No trip to Japan is complete without an adventure in the famous city of Tokyo. Although some travellers whose main destination is Narita prefer to take trains or hired cars, a road trip between the two cities is a memorable experience.
Routes from Narita to Tokyo
There are three main ways to reach Tokyo from Narita. If you use MapQuest, you will find current and detailed instructions for each of the main routes. The Higashi-Kanto Expressway is the most popular option. As long as you follow the directions and do not miss a step, this is the quickest route.
The trip usually takes about 45 minutes in average traffic conditions. With this route, you will pay several tolls. Route 51 has less tolls and is a slightly longer drive. If you are on a budget and prefer a toll-free road, Route 296 is the best but longest option.
Driving Tips and Travel Information
Foreign travellers can typically rent a car in Narita with a major credit card, a valid driver’s licence, and an international driving permit. The AA provides a list of requirements by country for obtaining a permit.
You should obtain a permit before leaving for Japan. Japan Guide provides a concise and helpful overview of Japan’s driving laws. Although following the driving laws is the best way to avoid any problems with law enforcement, it is also important to know some insider tips when traveling on major roads. If you have never driven on a large Japanese expressway, it is best to take either Route 296 or Route 51. For a smoother drive, use the following tips:
- If you have a deadline for arriving in Tokyo, allow at least an extra hour to get there.
- Since it can take over 30 minutes to correct a wrong turn or driving step, read signs carefully.
- Plan where to park at different destinations in Tokyo in advance.
- Have enough cash ready for the toll booths before leaving Narita if you use the expressway. The average toll is between ¥700 and ¥1,500.
Sights to See during the Trip
One of the most intriguing sights along the trip is Rainbow Bridge. You can see it if you take a short detour by continuing along the Bayshore Route from the Higashi-Kanto Expressway to the Shuto Expressway. At night, the bridge is illuminated in multiple colours. For a visual treat from nature, visit the Rose Garden or Tidal Flats in Narashino. If you are bringing your family, be sure to visit both Disneyland Tokyo and Disney Sea in Urayasu.
Get a full night’s rest before you embark on your journey with a stay at the stylish Radisson Hotel Narita. Conveniently located near the Tokyo Narita International Airport, our Narita hotel makes it easy to take a road trip to Tokyo while you’re in Japan.