at Minato Mirai
Located on the western coast of Tokyo Bay directly south of Tokyo, Yokohama Practice page (横浜) is the second largest city in Japan and one of the cities most used to seeing foreigners.
Yokohama was the first port opened up to foreign trade after the opening of Japan in 1854. At the forefront of the Meiji restoration, the first train line in Japan connected Tokyo and Yokohama. However, Yokohama was devastated by the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 and again by the firebombings of World War II, and never really regained its prominence. It remains a maritime city to this day and retains an international flavor.
Yokohama is located only half an hour away from Tokyo, and effectively forms a part of the giant conurbation.
Yokohama does not have its own airport. You can reach Yokohama from Tokyo's two main airports.
Some Narita Express trains from Narita Airport go through to Yokohama (1 1/2 hours, ¥4380). Limousine Buses run frequently from Narita to the Yokohama City Air Terminal (YCAT) (1 1/2 ~3 hours, ¥3500). The cheapest access from Narita Airport is to take a Keisei train to Nippori, then change to a JR Keihin-Tohoku Line train for Yokohama (about 2 hr. and ¥1540).
The Keihin Kyuko line (Keikyu line) is the best route from Haneda Airport to Yokohama (25 minutes direct, 30 minutes with connection, ¥470).
The overwhelming majority of visitors to Yokohama arrive from Tokyo by train. A multitude of train lines connect the two cities at roughly equal prices (around ¥200 one-way), but some of the more convenient options are:
- Tokyu Toyoko Line (東急東横線) from Shibuya to Yokohama Station. Some trains on the Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line run through to the Toyoko Line, which in turn runs through to the recently-opened Minato Mirai 21 subway line (see below). A trip from Shibuya to Yokohama takes as little as 24 minutes on the fastest service; Chinatown, the terminus of the MM21 line, is another 10 minutes away. Up to eight kyūkō (急行) and tokkyū (特急) trains per hour. In the year 2012, the Toyoko Line will link to the Tokyo Metro Fukutoshin Line subway, allowing trains to continue north to Shinjuku, Ikebukuro and into Saitama.
- JR Shonan Shinjuku Line (湘南新宿ライン) from Ōmiya, Akabane, Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Ebisu and Ōsaki. Established in 2003, this line allows for easy access to Yokohama from west Tokyo. Roughly four trains per hour, reaching Yokohama from Shinjuku in as little as 30 minutes. This line will have no major competition until the Toyoko/Fukutoshin services join together in 2012.
- JR Tokaido Main Line (東海道線) from Tokyo and Shinagawa stations (both on the Yamanote Line). Departs every 10 minutes; more trains during rush hour. About 25 minutes from Tokyo to Yokohama. Note that Commuter Rapid Service (通勤快速) and Shonan Liner (湘南ライナー) trains do not stop at Yokohama Station.
- JR Yokosuka Line (横須賀線): A less-convenient alternative from Tokyo Station and Shinagawa. However, it is the route of choice if coming from stations east of Tokyo on the Sobu Rapid line, such as Tsudanuma and Chiba, as most of these trains continue onto the Yokosuka line. About 30 minutes from Tokyo to Yokohama; about 75 minutes from Chiba. Departs every 15 minutes or so from Tokyo; more trains during rush hour.
- JR Keihin Tohoku Line (京浜東北線) from Nippori, Ueno, Akihabara, Tokyo, and Shinagawa Stations. This train stops at more stations in Yokohama than the Yokosuka Line, including Sakuragicho (桜木町), which is within walking distance of Chinatown. It is also a convenient route from stations north of Tokyo in Saitama prefecture. About 35 minutes from Tokyo Station to Yokohama Station. Departs every 5 minutes from Tokyo; more trains during rush hour.
- Keihin Kyuko Main Line (京浜急行線), or Keikyu for short, from Shinagawa and Haneda Airport. Most trains from the Toei Asakusa subway line continue onto the Keikyu line. Departs every 10 minutes from Shinagawa (more trains during rush hour), with the fastest train reaching Yokohama in only 18 minutes. Note that Keikyu WING (京急ウィング) trains, which run on weekday evenings, do not stop at Yokohama.
