shinkyo nikko bridge
Shinkyo Bridge, Nikko

Only 2 hours from Tokyo by train, Nikko is located in the Northwestern of Tochigi Prefecture. With a relatively pleasant, cool climate, the city is a suitable weekend destination for local people or anyone who wants to find an ancient, quiet space for themselves to escape from the crowded, bustle and hustle of the nearby cities. Many visitors choose Nikko in the list of itineraries to visit Japan. Do you know why? Now, let’s explore the most mysterious ancient city in Japan through our Nikko day trip from Tokyo on how to spend a day in Nikko (Nikko 1 day, one day in Nikko, Nikko one day trip) perfectly to find out the answer! Joining Living Nomads strolling around this heritage land!

Nikko in Autumn
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Toshogu Shrine in Nikko in autumn
Edo Wonderland Nikko Edomura nikko tochigi
Edo Wonderland Nikko Edomura: the samurai era in town and country.
festival in nikko
Festival in Nikko
nikko shopping
Shopping in Nikko
soba nikko
Soba noodles

Nikko day trip from Tokyo: How to get to Nikko?

Tobu Railway train to nikko
Train to Nikko from Tokyo.

Getting to Nikko is very simple, from Asakusa Station take the Tobu Nikko Line, get off at Tobu Nikko Station. The return trip you just go back, each journey takes only 2 hours, so you are comfortable to actively take your trip. You can book train tickets in advance here for your self-sufficient traveling. Tobu Railway Nikko Area Pass.

Tobu Nikko Station

Nikko one day trip: Best places to visit and top things to do in Nikko

Where is in Nikko place the magnet that attracts the most tourists?

That is the ancient temples and pagodas complex recognized by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage, and until now it is still the pride of the people of the land of the rising sun.

Toshogu Shrine

The legendary Shinkyo Bridge

Before reaching this famous Shinto shrine, you will pass the Shinkyo Bridge. This is a red bridge bearing the historical value of the old town of Nikko, witnessing the flow of time effects on the land. This architecture and retain historical values remain. If you choose to explore the city in the fall, the Creator will give you a great picture as in the movies on the screen.

Toshogu Shrine | nikko day trip from tokyo
| nikko 1 day

toshogu nikko shrines

toshogu nikko shrines
Sophisticated wood carvins | nikko 1 day
Toshogu in the fall | nikko 1 day
Boulevard of cedar trees is planted in long queues lying on both sides of the road, called Sugi.
Boulevard of cedar trees is planted in long queues lying on both sides of the road, called Sugi.
Nikko Toshogu Shrine
| nikko one day trip

toshogu shrine temple

toshogu shrine campus
| nikko one day trip

Toshogu is bearing bold with ancient Japanese architecture, high and neat temple roof, not spread like Chinese architectural samples. Green and gold fringes are spread evenly across the walls and carved eaves. Toshogu is said to be the most important Shinto shrine in Japan, having performed many important sacrifices and ritual of purifications. With a view to persuade people to avoid evil things and devil. Many statues, carvings exist inside the temple symbolizing the values ​​brought by the Shinto religion. In particular, the statue of three monkeys covering eyes, ears, and mouth in turn has become a widespread image in Asian countries with the purpose of wanting people to toward the innocent. If you come to Toshogu do not forget to pray for good luck and own a gift is the statue of the 3 monkeys!

toshogu carvings
The very famous carving of three monkeys.
Karamon Gate of the Nikko Toshogu Shrine
Karamon Gate of the Nikko Toshogu Shrine
nikko places to see autumn leaves in japan (1)
Nikko Toshogu in Autumn | nikko day trip from tokyo
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Nikko Toshogu Shrine. One of the most beautiful shrines in Japan
Nikko in Autumn
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| a day in nikko
nikko places to see autumn leaves in japan (1)
| a day in nikko

nikko shrines2

toshogu nikko shrines
Wedding ceremony at Toshogu | one day in nikko
Toshogu festival

Address: 2301 Sannai, Nikko, Tochigi 321-1431, Japan
Hours: 8AM–5PM
Phone: +81 288-54-0560

Rinno-ji Temple

Rinnoji Entrance Gate | nikko 1 day

Built in the 18th century, Rinnoji Temple has undergone many renovations. This is the oldest temple in the old town of Nikko in particular or Japan in general. Inside the temple, there are three main Buddha statues, including Amida, Senju-Kannon and Bato-Kannon. Painted in striking red lacquerware, Rinnoji is a place where people often come to pray peace for their family and stilless after the noise of the city. Give yourself some time to experience the peaceful moment when you come here. Inside the temple are not allowed to filming, take photos to keep the security and worship space of the temple, please pay attention!

toshogu nikko shrines
| a day in nikko

Rinno-ji Temple 2653

Rinno-ji Temple 2
| a day in nikko

Rinno-ji Temple 2

Address: 2300 Sannai, Nikko, Tochigi 321-1431, Japan
Hours: 8AM–4PM
Phone: +81 288-54-0531

Futarasan Jinja


The third highlight of Nikko old town heritage, Futarasan Jinja shrine was founded by the Japanese people to worship the three mountain gods including Taro, Nyoho, Nantai dating backs from the 700s to the present day, Futarasan shrine continues to be the place where Japanese people towards. The sacred place in the middle of a fresh, green and airy space, the shrine also has a golden arrow that is “very sacred” is told by tourists from everywhere. Before reaching the place of worship, you have to climb through hundreds of towering steps to reach this land near the heaven, a series of beautiful views will occupy your eyes. This is a good opportunity for you to own the photos retelling the journey. Do not forget to discover the golden arrow when visiting the shrine and draw your fortune stick!

