Yokohama is a major port town and is the second most largest city in Japan after Tokyo. It is the capital city of Kanagawa Prefecture, facing Tokyo Bay, 40 km from Tokyo, making it a popular day trip destination from Japan’s capital city.
Yokohama has an interesting relationship with the West because it was one of the first three ports opened to foreigners along with Shimoda and Hakodate. Yokohama was opened in 1859, and rapidly transformed from a small fishing village into an international foreign trade base.
The city today has a reputation for being one of Japan’s most international cities. It is an important industrial and commercial city of the country.
Some of the best things to do in Yokohama is take a stroll along the harbor of the future called Minato Mirai 21, visiting the Landmark Tower, one of Japan’s tallest buildings, shopping at the Red Brick Warehouse, exploring Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, Cosmo World, as well as visiting Shin-Yokohama Raumen Museum and CupNoodles Museum Yokohama.
There is also Chinatown to explore. It is the largest Chinatown in Japan, where you can enjoy the best Chinese food and fascinating architecture.
In addition to many cultural and historical attractions, Yokohama is also home to many beautiful parks and gardens including the traditional Japanese-style garden of Sankei-en, the waterfront of Yamashita Park and Rinko Park.
Yokohama can be reached from Tokyo by around 30 minute rides from the subway and local trains. With Shin-Yokohama shinkansen station, it is also easy to reach from many other cities.
30 Best things to do in Yokohama, Japan
It was only a small fishing village when in 1854 Matthew C. Perry arrived with his fleet of U.S. naval warships. He arrived at the harbor of the neighboring town of Kanagawa. Five years later Kanagawa was designated Japan’s first port under the Harris Treaty (1858) where foreigners could reside and trade.
1. Cup Noodles Museum
Cup Noodles Museum, also known as Yokohama’s instant noodles museum in English, is one of the interesting things to do and see in Yokohama where you can learn more about the history of the national dish and also make your own ramen at its workshop.
The Cup Noodles Museum was founded in 2011, by the company Nissin Food, whose founder Momofuku Ando invented chicken ramen in 1958.
Momofuku Ando was born in Taiwan during the Japanese colonization times. He moved to Japan after World War II, and founded Osaka Nissin Foods in 1948.
In the building, you will see ticket counters, a souvenir shop, and a big room with 3,000 Cup Noodles packages, as well as a documentary about its investor, and workshops.
There are several sections in the upper floor such as Cupnoodles Factory, a cooking workshop; the Chicken Ramen Factory, a take-away ramen workshop; Cupnoodles Park, a children’s playground; and Cupnoodles Bazaar, a food counter.
The museum is located in Minato Mirai 21 district and is easy to reach by train within walking distance from the stations of Minatomirai and Bashamichi.
2. Marine & Walk Yokohama
Yokohama’s Marine and Walk is a trendy waterfront mall, located in the modern Minato Mirai district. It is a pedestrian-friendly and wide-open area with a selection of boutiques, cafes and restaurants.
Marine and Walk is easily accessible by trains. It is located within walking distance from Bashamichi Station and Nihon Odori Station, on the Minato-Mirai line.
Yokohama’s Marine and Walk is a popular place for window-shopping or a romantic dinner with sea view, as well as venues of the Christmas & Golden Week events.
3. Yokohama Noh Theater
Yokohama Noh Theater is a Japanese theater and is a great place to visit if you want to watch a traditional arts performance that mixes drama with dance.
The main stage of Yokohama Noh Theater is a restored version of the original one built in 1875 in the home of the lord of the Kaga domain and later moved to the home of the lord of Takamatsu domain at the time.
The theater also has a second stage and studio rooms. It is conveniently located in the Minato Mirai 21 area, close to Sakuragicho Station.
Chinatown is the largest Chinatown in the whole of Japan where you can enjoy stunning architecture, rich history, and delicious food.
Yokohama’s Chinatown, or Yokohama Chukagai has history dating back to 1859 when the city opened up as a port for foreign trade, attracting traders from China to come and set up their shops in the city.
You can check out attractions such as the Main Gate, Kanteibyo Temple, and Masobyo Temp. There are also shopping opportunities at its many shops and try local dishes such as mapo tofu, a tofu based fish from Sichuan province, as well as dine in a yum cha style restaurant.
Chinatown is also the location of several festivals and events throughout the year including the Chinese New Year Parade and the Lantern Festival.