Shinkansen trains go to Shin-Yokohama station instead, a few subway stops away from the main Yokohama station. Alternatively, take the shinkansen to Shinagawa and change to the Tokaido, Yokosuka or Keihin Tohoku lines. If your final destination is Chinatown or a the harbor area, taking one of the non-Shinkansen trains listed above is likely to be faster.
The Minato Mirai Line (みなとみらい線) (Japanese link), opened in 2004, is a direct extension of the Tokyu Toyoko Line. Connection with the lines is at Yokohama Station, and the line itself has five stations: Shin-Takashimacho (新高島町), Minatomirai (みなとみらい), Bashamichi (馬車道), Nihon Ōdori (日本大通り), and Motomachi-Chūkagai (元町・中華街), terminating at the posh Motomachi shopping street and the second largest Chinatown in the world. The line’s stations itself are worth seeing, especially Minato-Mirai Station itself, where you are able to see straight up to the very spacious entrance hall (7 floors in all) of the Yokohama Landmark Tower, the tallest building in Japan.
Bashamichi station is with artifact bricks and hosts the remains of the first western style bank of Yokohama. Note also that Bashamichi (literal translation: horse carriage street) was the first street in Japan to have gas fired street lightings, which were re-installed lately. Bashamichi Station is surrounded by historical buildings, built only a century ago, but for Japanese standards are a true catapulting into westernization. Thus all buildings remaining (partially rebuilt after the heavy bombings of WWII) are protected as “historical – cultural national treasure.”
Nihon-Ōdori Station is similar to Bashamichi Station. Nihon-Ōdori (meaning Japan Avenue) is a two lane-two way avenue, which back then separated the living quarters of the foreign delegation and Japanese. The line runs parallel to the Keihin-Tohoku Line, but due to its massive expenses in keeping the designer-class stations running, the fares are rather pricey but definitely worthwhile. The line runs through the very historical parts of Yokohama, when Japan opened up towards the Western civilization. Many history-related museums of Yokohama are dotted along the line, and to attract further tourists, the line offers a one-day unlimited ride ticket (¥450 for adults, 1/2 price for children).
View of Yokohama skyline and passenger port
Yokohama is not a very automobile-friendly place, especially for foreigners. Public transit and walking work best.
The Minato Mirai 21 subway line from Yokohama station down the harborfront to Chinatown is the best method of accessing the main tourist haunts. The main subway line is useful primarily for transfers between central Yokohama and the Shinkansen station. JR Negishi Line (根岸線) is also available for Chinatown and Minato Mirai Area. All Negishi Line Trains with the blue line are direct service via the Keihin-Tohoku Line. For suburban areas, Yokohama has a subway and extensive commuter rail lines that crisscross the city from every direction and to all neighboring cities.
A "sea bus"  operates between JR Yokohama station (east exit), Minato Mirai and Yamashita Park, and is one of the nicest ways to get around on a sunny day. The fare is ¥340-700 depending on the distance.
Central Yokohama is comparatively compact and the Chinatown/Yamashita Park area is best explored on foot.
- Chinatown (中華街 Chūkagai), MM21 Motomachi-Chukagai station, . Yokohama's Chinatown is the largest in Japan and dates back to the Opening of Japan in 1859. These days it's unabashedly touristy, but there are plenty of Chinese grocery stores and places to buy a cheap cheongsam dress or jade knick-knacks.
- Bay Stars Stadium. Located in Naka ward. A short walk from Chinatown or Kannai station, this is probably one of the most fun places to watch a baseball game in Japan. Known as the Bay Stars Stadium, the Yokohama Baseball Team of the Central League, the Stadium itself was built on the remains of the Cricket Ballpark of the last century for the British delegation. The Bay Stars Stadium is an open roof stadium with natural grass, very rare in Japan, which prefers to man-made grass to save on costs, and the entertainment boasted throughout the games is trying hard, and doing a good job, by Japanese terms, in trying to have each game hosted at the "home ground" to be as American as possible.
