Top things to do in Niigata

Market in Niigata

Pia Bandai

Conveniently located on the way to the Sado Kisen ferry terminal, this sprawling complex includes markets and eateries – so you can gawk at the bounty of Niigata's coast and sample it, too. If you're in Niigata with…
Historic Building in Niigata

Saito Family Summer Villa

Wander the polished wooden floors of this beautifully preserved Japanese summer house built in 1918, a luscious example of turn-of-the-century Japanese architecture and design. The grounds are home to a beautiful ga…
Museum in Niigata

Niigata City Art Museum

This petite, elegant museum stages interesting temporary exhibitions by Japanese artists and also has a well-curated permanent collection of local and international works. The on-site organic cafe makes a great lunc…
Viewpoint in Niigata

Nippō Media Ship Sora-no-hiroba

Visit the observation deck on the 20th floor of this skyscraper for amazing 360-degree views over the Sea of Japan, Niigata city and the distant mountains. The elevator is to your right from the main entrance.
Festival in Niigata

Sake-no-jin

Sake aficionados won't want to miss this event, held on the third weekend each March. It's a mammoth bacchanal, highlighting more than 90 varieties of sake from around Niigata. Kampai!
Distillery in Niigata

Ponshukan

This charming sake shop on the concourse just outside the train station sells hundreds of different types in the kikizake style, where you can purchase five small samples for ¥500. Gourmet nibbles are also served to…
Fusion in Niigata

Pulp Fiction

This beer-and-bourbon bar's chef sizzles amazing yakitori (chicken, and other meats or vegetables, grilled on skewers), curates cured meat and cheese plates and whips up various fried delicacies to complement the fi…
Fusion in Niigata

Kanda Grill

Yōshoku (Western-style) cuisine is a treat for homesick Japanophiles. This grill house does a good katsu-don (rice topped with a fried pork cutlet) and hamburg teishoku (set meal that involves hamburgers); try the c…
Craft Beer in Niigata

Craft Beer Kan

By the south exit of Niigata Station is this fun little stand-up beer bar at the forefront of the city's craft-beer renaissance. Forty-odd beers are on tap; buy tickets (500mL glass from ¥400) from a machine. The ow…
Park in Niigata

Hakusan-kōen

Built in 1873 as Japan's first citizen's park, Hakusan-kōen remains a lovely place for a stroll among beautiful, manicured gardens. There's a pond full of koi, a bridge and a shrine.