A Travel Price Comparison for Japan Yokohama vs. Nikko for Attractions, Families, Couples, and Food

Should you visit Yokohama or Nikko?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Yokohama or Nikko, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Yokohama

Yokohama is a laid-back, diverse, and bright city. It's a large city with plenty of activites for visitors as well. Other reasons to visit include museums, nightlife, and food.

Nikko

Nikko is a rural, historic, and cultural town. This is also a fantastic small town with plenty of charm and local activities. The famous beauty of this place is one of the main draws. It's also known for shopping, museums, and food.

Yokohama and Nikko: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Big city activities
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Scenic old town
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Small town charm
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for nightlife


Is there more to do in Yokohama or Nikko?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Yokohama. Although Yokohama and Nikko are both popular with visitors, Yokohama has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Yokohama is more popular for its nightlife, shopping, and big city activities, while Nikko is known for its museums, historical sights, hiking, small town charm, and impressive beauty. Nikko is more touristy than Yokohama and is popular for its Shinto and Buddhist mountain temples, its tranquil hot spring baths, and its peaceful natural setting. Yokohama is popular for its tech industry, impressive Chinatown, and brightly lit skyline at night. It is also home to the Yokohama Chinatown.

How is Yokohama different from Nikko?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Nikko and Yokohama. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Yokohama or Nikko?

Yokohama
Nikko

Nikko is terrific for its museums and landmarks. Also, Yokohama is still popular, but not quite as popular for its historical sights.

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Nikko that are not to be missed. The town sits on the edge of Nikko National Park, where you'll find shrines and temples. Toshogu Shrine is lavishly designed. Other notable temples in the area are Taiyuin, Rinnoji Temple, and Futarasan Temple.

You'll find a good number of museums and monuments packed into Yokohama. The city has some eclectic museums like Cupnoodles Museum, the Ramen Museum, and the Kirin Beer Factory. There are also zoos, gardens, and the largest Chinatown in Japan.


Is the Food Better in Yokohama or Nikko? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Yokohama
Nikko

Local dishes at restaurants are fun to try in both Yokohama and Nikko.

With its innovative style combined with traditional elements, Yokohama makes for a great culinary experience. As home to the largest Chinatown in Japan, you'll find no shortage of Chinese restaurants here. You'll also find that the local cuisine uses a lot of vegetables. Local favorites include kenchin-jiru (tofu and vegetable chowder) as well as gyunabe (beef hot pot).

Nikko has a huge number of terrific restaurants. There are many traditional dishes in the area, but one of the most famous is yuba. Yuba is made from a part of soy milk, and you'll find it in places all over town. You'll also find sushi, tofu, and tea everywhere.

Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Nightlife?

Yokohama
Nikko

Yokohama is great for nightlife. However, Nikko is not a good destination for nightlife and partying.

Many people head to Yokohama for the nightlife scene. The nightlife scene is diverse, with lounges, pubs, and clubs throughout. It is also the home of Japan's first commercial brewery - Kinn. You'll find a good live music scene as well as everything from casual bars to upscale cocktail lounges.

People don't go to Nikko for the nightlife. The town is about relaxing in a tranquil setting and soaking up nature, so you won't find much in the form of nightlife.

Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for its Old Town?

Yokohama
Nikko

Nikko is terrific for its historic old town. However, Yokohama does not have a historic old town.

Nikko has a unique history which comes to life in its historic area. The ancient town is filled with giant cedar trees that line walking paths that take you to the many shrines and temples in the area.

Yokohama does not have a historic old town.


Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Hiking?

Yokohama
Nikko

Nikko is well known for its hiking experiences. However, Yokohama is not a hiking destination.

You'll find a nice variety of hiking trails around Nikko. The town is surrounded by beautiful nature that you can explore on the many walking paths. The forests are well-preserved and they're filled with large cedar trees, dramatic waterfalls, and beautiful hikes. The area embraces the Japanese practice of "forest bathing" where you "bath" yourself in a beautiful natural environment.

Yokohama is not a hiking destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Yokohama or Nikko?

Yokohama
Nikko

Yokohama is great for shopping. Also, Nikko is not as popular, but is still a nice town for its shopping opportunities.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Yokohama. The shopping scene has a laid back vibe that encourages you to take a stroll and enjoy the sights. Head to Marine & Walk Yokohama, which is right by the Minato Mirai waterfront, to find boutiques and upscale vendors. Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse is also one of the more famous shopping areas, but you should also check out Yokohama World Porters.

Nikko offers some nice shopping areas. There are places in town where you can pick up local handicrafts and traditional items.

Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Families?

Yokohama
Nikko

Yokohama is a must-visit destination for its kid-friendly activities. Also, Nikko is not as popular, but is still a nice town for its family-friendly activities.