5. World Cup Stadium
Nissan Stadium, also known as International Stadium Yokohama, is Japan’s biggest stadium. It was the location of the World Cup in 2002 with several matches including the final Germany & Brazil match.
The stadium also hosted the Intercontinental Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup, as well as other sports events like American football, athletics, and rugby.
Nissan Stadium is located within a short metro, or subway ride from central Yokohama, and is within walking distance from Yokohama Station.
6. Yokohama Stadium
If you love baseball, you can watch a match at the Yokohama stadium. Don’t be confused with International Stadium Yokohama, they are different.
Yokohama Stadium was built in 1978 as Japan’s first multi-purpose stadium. It was used for baseball at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021. It is located within easy walking distance from Kannai station.
Yokohama Stadium is the home field of the Yokohama DeNA BayStars. It is also used as a venue of American football games and events.
7. Shin Yokohama Ramen Museum
A trip to Yokoham for fans of ramen noodles is not complete without visiting the Shin Yokohama Ramen Museum where you can learn the history of the ramen and try different types of ramen noodles.
This noodle-themed amusement park was established in 1994. You can find a small version of Old Tokyo, Shitamachi, in the 1950s from the basement, as well as a gallery and documentation of ramen on the 1st floor.
Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum is conveniently located close to Shin-Yokohama Station. It is open daily from 11am to 22pm, and admission fee is 380 yen for adults, and discounted price for children and seniors.
Sake, also known as Japanese rice wine, is a traditional alcoholic beverage in Japan. Trying Sake is one of the ways to experience local culture because it is a national drink.
Yokohama Meishu Centre, or Sake Bar Yokohama are sake lover’s paradise in Yokohama. Yokohama Meishu Centre has a collection of 100 different premium sake.
9. Red Brick Warehouse
Red Brick Warehouse, also known as Aka-Renga Soko in Japanese, is a beautiful building along the Yokohama Port.
Formerly a customs inspection house for shipping boats, the building has been converted into a shopping and entertainment complex, as well as a local community and businesses center.
The complex is packed with several stores, cafes or restaurants, making it a great place to do shopping and dining.
Red Brick Warehouse is centrally located in the Minato Mirai 21 district. It is within walking distance from Bashamichi and Nihon-Odori stations.
10. Japanese Jazz
Yokohama is known as the birthplace of jazz in Japan, making it a perfect place to enjoy jazz music, which you can listen to at one of the city’s many nightclubs, bars, cafes, restaurants, and concert halls.
The Yokohama Jazz Promenade, one of Yokohama’s biggest festivals, is held annually in October.
Some of the best places to enjoy jazz in Yokohama are Jazz Café Chigusa, Downbeat, Windjammer, which is one of Japan’s oldest bars, located between Yokohama Stadium and Chinatown.
11. Osanbashi International Passenger Terminal
Osanbashi International Passenger Terminal is located on the 2nd floor of Osanbashi Pier. You can find an observation deck on the roof, offering stunning views of the surroundings.
The terminal was first built in 1902 and has undergone several renovations and extensions over the years, with the most recent renovation completed in 2002. It features a number of facilities for passengers, including a duty-free shop, and a tourist information center.
Osanbashi International Passenger Terminal is conveniently located close to tourist attractions such as the Chinatown, Yamashita Park, and Red Brick Warehouse.
12. Yokohama Museum of Art
Yokohama Museum of Art is a large modern art and contemporary art museum in Japan, located in the Minato Mirai district.
The museum was designed by Japanese architect Kenzō Tange. It has 7 galleries, and a library with thousands of art books.
The museum has a collection of paintings, film, photography, and sculptures. Famous item is the painting of Commodore Perry Coming Ashore.
Yokohama Museum of Art is easily accessible by trains, and it is located within walking distance from Minatomirai and Sakuragicho stations.
13. Cosmo World
Yokohama Cosmo World is a family friendly amusement park that is dominated by one of the world’s largest Cosmo Clock 21 Ferris wheels.
Yokohama Cosmo World features a variety of rides, including roller coasters and attractions, as well as food and shopping options.
It is free to enter, and you buy tickets for rides and attractions that you used. There are three sections in the area including the Kids Carnival Zone, Wonder Amuse, and Brano Street.
14. Kirin Beer Factory
If you are interested in Kirin beers and its history, you can take an 80 minute free guided tour at the Kirin Brewery Company.
You can see the manufacturing process of Kirin Japanese beer, as well as watching the cans and bottles of beer go shooting at high speeds through machines.
