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Nikko Toshogu

Nikko Toshogu: Our most recommended tours and activities

Tokyo: Nikko Toshogu Shrine and Kegon Waterfall Tour

1. Tokyo: Nikko Toshogu Shrine and Kegon Waterfall Tour

After meeting at 7:50AM, your tour leader will greet you at the ground floor of the Shinjuku Subaru Building next to the Shinjuku JR Station west exit. At 8:00AM, you will depart from Shinjuku to Tochigi prefecture, where Nikko City is located. At around 10:30AM, you will travel to the first stop on your tour, the Nikko Toshogu Shrine. This shrine is the final resting place of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate that ruled Japan for over 250 years until 1868, known as the Edo Period. You can appreciate the beauty of this shrine complex, a UNESCO World Heritage site, whilst learning the interesting stories and legends of the buildings from your guide. After visiting the Nikko Toshogo Shrine, you will pass through the Iroha Slope. It is famous for its 48 sharp turns along its route, and is portrayed in the animation ”Initial D”. The road is very popular for its autumn leaves in the fall. At 12:30PM, you will arrive at the Kegon Waterfall. This almost 100-meter-tall waterfall is the most famous of Nikko's many beautiful waterfalls. It is even ranked as one of Japan's three most beautiful falls, along with the Nachi Waterfall in the Wakayama Prefecture and the Fukuroda Waterfall in the Ibaraki Prefecture. At 2:00PM, your tour will be separated into two groups, you can choose according to your preference to either walk along Lake Chuzenji, or to experience the Nikko hot spring. Before finishing your tour, you will stop by the Onihei Edo service area, which is the most interesting service area with edo style design and traditional souvenirs. At 6:00PM, you will be dropped back at the Shinjuku Subaru Building, where your tour will end.

Nikko: Private Walking Tour with Local Guide

2. Nikko: Private Walking Tour with Local Guide

Discover Nikko on a fully customizable private tour. Choose what you would like to experience, what time you would like to start your tour, and the local partner will arrange a tour to suit you. Start your day by meeting your guide and then choose the sites you wish to visit depending on your interests. Example 6-hour Itinerary: Meet your guide at Tobu Nikko Station and get the bus to Nikko Tosho-gu shrine. Discover the impressive carvings of the shrine which showcase the techniques of Edo period craftsmen. See carvings of animals, such as the three monkeys said to be admonishing mankind, the sleeping cat, as well as ornate buildings and a five-storied pagoda. Hop on the next bus to Lake Chuzenji via Iroha Zaka. Enjoy the views throughout the journey on this famous winding road. Enjoy lunch by Lake Chuzenji with the brilliant colors of the leaves contrasting with the lake's pristine waters. Take a short walk along the shore of the lake to better experience the beautiful scenery. Continue to Kegon Falls, one of the three most famous waterfalls in Japan. See the water flowing from Lake Chuzenji as it falls from a height of 97 meters. To experience the full power of the waterfall, take the elevator to the viewing platform at the base of the falls where you can view them up close.

From Tokyo: Day Trip to Nikko with English Speaking Driver

3. From Tokyo: Day Trip to Nikko with English Speaking Driver

There are many reasons why Nikko is a must-see stop during your stay in Japan. Your private driver will help you efficiently escape the hustle and bustle of Tokyo on a full-day tour of this historic, beautiful town. Your driver will pick you up at your hotel, the nearest station, or your preferred location around Tokyo. Passing by Irohazaka Route, made up of 48 hairpin turns throughout the different upslope and downslope roads, it is known as the best place to view the autumn leaves. Stop at Kegon Falls, the most famous of Nikko’s 48 waterfalls. Water from Lake Chuzenji falls 97 meters straight down to the rocks below creating a dynamic and artistic work of nature. A special lift takes visitors to the basin where the force and roar of the water can be witnessed close up. Visit the waterfall when surrounded by the fresh green leaves in May, house martins in June or the “12 falls” - small streams of the frozen waterfall clad in blue ice - during January and February. Visit Lake Chuzenji to enjoy the seasonal charms of the lake, particularly when the cherry blossoms or azaleas are in bloom. Walking trails surround the water’s edge and there is an excursion boat available on the lake. Go to Senjogahara, the battlefield, that refers to a mythical battlefield where legends say that the gods of Mount Nantai and Mount Akagi fought once to claim the neighboring lakes as their own. The battlefield has now changed to a battle of charms as various plants and fauna reside in the vast field. Take a hike along the trail for a personal experience with the plants and birds that visit the place. Or head over to the observation deck for a stunning panoramic view of the marshlands. Either way, be ready for a breath-taking sight that you will not regret. Stop at Nikko Toshogu Shrine. Understand why “Don’t say ‘magnificent’ until you’ve seen Nikko” visiting the final resting place of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate, and nearby shrines and temple. The shrine contains 55 buildings including 8 national treasures and 34 listed buildings. The highlights are sumptuous carvings lacquered and richly colored brilliantly, which you will gaze at craftsmanship assembled from all over the country. Do not miss the symbol of peace “Sleeping Cat”, and the “Three Monkeys” with the “see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil” poses.

  • Private tours
  • Day trips
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What people are saying about Nikko Toshogu

Overall rating

4.1 / 5

based on 112 reviews

In this short tour I was able to visit the shrine, see the water fall, the beautiful lake, mountain and enjoyed a local onsen. The two rest stops were worth visiting as well because there were clean toilets (one had ikebana and origami display), nice restaurants and shops :) Every activity was well paced out I think. The tour guide was very patient and helpful. She came prepared with the map drawn by her and English explanation. She gave tips on where we had better spent more time at the shrine. The onsen experience was not really amazing. It's a very small local and indoors onsen. Overall, considering the price that I paid for and places that I have experienced within a day, all's good.

Amazing place, I was very impressed with the park, centuries-old trees, clean, crystal air, the temple complex is very beautiful and interesting, it was very informative to walk around the territory. The weather that day was frosty, but sunny, despite this, the impressions from the waterfall and the view of the lake were the most iridescent and favorable. We expected more from the onsen, in the female part there are two pools with hot water, one of which smelled of hydrogen sulfide, probably real thermal water, only this smoothed out the overall impression of the spa. We were satisfied with the walk.

This was a very good tour, well organized and the tour guide (I think Vicky?) was very good. She gave ample information and made sure all our questions were answered. This was a small group of about 12 people, we traveled in a comfortable mini bus and our driver was excellent.

Our guide was sooo good. She spoke great English and was so informative about the sites. She was very attentive too. The Toshogu Shrine was beautiful and the waterfall was spectacular. Also, the bus and driver were excellent.

I enjoyed this immensely! Takes all the thinking out of travelling to some key tourist spots in Nikko. Waterfall was extremely beautiful.