- Yamashita Park. On the waterfront, adjacent to the ferry terminal. Don't miss the statue of the "Girl With Red Shoes". This is also a good spot to see fireworks.
- Marine Tower. The largest onland lighthouse in the world. It is located in Naka ward. Currently closed to the public until 2009 pending change of ownership and renovation.
- Hikawa Maru. This passenger liner made 238 voyages across the Pacific to Seattle and Vancouver between 1930 and 1960, and served as a hospital ship during World War II. Currently closed to the public until 2009 pending change of ownership.
Sakuragicho as seen from Sky Walk
- Sky Walk. An observation platform attached to the Bay Bridge. To get there, take a bus in front of JR Sakuragicho station. If you cannot find the correct bus, ask for help from the Tourist information center located right in front of the station. However, the bus trip takes quite a while and there is nothing more to see than the view of Minato Mirai from afar.
- Landmark Tower, MM21 Minato Mirai station. The tallest building in Japan is located in the new Minato Mirai 21 district. The observation platform on the top 69th floor provides good views (admission ¥1,000). The elevators are said to be the fastest in Japan. For a classier experience, try the cocktail lounge on the 70th floor (¥1,000 cover, drinks ¥1000+ each) or eat dinner on the 68th (see below).
Foreigner's house in Yamate area
- Sankei-en Park (三渓園) . 35 minutes by bus from Yokohama station. Located southeast of Naka ward, this is a traditional style of park and known as Teien (lit. "set park") in Japanese. Opened in 1906, this large park (175000 sq.ft.) has many Japanese traditional buildings, 13 of which have been designated as national heritages.
- Yamate (山手). This is the neighbourhood where foreigners settled and still settle. You can make a pleasant walk from the Italian garden near Ishikawa-cho station to the French park near Motomachi Chukagai station. The walk will take you along some nice houses that were previously owned by rich foreigners. Nowadays, these houses can be visited freely. A nice cakeshop can be found here as well. The foreigner cemetery is also along this route and houses a small museum with some pictures of the Motomachi shopping street in the old days and some more cartoons how the Japanese saw foreigners.
- Baby Aquarium It is near the Yishichyo station and in front of Yokohama Park where parents can take their children to. There are many baby marine lives. Nowadays, children have only little chance to get close to the nature. As that, we should increase the chance to take them know more about any living things.
- Mazu Temple It takes five minutes from Yokohama Station. The last time when I went there, there were not many people it is built not so long. As I know this temple in Taiwan is very famous because it is efficacious. This kind of place is really quiet and when you feel stressful it is suitable for you to go.
- Yokohama Cosmo World , just across the water from Minato Mirai 21, is a small amusement park which boasts the Cosmo Clock 21, a 112.5m Ferris wheel which doubles as "the world's largest clock" (the 60 arms double as second hands). The park also has two roller coasters, a log flume ride and several other attractions. Admission is free but the rides cost ¥500-700 each.
- Minato Mirai 21 (みなとみらい２１)  A futuristic city district built entirely on reclaimed land. If you like high-end shopping, then this is the place to check out. For a slightly less expensive shopping mall experience, try Yokohama World Porters  located on the other side of Cosmo World.
- Motomachi (元町)  is a small fashionable shopping district located near Chinatown. Get off at Minato Mirai line "Motomachi-Chinatown" station or JR line "Ishikawacho" station.
Recreation of Old Tokyo, in the basement of the Ramen Museum
- For Chinese food the obvious choice is Chinatown (中華街 Chūkagai), which has over 200 Chinese restaurants. Snacks are sold on the streets, but most restaurants in the area are quite expensive (expect to pay ¥1,500 for a decent lunch) and the food has been toned down to suit the Japanese palate. One of the most popular foods in Chinatown is Nikuman (肉まん nikuman), or bread filled with pork and vegetables, which are sold by dozens of stores and vendors. Chinatown is the terminus of the Minato Mirai 21 line.