During the tour, you can have a chance to taste various types of Kirin beer at its tasting bar. There is also a shop where visitors can purchase Kirin merchandise and beer.
The Kirin Beer Factory is located close to the Namamugi Station and JR Shin-Koyasu Station. You can easily find it by train.
15. Skyduck Yokohama
Yokohama Sky Duck is a large bright red and blue vehicle that works as a boat on the water and as a bus on land.
It is a great way to do sightseeing around the city where you can view famous landmarks such as Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse and Landmark Tower from the water and on land.
This amphibious sightseeing bus runs around the Minato Mirai area. This is a very cool way to experience Yokohama.
16. Natural Hot Spring
Japan is famous for its hot springs and spas, so if you are visiting Yokohama, you should try it. It is a great way to relax, rejuvenate, and recharge.
Some of the popular hot spring spas in Yokohama are the Yokohama Tennen Onsen Spa Eas, which is located close to the Yokohama Station. You can enjoy bedrock baths, a sauna. Chinese massages, Thai massage.
You can also try Raku Spa Tsurumi with many different choices of baths and saunas. There are also onsen and spas in luxury hotels such as the APA Hotel & Resort Yokohama Bay Tower.
Kimono is a Japanese traditional garment. Many tourists rent a kimono and take a photo to keep memories while visiting Japan.
You can find kimono rental and traditional Japanese garment stores in Yokohama where you can purchase or rent kimonos and experience wearing one, also you may find workshops or experience wearing kimono with professional help.
18. Sail Training Ship Nippon Maru & Yokohama Port Museum
Yokohama Port Museum, formerly Yokohama Maritime Museum, shows visitors the history of Yokohama the port through artifacts, photographs, and interactive displays.
Yokohama Port was one of the first ports to open to foreign trade in Japan, following the country’s isolationist policies. The museum covers the port’s history from the Edo period to the present day, and also examines the impact of the port on the city’s development and culture.
Yokohama Port Museum is located in front of the Nippon Maru museum ship. There are combined tickets if you want to visit both, and also tickets separately.
The Nippon Maru museum ship is located below the iconic Yokohama Landmark Tower. Originally built in 1930 as a training ship, it was retired in 1984 after 50 years working for its purpose.
19. Landmark Tower Sky Garden
Landmark Tower Sky Garden is the tallest building in Yokohama and one of the tallest buildings in the country. It is located in the city center, offering stunning views of the city and Yokohama Bay from its 69th-floor observation deck.
The Sky Garden observation deck can be accessed via the fastest elevator in Pan, only in 40 seconds. It also has bars, and restaurants, to enjoy the views.
20. KOSÉ Shin Yokohama Skate Center
Shin-Yokohama Skate Centre is an indoor stadium that operates an Olympic size skating rink, as well as a venue of hockey, ice skating competition.
It features a 400-meter oval track for speed skating, as well as a section for figure skating. The rink was opened in 1990 and is open to the public for recreational skating.
If you love skating, even beginners, you can take skating classes here. The stadium is also home to a convenience store and the Princess Kitchen café.
21. Sankei-en Garden
Sankei-en Garden is a beautiful Japanese style garden that features a pond, small rivers, flowers, tea houses, and several historic buildings.
Sankei-en Garden was constructed by a wealthy businessman and silk trader, Hara Sankei, as a private home, and was restored in 1953 after the damage in World War II. The park was opened to the public in 1904.
Sankei-en Garden is at its best during cherry blossoms (sakura) in late March or early April, as well as the Japanese pink lotus blossoms in July and August. There are also autumn foliage and plum blossoms in winter.
22. Rokkakubashi Shopping Street
Rokkakubashi Shopping Street is one of the best things to do in Yokohama for shopaholics. It is a covered arcade shopping street with 170 shops.
The street has a wide range of goods ranging from fresh food stores, clothes stores and restaurants. It is a great place to find traditional Japanese souvenirs and gifts such as traditional sweets, crafts, and pottery.
Rokkakubashi Shopping Street is also a great place to try traditional Japanese food like sushi, ramen, and tempura.
23. Yamashita Park
Yamashita Park is a beautiful waterfront park, situated in front of Yokohama Port, spanning from Osanbashi to Yamashita Pier.
The park was built after the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923. The park has a grass lawn, a rose garden, numerous statues and monuments, and a stage.
You can stroll along the park, and enjoy stunning views over the Yokohama Bay and the Yokohama Bay Bridge.
