Kobe Sannomiya stations guide. Check the location and connections between many Sannomiya stations.

JR Sannomiya station north side
JR Sannomiya station north side

If you make a trip to Kobe, you may disembark a train at Sannomiya station. Sannomiya is downtown core of Kobe and you may access to many places from this station. There are three major railway’s stations, JR, Hankyu Railway and Hanshin Railway. And there are three more stations, two of Kobe subway and one of Port Liner. Each station is not a big station and structure is quite simple. But there are many stations and it may be complicated for you. And you may be overwhelmed.

In this post, I would like to share the information about all stations in Sannomiya. I would like to show you how to move among these stations. And also Sannomiya is the gateway to other areas. I would like to show you some information about bus stops around Sannomiya station.

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

Overview

There are six stations in Sannomiya area. Some stations are called simply “Sannomiya” and other are called “Kobe-Sannomiya”. But these are same location.

  • JR / Sannomiya station
  • Hankyu Railway / Kobe-Sannomiya station
  • Hanshin Railway / Kobe-Sannomiya station
  • Kobe Port Liner / Sannomiya station
  • Kobe Subway Seishin-Yamate line / Sannomiya station
  • Kobe Subway Kaigan line / Sannomiya-Hanadokeimae station

Please see the map below:

Please click to view larger.
Please click to view larger.

You may see the map in Google map too.

You cannot find Sannomiya-Hanadokeimae station in the first map. But it’s located just outside the map. All stations are located in the center of Sannomiya and are accessible each other by walk.

JR, Hankyu Railway and Port Liner stations are located on the ground level. JR station and Hankyu Railway stations are connected at mezzanine level. JR station’s west gate and Hankyu Railway’s east gate are connected each other.

Port Liner station is located just beside JR station. You can get Port Liner’s station from JR station’s central gate.

Other three stations, Hanshin Railway and two subway stations are located underground. All stations are connected by underground path. There is underground shopping complex that is called “Suntica”. You can go through this shopping arcade to get Hanshin Railway station and subway Sannomiya-Hanadokeimae station. Only Sannomiya-Hanadokeimae is located a few blocks away from other Sannomiya stations. But it takes 5 to 10 minutes and you can get there by walk easily. Underground map in Sannomiya is available at the link below:

Sannomiya Area Map (Underground Level)

Now I would like to show you all stations one by one.

JR Sannomiya station

JR Sannomiya station platform
JR Sannomiya station platform

This is the biggest station in Sannomiya area. But it is not a mega terminal station such as Osaka station. Sannomiya station is very simple structure. The ticket gates and exit are located on the ground level except west gate. And the tracks and platforms are located on the second level. It has only two platforms and four tracks. It is very easy to find the direction.

#track Sort of train Destinmation
1 Limited Express, Special Rapid, some of Rapid Osaka, Shin-Osaka, Kyoto
2 Rapid, Local
3 Rapid, Local Kobe, Akashi, Himeji
4 Limited Express, Special Rapid, some of Rapid

Shinkansen’s station is Shin-Kobe. It is located one station away from Sannomiya by subway. Most of trains that stop at Sannomiya are commute trains. There are very few limited express trains to stop at Sannomiya, such as Limited Express Hamakaze and Limited Express Super Hakuto.

JR Sannomiya station has three ticket gates, West, Central and East.

Signage at the platform
Signage at the platform

West gate is connected with Hankyu Railway. Central gate is most convenient to go down to underground path. And East gate is the closest to Port Liner station and bus terminal.

Signage of Central gate
Signage of Central gate
Central ticket gate and walkway to both south and north sides
Central ticket gate and walkway to both south and north sides
Reservation window (Midori no Madoguchi) is located at Central gate.
Reservation window (Midori no Madoguchi) is located at Central gate.
Signage of East gate
Signage of East gate
West ticket gate
West ticket gate. Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station ticket gate is located just in front of this gate.

Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station

Hankyu Railway Kobe Sannomiya station west side
Hankyu Railway Kobe Sannomiya station west side

First of all, Hankyu Railway’s station name is not Sannomiya but Kobe-Sannomiya. When you search the timetable on Hyperdia, you cannot find this station as “Sannomiya”.

