As the second-largest city in Japan, deciding where to stay in Yokohama isn’t easy. Only 30 minutes from the sprawling futuristic city of Tokyo, this bustling port city has 18 wards spread across 437 square kilometres. It also has a lot to offer a visitor with its easy to navigate transportation system and impressive port.
Yokohama was once a small fishing village until it opened its port to foreign trade. It quickly grew and continues to expand today. In fact, the port area in particular is constantly undergoing renovations.
Thanks to its innovative nature, the city has become one of the top travel destinations in Japan. The neon lights of the nightlife district and the vibrant buildings of Chinatown highlight the appeal of Yokohama. It’s a lively city, but nowhere near as crowded as nearby Tokyo.
You can enjoy a walk through the seaside park, stop into a bar for a microbrew, or check out the local museums without standing shoulder-to-shoulder with other tourists.
Not sure where to find the right hotel? Start searching for accommodations with this guide to the best places to stay in Yokohama…
Where to stay in Yokohama, Japan: A complete guide to the best neighbourhoods and areas for travellers
The 18 wards of Yokohama spread out from around the sea, with the most popular areas located near the port.
The inner wards are located further from the port and offer fewer tourist attractions and hotels. They’re mostly residential and industrial regions and home to most of the city’s four million residents.
Whether you want to check out the nightlife or explore the history of the city, you’ll likely want to stay near the sea. Naka, Nishi, and Kanagawa are the main seaside wards.
Naka ward is where you’ll find the busiest commercial districts and the top attractions in Yokohama, such as the iconic Yokohama Landmark Tower and the country’s largest Chinatown.
Neighbouring Nishi and Kanagawa also border the port and have their own reasons to attract tourists. They enjoy a more laid back atmosphere and open streets while still staying close to the city’s main landmarks.
A few of the best areas to stay in Yokohama for travellers include:
- Minato Mirai 21
✔ Best area to stay for nightlife and local culture
The historical attractions make Kannai an important destination for your Yokohama itinerary. It’s also home to Yokohama’s Chinatown. The largest Chinatown in the country and one of the largest in the world is within this neighbourhood, with hundreds of Chinese-owned shops and restaurants.
Other highlights of the area include Yamashita Park, famous for its waterfront views and carefully manicured landscape.
Outside of Chinatown and the park, you’ll find a large selection of boutique shops, small cafes, and museums. It’s the cosmopolitan hub of Yokohama and the perfect spot to indulge yourself in the local culture.
At night, the area becomes the top destination for party goers. You can dance the night away at any of the many neon-lit bars and clubs that attract both locals and tourists.
Kannai is also next to Minato Mirai 21 and the popular Yokohama Station area. When you stay in Kannai, you should have no problem reaching other parts of the city on foot.
Where to stay: The best hotels in Kannai
The Kannai neighbourhood offers the biggest variety of hotels. You can find everything from hostels to luxury hotels. Some of the top choices are conveniently located between the harbour and Chinatown or near other attractions.
Here are a few of the best hotels and places to stay in Kannai:
- Hotel Resol Yokohama Sakuragicho: Stay in the heart of the city at this three-star hotel near the neighbouring district of Minato Mirai 21 and Yokohama Station. The hotel features spacious rooms and 24-hour front desk service. It’s also one of the most popular hotels, so book early.
- Richmond Hotel Yokohama-Bashamichi: This hotel is a 10-minute walk from Chinatown and near Yokohama Park. The rooms are a little small, but feature neutral furnishings and décor to help you feel relaxed and comfortable.
- Hotel MYSTAYS Yokohama Kannai: Opened just a few years ago, this hotel provides clean, modern rooms with spacious layouts. It’s also a short walk from Kannai Station and the Red Brick Warehouse. People seem to love this three-star hotel for its onsite restaurant, serving Italian cuisine and an a la carte menu.
- Hotel Wing International Yokohama Kannai: This three-star hotel is a few hundred metres from Kannai Station and Yokohama Station. It’s a convenient spot with comfortable rooms featuring neutral tones and wood décor. The hotel also has its own restaurant on the first floor of the building.
✔ Best area to stay for boutique shopping and a stylish vibe
Motomachi is considered the best destination in Yokohama for couples. The laid back atmosphere of the neighbourhood combined with the clusters of boutique shops creates a romantic setting.
The stylish neighbourhood contains numerous small stores selling a wide variety of handicrafts. While a lot of the stores sell original items influenced by Japanese culture, the area also has many international shops. It’s an eclectic neighbourhood conveniently located near Chinatown and Minato Mirai 21.
As tourists tend to flock to the more popular neighbourhoods, this area also tends to have fewer tourists. It’s a little further from the harbour, but still close enough to walk or catch the bus.
Motomachi is also known for its odd assortment of interesting monuments. As you walk the streets, you may come across the cleaning industry memorial or the ice making monument.
If you’re interested in history, check out the Old British Navy Garrison or the American Mountain Park. At the Garrison, you can learn about World War II while the park showcases America’s influence on Japan.
Where to stay: The best hotels in Motomachi
Motomachi has a lot of hostels and apartments. Luckily, it also has a few midrange and luxury hotels. You can even find a spot with views of the waterfront and access to local shops and cafes.