24. Yokohama Archives of History
The Yokohama Archives of History is a research facility that focuses on collecting, preserving, and making available historical materials related to the city of Yokohama from the Edo period to the Taisho-Showa era.
The archives are open to researchers, and they also host exhibitions and educational programs for the general public.
The collections include documents, photographs, maps, and other materials dating back to the late 19th century, when Yokohama was one of the first Japanese ports to open to foreign trade.
25. Yokohama Doll Museum
Yokohama Doll Museum has a collection of more than 10000 dolls from hundreds of countries from all over the globe, making it one of Japan’s biggest doll museums.
There are dolls from traditional Japanese dolls, European dolls, and contemporary dolls.
Through the museum’s galleries and exhibitions, you can learn the doll making process and materials and tools to create a doll.
26. Yokohama Nigiwaiza
Yokohama Nigiwaiza is an entertainment theater, located in Minato Mirai 21 & Sakuragi-cho area. The Performance Hall has daily performances such as rakugo and comic storytelling, and a rental space.
Yokohama Nigiwaiza is conveniently located close to the Sakuragi-cho, Bashamichi, and Hinode-cho stations.
27. Mitsubishi Minatomirai Industrial Museum
The Mitsubishi Minatomirai Industrial Museum was founded in 1994 to help the younger generation to experience science and technology.
The museum has 4 different sections including the Land, transportation, sky, ocean, and aerospace, as well as exhibits such as the Science Plaza, Kids Ground, and Virtual TourStation.
Mitsubishi Minatomirai Industrial Museum is located close to the Yokohama Landmark Tower and Keyaki Dori Exit of Minatomirai Subway Station. Admission fee is 500 yen for adults.
29. Rinko Park
Rinko Park is located in the Minato Mirai 21 district of the city, which is known for its modern architecture and waterfront views.
The park features a variety of amenities, such as walking paths, gardens, playgrounds, and fountains.
It is also a popular spot for visitors to take in views of the Yokohama Bay Bridge and the city’s skyline.
30. Minato Mirai Hall
Minato Mirai Hall is a concert hall of Yokohama, also known by locals and internationally as “Concert Halls with a View of the Sea”, the Main Hall offers beautiful views of the Port.
There is a large hall with 2020 seats and a small concert hall with 400 seats. The hall is used for a variety of performances, including concerts, operas, and ballets.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Yokohama worth visiting?
Yokohama is definitely well worth a visit because it is the 2nd largest city in Japan after Tokyo with plenty of things to do and see from unique food culture and interesting history with foreign traders to a good range of shopping, dining, and tourist attractions such as Cupnoodles Museum, Minato Mirai, Sankeien Garden, and Chinatown.
What is Yokohama best known for?
Yokohama is best known for being Japan’s second largest city and a major port town. It also has a rich history, vibrant international vibe, as well as being home to Japan’s largest Chinatown, beautiful waterfront area of Minato Mirai 2, and the Landmark Tower, one of tallest buildings in Japan.
How long does it take to drive from Tokyo to Yokohama?
It is around 40 km driving distance between Yokohama & Tokyo, typically taking about 40 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic conditions.
What are the free things to do in yokohama?
Some free things to do in Yokohama include strolling along the waterfront at Minato Mirai 21, exploring Japan’s largest Chinatonwn, checking out the Cupnoodles Museum, and taking Kirin Yokohama factory tours.
What are the best things to do in Yokohama at night?
Some of the best things to do in Yokohama at night include visiting the Minato Mirai area for shopping, dining,dinner cruise around Yokohama Bay, enjoying night views from Yamashita Park, or checking out the colorful illumination of the Bay Bridge.
What are the best things to do in Yokohama for a day?
Spending a day in Yokohama by strolling along the lively Minato Mirai waterfront, visiting Japan’s largest Chinatown, going up to the top of the Landmark Tower Sky Garden, and riding the Ferris wheel at Cosmo World, shop at the Red Brick Warehouse. You can enjoy delicious local dishes and vibrant nightlife.
What are the best things to do in Yokohama with a family?
Some of the best things to do with kids in Yokohama include making noodles at Cupnoodles Museum Yokohama, visiting Children’s Land, Yokohama Cosmo World amusement park, Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, and Hamleys Yokohama World Porters.
See more: Where to Stay in Yokohama
So there you have it, the best things to do in Yokohama, Japan for your next trip. If you enjoyed my post, please leave a comment below.