Hankyu Railway’s Kobe-Sannomiya station is located next to JR Sannomiya station. East ticket gate of Hankyu Railway and west ticket gate of JR are connected at mezzanine level and very easy to transfer.

West ticket gate of Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station
West ticket gate of Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station

There is exit to overpass along JR Sannomiya station. This is connected to Port Liner Sannomiya station.

Walkway to Port Liner Sannomiya station
Walkway to Port Liner Sannomiya station

Hankyu Railway’s station is very small and easy to find the direction.

Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station platforms (C) Corpse Reviver (Own work) (GFDL  or CC-BY-SA-3.0), via Wikimedia Commons
Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station platforms (C) Corpse Reviver (Own work) (GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0), via Wikimedia Commons
Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station information board. It is written in English too. (click to view large)
Hankyu Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station information board. It is written in English too. (click to view large)

As you see the information board above, there are three tracks and two platforms.

#track Destinmation
1,2 Kosoku-Kobe, Shinkaichi, Himeji
3,4 Kosoku-Kobe, Akashi, Himeji

Hanshin Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station

The signage of Hanshin Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station at underground arcade.
The signage of Hanshin Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station at underground arcade.

Hanshin Railway station is not Sannomiya but Kobe-Sannomiya as well as Hankyu Railway. Both railways run between Umeda (JR Osaka) and Sannomiya. You can take either railway to get Sannomiya from Umeda. But Hanshin Railway has another terminal in Osaka-Namba. And also many Kintetsu Railway trains go through Hanshin Railway line to Sannomiya from Nara. If you want to make sure the train network in Kansai area, please find more information at the link below:

How to transfer among Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, Nara and Wakayama. Compare Japan Railway and private railways.

Hanshin Railway station is located underground at south side of JR Sannomiya station. Hanshin Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station is connected by underground shopping arcade that is called “Santica” with other Sannomiya stations. It is only 5 minutes away from other stations and very easy to transfer.

The stairs to underground shopping arcade Santica in front of JR Sannomiya station
The stairs to underground shopping arcade Santica in front of JR Sannomiya station
Train departure information board
Train departure information board

Hanshin Railway’s station is very small too. The layout is almost same as Hankyu Railway’s Kobe-Sannomiya station.

Hashin Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station platforms (C) Jr223 (Own work) (CC BY-SA 3.0), via Wikimedia Commons
Hashin Railway Kobe-Sannomiya station platforms (C) Jr223 (Own work) (CC BY-SA 3.0), via Wikimedia Commons
#track Destinmation
1,2 Umeda, Osaka-Namba, Amagasaki, Nara
3 Kosoku-Kobe, Akashi, Himeji

Kobe Port Liner Sannomiya station

Port Liner Sannomiya station.  JR Sannomiya station is just behind this station.
Port Liner Sannomiya station. JR Sannomiya station is just behind this station.

Port Liner is small train rapid transit system in Kobe. It connects Sannomiya, Kobe Airport and many places in Port Island. This station is located next to JR Sannomiya station.

Port Liner station is connected to JR Sannomiya station Central gate.
Port Liner station is connected to JR Sannomiya station Central gate.

This station is very small. It has only one platform and one ticket gate.

Port Liner Sannomiya station ticket gate
Port Liner Sannomiya station ticket gate
Port Liner platform(C) own (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Port Liner platform(C) own (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
#track Destinmation
1,2 Kobe Airport, Kitafuto

Kobe Subway Seishin-Yamate line Sannomiya station

Subway ticket vending machine and ticket gate.
Subway ticket vending machine and ticket gate.

This subway line runs mountain side of Kobe. This line connects Sannomiya, Shin-Kobe and Tanigami. Shin-Kobe is Shinkansen’s station in Kobe. It is one station away from Sannomiya. Tanigami is technically not this line’s station but Hokushin Kyuko Railway’s station. But all subway trains are operated on Hokushin Kyuko train to Tanigami. You can go to Tanigami from Sannomiya directly. Tanigami is located on the way to Arima Onsen. If you want to take a train to Arima Onsen, this is your route. Please fine more information about this route, please see the following link:

Guide to take trains in Kobe. How to choose the best route by train to get the major spots?

This station is located underground near JR and Hankyu railway station. You can find the stairs to go down this station many places around Sannomiya stations.

