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Toyama

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Hotel Relax Inn Toyama
Hotel Relax Inn Toyama - dream vacation

1 7 22 Sakuramachi Toyama Shi Toyama 930 0003 JapanToyama

Amuz Hotel
Amuz Hotel - dream vacation

Sakuragi Plaza Bldg 3F Sakuragi 12-5Toyama

Dai-Ichi Hotel Toyama
Dai-Ichi Hotel Toyama - dream vacation

10-10 Sakuragi-Cho Toyama 930-0082Toyama

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Toyama City (富山市) [1] is the capital of Toyama prefecture, Japan.

Get in

By plane

Toyama Airport (TOY IATA, 富山空港) (20 minutes south of the city center). It has international flights to Shanghai, Seoul, Vladivostok, and Dalian and local service to Tokyo, Sapporo, and Fukuoka. However, flight schedules change heavily with the season so it would be worth checking out in advance what is available for when you will be traveling. Buses run to and from the city center (25 min, ¥400).

By train

2 Toyama Station (富山駅). It is located right in the city center.

From Tokyo, the Hokuriku Shinkansen takes as little as two hours for this trip on the fastest service - the Kagayaki (かがやき) - which generally operates during the morning and evening hours. The more frequent Hakutaka (はくたか) makes all stops north of Nagano yielding slightly longer travel times. The regular fare from Tokyo to Toyama is ¥12,730 for a reserved seat. Standard and Green Car seats are fully covered by the respective versions of the Japan Rail Pass, but if you want to use the premium GranClass seats - which feature airline-like business class seats and personal attendant service - you will have to pay the limited express and GranClass surcharges (an additional ¥19,100 from Tokyo to Toyama), as any version of the Japan Rail Pass only covers the base fare.

Travel from the Kansai and Chubu regions to Toyama used to offer one-seat rides, but these trains now terminate at Kanazawa and you will have to transfer to the Shinkansen to complete your journey. The Thunderbird (サンダーバード) runs from Osaka and Kyoto to Kanazawa; the complete journey from Osaka to Toyama takes approximately 3 hr 20 min (¥9,430; no charge with the Japan Rail Pass).

Toyama is also covered by the JR Hokuriku Arch Pass which includes unlimited travel between Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka via Toyama and Kanazawa for seven consecutive days using the above routes (¥25000; ¥1000 discount if purchased outside of Japan). Unlimited seat reservations in standard cars can be made, but you'll have to pay extra for Green Car and GranClass seat reservations.

Nagoya serves Toyama every day with four direct limited express services called the Hida (ひだ), which take 4 hours and cost ¥7,650 yen reserved. More expensive, but faster, is to take the Tokaido Shinkansen to Maibara, the Shirasagi (しらさぎ) from Maibara to Kanazawa, and finally the Hokuriku Shinkansen (3 hr 15 min, ¥11,350; no charge with the Japan Rail Pass). Some Shirasagi trains start in Nagoya.

Complementing the Kagayaki and Hakutaka trains in Toyama is a bullet train shuttle, called the Tsurugi (つるぎ). The Tsurugi only operates between Kanazawa and Toyama, covering the journey in 23 minutes.

The Ainokaze Toyama Railway operates local services to train stations formerly served by Japan Railways. The Japan Rail Pass is valid only Toyama-Takaoka without stopover. If you disembark at any other stations except Toyama station or Takaoka Station, Japan Rail Pass is not valid.

By bus

Seibu runs three daily buses (one of which is overnight) to Toyama from Ikebukuro and the Sunshine City Prince Hotel. It costs ¥7340 one-way (¥13210 round-trip) and takes seven hours to make the journey.

Several companies have bus runs from Osaka and Kyoto to Toyama. West JR Bus has a morning run (5½ hours) and an overnight run (8 hours) from JR Osaka station, while Hankyu has an evening run (5 hours) and an overnight run (7hr 45min hours) from Umeda. The one-way cost for these lines is roughly ¥5200 from Osaka and ¥4800 from Kyoto.

Get around

Central Toyama is compact and any sights of interest may be reached from the station on foot or by bike. The public transport is excellent with several upgrades in the past few years, the streetcar line operates just south of Toyama station, it has been upgraded and expanded in December 2009 into a 3 line system, one downtown loop, one south, and one west, (with many connections to various regional rail lines except the western end) while the newish port light rail operates from the north of the station (Ekikita) to the seaport and Iwasehama (Iwase beach).

Toyama station is served by 3 incoming (from the East) regional lines, Hokuriku main line (from Niigata), Toyama Chiho main line, and Fujikoshi line (from southeast), all of which may be used to get around town and/or beyond. The Hokuriku line continues west (to Kanazawa), the Takayama main line heads southwest.

To complement the 4 light rail lines and 4 regional rail lines are the riverboat going north-south through the center of town and a bus system.

