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How to travel between Matsue and Tokyo

By JR daytime trains

Take the JR Tokaido/Sanyo Shinkansen from Tokyo to Okayama (200 minutes by Nozomi, 240 minutes by Hikari, multiple trains per hour) and transfer to a JR Yakumo limited express train to Matsue (2.5 hours, one train per hour) or Izumo (3 hours, one train per hour). The one way fare is slightly under 20,000 yen.

The Japan Rail Pass fully covers the journey if Hikari trains are used between Tokyo and Okayama, but the pass is not valid on Nozomi trains.

By JR night train

The "Sunrise Izumo" night train operates daily between Tokyo, Matsue and Izumo. One way fares including berth fee, start around 22,000 yen.

Japan Rail Pass holders have to pay around 10,000 yen additionally for using a berth, except when using so called "nobi nobi" compartments, which can be used for free with the pass. Nobi nobi compartments are small spaces of carpeted floor to lie down. They are popular and often book out in advance.

By air

JAL operates multiple flights per day between Tokyo's Haneda Airport and Izumo Airport (flight time 90 minutes). The regular one way fare is about 34,000 yen, but by using a discount offer, you can usually fly for around 15,000 to 24,000 yen. Air passes can be even cheaper. Izumo Airport is a 30 minute bus ride from Matsue Station (1050 yen) and Izumoshi Station (720 yen).

ANA operates multiple flights per day between Tokyo and Yonago Airport. Flight time is 75 minutes. The regular one way fare is about 33,000 yen; however, discount tickets are usually available for between 15,000 to 24,000 yen. Yonago Airport is a 45 minute bus ride from Matsue Station (1000 yen).

By highway bus

Matsue and Izumo are connected with Tokyo by a night bus, operated daily by Ichibata Bus and JR Chugoku Bus. The one way ride takes 12 hours and costs 11,600 yen to Matsue and 12,000 yen to Izumo Taisha. The route is also served by discount bus companies such as Willer Bus with tickets available from around 6,000 yen. If used effectively, the Japan Bus Pass can reduce the cost for the bus trip to around 3,000 yen. Online reservations can be made through Willer.

Above fees and schedules are subject to change. For the current yen exchange rate, click here.

Getting around

Matsue is served by two railway companies: Japan Railways (JR) and Ichibata Railways. JR Matsue Station is a regional transportation hub, located two kilometers south of Matsue Castle, while Ichibata Railways connects Matsue with neighboring Izumo and Izumo Taisha from its terminal station, Matsue Shinjiko Onsen Station, one kilometer west of the castle.

Transportation within the city is provided by Matsue City Bus and Ichibata Bus. Convenient for tourists is the "Lake Line" loop bus, which connects the two railway stations with all of the city's major tourist sights. Buses operate every 20 minutes. A single ride costs 210 yen, while a one-day pass is available for 520 yen.

Good walkers can explore the city's main sights entirely on foot. It takes about 30 minutes to walk from JR Matsue Station to the castle or about 15 minutes from Ichibata's Shinjiko Onsen Station.

