Summary of 2019 fall seasonal trains of JR trains

The Sanyo Shinkansen in fall season

Autumn and spring are the good season to travel in Japan. In fall season, you may see the fall foliage in most part of Japan. You will be impressed by this amazing scenery.

JR Group companies operate lots of seasonal trains in the fall season. In this post, I show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots in October and November.

*The schedule of some trains, such as Resort Shirakami are not available yet. I will update it when it is available.

*Winter seasonal train schedule (December to February) will come up in late October. But you will find all JR Kyushu seasonal trains’ schedules until February, 2020.

Continue reading Summary of 2019 fall seasonal trains of JR trains

Flex Rail Ticket, The Tokaido Shinkansen round trip deal between Tokyo, Shin-Yokohama, Nagoya, Kyoto and Shin-Osaka for all of you

Tokaido Shinkansen and fuji

I usually recommend you use the 7-day JR Pass if you make a round trip between Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka because the round trip fare for Tokyo to/from Shin-Osaka is almost the same as the 7-day JR Pass price. But the JR Pass is available for the short term stay tourist only. The residents cannot buy it.

But a new deal “Flex Rail Ticket” has been introduced by JR Tokai Tours. This is available for the residents too. If you are not Japanese but live in Japan as a resident, you can buy this.

I would like to explain to you this new deal “Flex Rail Ticket” in this post.

Continue reading Flex Rail Ticket, The Tokaido Shinkansen round trip deal between Tokyo, Shin-Yokohama, Nagoya, Kyoto and Shin-Osaka for all of you

2 days Trip to Kinugawa Onsen and Edo Wonderland

I visited Edo Wonderland in Kinugawa Onsen in March, 2019. I visited there with my family member who are from Canada. Some of them do not understand Japanese at all. I also took a few children from 7 years old to 10 years old. In this post, I would like to tell the story from the point of the view of the traveler with the foreign tourist and young children.

Continue reading 2 days Trip to Kinugawa Onsen and Edo Wonderland

Summary of 2019 summer seasonal trains of JR trains

Summer is very hot and humid in Japan. It is not the best season to travel. However summer is very busy travel season. In Japan, most public schools have summer break from July 20 to August 31. This period is busier than usual. Especially mid August is called “Obon”. This is one of the busiest season. Many local residents go back to hometown and spend the time with their family. It is Japanese tradition. Many of trains are booked out very quickly. Please see the link below to learn more:

All JR companies add lots of seasonal trains during all summer season. In this post, I show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots between July and September.

*If you look for the seasonal train schedule until June, please see the following link:

*Fall seasonal train schedule (October and November) will come up in late August. But you can find some of JR Kyushu train schedules until February, 2020.

Continue reading Summary of 2019 summer seasonal trains of JR trains

Trip to Universal Studio Japan Osaka in the spring break

It was not very crowded at the entrance gate.

My daughter and my wife are the big fan of Harry Potter. And they wanted to visit Universal Studio Japan in Osaka to see The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This trip report is not related to the train travel and there are many resources of Universal Studio Japan. However my trip report may help you for your visit to USJ. I will share my experience with you in this post.

Continue reading Trip to Universal Studio Japan Osaka in the spring break

Hokkaido Train Guide. Guide of the access route to major places in Hokkaido by train

Aoi Ike (blue pond) near Biei

Hokkaido is very very popular destination. There are lots of places to see. However this island is quite large. You must know the best way between the places to save your trip time.

In this post, I will show you the train network in Hokkaido. You will find most time efficient way.

Continue reading Hokkaido Train Guide. Guide of the access route to major places in Hokkaido by train

The list of train company public wifi connection

The mobile connection is essential in these days. The number of overseas tourists to Japan have been increasing significantly in these day. The demand of the mobile connection are huge. Many train companies provide the free wifi at the station and in some trains as the tourists’ demand.

In this post, I would like to tell you about the free wifi in the train and at the station.

Continue reading The list of train company public wifi connection

Mishima station guide. How to change the trains and the buses to Hakone, Fuji and Shuzenji.

