Makuhari is a commercial district just outside central Tokyo along the shores of Tokyo Bay in Chiba Prefecture. In the late 1980s, the district was built on reclaimed land in a modern style of architecture and with noticeably organized city planning that includes elevated promenades and walkways as well as wide, well designed streets. The district's attractions include a convention center, baseball stadium, lots of shopping and dining and an expansive seaside park.
Makuhari's main attraction is the Makuhari Messe International Convention Complex (幕張メッセ), which is the second largest convention center in Japan behind Tokyo Big Sight. The center's eleven exhibition halls, conference hall and 9000 seat event hall host major tradeshows and technology exhibitions such as the annual Tokyo Game Show, Tokyo Auto Salon and Jump Festa, along with dozens of other events, conventions and concerts.
Elevated pedestrian walkways radiate from the convention center to the surrounding hotels, shops and restaurants. Shopping and dining are mostly found around Kaihin-Makuhari Station where the Plena Makuhari Mall and the Mitsui Outlet Park are located. The outlet mall features brand stores of numerous foreign and domestic labels selling mostly apparel and accessories. North of the station is the Aeon shopping mall, the Room Deco home interior showroom and the Cineplex Makuhari.
Makuhari also offers park and recreation space, especially east of the station. There is also the Makuhari Seaside Park along the shore where the Chiba Marine Stadium, home of the Chiba Lotte Marines baseball team, is located. Furthermore, Tokyo Disney Resort is just a short train ride away near Maihama Station.
Makuhari is centered around JR Kaihin-Makuhari Station. Makuhari Station and Makuhari-Hongo Station, while in the general area, are not particularly close and connected to Kaihin-Makuhari Station by a 15-20 minute bus ride.
Both local and rapid trains operate on the JR Keiyo Line between Tokyo and Kaihin-Makuhari Stations. The one way trip costs 550 yen and takes about 30 minutes by rapid train or a few minutes longer by local train. There are frequent departures with trains leaving every 5-15 minutes.
Alternatively, JR Sazanami and Wakashio limited express trains run also along the JR Keiyo Line between Tokyo and Kaihin-Makuhari Stations. These trains cost 1060 yen one way for a non-reserved seat, but are slightly faster and tend to be less crowded. Limited express trains depart hourly.
Note that the platform of the JR Keiyo Line at Tokyo Station is located a ten minute walk from the station's other platforms. Also, all of the trains that are mentioned above are fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass.
From Narita Airport
Alternatively, take a train on the Keisei Line from Narita Airport to Keisei-Tsudanuma Station (40 minutes) and transfer to the Keisei Chiba Line to Makuhari-Hongo Station (2 minutes). The one way fare is 740 yen and there are frequent connections. From Makuhari-Hongo Station, it is a 15-20 minute ride by Keisei Bus to Makuhari Messe (220-250 yen, multiple departures every hour). Keisei trains are not covered by the Japan Rail Pass.