- Shinyokohama Raamen Museum (新横浜ラーメン博物館 Shin-Yokohama rāmen hakubutsukan). Shin-Yokohama 2-14-21, . Paradise for noodle lovers, but not just because of the (Japanese-only) exhibits of the history of instant ramen noodles: the centerpiece here is the basement, which contains a recreation of 1950s-era Tokyo done in incredible detail, complete with operating branches of 10 famous ramen joints. Expect to queue and pay at least ¥1000 for a bowl, but if you really love your noodles, it's worth it. 5 minute walk from Shin-Yokohama station (on the #1 subway line). Open from 11 AM to 11 PM daily, admission ¥300.
- Chano-ma, in Aka-renga park in Minato-Mirai. There is a large floor about 60cm up where you can lay down with blankets and some pillows like a living room.Italic text
- Manchin-Ro , it is located near Yoshimoto Baby Aquarium. It is best to take the Keihin Tohoku Line and get off at the Ishikawa station, and it only take 5 mintues to get there. It is not only supplying delicious food, but also it is really very cheap which only need 1,500 en for you to get full. During lunch time it is running as a kind of self-servie restaurant, but you do not need to get food by yourself and just order the food wanted from menu then they will serve them just finished to guests.
- Tachibana, it is located near Higashihakuraku station in Kanagawa word in Yokohama city. Wanko-soba restaurant, which is Japanese noodles served in small bowls to have eating competition at restaurant.
- The Landmark Tower has Japanese, Chinese and French restaurants on the 68th floor, where you can enjoy excellent food and unparalleled views of Yokohama and Tokyo. But the luxury doesn't come cheap: dinner at any of these restaurants is around ¥10,000 per person.
- Palm Bar And Cafe Hodogaya Eki East Gate tel +81/(0) 45-712-0227. AKA the Digital Bar by the locals - A small trendy bar with a full array of top shelf liquors, bottled beers from 500 yen and daily drink specials from 420 yen makes it an inexpensive watering hole. English music selections with a large screen TV plus free internet makes it a great place to relax after work. Located 4mins from Yokohama Stn on the Yokosuka Line. Also bar snacks and pretty decent pasta from 900 yen. Open Mon-Sat. 19:00-2:00. 045-712-0227. http://www16.ocn.ne.jp/~kabu-fun/
- Windjammer Toraku Building 1F, Yamashita-cho, Naka-ku, tel +81/(0) 45-662-3966. A classy jazz bar on the edges of Chinatown run by a dapper American expat who loves to put on a show for his customers. Bands play downstairs most nights and there's a large screen for those on the second floor showing the action below. The decor is decadent and there's a chocolate fountain with fruit for dipping. Open 5.30pm-1am Sun-Thu, 6pm-2am Fri-Sat. Music cover 500yen, drinks from 800yen.
- Downbeat Miyamoto Bldg. 2F 1-43 Hanabusacho, Naku-ku 231-0052 Sakuragicho. Another jazz bar, but this one features an extensive record collection, a "record menu" and a foreigner friendly staff. Request a song out of the menu and the owner will put it in the queue.
- Ishikawacho, 4-168 Sekiuti Real Estate Building 2, B1F. One of Yokohama's hottest, and oldest, hip hop clubs. DJ's spinning R&B, Reggae, and Hip Hop. Special events throughout the month.
- Summer brings the beer gardens : both Luminè Department Store (near Yokohama Station) and the Star Hotel sport the rooftop variety, or there's a real garden next to Yamate Jubankan.