Mishima station south ticket gate building

Mishima is the gateway of the west coast of Izu peninsula, such as Shuzenji. This station is also the departure point of a bus to Fuji and Hakone. You can catch the bus to Lake Kawaguchi and Lake Yamanaka in Fuji area, and Motohakone and Hakonemachi by Lake Ashi in Hakone.

In this post, I will show you many photos of inside and outside of Mishima station. And I will explain about this station structure and transfer among trains and buses.

Continue reading Mishima station guide. How to change the trains and the buses to Hakone, Fuji and Shuzenji.

Summary of 2019 spring seasonal trains of JR trains

Spring is the amazing season to travel in Japan.

I think everybody agree that spring is the best season to travel. The cherry blossom is amazing, gorgeous and unforgettable. Therefore this season is very busy. Especially the period from late March to early April is the spring break of the public school in Japan. This period is usually the peak period of the cherry blossom in southside of Japan. It is busy season.

Do not forget “Golden Week”. Japan has many holidays from late April to early May. Especially 2019’s Golden Week will be very special. The emperor will retire and the prince will take over. Please see the link below to find the detailed information about the calendar.

2019 busiest period to travel by train. Tips to book your seat in even during the busy period.

JR Group operate lots of seasonal trains during the spring peak period. In this post, I will show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots until the end of June.

If you are looking for the schedule of the seasonal trains for the summer season (July to September), please see the post below to find the information:

Continue reading Summary of 2019 spring seasonal trains of JR trains

What to do when a train delay and suspension

I had a trip to Japan in this past October. I had lots of train troubles in this trip. The train operation is usually very stable and reliable in Japan. But a train suspension and/or a train delay may happen on your trip.

I will explain how to deal with these problems, with my experience.

Continue reading What to do when a train delay and suspension

2019 busiest period to travel by train. Tips to book your seat in even during the busy period.

Hatsumoude is the first visit a shrine or a temple to pray and make a wish on New Year’s day.

You must know that your travel period is a peak season or a shoulder season. I would like to show you the busy period in 2019. You also find some tips when you travel in the peak season in this post.

Continue reading 2019 busiest period to travel by train. Tips to book your seat in even during the busy period.

Visiting Kumano Sanzan (Kumano three important shrines) in one day.

Yatagarasu (three legs raven) is the symbol of Kumano region.

As I mentioned in the last post, Visited Seikan Train ferry Museum, Memorial ship Hakkodamaru, I gave up on visiting Hokkaido because of the typhoon. I spent one whole day moving to Kii-Katsuura, and on the next day, I went Kumano Sanzan (Kumano Nachi Taisha shrine, Kumano Hongu Taisha shrine, Kumano Hayatama Taisha shrine). I had many places to visit when I decided to give up Hokkaido. But I had to move to the west because of the typhoon. The weather was very rough by typhoon from the Sea of ​​Japan side to the Tohoku area in northern part of Japan. Kumano-Nachi area had been on my wish list for a long time. And this area was one of the sunny places on that day. It was worth spending one whole day to move to get this area.

I would like to show you my trip report to Kumano Nachi area. I also will tell you the deal for this trip. Continue reading Visiting Kumano Sanzan (Kumano three important shrines) in one day.

Visited Seikan Train Ferry Museum, Memorial Ship Hakkodamaru

Hakkodamaru at Aomori pier

I went to Japan in early October. I was supposed to visit Hokkaido but a typhoon hit there. I was in Aomori but I gave up on visiting Hokkaido. I had some extra time in Aomori and spent this time to visit Seikan Train Ferry museum.

I would like to share my experience to visit this train ferry museum. Continue reading Visited Seikan Train Ferry Museum, Memorial Ship Hakkodamaru

Summary of 2018-19 winter seasonal trains of JR trains

Renovated E3 series for Toreiyu Tsubasa

Winter used to be a shoulder season to travel. However in these days, many foreign travelers visit Japan all year long. Especially northern Japan, such as Hokkaido is very popular for Asian tourist to see the snow. And New Year’s holidays from late December to Early January is the busiest season in Japan. This is very challenging to book a seat in New Year’s holidays period. Do not forget that early February is also busy season in Hokkaido because of Sapporo winter festival.