One of the entrance to subway station near JR Sannomiya station
One of the entrance to subway station near JR Sannomiya station
Subway Sannomiya station is connected to Santica shopping arcade by underground path.
Subway Sannomiya station is connected to Santica shopping arcade by underground path.

This station has only two tracks but it is a little bit complicated. Because it is three levels structure. At B1 floor (underground 1st floor), there are ticket gates and vending machines.

Peak hour at the ticket gate
Peak hour at the ticket gate
Peak hour at just inside of the ticket gate
Peak hour at just inside of the ticket gate

And the platforms are located at B2 (underground 2nd) and B3 (underground 3rd) floors. These two platforms are not located at the same level.

The signage shows the directions of platforms.
The signage shows the directions of platforms.
Stairs and escalators to B2 floor, trains for Shin-Kobe and Tanigami
Stairs and escalators to B2 floor, trains for Shin-Kobe and Tanigami
Kobe subway train
Kobe subway train
#track Destinmation
1 (B2 floor) Shin-Kobe, Tanigami
2 (B3 floor) Myodani, Seishin-Chuo

Kobe Subway Kaigan line Sannomiya-Hanadokeimae station

Ticket gate of Sannomiya Hanadokeimae station
Ticket gate of Sannomiya Hanadokeimae station

This is another line of Kobe subways. This line’s name, Kaigan line means shore line. It runs along the port and shore. You can access to many places along shore, such as Harborland, Meriken Park.

This station is a bit away from other Sannomiya stations. It takes about 10 minutes on foot from JR Sannomiya station via underground shopping arcade, Santica.

By the way, Harborland is located near JR Kobe and Hankyu/Hanshin railway’s Kosoku-Kobe station. Meriken park can be accessed from JR and Hanshin Motomachi stations, and Hankyu Hanakuma station in 10 to 15 minutes. You spend 10 minutes to transfer to this subway line anyway. I cannot find any reason to transfer to this subway lines from JR, Hankyu and Hanshin Railways. Most of you access to Kobe from Osaka. You can continue to ride to Kobe or other stations when you go to Meriken Park and Harborland.

This station has only one ticket gate and one platform. It is very simple layout.

(C) 三宮・花時計前駅ホーム 2008.3.1 laurel04spl, via Wikimedia Commons
(C) 三宮・花時計前駅ホーム 2008.3.1 laurel04spl, via Wikimedia Commons
1,2 Harborland, Shin-Nagata

Bus stops and terminals

Even though this is not a train station’s information, I would like to add some information about bus stops too. Because I have received many inquiries before. I think this information is demanded.

Scheduled bus to Arima Onsen

You can access to Arima Onsen by train by Kobe subway, Hokushin Kyuko and Kobe Railway. But you have to transfer twice. If you use Kansai Thru Pass, this train route is covered fully. But if you use other deals, such as JR pass, Kansai area pass or other JR deals, or if you do not use any deals, direct bus service is the easiest way to get Arima Onsen from Sannomiya. There are many trips to Arima Onsen by scheduled bu service.

This bus departs from the ground level of the building, “M-Int Kobe” that is located at the south side of JR Sannomiya station. You may find the place of bus stop at the map and Google map above in this post.

Bus terminal at M-Int Kobe (C) 663highland (663highland) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons
Bus terminal at M-Int Kobe (C) 663highland (663highland) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons

Bus stop #4 (shown in the map by “M4”) is the place to catch this bus.

  • One way fare 700 yen, Child rate (6-11 years) 350 yen, Senior rate not available
  • Trip time 40 minutes when traffic normal

I put the link of timetable. It is in Japanese but you can find the departure time easily.

Hankyu and Kishin bus to Arima Onsen timetable from Sannomiya station
Hankyu and Kishin bus to Sannomiya station timetable from Arima Onsen

City Loop Bus

City Loop Bus stop
City Loop Bus stop

It is the scheduled bus that connect Sannomiya station and major visitor spots.

Kobe City Loop Bus

The bus stop is located in front of Hankyu Railway Kobe Sannomiya station. It is shown as “N2” in the map above.

I hope these information will help you to enjoy the trip in Kobe!

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