Kushiro Shitsugen (Kushiro marsh) is national park and has the largest marsh wetland in Japan. It is well known as the home of endangered Japanese Cranes. JR Hokkaido’s Senmo line goes through this wetland and gives you a great scenery. Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko train is operated on this line from late April to late September. This is the easiest way to enjoy a day excursion in Kushiro Shitsugen from Kushiro. And Kushiro can be reached by Limited Express Super Ozora from Sapporo easily. Both Super Ozora and Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko train are fully covered by Japan Rail Pass.
Let’s see the detail about this train.
Route and schedule
Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko train is operated between Kushiro and Toro. This train usually start to run in late April and it runs until September. Please find the latest operation dates at Seasonal trains information.
All trains are connected with Limited Express Super Ozora at Kushiro. Even though it is super tight, a day trip from Sapporo to Kushiro marsh can be made.
Norokko is a combination word of “Noroi” and “Torokko” in Japanese. “Noroi” means very slow. Torokko originally means an openair car. This is very popular type of fleet for a cruising train during summer time. On the other hand, this train does not give you any luxury atmosphere. There are the wood bench seats only. But you can enjoy the beautiful scenery and the fresh air from the nature of Hokkaido.
|Kushiro (釧路)||Connect with Limited Express Super Ozora|
|Kushiro Shitsugen (釧路湿原)||Access to Hosooka view point and visitors lounge|
|Toro (塘路)||Access to Lake Toro|
The train crew is on board. They guide about Kushiro marshland (in Japanese) and sell drinks, snacks and souvenirs. Hosooka view point is one of the best point to see Kushiro marshland. It is 20 minutes away from Kushiro Shitsugen station. Be careful that it is not from Hosooka station.
Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko train is extended to operate until October. And also the train goes to Kawayu Onsen from Kushiro via Kushiro marsh.
Please check the latest information at Seasonal trains Schedule.
View Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko in a larger map
Accommodation and train formation
This train is operated by open air observation car (=Torokko in Japanese). But this train has one regular seat car. There are reserved seat and non reserved. But the accommodations are completely same. There are the wood bench seat except one regular seat car (non reserved car).
R=Reserved ordinary seat NR=Non reserved ordinary seat NR(R)=Non reserved ordinary seat (Regular seat car)
I am arriving on a cruise ship on Sunday 10th May 2020, during a port visit to Kushiro. Arrival time is 1000 and departure is 1630. Is it possible to do this train trip in the limited time I will be in port? If it is possible, when can a make a booking. Thank you.
If the schedule will be same as this year, you can make it. Please find the train schedule of 2019 in the link below:
The schedule usually comes out in late January.
Unfortunately there is no online booking. You have to make a booking after arrival in Japan. Or just take the train without booking. But in this case, you cannot get on the open air car. You will stay in the regular seat car.
Takeshi / JPRail.com
I am coming from Shiretoko Shari by the express train (Senmo line forKushiro.
Can I connect with this special train at Toro?
Do I have to get to difference station for this train after I get off from the regular express train?
You can connect these trains at Toro but you have to wait at Toro about 1.5 hours at least. Please check Senmo line trains timetable and Norokko train timetable in the links below:
You can get on and off Norokko trains at any stations.
Takeshi / JPRail.com
I have a question. Can I use Hokkaido Rail Pass with this train? Because I am confusing between Japan Rail Pass and Hokkaido Rail Pass. Thank you for your answer.
This train is covered by Hokkaido Rail Pass. In Hokkaido, both JR pass and Hokkaido rail pass covers same trains.
Takeshi / JPRail.com
When will September 2012 Norokko schedule be available?
Not yet. I think tt is coming late May.
Takeshi / JP Rail