JR Group operate lots of seasonal trains during a winter season. In this post, I show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots until the end of February.

*Spring seasonal train schedule (March to May) will come up in late January. Continue reading Summary of 2018-19 winter seasonal trains of JR trains

Naoshima, Takamatsu, Okayama, Kurashiki, Tottori, Kinosaki and Amanohashidate 5 days trip plan by Kansai WIDE Area Pass

Pumpkin at Naoshima island

If you want something different on your trip to Kansai area, Kansai Wide Area Pass is highly recommended. I always recommend to use Kansai Thru Pass and Kansai Area Pass to travel within Kansai area, such as Kyoto, Nara, Kobe, Osaka, Wakayama, Himeji. But Kansai Wide Area Pass covers outside these areas, such as Shingu, Okayama, Kinosaki Onsen, Takamatsu. And this pass is valid for 5 days. It makes your trip more interesting.

In this post, I would like to show you a sample itineraries which include Naoshima, Takamatsu, Okayama, Kurashiki, Tottori, Kinosaki and Amanohashidate in 5 days. You will find the way to maximize using this pass.
Continue reading Naoshima, Takamatsu, Okayama, Kurashiki, Tottori, Kinosaki and Amanohashidate 5 days trip plan by Kansai WIDE Area Pass

How to transfer between Nagoya and Osaka/Kyoto by train

Which one is better, Shinkansen (left) or Kintetsu (right) ?

If you have to move between Nagoya and Osaka (or Kyoto), you have two choices, Shinkansen or Kintetsu railway. I would like to compare these two choices and tell you pros and cons of each choice.

Continue reading How to transfer between Nagoya and Osaka/Kyoto by train

Summary of 2018 fall seasonal trains of JR trains

Renovated E3 series for Toreiyu Tsubasa

Autumn and spring are the good season to travel in Japan. In fall season, you may see the fall foliage in most part of Japan. You will be impressed by this amazing scenery.

JR Group operate lots of seasonal trains in the fall season. In this post, I show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots in October and November.

*The schedule of some trains, such as Resort Shirakami are not available yet. I will update it when it is available.

*Winter seasonal train schedule (December to February) will come up in late October. But you will find all JR Kyushu seasonal trains’ schedules until February, 2019.

Continue reading Summary of 2018 fall seasonal trains of JR trains

What is IC card, Suica, ICOCA, Pasmo? How to use these cards?

Suica is one of major IC cards in Japan. (C) suica card
by bitmask

If you do not intend to purchase any rail passes, you may think about using IC card. This card makes your trip be much easier.

IC card is a rechargeable smart card which is issued by the railway companies. It is getting very common ways to ride a train in these days. Once you have this card, you do not have to buy a ticket one by one. As long as you have some fund in your card, you can tap it at the ticket gate and tap again when you exit the station. The fare is deducted automatically. It gives you convenience. But there are many types of card available. And it is so hard to find which train and bus are covered by these cards.

In this post, I will show you the list of major IC cards, the difference of these cards, and coverage area.

Continue reading What is IC card, Suica, ICOCA, Pasmo? How to use these cards?

Peach / Vanilla Kita Hokkaido Free Pass

Cape Soya is northernmost point in Japan. (C) By Rsa [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], from Wikimedia Commons

I introduced Peach / Vanilla Higashi Hokkaido Free Pass in the previous post. That covers eastern Hokkaido and available for anybody who arrive in New Chitose airport or Kushiro airport by Peach Air or Vanilla Air. In this post, I will show you very similar deal which is Peach / Vanilla Kita Hokkaido Free Pass. This is designed for the trip to northern part of Hokkaido. If you are under 25 years old, you can get this pass at U25 discount rate.

I would like to show you how you use this pass. Continue reading Peach / Vanilla Kita Hokkaido Free Pass

Peach / Vanilla Higashi Hokkaido Free Pass

Farm near Furano, typical scenery in Hokkaido (C) Furano / JNTO

I explain many deals in this site but these are mostly available for overseas tourist only. In this post, I would like to show you the deal for both resident and overseas tourist in this post. This deal, Peach / Vanilla Higashi Hokkaido Free Pass is designed for the trip to eastern part of Hokkaido. If you are under 25 years old, you can get this pass at U25 discount rate.