Entrace to Futarasan Shrine
Entrace to Futarasan Shrine | a day in nikko

Futarasan Shrine,Chugushi Shrine, Nikko, Japan

Futarasan Shrine,Chugushi Shrine, Nikko, Japan
| nikko day trip from tokyo
Futarasan Shrine,Chugushi Shrine, Nikko, Japan
Nikko Futarasan Shrine (Futarasan jinja)

Address: 2307 Sannai, Nikko, Tochigi 321-1431, Japan
Hours: 8AM–5PM
Phone: +81 288-54-0535

Three ancient “architecture” places are located quite close to each other, you can combine to explore in the same day if you going from early morning. Each place has its own admission tickets, so to save time and avoid getting lost, you can choose the available tours provided by Klook that depart from Tokyo or self-sufficient traveling and come closer to the value of the old town of Nikko.

You can refer to and book Nikko tours here:

Narabi Jizo statues in Nikko forest by Kanmangafuchi gorge
Narabi Jizo statues in Nikko forest by Kanmangafuchi gorge. | a day in nikko

In addition to the cultural spots in the old town of Nikko, the natural scenery around this area is also wonderful. In particular, Lake Chuzenji is made up of crater and is embraced by maple leaves forest create a stunning scenery, especially in the autumn. Right under the Lake Chuzenji is the majestic Kegon waterfall. Along with the cold air, Kegon has strong pouring water, creating a misty and mysterious scene. In the fall when red leaves cover the roads in the old town of Nikko, Kegon waterfalls vibrant in in orange and brilliant red. The falls bring undeniable attraction to photographers and is one of the most beautiful landscapes in Japan. The moment of virtual living is waiting for you in this fall, if you have come to Japan, don’t miss it!

Lake Chuzenji
Kayaking on Lake Chuzenji in the summer
nikko places to see autumn leaves in japan (1)
Autumn Colors in Kamakura, Chuzenji lake | nikko day trip from tokyo

Lake Chuzenji

Kegon falls in the autumn | nikko one day trip
Kegon Falls (Tochigi)3
Spectacular Falls | nikko one day trip

Nikko 1 day: What to eat?

nikko cuisine
Nikko cuisine

Indispensable delicacies for the trip is both full and energized by the attractive flavors from the locality. In addition to traditional values, Nikko old town also has delicious foods that you cannot miss:


mochi cake nikko
Nikko Mochi cakes

Mochi, which is indispensable for festivals in the land of the rising sun. In the old town of Nikko, the cake is even more quintessential when the cultural festival takes place very often here. Many travelers believe that coming to Nikko, you will be tried great variety of interesting cakes because of their toughness, smooth and softness.

Sweet red bean drop mochi cakes
Sweet red bean drop mochi cakes

Yuba noodles

Yuba – A vegetarian dish you have to try in Nikko | one day in nikko

Yuba vegetarian noodles are equally famous in the list of unique dishes in Nikko. The udon noodles are tough, big, fat but not greasy mixed with cold broth. The unique soup combined with Japanese tofu will quickly help you fill your hungry stomach with fragrant broth.

A bowl of Yuba will make the trip to Nikko complete
A bowl of Yuba will make the trip to Nikko complete

Wagyu beef

Kobe wagyu teppanyaki
Wagyu beef teppanyaki

A characteristic of Wagyu beef is that the white fat part in the meat is a lot, make the beef has texture like pattern of marble and it also makes the steak after being grilled will be softer and fatter than other types of beef. Just sliced, put it in your mouth, you will feel the nutrients of meat blending on the tip of the tongue. Enjoying this dish in the cool air of autumn day and peaceful atmosphere of Nikko will be an unforgettable experience.

Kobe wagyu teppanyaki
| one day in nikko

Are historical sites, natural scenery and attractive dishes enough to inspire you to come to Nikko old town?

Let’s joining Living Nomads straight to Nikko, the land containing historical and cultural treasures along with the beautiful natural scenery from the ancient time of the land of the rising sun right away.

Edo Wonderland Nikko Edomura the samurai era in town and country1

Prepare the following items in advance, you will have a convenient trip:

+ 4G Sim. Networking fees in Japan are very expensive, so you should buy 4G sim card in for easy access, using map and social networking to connect your friends or call relatives!

+ JR Pass. One of the trip costs that Living Nomads will help you save a lot of money is JR Pass. Japan has many attractive cities waiting for you to explore, using the JR Pass you will easily move to anywhere quickly and for as long as you want.

JR Pass
JR Pass | nikko day trip from tokyo

Are you looking for more Nikko travel guide and top things to do in Nikko: Tours, activities, attractions and other things? Read more: Nikko travel blog — The fullest Nikko travel guide blog for a wonderful trip to Nikko, Japan.

Living Nomads celebrates and is inspired by explorers and their passion for travel, curiosity about the world and unique points of view. Travel is eye-opening. Curious. Daring. Fun. We are here to help you travel better, cheaper & longer! Discover the art of traveling anywhere you want.