This local bus line is the best way to access Gokayama by public transportion. It runs between Ogimachi in Shirakawa-go and Takaoka Station. It also stops at Shin-Takaoka Station along the Hokuriku Shinkansen where you can transfer to trains to Tokyo and Kanazawa.

Along the way, the bus stops at various locations in Gokayama, including the villages of Suganuma and Ainokura. Between Ainokura and Takaoka, the bus also stops at JR Johana Station, the terminal station of the JR Johana Line, where budget conscious Japan Rail Pass holders can transfer to a train to Shin-Takaoka.

Takaoka - Gokayama - Shirakawago Valid as of April 1, 2021
Takaoka StationShin-Takaoka StationJohana StationAinokuraSuganumaShirakawago
ShirakawagoSuganumaAinokuraJohana Station (arr.)Johana Station (dep.)Shin-Takaoka StationTakaoka Station
Shirakawago - Takaoka/Shin-Takaoka1800 yen
Shirakawago - Ainokura1300 yen
Shirakawago - Suganuma870 yen
Suganuma - Takaoka/Shin-Takaoka1200 yen
Ainokura - Takaoka/Shin-Takaoka1000 yen

Several discount passes are available for this bus line:

  • Gokayama Free Kippu (2500 yen)
    Round trip between Takaoka Station and Johana Station and free use of buses between Johana Station and Gokayama, but not as far as Shirakawago. Valid for up to two consecutive days.
  • Gokayama-Shirakawago Free Kippu (3500 yen)
    Round trip between Takaoka Station and Johana Station and free use of buses between Johana Station and Shirakawago, including Gokayama. Valid for up to two consecutive days.
  • World Heritage 1-Day Free Kippu (2600 yen)
    Free use of buses between Shirakawago and Ainokura on a single calendar day. It costs the same as a round trip by regular tickets from Shirakawago to Ainokura, but becomes cheaper if you also visit Suganuma along the way.
  • Takaoka-Gokayama/Shirakawago One Way Free Kippu (2000 yen)
    One way trip from Takaoka Station to Shirakawago with stopovers allowed along the way between Johana Station and Shirakawago. Valid for up to two consecutive days. A similar ticket is available for one-way travel in the opposite direction.

Bus stop locations

In Shirakawago, the buses stop at the Shirakawago Bus Terminal (see map)
"Suganuma" bus stop is located along the main road at the entrance to the village (see map)
"Ainokura-guchi" bus stop is located along the main road, a five minute walk from the village of Ainokura (see map)


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