If you are arriving at Narita Airport and would like to know direct travel options, click to go to the Getting from Narita to Nagano page.
The distance from Tokyo to Nagano is around 230km. The fastest way to travel is the shinkansen (bullet train, around 1.5 hours). The cheapest way to travel is the highway bus from Shinjuku which takes around 4 hours. If you have a car, it will take around 4 hours on the highway.
The Asama Shinkansen departs every half hour, takes 100 minutes and costs ¥8,000 per person (6 & under travel free). The stations around Tokyo where you can board are Tokyo, Ueno and Omia.
To find exact departure times, routes and prices from any station, use the Jorudan English Train Route Finder and search to Nagano.
Tokyo to Nagano By Bus
The Keio Highway Bus Terminal is located in Shinjuku, a little south of the Central West Exit and across the road. It’s actually right outside Exit #7 from the underground. The building is opposite Yodobashi Camera, and all the buses swing through here and stop to let people on and off. There are a bunch of places around here to eat and drink.
The schedule (and price) changes seasonally and with peak dates, but buses leave for Nagano pretty much every hour, and it can be as cheap as ¥2,900. It stops to let people on and off several times, with one break at a rest stop with toilets, fast food, a convenience store and so on. No alcohol though, the highway stop shops aren’t allowed to sell booze. The trip normally takes a bit under 4 hours, but on weekends and holidays it can take longer.
Tokyo to Nagano By Car
Though it’s possible to do the trip without taking the highway, it isn’t recommended. On the highway it will take around 4 hours to drive a minimum of 220km – allowing for reasonable traffic and a break at one of the numerous Service Areas. The cash fare is a little over ¥5,000.
It is possible to navigate yourself, but so much easier to use either the car’s GPS or the maps on your phone plugged into a car charger. If your car doesn’t have a GPS and you’re not with someone who knows the way, this is one time having a roaming cellphone plan will really come in handy.
- Japan Guide – Nagano Travel: Access, Transportation and Orientation
- JR East – Nagano Shinkansen | Routes & Maps | JR-EAST