Cardinal points, directions and locations in Japanese

Have you ever wondered how to say north, south, east, and west in Japanese? In this article, you will increase your Japanese language vocabulary by learning about directions, cardinal points, and relatives. Direction in Japanese is called houkou [方向].

Directions and Cardinal Points in Japanese

Norteきた / ほくkita / hoku
(N) eastひがしhigashi
(N) South, proceeding south (P)みなみminami
(N) west西にしnishi
northeast (Direction)北東ほくとうhokutou
Northeast (Region)東北とうほくtōhoku
northwest (Direction)北西ほくせいhokusei
northwest (Region)西北せいほくseihoku
southeast (Direction)南東 なんとうswam
Southeast (Region)東南とうなんtounan
southwest (Direction)南西 なんせいnansei
southwest (Region)西南せいなんseinan

Maybe you are interested in reading about the regions of Japan as well. Learning about the regions of Japan will help you not to get lost when looking for directions. For example, we have Hokkaido, a region located in the north of Japan.


  • Kitamuki [北 向き] - Voltado para o norte;
  • Kitakaze [北風] - North wind;
  • Kitanihon [北日本- North of Japan;

You also noticed that to change a direction to a region, just invert the kanji.

We recommend reading: The map of Japan and its 8 Regions

Cardeais: - Norte: 北 (kita)- Sul: 南 (minami)- Leste: 東 (higashi)- Oeste: 西 (nishi)Direções:- Direita: 右 (migi)- Esquerda: 左 (hidari)Localizações:- A frente: 前 (mae)- Atrás: 後ろ (ushiro)

Directions and Relative Locations 

Below we will study Japanese directions like left and right and some relative locations like corners, inside outside and others. You may also be interested in reading about the Japanese numbers.

(A) to the leftひだり hidari
(On the rightみぎ migi
aboveうえ huh
lowした shita
top left左上ひだりうえ hydariue
lower left左下ひだりした Hidarishite
top right corner右上みぎうえ migiue
lower right右下みぎした mishite
fowardまえ mom
back後ろうしろ ushiru
In a straight line真っ直ぐまっすぐ massugu
verticalた て tate
horizontal / Side / Sideよ こ yoko
diagonal斜めな な め naname
4 Directions東西南北とうざいなんぼく touzainanboku
Perto近くちかく chikaku
Far遠いとおい tooi
distant離れて はなれて hanarete
next となり Tonari
Next そばに soba ni
before, in front まえ mom
Later あと Ato
Dentro, no meio なか naka
Among the間に あいだに aidani
Outsideそと soto
ascent上がりあがり agari
descent下りくだり kudari
Aroundまわり mawari

[真っ直ぐ] is normally written as [straight];


  • Migite [右手[ - Mão direita;
  • Nishikaigan [西海岸] - Costa oeste;
  • Yenosotho [家の外] - Fora de casa;

Example Sentences in Japanese

Below are some example sentences for you to study the cardinal points and directions in Japanese:

It's straight.

Massugu desu.

This city is like this.

Sono michi ni sotte itte kudasai.

Go right to reach the city.

Machi o sotte massugu itte kudasai.

Please go to the city.

Machi ni itte kudasai.

Turn left.

Hidari ni Magatte kudasai.

Turn right.

Migi ni Magatte kudasai.

It's in front of the bank.

銀行の向かいで す.
Ginkou no mukai desu.

It's next to the bank.

Ginkou no tonari desu.

It is located on the opposite side.

Hantai-gawa desu.

The article is still halfway through, but we recommend also reading:

Videos about directions in Japanese

To end the article we will leave some videos that talk more about the cardinal points and directions In japanese.

I hope this article helped you understand directions in Japanese. If you liked it, don't forget to share and leave your comments.

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