This tourist pamphlet for Nagano gives an overview of ways to access Nagano, as well as information about tourist destinations.
Access to JR Nagano Station (Nagano City, Nagano)
JR Nagano is on the Hokuriku Shinkansen.
If you are connecting through...
- Tokyo: approx. 90 minutes by Shinkansen
- Kanazawa: approx. 65 minutes by Shinkansen
- Omiya, Saitama: approx. 65 minutes by Shinkansen
Another option is the Wideview Shinano train fro Nagoya (approx 3 hours) over and through the Central Alps (Kiso Mountains)
Closest Airport: Matsumoto Airport
Matsumoto is approximately 60 minutes from Nagano City by train. The airport is also INCONVENIENTLY located in Matsumoto. (http://www.matsumoto-airport.co.jp/timetable/index.htm)
There are limited flights to-from Sapporo, Osaka, Kobe, Fukuoka. This is perhaps an option for people coming from the furthest regions in Japan. But for most people flying, flights to Haneda or Narita, then a train to Tokyo station, and the Hokuriku Shinkansen from Tokyo would likely be more convenient/faster.