There are direct buses to Gotemba Station from Haneda Airport operated by Odakyu Hakone Highway Bus and Keikyu Bus every 2 hours during the day (2 hr, ¥2060).
Service between Narita Airport and Gotemba is very limited. There are only two return services per day to the Gotemba stop on the Tomei Expressway (3 hr, ¥4100). It might be best to travel from Narita to Tokyo, then head to Gotemba from there by train or by bus.
Gotemba Station is located on the JR Gotemba Line, which branches inland from the Tokaido Main Line at Numazu at the western end and Kōzu at the eastern end.
Odakyu Railway offers a few daily limited express Romancecar services to Gotemba Station from their terminal in Shinjuku. These services are called the Fujisan (ふじさん) because of Gotemba's proximity to Mount Fuji. There are three round-trips on weekdays, and five round-trips on weekends and holidays. Trips take two hours and cost ¥2810. Seat reservations are compulsory. If you hold the Japan Rail Pass, you'll have to pay the Odakyu Railway basic and Romancecar fares (¥1470).
The alternate way to reach Gotemba by train - and the option that doesn't cost anything with a Japan Rail Pass - is to take a Tokaido Main Line service to Kōzu and change to the JR Gotemba Line. With this method it takes around 2 hr 15 min from Tokyo Station and costs ¥1940.
From Central/Western Japan
Odakyu Hakone Highway Bus runs services from Shinjuku Expressway Bus Terminal (Busta Shinjuku) to Gotemba Station, with 1-2 buses every hour. The trip takes 1 hr 45 min and costs ¥1680. Odakyu and JR Bus also run less frequent services from Tokyo Station (1 hr 30 min, ¥1650). Buses also run to Gotemba Station from Haneda Airport (about 2 hr, ¥2060) and Yokohama Station (80 min, ¥1650) several times during the day.
A few Odakyu buses from Shinjuku run directly to the Gotemba Premium Outlets, with two trips to the outlets in the morning and three trips back to Shinjuku in the evening (1 hr 45 min, ¥1800). Otherwise, free shuttle buses connect the train station with the premium outlets.
Other highway buses may use the Tomei Gotemba Interchange stop on the Tomei Expressway. Taxis are available outside the interchange, but free shuttles operate during the day to Gotemba train station and to the Premium Outlets.
Free shuttle buses operate every 15 minutes during the day between Gotemba Station, Tomei Gotemba Interchange bus stop and the Premium Outlets. The buses run during the operating hours of the Premium Outlets.
If you want to climb Mount Fuji from the Gotemba side, there are buses from Gotemba Station to the Gotemba 5th Station. Buses take 40 min and cost ¥1110 one way or ¥1540 round-trip.
Otherwise, walking is a good way to experience Gotemba's quaintness, as well as find random views of Mount Fuji.
Gotemba Heiwa Koen (Peace Park) (御殿場平和公園) The Peace Park has a white stupa with golden Buddha statues as well as temple dogs donated from other Buddhist countries in Asia. Prayers can still be heard at the temple on the grounds. Also enjoy the walkway of Bodhisattva statues hidden in the woods. During the spring, the area is covered in cherry blossoms.
Kogen Brewery (高原ビール) - Kogen Brewery is a large complex housing various restaurants as well as a Brush Up Hotel and hot springs. During the winter months, there is a large illumination display as well as open stalls selling food. There is also a bakery and food store, gift shops, and a flower shop in addition to a local fruit and vegetable market. Shuttle buses run about once an hour with service to Gotemba Tomei Express and Gotemba station. Buses are also available to Iwanami, Susono and Mishima stations. The shuttle bus is free.
Mt. Fuji Taiko Festival A taiko (drum) festival held every August in Gotemba. Features local performers and various competitions.
Gotemba Premium Outlets - Gotemba Premium Outlets offers brand names with a good variety of shops (from Armani to Adidas). A free shuttle bus runs everyone 20 minutes from 09:00 to closing hours from both Gotemba station and the Gotemba Tomei Express. On busy days, it's faster to walk there (half an hour to 45 minutes from the station).
"Little America" exists on 246, with a McDonald's, Baskin Robbins, KFC, and Denny's all in a row. Local family restaurants include Jonathan's, Big Boy, Coco's, and Yoshino. Chain and local izakaya (food and drink bars) can be found around the station.
Meiten Kitchen and Bar Located a short walk from the station, this restaurant is a house converted into a small eatery. They have an English menu as well as alcoholic drinks. Food ranges from seasonal curry to pradatha to spaghetti and salad.
Gotenba is lacking in genuine bars but has a few chain izakayas.
Check out Dorifu for somewhat of a bar atmosphere.
Hibiki serves as a restaurant but very occasionally pulls out the stops for a good club event, with local and Tokyo DJs playing good electronic dance music and a crowd coming from neighboring towns.
- Gotemba Youth Hostel, 3857 Higashiyama, ☏ . The cheapest place in town. Call for rates.
The Gotemba city website has a list of other sight seeing spots within the area.
For those living within Gotemba or staying for a longer period, it might be worth it to contact the Gotemba International Association. GIA puts on various international and culture events in the city every year.
- Fujiyoshida Home to Fujikyu Highland Amusement Park - Package tickets with bus fare are available at the ticket office in Gotemba Station's bus depot. About 45 minutes from Gotemba station by bus.
- Fuji Safari Park, about 16 km west of town, . This drive-through zoo has a range of exotic animals including lions, giraffes, and elephants.
- Kawaguchi-ko (河口湖) - on the 'back' side of Mt. Fuji. Buses run directly to Kawaguchi-ko from the Gotemba station Fujikyu bus stop. Watch the sun rise over Mt. Fuji.
|Routes through Gotemba|
|Shizuoka ← Nagaizumi-Numazu ←||W E||→ End|
|Shizuoka ← Numazu ←||W E||→ Atsugi → Tokyo|
|Fuji Yoshida ← Yamanakako ←||N E||→ Hakone → Odawara|
|Numazu ←||W E||→ Atsugi → Yokohama|
|Fujinomiya ← Fuji ←||W E||→ END|