Overnight train to/from Sapporo and Aomori. Express Hamanasu

Overnight train Hamanasu at Aomori station
Overnight train Hamanasu at Aomori station

This overnight express train is operated between Aomori and Sapporo. If you want to save your time and you don’t want to spend your money for Hotel in Sapporo, this overnight train is the best choice. Especially when you want to transfer to Tokyo from Sapporo as early as possible, this train is connected with the earliest Tohoku Shinkansen at Shin-Aomori.

*The information in this article is current at the time of writing.

As of August 2015, Hamanasu will run until the end of February with a few suspension dates and some schedule changes. Please find more info at the post, Schedule of 2015 fall seasonal trains of Japan Railways.

Most of the night train have only sleeper class. This express train has Type B sleeper class. But this train has two types of reserved seats too. If you take these reserved class, you can take this train without any extra pay by Japan Rail Pass. Okay, let’s see the accommodations and interior of Hamanasu.

I got on Hamanasu in mid March, 2012. I hope my passengers’ report, “My trip from Aomori to Sapporo on March 19, 2012 by Hamanasu Carpet car.” help you.

View Hamanasu in a larger map


Type B sleeper class

Additional fare 7,560yen (Express surcharge 1,260yen + Accommodation charge 6,300yen)
This is very basic sleeper in Japan. 4 beds are in one compartment. Lower berth is 195 cm X 70 cm X 111 cm. (Length/Width/Height) Upper berth is 195 cm X 70 cm X 95 cm. Lower berth has a little more head room.
Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu

Dream Car

No extra charge
One of those reserved seats is called “Dream Car”. This seat provide you same grade of comfortably as Green classr.
Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu

Carpet Car

No extra charge
The other reserved seat is called “Carpet car”. This seat is the same kind of seat as Nobi Nobi seat on Sunrise Seto and Sunrise Izumo. It is like a berth. You can lie on the seat. This berth is better than Nobi Nobi seat because this accommodation provides you a pillow, linen and the Heated Carpet in winter time. Please click the following images. You will see the purple carpet on the berth. That is the Heated Carpet.
Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu
As you see the images, Upper section has more privacy. Try to get it!

Non Reserved seat

Of course, no extra charge
If you cannot get the reserved seat, you can take a non reserved seat, if you like. This seat is very very common seat. If you need to take overnight train from Sapporo to Aomori, you have to take this. Otherwise I don’t recommend you.
Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu Overnight train Hamanasu

Other facilities

This train has several the vending machine. You can buy some refreshment.
Overnight train Hamanasu
Several change rooms are equipped in the train. And you will have a small space to take a break, drink and eat. But there is no shower facility.
Overnight train Hamanasu
Be careful! This train has Japanese style washroom only!
Overnight train Hamanasu


Station Aomori to Sapporo Sapporo to Aomori
Aomori (青森) 22:18 5:39
Hakodate (函館) 0:44-1:23 2:52-3:27
Oshamanbe (長万部) 3:08 1:03
Date-Monbetsu (伊達紋別駅) 0:17
Higashi-Muroran (東室蘭) 4:17 23:50
Noboribetsu (登別) 23:35
Tomakomai (苫小牧) 5:01 23:04
Minami-Chitose (南千歳) 5:25 22:41
Chitose (千歳) 5:30 22:36
Shin-Sapporo (新札幌) 5:55 22:11
Sapporo (札幌) 6:07 22:00

197 thoughts on “Overnight train to/from Sapporo and Aomori. Express Hamanasu”

  1. Dear Takeshi-San

    May I have the Hamanasu night train schedules operating between Tokyo and Hokkaido for October 2015?

    Many thanks

  2. Takeshi san,

    First of all many thanks for your excellent website. It is clearly the best resource for English speaking tourists in Japan. Sir, I travel to Japan for the fist time this weekend unfortunately just for 8 days. On Sunday night I would like to to leave Tokyo and travel to Hokkaido to see the national parks – they are truly stunning. I need to be back to Kyoto for Thursday.. I think this trip could be possible if I use night trains but how should I go about it? I have a 7 day JR pass. Am I better advised to take sleep train direct from Tokyo,.. a shinkansen from Tokyo to somewhere in the north of the honshu and then to continue on sleeper train? Maybe stop change in Aomori or Morioki? Forgive me I have never visited Japan before.

    1. Hi Eamonn san,

      The following link shows you how to get Hokkaido by train.

      I’ve heard that Hamanasu is very busy now. Because this train may be discontinued near future. Many train fans want to take this train before that. Unfortunately there is no way to book before arriving Japan. So if you intend to book a reserved seat on this train, you may not be able to make it. There are non reserved seat that is first come first serve basis. You can take this train anyway without reservation. But it’s hard to guess how busy this train will be. You can try but please keep it in your mind.


      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  3. Hi Takeshi,

    Me and my friend might going to take this night train on 20th August 2015, when and where can we do a reservation?
    Thank you in advance.

    1. Hi Mazia,

      You can book at reservation window that is called “Midori no Madoguchi”. You can find this window at any major JR stations. If you look for this window in Tokyo, you can find it at any JR stations.

      Ticket has already been on sale. It’s on sale one month prior to departure date.


      Takeshi / JPRail.com

      1. Hi Takeshi,
        We will only buy the JR pass next week, it is possible to make a reservation if we are still outside of Japan?

  4. Hi Takeshi,

    we would like to take overnight train from Tokyo to Sapporo while Aomori by using our 7 days JR Pass this mid July, may i know which station should I alight on ? and we just need a nobi-nobi seat, do we still have to pay any extra charges?

    Thank You vm

    1. Hi Way,

      You don’t need to pay any extra charge other than type B berth. But I think all reserved seats have been booked out already. If you expect to book Carpet car, I think it’s no chance to book. This train has been super super busy in these days. Your choice will be only non reserved seat. If you don’t want to take regular seat, please don’t try to use this train. If you are okay with non reserved seat, I recommend you to show up at Aomori station at least 30 minutes before. Even 30 minutes may not be enough to get a seat.
      You may try to book when you arrive in Japan. But please expect the worst case. If you cannot book this, I recommend you to avoid taking this train and stay somewhere between Tokyo and Sapporo or taking daytime train.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  5. Dear Takeshi-san,

    I’m planning to use Hanamasu night train From Sapporo(JR) to Aomori, on 27 Oct 2015.

    Is Hanamasu still running in Oct. 2015?

    Thank you,

    1. Hi Wip san,

      We have no idea at this point. JR will revise timetable in mid October. It may be discontinued at that point. But no official announcement has been made yet. We will find it by mid September.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

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