- HOGS HEAD. Irish/American pub. Address: Naka-ku Tokiwa-cho 6-77, No 2 Hiyoshi Bldg 1F (中区常盤町6-77第2日吉ビル１F). If you like the Windjammer, you will like this place too. Very Japanese, they tried it to perfection. The pub is trying hard to look as Irish/American as can be and is doing a very good job. The bartenders know over 200 cocktails and the “financial damage” per drink hovers around Yen1,000. Basic food, pasta, pizza and snacks are also available. Unique about the bar is its size, which can be classed as rather large in the area of Bashamichi, Kannai, where small, tiny sized bars are common. There is no live band, but the music jamming out of the speaker systems throughout the bar is Jazz and the bar itself is very quiet and emphasis is placed on enjoying your drink. Hogshead proud sales pitch is the long bar counter with the respectful collection of whiskeys, brandies and other alcoholic delicacies proudly shelved behind it. The bar itself accepts reservations for larger groupings under (045) 641-4746.
- Benny's Place, Ishikawacho 1-25 Mitsubo Bldg. 2F, tel 045-671-0818 (just off the big intersection in Motomachi). American-style sports bar complete with baseball memorabilia, cable TV, darts, and a friendly owner who'll gladly tell you about his days in the U.S. Navy at "Yah-kohska". And the biggest hamburgers served this side of the Pacific. 
- Oriental Café, 2-16-4 Minamisaiwai, Nishi-ku, is a small sized diner which plays continuously house music and the interior décor is in line with the music it plays. For an easy night out and on budget (in this country being less than US$100.00) this place is rather attractive with its unique décor, its simple menu and plain but basic selection of beers, cocktails and wines. Tel: (045) 311-4640. Access, Yokohama Station plus 10 to 15 minute walk along the Shintama River, diagonally across the “Hamabowl” Bowling hall.
- Kanagawa Youth Hostel . 1 Momijigaoka, Nishi-ku, Yokohama, tel +81-45-241-6503. 10 min walk from Sakuragi-cho JR Station. Single room for 2980¥ + 600¥ for non-members.
- Yokohama Hostel Village . SanWa Building 1F, 3-11-2 Matsukage-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama, tel +81-45-663-3696. 5 min walk from Ishikawa-cho JR Station. Inexpensive accommodations. Single room for 3000¥. Recently added small LB apartments for 4300¥, no deposit is needed and you get your own kitchen and bathroom.
- Washington Hotel . 5-33 Choja-machi, Naka-ku, tel +81/(0)45-243-7111. A serviceable but quite pricey middle of the road hotel with airconditioning and high speed internet in every room. Close to JR station and easy walking distance to Chinatown. Single from 9200¥, Double 16,300¥.
- Shinyokohama Prince Hotel is the cylindrical skyscraper right outside Shinyokohama station, where the Shinkansen (新幹線) super-express calls (aka bullet train). A rather quiet corner of Yokohama, it is well connected with bustling Yokohama by the Yokohama Line (横浜線), or the municipal subway (市営地下鉄) and various municipal city buses (市営バス). Only ten minutes away it is an ideal place to stay with mediocre quality whilst saving money. The Prince Hotel is one of the largest chains of hotels in Japan, run by the behemoth company Seibu. Foreigners registering with the homepage member area enjoy additional reductions, but only if you register and apply PRIOR to arriving in the country. Prices range between ¥11,000 and ¥19,000, depending on room class and number of people.
- Hotel Monterey Yokohama is located in Yamashita Park and it has view of Minatomirai and Bay bridge. 6-1 yamashita-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama-city. It takes about 3 minutes from Motomachi-Cyukagai station to get the Hotel. 3 minutes walk to Yokohama China Town and Yokohama doll’s house (Ningyou-no-ie). Standard doubles from ¥5300.
The three main hotels in the Minato Mirai area are the ultimate in local luxury, and occasionally offer their rooms on sale at bargain prices.
- Yokohama Royal Park Hotel . Takes up the mid-section of the Landmark Tower. Standard rates start at ¥31,500 (single) or ¥36,750 (double).
- Pan Pacific . Located in Minato Mirai, operated by Nikko Hotels. Standard rates start at ¥40,000.
- InterContinental Grand Yokohama . One of the most recognizable features in the Yokohama skyline (it's the sail-shaped building near the Landmark Tower). The standard "Executive Double" is ¥35,000 (single) or ¥43,000 (double).