Yokohama is an extremely popular city to visit for families. Kodomo no Kuni, or Children’s Land, is a theme park that has a lot to do for younger kids and a few things for older kids as well. Yokohama Cosmo World is another amusement park that is geared towards all ages, including rides for the older kids. Other interesting activities for families include Cupnoodles Museum, Zoorasia, and Hakkeijima Sea Paradise.

Nikko is a very kid-friendly city. The area offers a unique way for kids to experience Japanese culture. A highlight for the little ones is a ninja show at Grand Ninja Theatre and the Mizugei-za water magic show. Kids will also enjoy staying in a traditional ryokan and floating in the hot spring baths.


Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Couples?

Yokohama
Nikko

Nikko is terrific for romance. Also, Yokohama is still popular, but not quite as popular for its romantic activities.

Nikko has so much to offer for a romantic couple's vacation. While many visitors come to see the shrines and temples, they often end up falling in love with the area's natural beauty, waterfalls, and "forest bathing" (surrounding yourself with nature). Couples will also enjoy dining on the local food and relaxing in a pool fed by a natural hot spring.

Yokohama is a great city if you're traveling as a couple. You can explore the city's impressive Chinatown, enjoy the hot springs at Minato Mirai Manyo Club, or have an adrenaline filled day at Yokohama Cosmo World. There are also many museums and entertainment centers around town.

Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Yokohama
Nikko

Nikko is well known for backpackers. Also, Yokohama is still popular, but not quite as popular for backpackers and budget travelers.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Nikko. There are hostels in the area that combine affordability with traditional Japanese customs.

Yokohama is a good city to visit for backpackers. Most backpackers skip over this city, but there are still a number of hostels around town and some interesting activities that you can enjoy.

Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Students?

Yokohama
Nikko

Yokohama is a city with good options for its student-friendly activities. However, Nikko is not popular with students.

It's common for students to visit Yokohama. Students appreciate the cosmopolitan atmosphere and high quality of the educational institutions.

Nikko is not popular with students.


Is Yokohama or Nikko Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Yokohama
Nikko

You'll find somewhat comparable public transit options in both Yokohama and Nikko.

Public transit in Yokohama is fairly effecient and thorough. Yokohama Station and Shin-Yokohama Station are the two main train stations. There is a subway system as well as city buses that travel around town.

Nikko has some very good public transit options. There are buses that run from the main train station to the many tourist sights in the area.

Is Yokohama or Nikko a more walkable city?

Yokohama
Nikko

Yokohama and Nikko both are high quality when exploring on foot.

Yokohama is very walkable. Many of the central parts of the city can be explored on foot. Most of the sites are concentrated around Minato Mirai, Chinatown, and Yokohama Station, which you can walk between.

Nikko is a very walkable city. While the town is relatively walkable and there are walking paths through the forest and to most of the temples and shrines, if you want to get further into the region, it's helpful to have a car.

For even more information, also check out Is Yokohama Worth Visiting? and Is Nikko Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Nikko or Yokohama?

How long in Yokohama or Nikko?

It's fun to spend time in either Yokohama or Nikko. Generally, people tend to spend more time in Nikko due to the larger number of activities and things to do. Usually, 1-2 days is a good amount of time for Yokohama, and 1-4 days is enough time in Nikko.

Families should spend more time in Yokohama than Nikko. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Yokohama, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Nikko than Yokohama. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Nikko that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Nikko than Yokohama if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Nikko.


  • How many days in Yokohama or Nikko? Ideal Length of Stay
    Yokohama 1-2 
    Nikko 1-4

One day in Yokohama or Nikko?

Each neighborhood in Yokohama has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Because of this, one day is usually enough time for a trip here.

Nikko is a small town where visitors enjoy the food and shopping. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. With all of its activities, you can easily fill one day here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.


A weekend in Yokohama or Nikko?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Yokohama. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Nikko is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this town makes for a great vacation. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Nikko, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

Five days in Yokohama or Nikko?

Yokohama is a fun place to experience. Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the big city destination of Yokohama. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

Nikko is a popular choice for travelers. It's no surprise that museums is why people visit. Five days is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

A week in Yokohama or Nikko?

You'll find food and shopping around the bright big city of Yokohama. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Nikko is a great place to explore. It's no surprise that museums is why people visit. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This town offers something for everyone.