Here are a few of the best hotels and places to stay in Motomachi:
- Hotel New Grand: Located in front of Yamashita Park, this popular hotel features classic furnishings and modern amenities. It’s a luxurious place to rest after a long day of sightseeing. While the hotel doesn’t have its own restaurant, you’re just feet away from the shops and restaurants in Chinatown and along the waterfront.
- Rose Hotel Yokohama: This hotel places you near Chinatown and the waterfront, giving you the best of both worlds. It’s also got large rooms and an incredibly helpful staff, helping you feel at home, whether you’re here for just a day or a week.
- Hotel Escale-Yokohama: Paid parking, public baths, and its own convenience store are a few of the reasons to consider staying at this three-star hotel. Guests also receive an American breakfast and access to a sauna.
- Hotel Livemax Yokohama Motomachi Ekimae: Located just a short walk from Yokohama Marine Tower, this hotel is near popular attractions and offers great rates on comfortable rooms. The rooms are a little small, but you’ll likely spend most of your time exploring the waterfront.
Minato Mirai 21
✔ Best area to stay for shopping and dining
Minato Mirai 21 is the main business district of Yokohama and centre of tourism. The modern landscape and access to seaside shopping draws tourists from all over. You can enjoy a cruise around the harbour or travel up to the top of the Yokohama Landmark Tower to see the city from a different perspective.
This neighbourhood is in the Naka ward, along with several of the other best neighbourhoods. It includes numerous shopping centres, cafes, and a large convention centre.
The area was originally revitalized in the 1980s and continues to grow as part of a major urban renewal project. Nissan Motors and several other large corporations also operate out of the area, employing close to 100,000 workers.
It’s a bustling area for both locals and tourists, with plenty of activities to keep you busy during your stay. You can also easily travel to the rest of the city from this central neighbourhood.
Where to stay: The best hotels in Minato Mirai 21
As the main district for shopping and tourism, Minato Mirai 21 has some of the best hotels in Yokohama. One of the hotels is inside the Landmark Tower while the others are around the harbour area, providing convenient access to the rest of the city.
Here are a few of the best hotels and places to stay in Minato Mirai 21:
- Yokohama Royal Park Hotel: This hotel is inside Yokohama Landmark Tower. It’s on the 52nd floor of the iconic building, allowing you to quickly travel to the observation deck for a better view of the city. It’s also got spacious rooms with carpeted floors and a 24-hour front desk.
- InterContinental Yokohama Grand Hotel: As an older hotel, the rooms are a little more spacious compared to other options. It’s also well maintained and offers quick access to the surrounding attractions. The main highlight is the Chinese restaurant on the 31st floor of the hotel.
- Yokohama Sakuragicho Washington Hotel: One of the top-rated hotels in the city, this boutique-style location is less than a 10-minute walk from Yokohama Landmark Tower. It’s also got a view of the downtown area. Around the corner from the hotel, you’ll find bayside restaurants and cafes serving local cuisine.
✔ Best area to stay for sightseeing and shopping
Takashima encompasses the Yokohama Station area, which is where most tourists first arrive in the city. The modern luxury district includes access to some of the top hotels, shops, and restaurants. You’re also close to just about everything.
While you will find plenty of activities throughout the neighbourhood, you can also spend all your time at Yokohama Station. It’s the fifth-busiest station in the world and the hub for rail and bus travel in the city.
The main reason to spend time at the station is the world-class shopping and dining. Two massive business districts are located underneath the station.
Hundreds of shops and restaurants are housed underground, ensuring that you never need to set foot outside. You can even find hotels inside the station.
Away from the station, you’ll find a wide range of fun attractions. Travel to the Tehran Quarter to explore Iranian influences in the city or travel to the Yokohama Skyspa for a day of relaxation and spa treatments.
Where to stay: The best hotels in Takashima
As a luxury district, this part of the city includes higher priced accommodations. Some of the hotels feature smaller rooms, but you pay for the convenience of staying in a central part of Yokohama. While most of the hotels feature lower ratings from guests, the lower scores are mostly due to the smaller rooms.
Here are a few of the best hotels and places to stay in Takashima:
- Yokohama Mandarin Hotel: This is a basic Japanese business hotel with affordable rates and simple rooms. It’s a no-frills option, but offers clean rooms and convenient access to the top attractions in the city.
- Flexstay Inn Sakuragicho: Located near the JR Sakuragicho Station, this hotel was recently renovated and features comfortable small rooms. While the hotel doesn’t have a restaurant, many convenience stores, cafes, and small shops are located on the surrounding blocks.
- Breezbay Hotel Resort and Spa: This popular resort is close to the station and the Minato Mirai area. The rooms are softly lit and feature relaxing tones to help you get a full night’s sleep. The hotel also has its own onsite restaurant, serving a buffet breakfast and lunch followed by a French dinner.
- New Otani Inn Yokohama Premium: The location is the best part of this hotel. It’s right across from Yokohama Station, but a little further from the busiest intersections. You also get a view of the bay from some of the rooms.