See

  • 1 Toyama Folk Village (富山市民俗民芸村) (located about a half hour from the station. Buses leave at regular intervals from a bus stop located near Toyama Station). A series of small cultural museums. Each of them is in a traditional house and they feature a large number of crafts, tools, toys and furniture. There is a also a beautiful shop full of traditional Toyama clay crafts made on the premises.
  • 2 Gohyaku-rakan (五百羅漢). Also known as the "Hills of 500 Buddhas", is next to the Toyama Folk Village. Even from a short distance away, nothing is visible but a few trees and a small, dilapidated temple. When you get closer however, you find yourself surrounded by hundreds of eerie and atmospheric Buddha statues, dressed in multi-colored ribbons. The statues are disciples of Buddha.
  • 3 Toyama Castle (富山城, Toyama-jō). A small residence dating from the 15th century, and Toyama Castle Park, are a short walk south from the station. Along the way are showcases of local artworks.
  • 4 Toyama City Hall observation deck (at the top of the Toyama City Hall). From which you can see the whole city. free.
  • Iwase town. To see some pre-war Japan and get a taste of Toyama's shipping history, take a walk through Iwase town. Take the lightrail to Higashi Iwase to visit the Mori residence (1878), or to Iwasehama for the beach.
  • 5 Fugan Canal Kansui Park (富岩運河環水公園, fugan unga kansui kōen). A ten-minute walk north from Toyama Station, this large park is split by a large canal from which some sightseeing boats arrive and depart. A bridge crossing over the canal provides panoramic views of the area. The park also has a Starbucks Cafe that has been recognized as the most beautiful store of the Seattle-based chain. Free.

Do

One of the highlights of a trip to Toyama is a riverboat ride around the center of the city. Boats leave at regular intervals from a stand next to Toyama Castle.

Many festivals can be enjoyed in Toyama and the surrounding region year round.

  • Toyama matsuri (富山まつり). first week-end of August. Toyama festival is held in August and includes a fireworks display and various local activities.
  • Yosakoi dance festival. over a weekend, occurs at the end of July/beginning of August. Some of the best spots for viewing displays of this modern Japanese dance style include around Toyama castle, Kencho-mae Park, and the Sogawa shopping arcade.
  • Kaze no Bon (風の盆) (in Yatsuo town, a few stops from Toyama JR station). three days at the beginning of September. Attracts large crowds. Lanterns line the streets of this picturesque town and dancers and musicians parade through the streets demonstrating this traditional dance style. There are also many food and souvenir stalls. Rumor has it the best time to enjoy the atmosphere is after midnight.

National holidays and festivals also provide opportunities to catch events in Toyama, including Tanabata, Kaze-no-bon, and cherry blossom viewing in spring. The Toyama International Center has up-to-date listings on notable events in Toyama and the surrounding area in several languages including English.

Buy

Above the station, a range of souvenirs can be found, but a greater range of traditional objects can be found in nearby tourist towns such as Kanazawa. Toyama clay dolls and local glass art can be found at the folkcraft village.

The Daiwa department store has multiple levels of international and Japanese designer label clothing, accessories, shoes, homewares, books, stationery and so on. Head to the basement for local and imported foodstuffs, from sushi to cheeses. There are also a range of restaurants and cafes in the complex, as well as a Mochi Cream counter on the ground floor. Running next to the store is the Sogawa shopping arcade, lined with boutiques and stores, including a few Kimono boutiques and a bookstore.

Next to the station can be found the Marier shopping complex for more upmarket clothing labels.

The first Sunday morning of each month, a market is held in the grounds of the Gokoku shrine (by the Jinzu river, at the end of Heiwadori), with a range of secondhand and handmade goods on sale, including kimono, ceramics and food. Earlier is better to catch the best bargains or just get some of the atmosphere.

Eat

Around the station can be found many restaurants serving local and international food, including Korean, Chinese and Indian. Another area densely packed with restaurants are the alleys around and behind the Sogawa shopping arcade, as well as the Daiwa department store.

For an inexpensive Izakaya experience, try the 5th floor of the CIC building (opposite Toyama station).

Head to La Yuki, on Joshi-Odori, for Mexican style food in cozy surroundings (near tram stop Aramachi station).

Drink

The most popular area for nightlife for foreigners is around Toyama station, and home to Toyama's only major nightclub, Club Mairo (Japanese language), as well as My Pleasure Karaoke (歌んだ村).

Just around the corner from My Pleasure and down the street from the Lawsons convenience store you'll come across the Irish pub Pot Still which has a sign that remotely resembles a pile of crap. Grab a pint of Guinness and Bass to go with a plate of the best fish and chips in town. Pot Still has darts and pool and a very foreigner friendly environment.

For a more relaxed bar/club, try Beeline in an alley off the Chuodori end of Sogawa. This area is also home to a few bars and Izakaya. Just opposite and south of Daiwa, the quirky De Niro lies in an alley.

Right across from Beeline is a restaurant called Pepin. Good food and service with and English menu. Food is smaller portioned and presented but is still a casual relaxed dining atmosphere. Generally, modern music plays low in the background and a small counter/bar for those dining alone or just like a drink.

Sleep

ANA Crowne Plaza is the best in Toyama. Many weddings held here but good service, comfortable beds and great breakfast. Traditional Japanese breakfast on 5th floor at the Unkai restaurant.

Another very nice hotel for business travelers is the Daiwa Roynet Hotel. The price is very reasonable (less than ¥8000) and the amenities are excellent. Plus, for a small addition ¥1000, you can add a buffet style breakfast. PH: 076-420-0055 [2]

Go next

  • Mount Tate (Tateyama) — one of Japan's best-known mountains and one of the highest peaks in the area. Can be climbed in a challenging day-trip, or viewed at leisure on the many cable cars and gondolas of the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route.
  • Noto Peninsula
  • Kanazawa





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