Which place is cheaper, Nikko or Yokohama?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Yokohama is $127, while the average daily cost in Nikko is $84. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Yokohama and Nikko in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Yokohama $71
    Nikko $47
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Yokohama $142
    Nikko $94
Compare Hotels in Yokohama and Nikko

Looking for a hotel in Yokohama or Nikko? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Yokohama


Hotels in Nikko


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Yokohama Hotel Prices and Nikko Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Yokohama $21
    Nikko -

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Yokohama

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Yokohama:

  • Shuttle Van Transfer from Yokohama City to Narita Airport: $365
  • Narita Airport to/from Yokohama Private Transfer: $303
  • Narita Airport: Private One-Way Transfer to/from Yokohama: $264
  • Private Departure Transfer : Yokohama City to Narita International Airport: $252
  • Tokyo private transfer for Yokohama Port: $238
  • Yokohama Port: Private Transfer from/to Haneda Airport: $206
  • Yokohama Port: Private Arrival Transfers to Tokyo City Center: $189
  • Yokohama Port: Private Transfer to/from Tokyo: $183
  • Yokohama City: transfer from/to Tokyo/HND airport: $166
  • Yokohama Port: Private transfer to/from Tokyo/HND airport: $166
  • Yokohama Private Departure Transfer : from Yokohama Port or Hotels to Tokyo Hotels: $159
  • Haneda Airport: Private One-Way Transfer to/from Yokohama: $148

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Nikko

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

  • Haneda Airport to/from Nikko City Private Transfer: $644
  • Kinugawa Osen to Tokyo Haneda Airport Departure Private Transfer: $266
  • Kinugawa Osen to Tokyo Narita Airport Private Departure Transfer: $266
  • Narita Airport to/from Nikko City Private Transfer: $644

Is it cheaper to fly into Yokohama or Nikko?

Prices for flights to both Nikko and Yokohama 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.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Yokohama $38
    Nikko $31

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Yokohama

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Yokohama.

  • Easy Ramen cooking experience in Kabukicho, Shinjuku: $22
  • Sushi Roll and Side Dish Cooking Experience in Tokyo: $68
  • 3-Hour Shared Halal-Friendly Japanese Cooking Class in Tokyo: $85
  • Izakaya Food Tour in Shinjuku: $113
  • Japanese Cooking Class plus Little Homestay Experience: $115
  • Half-day Cooking Class in Yokohama Local Shopping District: $129
  • Adventurous Japanese Food Tour: $129
  • Yokohama Private Food Tours with a Local: 100% Personalized : $162
  • Experience Izakaya With A Mini Food Tour Of Tokyo: $168
  • Night Food Tour Starting Ginza: $170
  • Tokyo Allstar Food Tour: $245

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Yokohama $30
    Nikko $22

Tours and Activities in Yokohama

Here are a few actual costs in Yokohama for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • 'Feel Yokohama!'Private tour in English: $80
  • "Heart of Yokohama" Walking: Experience Hill Area: $47
  • 1.5 hours Night View Walking Tour in Minatomirai: $41
  • 1.5 hours Night View Walking Tour in Minatomirai: $42
  • 1.5 hours Night View and Shopping Tour in Minatomirai: $41
  • 1.5 hours Night View and Shopping Tour in Minatomirai: $42
  • 3 Hours Private Edo Tokyo Shinjuku Entertainment Tour: $34
  • Authentic Sumo Experience in Tokyo : Enter the Sanctuary: $143
  • Calligraphy Art Experience Led by a Japanese Language Instructor: $60
  • Calligraphy Experience in Kabukicho: $68
  • Cup Noodles Museum Tour with Guide in Yokohama: $67
  • Experience Comparing Sake and Delicacies in Kabukikcho: $34

Tours and Activities in Nikko

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

  • Nikko self-guided tour app with multi-language audioguide: $4.33
  • Ticket to Japanese Style Dance/Drama Show Taishu-Engeki at Nikko: $8.83
  • World Heritage Nikko Walking Tour - Toshogu Shrine, Kanmangafuchi: $61
  • Visit the Unexplored Regions of Lake Chuzenji--Scenic Trekking and Rafting Tour: $79
  • Nikko Full-Day Private Tour with Government-Licensed Guide: $143
  • Nikko Custom Half Day Tour: $149
  • Nikko Custom Full Day Tour: $238
  • 1Day Private Nikko World Heritage Tour English Driver: $432
  • Nikko Private Full-Day Sightseeing Day Tour: $448

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Yokohama $18
    Nikko $15

Sample the Local Flavors in Yokohama

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Yokohama:

  • Tokyo Pub Crawl: $26
  • Tokyo Hidden Izakaya and Sake Small-Group Pub Tour with Local Guide: $170


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Yokohama and Nikko, we can see that Yokohama 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 Yokohama would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Yokohama than you might in Nikko.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Yokohama Expensive? and Is Nikko Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Yokohama or Nikko?

