Overnight train to/from Sapporo and Aomori. Express Hamanasu

Aomori, Shin-Aomori, Hirosaki
Overnight train Hamanasu at Aomori station
Overnight train Hamanasu at Aomori station

Overnight train Hamanasu at Aomori station

Hamanasu was discontinued in mid March, 2016. There is no overnight train service options available to Hokkaido.

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.

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


StationAomori to SapporoSapporo to Aomori
Aomori (青森)22:185:39
Hakodate (函館)0:44-1:232:52-3:27
Oshamanbe (長万部)3:081:03
Date-Monbetsu (伊達紋別駅)0:17
Higashi-Muroran (東室蘭)4:1723:50
Noboribetsu (登別)23:35
Tomakomai (苫小牧)5:0123:04
Minami-Chitose (南千歳)5:2522:41
Chitose (千歳)5:3022:36
Shin-Sapporo (新札幌)5:5522:11
Sapporo (札幌)6:0722:00


  1. TANG says:

    Hi Takeshi
    I have plan to go to sapporo on this weekend and leave from Hakodate on January 14 with overnight train. I want to take Hamanasu train that will dep. from Hakodate at 2.52 or 3.27am.
    Do you think is it a good idea? i just worry that what should i do before the train come. Or you have any suggestion? It’ll be useful.
    Best regards

  2. Aesir says:


    Can you explain the timing from Sapporo to Aomori? I do not understand. Are those arrival time or last train time?

    Thank You

  3. Kate says:

    Hi Takeshi-san,

    Thank you for all the useful information. We are hoping to use Hamanasu for our trip to Sapporo and have some questions to ask:

    1. Will it be difficult to reserve a seat ~10 days in advance for 6 people on Jan 29th?
    2. Can you tell me which trains are best to get from Tokyo to Aomori? We would like to leave Tokyo as late as possible, but do not want to risk missing the train.
    29/1 (to Sapporo)
    Tokyo – Shin-Aomori
    > Hayabusa 29: 5:20pm – 8:42pm
    > Hayate 369: 4:28pm – 8:05pm
    > Hayabusa 27: 4:20pm – 7:37pm
    Shin-Aomori – Aomori (JR Ou Line)
    > 8:06pm, 8:50pm, 9:46pm
    3. Is it likely for trains to be cancelled due to bad weather eg heavy snow?

    Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Kate san,

      1. It will be okay if you can accept any kinds of seats.
      2. As long as weather is okay, Hayabusa 29 is okay. If I were you and made a booking seat for Hamanasu, I will take even later train.
      3. Yes. It may happen in winter time. So I recommend you to keep checking updated weather info.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  4. Joy says:

    Hello, can you tell if it will be difficult for us to get even an unreserved seat in the hamanasu if we will go to sapporo on feb 5 in the evening for sapporo ice festival?

    We are arriving in tokyo feb 5 in the morning, and i believe the reserved seats has a high chance of being fully booked already when we arrive. Thanks and hope you can answer

    • Hi Joy,

      Technically you can take non reserved seat on Hamanasu anyway. But it’s hard to find that you can get the seat or not. During peak season, there are some passengers who cannot get the seat and they stay on isle. But it is the worst case. In most cases, it’s not hard to get a seat on non reserved seat.

      You should try to book it right after you arrive in Japan. You may be able to book it.

      Good luck!


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  5. Jimmy says:

    I and my friends have plan to depart from Aomori to Sapporo on the 1 January 2015 at 10:18PM. Will this exp. Hamanasu train be available?

    I have checked from HYPERDIA.com. It said unavailable. But in Google maps say available, so that make me confuse.

  6. Crystal Lew says:

    Hi there,

    I will travel From Tokyo to Sapporo on 09/12/14. I was thinking to take night train from Tokyo, following is my route.

    >Depart from Tokyo Station & take Shinkansen Hayabusa 31 to Shin-Aomori.

    >At Shin-Aomori transfer JR OU line to AOMORI.

    >At AOMORI transfer to Express Hamanasu & heading to Sapporo.

    My question is, is all these route will fully cover by JR Pass? Or do you have better alternative way to travel from Tokyo to Sapporo by night train without extra charge.


    • Hi Crystal,

      It’s fully covered by JR Pass if you don’t use B berth on Hamanasu. As you read above, Dream car, Carpet car and non reserved seat are fully covered by JR Pass.
      This is only way to get Sapporo by overnight train without any extra on JR Pass.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  7. George says:

    Hi there,

    Since this train is operated by JR Hokkaido, is it possible to make a reservation at a JR East office? I mean, when I arrive and I turn in my JR Pass Exchange Order at Haneda Airport and by some miracle they can find me an available place in the Carpet Car, are they able to reserve this place?

    Ps.: According to Hyperdia and JR Hokkaido website, the train leaves Aomori at 22:18, not 22:42. Just for your information. 🙂

    • Hi George,

      Yes, you can. You can book any JR trains at any JR stations that has Midori no Madoguchi (reservation window). So you can book it at Haneda airport if the space is available. Good luck!

      PS Thanks for the info about timetable. I will correct it.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  8. Anthony says:


    I’m travelling from Sapporo to Tokyo by Hamanasu and Hayabusa on the 13th March and will reach Tokyo 14th March.

    As said in the article, it is quite difficult to reserve the seats such as Dream Car and Carpet Car.
    I’ll be using a JR Pass for my trip and only be in arriving in Japan (Chitose) on the 4th March.

    May I know if it will be very difficult to reserve a seat for myself from Sapporo to Tokyo.
    Thank you!

    • Hi Anthony,

      It’s very hard to say. In my opinion, it’s no chance to get Carpet. It’s usually sold out right after on sale. I think you will have a chance to get Dream seat. Usually Dream is much easier to book than carpet.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  9. Adang Tjendana says:

    Hello, Takeshi-san, i’m planning to buy 1 week JR Pass, and i already have the plane ticket from tokyo to shin-chitose, and i still haven’t booked any ticket from shin-chitose to osaka because i’m planning to use the JR Pass. is it possible to use it? and i’ve been searching by hyperdia from sapporo to aomori that it took more than 7 hours by hanamasu express. and there is a type b sleeper class in hanamasu and i need additional fare 7,560 yen for it. if we pay 7,560 yen, do we get 4 beds in 1 compartment, or is it only for 1 person?

    i’m looking forward to hearing from you as soon as possible.


    Adang Tjendana

    • Hi Adang-san,

      7560 yen is the rate per person. So you can use just one bed. If you want to use all 4 beds in one compartment, you have to pay 7560 yen X 4.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  10. Yakisoba says:

    Hello Takeshi.

    What an informative site, thank you for sharing to us.

    I want to ride Hamanasu Express on my way back to Tokyo from Sapporo. Based on my research, Hamanasu express will depart in Sapporo station at 20:00, there are non-reserved seats available and I have JR pass, so that means I can ride this train for free. However, it is certain that there would be available non-reserved seats as soon as I arrive at the station 1 hour earlier?

    So I have to ride Express Hamanasu (20:00)- transfer to JR Ou Line (6:00) – transfer again to Shin-Aomori (6:17), is this correct? Please help. Thank you.


    • Hi Yakisoba,

      I have never taken Hamanasu during snow festival. But I have seen many comments in Japanese forum.
      Some says Hamanasu was SUPER busy. Some of passengers waited at platform for Hamanasu 5 hours before departure time. Many passengers cannot find the seat and stay on the isle or passenger’s deck all the way to Aomori.
      Other says non reserved seat was almost empty.

      So it is very hard to guess. But I think you have to expect the worst case if you intend to take Hamanasu.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

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