Hotels around Matsue

Top rated in Matsue
Budget:
    • Matsue Guesthouse
      Budget-friendly
      Matsue Guesthouse offers rooms in Matsue near Shimane Art Museum and Matsue Castle. Among the facilities at this property are a shared kitchen and a shared lounge, along with free WiFi throughout the property. Matsue English Garden is 7 km from the guest house and Yaegaki Shrine is 5 km away. At the guest house all rooms are fitted with a shared bathroom. Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum is 2.5 km from Matsue Guesthouse, while Lake Shinji is 3.7 km away. The nearest airport is Izumo Airport, 17 km from the accommodation.
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    • Guest house daisho oshiro asobi
      Budget-friendly
      Located in Matsue, less than 1 km from Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum, Guest house daisho oshiro asobi provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a shared lounge and a garden. Featuring family rooms, this property also provides guests with a terrace. The accommodation features a shared kitchen and free WiFi throughout the property. Guests at the guest house can enjoy a ? la carte breakfast. Lake Shinji is 4.4 km from Guest house daisho oshiro asobi, while Matsue Castle is 500 metres away. The nearest airport is Izumo Airport, 17 km from the accommodation.
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      8.9Booking.com
    • Hotel Gyokusen
      Mid-range
      Set in Matsue, 5 km from Lake Shinji, Hotel Gyokusen offers accommodation with a shared lounge, free private parking and a garden. Around 10 km from Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum, the property is also 8 km away from Shimane Art Museum and offers free WiFi. The accommodation features a hot spring bath, evening entertainment and a 24-hour front desk. An Asian breakfast is available every morning at the ryokan. At Hotel Gyokusen guests are welcome to take advantage of a sauna. Matsue Castle is 9 km from the accommodation, while Matsue English Garden is 14 km from the property. The nearest airport is Izumo Airport, 11 km from Hotel Gyokusen.
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      8.6Booking.com
    • Onsen Guest House Aobato no Su
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi throughout the property, Onsen Guest House Aobato no Su offers accommodation in Matsue, a few steps from Tamatsukuri Onsen. Free private parking is available on site. All rooms include a flat-screen TV. Every room is fitted with a shared bathroom. You will find a 24-hour front desk at the property. The ryokan also offers bike hire. Lake Shinji is 4.1 km from Onsen Guest House Aobato no Su, while Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum is 8 km from the property. The nearest airport is Yonago Airport, 22 km from the property.
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    • Kasuien Minami
      Luxury
      Set in Matsue, within 6 km of Lake Shinji and 10 km of Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum, Kasuien Minami offers accommodation with a garden and free WiFi as well as free private parking for guests who drive. The property is situated 9 km from Matsue Castle, 14 km from Matsue English Garden and 600 metres from Tamatsukuriyu Shrine. The property is allergy-free and is located 8 km from Shimane Art Museum. At the ryokan, each room comes with a wardrobe. At Kasuien Minami the rooms are equipped with a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. A buffet breakfast is available every morning at the accommodation. Kasuien Minami offers a hot spring bath. Tamatsukuriyu Shrine is 600 metres from the ryokan, while Yaegaki Shrine is 10 km from the property. The nearest airport is Izumo Airport, 11 km from Kasuien Minami.
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    • Matsue Excel Hotel Tokyu
      Mid-range
      Located just a 3-minute walk from JR Matsue Station, Matsue Excel Hotel Tokyu provides simple guest rooms fitted with modern amenities. Free in-room wired internet is provided. All guest rooms are non-smoking at this hotel. Guests can smoke in a designated smoking booth. The hotel features banquet facilities, and drink vending machines can be used. Rooms at Tokyu Matsue Excel Hotel come with a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a small fridge and an electric kettle. An air-purifier is also provided in the room. Izumo Airport is a 30-minute limousine bus ride from the station. Matsue Castle can be reached within a 5-minute drive, and historic Izumo Taisha Shrine is a 1-hour drive away. On-site Restaurant Mosoro offers a Japanese and Western breakfast buffet, a buffet lunch and dinner. Casual set meals and a la carte menus are available for dinner.
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      8.1Booking.com
    • Dormy Inn Express Matsue
      Mid-range
      Dormy Inn Express Matsue offers modern accommodations with wired internet access, an iPod docking station and free welcome coffee. Guests can refresh in the bathtub while watching the TV monitor in the en suite bathrooms. JR Matsue Train Station is a 5-minute walk away. The air-conditioned rooms feature carpeted floors, a flat-screen TV with a DVD player and a fridge. Green tea can be enjoyed using the electric kettle and sleepwear is provided for all guests. The en suite bathroom comes with slippers and a hairdryer. Matsue Dormy Inn Express is a 5-minute drive from Matsue Castle and a 15-minute drive from Kamosu Shrine. Former Yakumo Koizumi Residence is a 10-minute drive away. Massages can be requested for an extra cost and free-use washing machines are on-site. English speaking staff can be found at the 24-hour front desk. Hatago restaurant serves a breakfast buffet. Complimentary noodle soup is offered in the dining room between 21:30 and 23:00.
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    • Hotel Ichibata
      Luxury
      Situated in Matsue, 2.4 km from Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum, Hotel Ichibata features accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a bar and a garden. Featuring a spa and wellness centre, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a shared bathroom. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, a concierge service and currency exchange for guests. At the hotel, the rooms include a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. All rooms will provide guests with a wardrobe and a kettle. Guests at Hotel Ichibata can enjoy a buffet or a ? la carte breakfast. The accommodation offers a range of wellness facilities including a hot spring bath and a hot tub. Guests at Hotel Ichibata will be able to enjoy activities in and around Matsue, like fishing. Lake Shinji is 4.1 km from the hotel, while Matsue Castle is 1.4 km from the property. The nearest airport is Izumo Airport, 16 km from Hotel Ichibata.
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    • Ryokan Yukeikohan Suitenkaku
      Mid-range
      Ryokan Yukeikohan Suitenkaku is a 5-minute walk from Shinjiko Onsen Station and an 8-minute drive from JR Matsue Station. It offers Japanese-style accommodation with 2 public baths and free parking. Guest rooms feature tatami (woven straw) mat with traditional futon bedding. Each room is equipped with a fridge, electric kettle and a flat-screen TV. The lobby area has a personal computer for guestsf use. Free use of massage chair is provided. Breakfast and dinner are served in the dining room. Japanese dishes are on offer. Yukeikohan Suitenkaku Ryokan is within a 10-minute drive of the Matsue Castle, Matsue History Museum and the Jozan Inari Shrine. Izumo Airport is a 36-minute drive away.
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    • Matsue Urban Hotel
      Mid-range
      Matsue Urban Hotel is a 3-minute walk from JR Matsue Station and a 10-minute drive from Matsue Castle. It offers modern accommodation with a restaurant, massage services and rooms with free wired internet. Guest rooms offer both air-conditioning and heating facilities. Each room is equipped with a fridge, a flat-screen TV and a pot with tea bags. The en suite bathroom comes with toiletries and a bathtub. The hotel has a coin-operated laundrette. Humidifier and air freshener can be borrowed from the front desk. Bicycle rental is available for guests who wish to explore the area. The on-site restaurant serves Western buffet dishes for breakfast. Hotel Urban Matsue is a 15-minute drive from Shimane Art Museum and a 25-minute drive from Aikanagisa Park. Izumo Airport is a 40-minute drive away.
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