Yokohama has a larger population, and is about 220 times larger than the population of Nikko. When comparing the sizes of Yokohama and Nikko, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.


When is the best time to visit Yokohama or Nikko?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Yokohama or Nikko in the Summer?

Both Nikko and Yokohama during the summer are popular places to visit. The city activities and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Yokohama this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Nikko for the hiking, the small town charm, and the family-friendly experiences.

Yokohama is around the same temperature as Nikko in the summer. The daily temperature in Yokohama averages around 25°C (78°F) in July, and Nikko fluctuates around 25°C (77°F).

In the summer, Yokohama often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Nikko. Yokohama gets 137 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Nikko receives 136 hours of full sun.

Nikko gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Yokohama. Yokohama usually gets less rain in July than Nikko. Yokohama gets 138 mm (5.4 in) of rain, while Nikko receives 171 mm (6.7 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Yokohama 25°C (78°F) 
    Nikko 25°C (77°F)

Should I visit Yokohama or Nikko in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Yokohama and Nikko. Many travelers come to Yokohama for the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene. Also, many visitors come to Nikko in the autumn for the hiking trails, the shopping scene, the small town atmosphere, and the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Yokohama is around the same temperature as Nikko. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Yokohama in October average around 18°C (64°F), and Nikko averages at about 16°C (61°F).

Yokohama usually receives less sunshine than Nikko during autumn. Yokohama gets 129 hours of sunny skies, while Nikko receives 167 hours of full sun in the autumn.

Nikko receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Yokohama gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In October, Yokohama usually receives more rain than Nikko. Yokohama gets 175 mm (6.9 in) of rain, while Nikko receives 117 mm (4.6 in) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Yokohama 18°C (64°F) 
    Nikko 16°C (61°F)

Should I visit Yokohama or Nikko in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Yokohama as well as Nikko. Many visitors come to Yokohama in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, most visitors come to Nikko for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.

Nikko can be very cold during winter. In January, Yokohama is generally much warmer than Nikko. Daily temperatures in Yokohama average around 6°C (42°F), and Nikko fluctuates around 3°C (37°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Nikko. In the winter, Yokohama often gets less sunshine than Nikko. Yokohama gets 175 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Nikko receives 212 hours of full sun.

Yokohama usually gets more rain in January than Nikko. Yokohama gets 53 mm (2.1 in) of rain, while Nikko receives 26 mm (1 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Yokohama 6°C (42°F) 
    Nikko 3°C (37°F)

Should I visit Yokohama or Nikko in the Spring?

Both Nikko and Yokohama are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Yokohama for the activities around the city during these months. Also, the spring months attract visitors to Nikko because of the small town charm and the natural beauty.

Yokohama is a little warmer than Nikko in the spring. The daily temperature in Yokohama averages around 14°C (58°F) in April, and Nikko fluctuates around 13°C (55°F).

Yokohama usually receives less sunshine than Nikko during spring. Yokohama gets 161 hours of sunny skies, while Nikko receives 191 hours of full sun in the spring.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Nikko. It's quite rainy in Yokohama. In April, Yokohama usually receives more rain than Nikko. Yokohama gets 145 mm (5.7 in) of rain, while Nikko receives 108 mm (4.2 in) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Yokohama 14°C (58°F) 
    Nikko 13°C (55°F)

Typical Weather for Nikko and Yokohama

Yokohama Nikko
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 6°C (42°F) 53 mm (2.1 in) 3°C (37°F) 26 mm (1 in)
Feb 6°C (42°F) 72 mm (2.8 in) 3°C (38°F) 44 mm (1.7 in)
Mar 9°C (47°F) 122 mm (4.8 in) 7°C (44°F) 74 mm (2.9 in)
Apr 14°C (58°F) 145 mm (5.7 in) 13°C (55°F) 108 mm (4.2 in)
May 19°C (66°F) 153 mm (6 in) 18°C (64°F) 139 mm (5.5 in)
Jun 22°C (71°F) 221 mm (8.7 in) 21°C (70°F) 206 mm (8.1 in)
Jul 25°C (78°F) 138 mm (5.4 in) 25°C (77°F) 171 mm (6.7 in)
Aug 27°C (81°F) 148 mm (5.8 in) 27°C (80°F) 195 mm (7.7 in)
Sep 23°C (74°F) 190 mm (7.5 in) 22°C (72°F) 201 mm (7.9 in)
Oct 18°C (64°F) 175 mm (6.9 in) 16°C (61°F) 117 mm (4.6 in)
Nov 13°C (55°F) 97 mm (3.8 in) 10°C (50°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)
Dec 8°C (47°F) 50 mm (2 in) 5°C (41°F) 32 mm (1.2 in)


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