How to travel between Okuhida and Tokyo

By direct bus

Nohi Bus and Keio Bus operate direct highway buses between Tokyo and Takayama that make a stop in Hirayu, the transportation hub of Okuhida, along the way. The one way journey between Tokyo and Hirayu Onsen takes about 4.5 hours and costs between 5,300 and 6,200 yen depending on travel date and purchase method.

By train and bus via Matsumoto

Take a JR train from Tokyo to Matsumoto and transfer to a bus at Matsumoto. The entire one way journey costs 9320 yen and takes around five hours. The train portion of the trip is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass and JR East Nagano Niigata Area Pass, but the bus portion (2700 yen) is not:
- How to travel between Tokyo and Matsumoto
- How to travel between Matsumoto and Okuhida

By shinkansen and bus via Toyama

Take the Hokuriku Shinkansen from Tokyo to Toyama (130-160 minutes, around 12,500 yen one way) from where there are infrequent buses into the Okuhida region (2.5 hours, 2100 yen one way to Hirayu Onsen). With a good connection (and there are not many), the entire trip takes about five hours. The bus ride is not covered by the Japan Rail Pass.

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

Getting around

Okuhida is comprised of five onsen towns along a valley: Hirayu Onsen, Fukuji Onsen, Shin-Hirayu Onsen, Tochio Onsen and Shin-Hotaka Onsen. Hirayu Onsen, the largest of these towns and the regional transportation hub, lies along the national route that connects Takayama with Matsumoto.

Public transportation within Okuhida is provided by buses that run from Takayama to Hirayu and then serve all the other hot spring towns along the valley. Buses depart hourly from Takayama and stop at Hirayu Onsen (60 minutes, 1600 yen), Fukuji Onsen (70 minutes, 1840 yen), Shin-Hirayu Onsen (75 minutes, 1850 yen) and Tochio Onsen (80 minutes, 1930 yen) before terminating at Shin-Hotaka Ropeway (90 minutes, 2200 yen) at the far end of Shin-Hotaka Onsen.

Passes and Tickets

Various free passes are offered to visitors to Okuhida for unlimited use of buses along specified routes:

  • Takayama & Shin-Hotaka 2-Day Free Pass (4,190 yen)
    Unlimited use of Nohi Buses between Takayama, Hirayu Onsen and Shin-Hotaka Onsen on two consecutive calendar days. Sold at the Takayama Bus Center.
  • Okuhida Onsen 2-Day Free Pass (1,570 yen)
    Unlimited use of Nohi Buses between Hirayu Onsen and Shin-Hotaka Onsen on two consecutive calendar days. Sold at the Hirayu Bus Terminal.
  • Alps Wide Free Passport (11,000 yen)
    Unlimited use of most buses around Takayama, Gero, Shirakawago, Okuhida, Kamikochi and Matsumoto on four consecutive calendar days.

Alternatively, rental cars are a convenient option for exploring the Okuhida region, but there is a risk of encountering snow on the roads during the winter months. Rental car outlets can be found in Takayama and Matsumoto.