2pm) can we take? And can I buy bus tickets online?

  3. Hi Takeshi,

    I wish to confirm regards Toyama to takayama transport fee.
    I check if take JR Toyama to takayama train fee is yen1660 compare to by nohi bus is yen3200.

    Im concern about bus fare is higher than train fare. Am I correct on this information.

    Really appreciated it

    Thanks and Rdgs
    Wendy

    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of JPRail.com
      Takeshi / JPRail.com says:

      Hi Wendy,

      Nohi bus go through Shirakawago, but train does not.
      And also 1660 yen is only base fare. If you take limited express train, you have to pay at least 1180 yen more for non reserved seat.
      You can take local train at 1660 yen. But you have to change the train at least once and it’s so slow.

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  4. Kristin den Exter – Lismore NSW Australia – Secretary, Wilsons River Landcare
    Kristin den Exter says:

    Hi 🙂

    My name is Kristin, I am from Australia. We (7 of us!) are traveling to Takayama soon, we leave for Kyoto on the 14th April.

    I am so sad to realise we will miss the evening procession of the Sanno Matsuri festival.

    We have a JR rail pass and I am wondering what is the last train to Kyoto & how long will it take?

    Thank you

    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of JPRail.com
      Takeshi / JPRail.com says:

      Hi Kristin,

      18:45, Wide View Hida 20 is the last train. And you need to change the trains at Nagoya. Arrival time is Kyoto around 22:00.
      This is the last train connection from Takayama. If you miss 18:45, you cannot get Kyoto.

      Don’t forget to book your seat on this train. You can book all train tickets right after you exchange JR Pass if you want.

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

      • Kristin den Exter – Lismore NSW Australia – Secretary, Wilsons River Landcare
        Kristin den Exter says:

        Thank you Takeshi! Very helpful 🙂

        If I may ask one other (silly) question – if we are coming from Tokyo with a JR Pass I understand that it is best to go through Nagoya is that right?

        Best wishes Kristin

        • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of JPRail.com
          Takeshi / JPRail.com says:

          Hi Kristin,

          You may take Nagoya route. This is most ordinary route. If you want to have something different, you can take Hokuriku Shinkansen to get Toyama and go down to Takayama. All part of Takayama line (Toyama-Takayama-Gifu) is very scenic. But trains do not run so many between Toyama and Takayama. If you take this route, please check the timetable and find the best time to take a train.

          Cheers,

          Takeshi / JPRail.com

  5. Jane says:

    We are planning to take train from Nagoya to Takayama, and then from Takayama to Kanazawa. Can we purchase reserved seats online in advance? Does any JR pass cover these 2 routes?

  6. hi,
    i am Siew Tin from Malaysia.

    i plan my trip from Kansai airport then go Kyoto and Nara first,then go Shirokawago.After this will go Osaka.

    i want to know is Kyoto to Shiro,JR train will stop in Takayama town,rite? After that,can i buy bus ticket for Takayama to Shirokawago?

    After Shiro,I can take JR direct go to Osaka? Which station will stop?

    Thanks

  7. cmfasmockpapers
    isaac says:

    Dear Takeshi,

    I am planning to go to Takayama from Kyoto. If i travel from Kyoto-Nagoya-Takayama will JR Pass be able to use on Limited express wide view Hida train?

    I understand there is a train ride

    “There is only one round trip to Takayama from Osaka directly. As of July 2013, the timetable is the following:
    Osaka 07:58 -> Takayama 12:13
    Takayama 15:36 -> Osaka 19:51”

    Will the JR Pass be able to cover this route as well?

    -Isaac

  8. Dear Sir,

    I would like to make a plan to visit in a Jan month to:

    1. Shirakawago, (1-2 nights)
    2. Takayama, (Day trip?)
    3. Kanazawa, (1 night?)
    4. Toyoma. (1 night)
    Am planning to fly into Toyoma and from there travel to these places. Would you be able to assist in sharing what is the best transport to travel around these places?

    Thanks much.

  9. bmwoo123
    Damien says:

    Hi,

    Which is the fastest and more convenient way to go to Takayama from Osaka? From which site can I book train/bus tickets? and how long will it take? I can’t read Japanese.

    I have booked two nights in the Ryokan “Hodakaso Sanganoyu”. Any tips appreciated, I was thinking to drive there but I don’t have snow tires and chains.

    Thanks!

  10. Crystal says:

    Hi,

    I’ll visit Osaka coming this 10th Dec.I plan to go Takayama.Any bus can reach if I from Osaka to Takayama?Thanks

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