A Travel Price Comparison for Japan Tokyo vs. Nikko for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Tokyo or Nikko?

Should I visit Tokyo or Nikko? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Tokyo

Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is by far the most populous city in the world with a staggering 37 million people. As a worldwide hub for technology and business, it hosts millions of visitors annually. But Tokyo is not just a place for business trips. With its incredible mixture of historical temples and shrines, remarkably beautiful parks, endless shopping malls, and genuinely wonderful people, Tokyo is a terrific place to visit and to explore.

Nikko

Nikko is a small Japanese city located in the mountains north of Tokyo. It is well-known for the site of Toshogu, a famed Shinto shrine established in 1617, in memory of Tokugawa Ieyasu who was the founding ruler of the Edo Period. The town is situated just outside of Nikko National Park which offers scenic mountain landscapes, lakes, waterfalls, hot springs, wild monkeys, and hiking trails.

Which city is cheaper, Nikko or Tokyo?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Tokyo is $176, while the average daily cost in Nikko is $92. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Tokyo and Nikko in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $166 in Tokyo For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

Travelers usually pay around $104 for a double occupancy room in Nikko If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Tokyo $83
    Nikko $52
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Tokyo $166
    Nikko $104

Food

The price of a meal in Tokyo can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $41 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $16 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

Nikko food costs typically run travelers around $34 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Tokyo $41
    Nikko $34
Typical Food prices in Tokyo

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Tokyo:


  • Late Night Noodles
    $7.28
  • Conveyor Belt Sushi Snack
    $7.28
  • Meal at Airport
    $9.49

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Tokyo

For Tokyo, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Lunch or Dinner with Maiko Experience in Kyoto : $14
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Miso-balls): $23
  • Yokohama Lunch, Tea, and Dinner Cruise with Royalwings: $25
  • Japanese Rolled Sushi cooking in Tokyo: $27
  • Online character lunch box cooking class: $27
  • Tokyo West Side Walking and Street Food Tour: $34
  • Hakodate's Famous Ikameshi Cooking Class: $36
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Casual): $41
  • West-Side Walking & Street Food Tour: $45
  • Okinawa Home Cooking Experience: $45
  • Moby Dick Dinner Cruise in Naha: $53
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Special): $59

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Nikko

For Nikko, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Lunch or Dinner with Maiko Experience in Kyoto : $14
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Miso-balls): $23
  • Yokohama Lunch, Tea, and Dinner Cruise with Royalwings: $25
  • Online character lunch box cooking class: $27
  • Japanese Rolled Sushi cooking in Tokyo: $27
  • Tokyo West Side Walking and Street Food Tour: $34
  • Hakodate's Famous Ikameshi Cooking Class: $36
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Casual): $41
  • Okinawa Home Cooking Experience: $45
  • Moby Dick Dinner Cruise in Naha: $53
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Special): $59
  • Morning Wagyu Kaiseki Cooking Course: $60

Local Transportation

Tokyo's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $22 per person, per day on transportation in Tokyo.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Tokyo $22
    Nikko -
Typical Local Transportation prices in Tokyo

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Tokyo:


  • Metro from Airport
    $18

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Tokyo

Also for Tokyo, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfer to Narita Airport via Shinshoji Temple: $808
  • From Private Transfer to Twin Ring MOTEGI and Hiyama: $569
  • Tokyo 23-Wards: Private Transfer to/from Narita Airport: $544
  • Tokyo Narita Airport to One-Way Private Transfer: $499
  • Tokyo Airport Transfers: Tokyo City to Tokyo-Narita Airport NRT in Luxury Car: $401
  • Private Kansai International Airport (KIX) Transfers for Osaka (Same Day Booking): $338
  • Private Narita International Airport Transfers (NRT) for Tokyo (Same Day Booking): $323
  • Departure Private Transfer from Tokyo City to Narita Airport NRT by Luxury Van: $302
  • Tokyo Airport Transfers: Tokyo City to Tokyo-Narita Airport NRT in Luxury Van: $299
  • Tokyo Departure Private Transfers from Tokyo City to Tokyo-Narita Airport NRT: $299
  • Tokyo Haneda Airport to One-Way Private Transfer: $290
  • Tokyo Airport Transfers: Tokyo City to Tokyo-Haneda Airport HND in Luxury Car: $290

