Yokosuka is located in the central part of the Miura Peninsula, Kanagawa Prefecture.
The Western shipyard of the Edo Shogunate was established in Yokosuka in 1856. Uraga port was the destination of the Commodore of the United States Navy Matthew C. Perry who forced Japan to enter into trade and diplomatic relations with the West in 1853 after more than two centuries of isolation. Yokosuka has been an important coastal military city for centuries and now hosts a large naval base for both the Japanese Self-Defense Force and American fleets.
Yokosuka is today a lively port city with an open, friendly, international atmosphere. We’re going to introduce you to 10 great things to do in Yokosuka, including the popular Dobuita Street, the city’s parks, their unique offering of Americanized foods, and more!
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How to get to Yokosuka?
Yokosuka is an one-hour direct trip from Tokyo by train, and 30 minutes from Yokohama. You can use the JR (Yokosuka Line) and Keikyu Line trains from Shinagawa, Shinjuku and Shibuya connect to Yokosuka directly by the JR Shonan Shinjuku Line. The JR station is a short walk from the center, while the Keikyu Line station is much more central.
1. Mikasa Park
Mikasa is a park based on the concept of “water, light, and sound”. Lovely at night is a grand fountain lit up and moving to the music; a dynamic wall fountain, and some great views of Sarushima island. The key sightseeing spot in the park is the battleship Mikasa; Admiral Togo’s flagship in the Russo-Japanese war (1904-1905). The ship is now a museum for Japan’s international maritime history. Inside, visitors can see ship’s 30 cm main cannon, and the radio communication room that received the first report of the Baltic Fleet.
▷Memorial Ship Official Website
9am – 4:30pm or 5:30pm (depends on the season)
Closed on new years holiday
Admission: 600 yen (Adult) Free(Children)
2. Dobuita Street
Japanese and American culture truly do mix in Dobuita Street, located close to the U.S. military base. The street offers a line of shops, cafes, and bars which are favored by both American and Japanese sailors. Also, unique vintage cloth shops and military-themed fashion retailers draw many curious visitors. The Yokosuka jacket, called Sukajan, is made with local embroidery and is a famous fashion item from Yokosuka. We’ll check out some special foods on this street later. The area is lively at night; the bars packed with locals, sailors, and international travelers.
3. Verny Park
This elegant park with a large fountain is located near Shioiri station. The Verny Park is a great place for taking a waterfront stroll, especially in rose-blossoming season. Enjoy the scent of the flowers and the port view!
Sarushima is a private island and can be accessed by a ferry from Mikasa park. It takes 10 minutes to get there. Sarushima is the only uninhabited island in Tokyo Bay. People visit the island to enjoy barbecues, fishing, walking around the heritage sites, and swimming in the summer.
Round trip: 1,300 yen (Adults) 650 yen (Children)
Ferry schedule: every hour from March through November (During off-season only on weekends and holidays.)
5. Yokosuka Museum of Art
The museum building is designed to blend in with the entire surrounding environment. This remarkable piece of architecture uses natural light and the sea view to create an atmosphere of wonder. Yokosuka Museum of Art is set between the spectacular view of Tokyo Bay on the front side and Kannonzaki’s lush natural forest at the back. The museum holds a collection of over 5,000 artworks.
10am – 6pm
Closed on the first Mondays, Dec.29th – Jan. 3rd
Admission:380 yen (Adult) 280 yen (High school&univeristy students& 65 years old and above)
6. Kannonzaki Lighthouse
Further down from the museum along the coast of the peninsula is the Kannonzaki lighthouse. The original lighthouse was built as the first western-style lighthouse in Japan in 1868 by a French engineer; although the lighthouse has fallen twice by earthquakes, it’s been rebuilt each time. The nearby beaches are famous for windsurfing spots.
9am – 4pm or 4:30pm (depends on season)
Entrance fee: 200 yen for adult
7. Nagai Seaside Park Soleil Hill
This is a vast facility built to showplace the region’s farming, agriculture, and fishing life. It’s very popular and a great family site. Here, children can harvest vegetables, enjoy an array of athletic playgrounds, and play with pet animals. You can enjoy cooking up a barbecue, and of course there is a hot spring facility too, the best way to relax after a busy day. (650 yen for adults, 300 yen for children above 3 years old).
9am – 6pm (Mar. – Nov.) 9:30am – 5pm (Dec. – Feb.)
8. Tateishi Park
This park offers a beautiful view of the coastline, where Mt. Fuji can be seen in the distance. The world-famous Edo period artist Ando Hiroshige captured this scenery in his ukiyo-e work. Today, visitors enjoy walking along the shore and examining the sea creatures hiding in the tidal pools. You can even climb over to a small island.
9. Yokosuka Curry
This town is known for two particular dining specials; Yokosuka curry (or Yokosuka Navy curry) and the Navy burger. The best place to find these dishes is on Dobuita street. Many restaurants offer both on the same menu.
Nowadays, Japanese curry-rice is one of the most popular dishes in all Japanese households. Japanese curry originated as a special dish for Japanese marines at the beginning of the Meiji period. It was believed to prevent beriberi disease caused by a vitamin B-1 deficiency. Yokosuka curry was made using the exact same recipe in 1908. Now, there is a variety of recipes, but Yokosuka curry still has to be served with curry, white rice, salad, and milk.
10. Yokosuka Burger
In the late 1940s, the restaurant called EM Club in Yokosuka started to serve American soul food, i.e. the hamburger. This was the first time to introduce a burger to Japan. In 2008, the Navy Burger recipe was provided from the US Navy Yokosuka Base to Yokosuka city as a symbol of friendship. It soon became one of the most famous and loved local foods. Each restaurant has its own recipe but the basics to be Yokosuka Burger are; the patty is 100% beef and must be 170 grams or more, basic toppings are lettuce, onions, tomatoes, and the patty is simply cooked on the grill without sauce and the customer can add ketchup or mustard as desired.
The centrally located restaurant Hungry Boy offers both dishes. Hungry Boy has been serving residents since 1981. This friendly joint has an English menu and most of the staff can speak conversational English.
Address: 2F 3-31 Honcho, Yokosuka City, Kanagawa (Bay Square Yokosuka City)
Where to stay in Yokosuka
Mercure Hotel Yokosuka ― 1 minute away from Shiori Station and 10 minutes walk from JR Yokosuka Station, clean and modern style hotel, enjoy the restaurant on 19th floor with a view over the port.
The Galaxy Express Nahama ―Lovely trailer house near the beach, you can also enjoy BBQ and jacuzzi bath! If you like outdoor activities in and near the beach, this will be your perfect holiday home.
Hotel Harbour Yokosuka ― 6 minutes walk from JR Yokosuka Station, complimentary including coffee and light meals, breakfast is available at an additional charge.
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There are so many spots you can enjoy in Yokosuka. You can easily spend a day there and you’ll get to experience the local culture, oceans views, museums and sites, and of course a real Navy Burger.
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