I would like to show you how you use this pass. Continue reading Peach / Vanilla Higashi Hokkaido Free Pass

Furano Biei Rail Ticket is the perfect choice for the trip to Furano, Biei and Asahikawa.

Patchwork Hill is one of popular spots in Biei. (C) JTA/ JNTO

If you think about making a day trip or a few days trip to Furano and Biei from Sapporo, this deals, “Furano Biei Rail Ticket” is the best deal. This ticket includes unlijmited ride in these areas and round trip from Sapporo.

In this post, I will tell you the detailed information about this deal. I also show you the comparison between this ticket and Hokkaido Rail Pass.

Continue reading Furano Biei Rail Ticket is the perfect choice for the trip to Furano, Biei and Asahikawa.

Summary of 2018 summer seasonal trains of JR trains

Specialized fleet of HIGH RAIL 1375(C) D-s-yama [CC BY-SA 4.0], from Wikimedia Commons

Summer is very hot and humid in Japan. It is not the best season to travel. However summer is very busy travel season. In Japan, most public schools have summer break from July 20 to August 31. This period is busier than usual. Especially mid August is called “Obon”. This is one of the busiest season. Many of Japanese go back to hometown and spend the time with families. It is Japanese tradition. Many of trains are booked out very quickly. Please see the link below to learn more:

2018 busiest period to travel by train. Tips to book your seat in even busy period

All JR companies add lots of seasonal trains during all summer season. In this post, I show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots until the end of September.

*Fall seasonal train schedule (October and November) will come up in late August. But you can find many of JR East train schedules until September, 2018. You also can find JR Kyushu train schedules until February, 2019. Continue reading Summary of 2018 summer seasonal trains of JR trains

Greater Tokyo Pass offers unlimited ride of Tokyo Subway and major Non JR lines in Tokyo and surrounding area.

Downtown Tokyo (C) Yasufumi Nishi / JNTO

In March, 2018, new rail pass, “Greater Tokyo Pass” was launched in overseas tourist market. This new deal covers all subway lines in Tokyo and major non JR railway services in Tokyo and surrounding area. Both Haneda and Narita airports are covered by this pass. You can start using this pass right after you arrive in Japan.

In this post, I would like to share the information about Greater Tokyo Pass. You will find how you use this pass and what type of travel you can get the worth by. Continue reading Greater Tokyo Pass offers unlimited ride of Tokyo Subway and major Non JR lines in Tokyo and surrounding area.

Schedule of 2018 spring seasonal trains of Japan Railways

EVA Type 500 train runs as regular scheduled Kodama on Sanyo Shinkansen.
EVA Type 500 train has been running as regular scheduled Kodama on Sanyo Shinkansen for a few years. But it will be done on in this coming May.

Spring is the best season to visit Japan because of the cherry blossom. Spring break of public school in Japan usually starts from the last week of March to the first week of April. This two weeks period is much busier than usual. And also between late April and the beginning of May is one of the busiest period in the year. It is known as “Golden Week” in Japan. April 29, May 3, 4, and 5 are National holidays. If you travel in this period, train may be booked out quickly. Please see the details in the link below:

2018 busiest period to travel by train. Tips to book your seat in even busy period

All JR companies add lots of seasonal trains during all spring season. In this post, I show you many seasonal trains that will run in major tourist spots until the end of June.

*Summer seasonal train schedule (July to September) will come up in late May. But you can find JR East train schedules until September, 2018. You also can find JR Kyushu train schedules until February, 2019. Continue reading Schedule of 2018 spring seasonal trains of Japan Railways

Wakayama and Wakayamashi stations guide. The difference of these stations and which station is more convenient for travelers?

JR Wakayama station building

When you plan to visit Wakayama, you will notice two stations there. Those are Wakayama station and Wakayamashi station. Both stations are located in Wakayama city but the locations are different.

In this post, I would like to show you these two stations’ layout and location. You will find the difference of these stations and which one the better location is. Continue reading Wakayama and Wakayamashi stations guide. The difference of these stations and which station is more convenient for travelers?