See the area and venues in Google Maps
Kobe is located in mid-west of Japan. The city is a part of Kansai urban area, together with Osaka, Kyoto and other cities. The city centre is called Sannomiya, where many hotels as well as restaurants and shops are located. The meeting venue is in Port Island, south of Sannomiya by several kilometres and, can be accessed by “Port Liner” train. It takes about 10-15 min from from Sannomiya station + a few minutes’ walk to the meeting venues. There are three hotels in Port Island, two of them being located next to the parallel session site.
In Osaka-Kansai area there is one international and two domestic airports.
- Kansai International airport (KIX): often called Osaka airport by non-Japanese
- Osaka-Itami airport (ITM): people in Japan calls just Itami airport. Most of the domestic flights as well as connection flights from international airports in Japan would arrive at this airport.
- Kobe airport: domestic only airport, with some flights being connected to international flights via Tokyo Haneda (HND).
People often get confused between Kansai International and Osaka-Itami (whose proper name is Osaka International airport). Please make sure to which airport you arrive or leave.
There are two ways to fly to Kobe: (1) to Kansai International Airport (KIX) and (2) via airports in Tokyo, Tokyo Narita (NRT) and Tokyo Haneda (HND).
For hotel reservation, our partner Kinki Nippon Tourist offers some pre-booked hotels. See this page.
Reaching Kobe via Osaka-Kansai Airport
The Kansai airport offers direct flights from major East and South-East Asian cities. From Europe/Middle East, direct flights are available from Amsterdam(KLM), Paris(AF), Frankfurt(LH), Helsinki(Finnair) and Dubai(Emirates). The flights from North America are from Vancouver, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Honolulu.
To transfer from Kansai Airport to Kobe:
- Recommended: Transfer by Limousine Bus:65 minutes, JPY 1,950 (return ticket: JPY 3,080, valid for 30 days)
KIX to Kobe Sannomiya - operations every 10-20 minutes between 06:20 – 23:00.
From terminal 1 (long-distance flights): The bus starts from the stop #6 of the arrival floor (ground floor). Need to purchase ticket in advance. The ticket machine and ticket counter is nearby the bus stop #5. More detail can be found here.
See also Kansai Airport Bus Access guide and Timetable .
- Transfer by Bay Shuttle Ferry:30 minutes, JPY 1,850 (return ticket: JPY 3,000, valid for 30 days)
KIX to Kobe domestic airport, south of the conference venue. Operations every 45-60 minutes between 06:20 – 23:00. This may be an interesting option for those who likes to reach directly the conference site from the Kansai airport as soon as you arrive. The KIX ferry dock is a 6-7 minutes free bus transfer from airport terminals.
See also: Kansai Airport Ferry guide and the "Bay Shuttle" web page
- By train: this is a cheaper option but not very straightforward. Please see KIX web site: http://www.kansai-airport.or.jp/en/access/train/index.html .
Reaching Kobe via Tokyo airports
More options are available for Tokyo airports, from minor cities in Asia, Eastern/Western Europe, North America and Oceanian countries. Many of the companies not serving direct flights to Kansai airport would offer flights from Tokyo Narita or Tokyo Haneda to Osaka Itami or to Kansai Airport without or little additional cost. Such an option is normally not available for arriving at Kobe Airport (domestic) as a final destination.
Tokyo Narita airport is located about 60km east to Tokyo. Several flights are available for connection to Osaka Itami. Tokyo Haneda 15km from the city centre and also is more convenient to fly to Osaka Itami thanks to frequent service. The flights for Haneda are often more expensive than via Narita, though.
From Osaka Itami airport to Kobe, there are two ways
- Tranfer by train: take a monorail service from the Osaka airport terminal to Hotarugaike station (the next stop, 2 min). Then change to Hankyu railway to go to the direction of Osaka Umeda, to the Juso station. Then take a train to Kobe Sannomiya. The total time is about one hour.
- Transfer by Limousine Bus: bound for Sannomiya Station, this bus takes 40 minutes and costs 1,050 Yen with operations every 15-30 minutes.
See also: http://www.osaka-airport.co.jp/en/access/ .
Reaching Kobe from Tokyo or Nagoya via Shinkansen (bullet train)
Bullet Trains to Shin-Kobe from Tokyo take about 2 hrs 50 minutes and cost approx. JPY 16,000. It runs with about four services/hour. The last train bound for Kobe is at 20:50 (arriving 23:38), the first at 06:00 am. From Nagoya trains take 70 minutes and cost about 8,300 Yen. From Kyoto, about 30 minutes, costing about 3,700 Yen. One could also get off at Shin-Osaka station and take JR train to reach to Sannomiya (25-40 min + transfer time). There are seven or more services per hour for most of the day from/to Tokyo to/from Shin-Osaka.
From Shin-Kobe station:
- Transfer by Taxi:5 minutes and 700 Yen (to Sannomiya)
- Transfer by City Subway:2 minutes and 210 Yen (to downtown Kobe, Sannomiya).
Shinkansen time table (Thomas-Cook style)
(a fairly unfriendly official guide of) how to buy Shinkansen tickets
Kobe Convention Centre access information: http://kobe-cc.jp/english/access/index.html
Kobe city guide Feel KOBE+ http://plus.feel-kobe.jp/ Some maps available
Kansai airport (KIX, international) http://www.kansai-airport.or.jp/en/index.asp
Osaka Itami airport (ITM, domestic) http://www.osaka-airport.co.jp/en/