With it’s beautiful waterfront, rich history and relaxed atmosphere, Yokohama is an incredibly romantic city for couples wanting to spend some quality time together.
Perfect date activities
Many of the city’s main attractions are located around Minato Mirai, which means ‘harbor of the future’ and this area is certainly one of the most vibrant parts of the city. One of the most popular activities for people of all ages is the Cup Noodles Museum – a fun, interactive and informative look into the history of instant noodles. For an additional fee you can make your own cup noodles and draw your own designs on the cup. Why not dedicate yours to your significant other or make matching cups? Just remember to make a reservation first.
A short walk from the museum is Cosmo World Amusement Park, which is a small, but fun, theme park. There is no entrance fee to the park – you just pay individually for each ride that you want to go on. Hold hands as you admire the view on the giant ferris wheel (called Cosmo Clock 21), get cosy on the “Spinning Coaster” and get your heart racing on the pink rollercoaster called Vanish!.
Once you’re done with the thrill-seeking, wander over towards the waterfront and stroll through the Red Brick Warehouses. These were built in the 20th Century to serve the port, but have now been turned into boutique shops and restaurants. Events are also often held on the open ground level between the two buildings.
Sophisticated dining options
On the ground floor of the second Red Brick Warehouse building is Bills, an Australian restaurant chain that serves quality food in a relaxed, modern setting. The Yokohama Bills is particularly beautiful and perfect for dates, with the exposed red brick, plenty of natural light and a cosy covered terrace.
If Aussie food isn’t quite what you’re after, perhaps a floating restaurant is? Pier 21 is the Intercontinental Hotel’s seafood bistro that floats on top of the sea. It has unbeatable views out onto the ocean and delicious food to match.
Prefer Japanese cuisine? Try Yokohama Bay near the Red Brick Warehouse for fresh sushi or go for a traditional Japanese multi-course meal at Minokichi, located at the Yokohama Land Park Plaza.
There are, of course, many restaurants around this area, so even if none of those appeal, you are bound to find something that better meets your needs.
A romantic way to end the day
With its convenient waterfront location, Yokohama has some of the most stunning sunset views in the area and there are actually a few places you can go to enjoy a romantic sunset moment.
The Sky Garden Observatory is one of the highest observatories in Japan and so you can be sure the views will be breathtaking and vast on a nice day. If you are particularly good with timing, you can head on up the Cosmo Clock in time for sunset. Or walk over to Osanbashi Pier, which is a really popular location with wedding photographers, to relax as the sun goes down.
The pier is a working international passenger terminal, so there is a chance that there will be a giant cruise ship in the way. However, there will still be plenty of viewing points even if there is a ship docked there. It is from this pier that you will get to see the glorious Yokohama skyline and if you’re fortunate enough to have clear skies, you will also catch a glimpse of Mt Fuji in the far distance between the buildings.
Another option is the Manyo Club, where there are hot spring baths that contain water brought in everyday by truck from the nearby Izu Peninsula. The rooftop foot spa offers a beautiful night view of the port.
Don’t forget to have your cameras or smartphones ready – all of these locations provide stunning settings for the perfect romantic selfies!
If you have time
Yokohama is home to Japan’s largest Chinatown and it is a vibrant way to kickstart a date. The best way to explore is to simply walk through the various alleyways, where you’ll see plenty of Chinese restaurants, shops and food stands. Come during February and the area will be bursting with action as Lunar New Year celebrations take part.
Chinatown is located past Osanbashi Pier in the opposite direction to Minato Mirai, so it would make sense to start at Chinatown and work your way towards the inner city. However, with all these places within walking distance and an efficient train system, you don’t need to stress about the order too much – just remember to make it on time to any reservations you have!