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Nikko

Also for Nikko, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Kansai International Airport (KIX) Transfers for Osaka (Same Day Booking): $338
  • Private Narita International Airport Transfers (NRT) for Tokyo (Same Day Booking): $323
  • Private Kansai International Airport Transfers (KIX) for Kyoto: $246
  • Private Airport Transfer between New Chitose Airport (CTS) and Hokkaido Major Cities: $209
  • Private Haneda International Airport Transfers (HND) for Tokyo (For Urgent Flight): $203
  • Private New Chitose Airport Transfers (CTS) for Sapporo, Hoshino Resorts, Noboribetsu, Lake Toya, or Surrounding Areas: $177
  • Private Nagoya Airport (NGO) Transfers for Downtown Nagoya and Surrounding Cities: $164
  • Private Kansai International Airport Transfers (KIX) for Osaka, Nara, & Kobe: $154
  • Private Transfers Between Yoyogi National Stadium (Olympic Stadium) and Tokyo City or Airports: $153
  • Private Transfers Between the New National Stadium (Olympic Stadium) and Tokyo City or Airports: $152
  • Private Narita International Airport Transfers (NRT) for Tokyo 23 Wards, Hakone, or Karuizawa: $150
  • Private Kansai Airport (KIX) Transfers for Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, or Nara: $150

Is it cheaper to fly into Tokyo or Nikko?

Prices for flights to both Nikko and Tokyo change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Tokyo can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $79 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

In Nikko, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $24 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Tokyo $79
    Nikko $24

Tours and Activities in Tokyo

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Tokyo.

  • Art Aquarium Museum Ticket in Tokyo: $21
  • Beppu Tower Admission Ticket: $3.65
  • Chiba Mother Farm Ticket Tokyo: $12
  • Hakodate-Onuma Segway Tours: $82
  • Hakone Kamakura 3-Day Ticket Pass: $63
  • Hakone Kowaki-en Yunessun Hot Spring Theme Park One Day Ticket : $21
  • Hakone Segway Tours: $82
  • Izu Teddy Bear Museum Admission Ticket: $13
  • Japanese Culture Experience at Kanda Myoujin Shrine EDOCCO Cha-ya in Tokyo: $27
  • Kanda Myoujin Rakugo Show Ticket in Tokyo: $7.29
  • Kanda Myoujin Shrine Experience Ticket in Tokyo: $45
  • Kouri Ocean Tower Observation Deck Ticket in Okinawa: $6.99

Tours and Activities in Nikko

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Nikko.

  • Art Aquarium Museum Ticket in Tokyo: $21
  • Beppu Tower Admission Ticket: $3.65
  • Chiba Mother Farm Ticket Tokyo: $12
  • Hakodate-Onuma Segway Tours: $82
  • Hakone Kamakura 3-Day Ticket Pass: $63
  • Hakone Kowaki-en Yunessun Hot Spring Theme Park One Day Ticket : $21
  • Hakone Segway Tours: $82
  • Izu Teddy Bear Museum Admission Ticket: $13
  • Japanese Culture Experience at Kanda Myoujin Shrine EDOCCO Cha-ya in Tokyo: $27
  • Kanda Myoujin Rakugo Show Ticket in Tokyo: $7.29
  • Kanda Myoujin Shrine Experience Ticket in Tokyo: $45
  • Kouri Ocean Tower Observation Deck Ticket in Okinawa: $6.99

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Tokyo, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $37.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Nikko, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $17.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Tokyo $37
    Nikko $17
Typical Alcohol prices in Tokyo

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Tokyo:


  • Sake
    $5.46

Sample the Local Flavors in Tokyo

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Tokyo:

  • Hiroshima Sake Brewery Guided Tour in "Saijo", one of the three largest Japanese Sake spot: $12
  • Tokyo Pub Crawl: $22
  • Sake Brewery Tour with Sake Tasting: $307

Sample the Local Flavors in Nikko

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Nikko:

  • Hiroshima Sake Brewery Guided Tour in "Saijo", one of the three largest Japanese Sake spot: $12


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Tokyo and Nikko, we can see that Tokyo is more expensive. And not only is Nikko much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Nikko would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Nikko and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Tokyo would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Tokyo than you might in Nikko.

Budget Your Trip

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Tokyo vs. Nikko Travel Comparison

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