Yokohama is an ordinance-designated city and capital of Kanagawa Prefecture that’s located 30 to 40 minutes away from Tokyo by train.

Yokohama is a prominent port town with numerous historical landmarks that make for perfect photo opportunities. In this article, we’ll spotlight one such landmark and symbol of Yokohama, the Yokohama Santo.

If you’re interested in learning about other photogenic spots in Yokohama, check out “10 Photogenic Spots in Yokohama”.

Photogenic Spots in Yokohama: Yokohama Santo

About Yokohama Santo

Yokohama Santo collectively refers to the three buildings incorporating a tower structure: Yokohama Zeikan, Yokohama Kaiko Kinenkan, and Yokohama Kencho.

Previously, trade ships used Yokohama Santo as a visual-marker when entering the port. Whilst it no longer hold the same purpose, the buildings now serve as a customs office, culture facility, and prefectural office.

Colloquially, the Yokohama Kencho, Yokohama Zeikan, and Yokohama Kinenkan are known as the “King’s Tower”, “Queen’s Tower”, and “Jack’s Tower”, respectively. While there are numerous speculations regarding the naming, the popular theory is that a foreign sailor likened the three towers to face cards.

Each building of Yokohama Santo is decorated with a Western-style facade. Accordingly, they have been popularized as picturesque historical buildings. The three buildings are located within minutes of each other, so we recommend stopping by and taking a photo at all three.

Photogenic Spots at Yokohama Santo: King’s Tower

Yokohama Kencho comprises several buildings, but the “King’s Tower” is the main office building, which is located immediately by the Kenchoguchi Exit of Nihonodori Station on Minatomirai Line.

We recommend photographing the King’s Tower head-on. That way, you’ll capture the surrounding greenery, along with the tower. We also recommend setting up at a distance, so that you’ll capture the entire tower.

Alternatively, position yourself at an angle, but be sure to frame the whole tower.

Photogenic Spots at Yokohama Santo: Queen’s Tower

Yokohama Zeikan, the Queen’s Tower, is a three minute walk from the Nihonodori Station on Minatomirai Line.

Similar to the King’s Tower, we recommend shooting Yokohama Zeikan from the front. There are no other buildings around the Queen’s Tower, so visitors can take an unobstructed photo of the entire building.

Position yourself on the adjacent Zou-No-Hana Terrace, when taking a photo. The park is the best place to photograph the Queen’s Tower.

Photogenic Spots at Yokohama Santo: Jack’s Tower

Yokohama Kinenkan, the Jack’s Tower, is a one minute walk from Nihonodori Station on Minatomirai Line.

The exotic facade of Jack’s Tower is best captured from the front. We recommend distancing yourself from the building so that you can frame the whole tower.

Try positioning yourself at the King’s Tower to photograph the Jack’s Tower. The two towers are located across from each other, separated only by a cross-walk. Alternatively, photograph the two towers together.

What is Yokohama?

Yokohama has prospered as a port town from 150 years ago. Due to its history, Yokohama is home to numerous historical landmarks with Western-style architecture.

Access to Yokohama

Directions from Tokyo Station
25 minutes on JR Tokaido Main Line
30 minutes on JR Yokosuka Line
40 minutes on JR Keihin Tohoku Line

Directions from Shibuya Station
25 minutes on Tokyu Toyoko Line
26 minutes on JR Shonan Shinjuku Line
45 minutes on JR Tokaido Main Line after transferring at Shinagawa Station on JR Yamanote Line

Directions from Haneda Airport
27 minutes on Keikyu Main Line after transferring at Keikyu Kamata Station on Keikyu Airport Line

Traveling to Yokohama? Here’s What We Recommend!

Romantic Kimono Photoshoot – Yokohama Tour

Wear a kimono, while visiting popular tourist destinations in Yokohama on the “Romantic Kimono Photoshoot – Yokohama Tour”. The four hour tour stops at Yamashita Park, Sankeien, and other landmarks in Yokohama. The guide will take pictures during the tour, making it a perfect way to memorialize your trip to Yokohama.