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One Day In Yokohama - The Ultimate 24 Hour Itinerary

By Kenji Kitabayashi An admirer of contemporary art with over twenty years of knowledge of Yokohama.
03 September 2020
One Day In Yokohama - The Ultimate 24 Hour Itinerary

Yokohama is a city where east and west collide to make one of the most special places in
the whole of Japan. The American influence combined with traditional Japanese culture has
produced a city that is diverse and varied - just right for somebody who wants an
unconventional Japan experience. For any tourist looking for day trips from Tokyo then
Yokohama should be very high up on your list of places to travel to. In just under one hour,
you can go from the busy streets of Tokyo to the diverse and far less travelled streets of
Yokohama. Here, you will find many fine foods to try and lots of interesting things to see
and do. Spend some time in the izakaya of Noge or walk the futuristic streets of Minato
Mirai - Yokhama is a tourist gem waiting to be discovered. My Yokohama travel guide will
give you a full twenty-four hour plan so that you can fit as much as you possibly can inside
the tiny amount of time you have here. Whether you do it on your own or with a local,
spending twenty-four hours in Yokohama promises to be an experience that you will never
forget!


Morning

Morning

Photo Credit: commons.wikimedia.org


Your one day in Yokohama will most likely start at Yokohama Station, in the center of the city. From here you will be able to reach everything very easily, so it is a very handy place to begin. Then, from the Station you will walk just a small way until you get to the futuristic waterfront area that we call Minato Mirai. Five minutes into your walk you will come to your very first stop; the Nissan Global Headquarters building. What I like most about here is that anybody can walk through the building, and if you are very lucky you might be able to see an event taking place. Sometimes they show Formula One, or they might even have a radio car racing match which can be very fun indeed.

Morning

Morning

Photo Credit: www.cntraveler.com


Next, it’s time for some Yokohama sightseeing around the Minato Mirai area – there are many must see attractions here. Straight away you can see the famous Yokohama skyline which includes the Landmark Tower and the famous Cosmo Clock Twenty One ferris wheel. From the top of both of these you’ll have very enjoyable views out over my beautiful city’s scenery – but you shouldn’t go up yet (wait until lunchtime!). For this next part, you can decide for yourself what to do in Yokohama because you have two very different choices. You could go to the Yokohama Port Museum and learn about the extraordinary maritime history of the city from aboard the Nippon Maru sailing ship. Or, if you are more interested in the art and culture of the city, then you could spend some time looking at works from some very famous international and Japanese artists at the Yokohama Museum of Art.

Afternoon

Afternoon

Mealtimes in Yokohama are very exciting for visitors as it gives you the chance to get to know the very extraordinary style of Yokohama food. Choosing one place to go for lunch is difficult, but I think I have somewhere that is very special indeed. On the seventieth floor of the Landmark Tower is the bar Sirius, and they do a great lunch buffet. Try real Yokohama ramen whilst you look down on Minato Mirai and beyond from the second highest building in Japan. The price for all of this is about fifty thousand Yen, which isn’t exactly an everyday, affordable price, but sometimes people want to go to a high-end place like this every once in a while. You might never get another chance to have the experience – plus it’s one of the best restaurants in Yokohama!

Afternoon

Afternoon

When lunch is over, stretch your legs at the Yamashita Park and enjoy the views out over the impressive port and bay side. I think this park is a must-see Yokohama attraction because of the street performers that display their extraordinary talents here every single day. Have a seat next to the fountain and watch the dancers and musicians perform, or just take in your colorful surroundings and feel the sea breeze on your face. The gardens are particularly impressive during the springtime when the flowers start to blossom! Then, maybe try some food from one of the stalls selling many different types of traditional Yokohama food. Or, if you want something sweeter, take a short walk to Cinnamon’s where can experience the city’s special American influence with the best stacked pancakes that you can imagine.

Afternoon

Afternoon

Next, walk towards the Yokohama Chinatown; it is by far the biggest in Japan! Enter the area through one of the four gates and explore the colorful and exciting streets on foot, taking in the sights and smells of this special part of the city. I think I’m talking about food too much (is that possible though?), but one of my favorite Yokohama hidden spots called Kowseiwa is here – they do the best dim sum. Shop for gifts in the stalls that run along every street – you will get clothes, jewelry, stationary and many, many other interesting things here. Something else that should be on your Yokohama itinerary is the Kanteibyo Temple right in the center of Chinatown. In the daytime, the temple is a colorful historic building with a very calming atmosphere, but by night it shines bright with the help of many beautiful Chinese lanterns. It is one of the most special sights in Yokohama at night for me, so you should wait until the sun goes down to see it.

Evening

Evening

Continue your twenty-four hours in Yokohama by travelling to the Noge area of the city. It’s not too far to walk, but if you begin to get tired you can always get a train from the Ishikawacho Station and get off at Takashimacho Station. Of everywhere in Yokohama, Noge is my favorite place for many, many reasons. It’s an area that contains endless restaurants and izakaya, and it is actually bigger than Shinjuku in Tokyo, but tourists never really come here! Spend your evening bar hopping around this area, making sure to try as many of the small and traditional independent izakaya as you possibly can. Many of my favorite hidden gems in Yokohama are in these streets, but Iwaki is my number one. It has so much character inside that is really cool to see, especially for visitors, plus they serve a traditional Japanese stew called oden - one of the must try foods in Yokohama. The master of this izakaya always serves the food that she has made that day, so you can be sure you are getting the very best dishes.


 

Evening

Evening

Photo Credit: metropolisjapan.com


For anyone trying to work out what to in Yokohama at night that will give you that very special Japanese experience you are looking for, you should go to the Chigusa Jazz Café. Even if you are not interested in jazz too much, you should still come here to take in the atmosphere and to experience a real-life Japanese jazz cafe. Unfortunately, they are beginning to become quite rare in Japan so there is even more reason to come to this must visit nightlife spot. Request your own records or just let the café choose which songs you should listen to – it is up to you. Take my advice and get a whiskey and soda in a classic highball glass – this is the best way to end your one day in Yokohama like a true local. Make sure you take some time to talk to the bartenders, staff or even the locals because we are all very friendly and would enjoy practicing our English with you!