The Limited Express Kamui and Lilac: Inter-city express between Sapporo and Asahikawa

Limited express train Kamui
The limited express train Kamui

These limited express trains, Kamui and Lilac connect Sapporo and Asahikawa. Kamui and Lilac run on exactly same route. The only difference is accommodation. Lilac has Green seat and Kamui does not. But the reserved ordinary seat of Kamui is called “U seat”. It offers a better seat with some extra equipments. But it is a sort of a reserved ordinary seat, so JR Pass Ordinary covers this seat.

In this post, I will explain about these Lilac and Kamui.

Route and timetable

Kamui and Lilac connect Asahikawa and Sapporo in 1 hour and 25 minutes. These trains run almost every 30 minutes in daytime and operated 24 round trips a day.

You can find the timetable of the major trains in Hokkaido in the link below.

Due to COVID-19, it may be operated on a schedule different from the normal timetable. Check the train schedule on Hyperdia.
Hyperdia perfect guide, train timetable and route search engine

View Super Kamui in a larger map

Seat and facilities

789 series for Lilac (C) Rsa (Own work) GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Both Kamui and Lilic are operated by 789 series. But there are two kinds of 789 series fleets.

As I mentioned, a reserved ordinary seat on Kamui is called “U seat”. Kamui does not have any Green seat, but this “u seat” is more spacious than non reserved ordinary class. Of course you can take this seat without any extra charges on the JR Pass ordinary. U seat also offers a power outlet. You can charge your small device.

Lilac has Green class seat, reserved ordinary seat and non reserved ordinary seat. Reserved seat of Lilac is not called U seat because both reserved and non reserved have same type of accommodation. But reserved seats on car #1 have a power outlet.

*Sonic Rail Garden has copyright for all images of accommodations below.

Train formation

Lilic 6 cars formation


Kamui 5 cars formation


*G=Green seat R=Reserved seat NR=Non reserved seat
Smoking is not allowed on this train.

Images – 789 series (for Kamui)

U seat (reserved ordinary seat)

Ordinary seat (non reserved seat)

Sanitary space

Images – 789 series (for Lilic)

Green seat

Ordinary seat

Sanitary space


  1. Emily says:

    I plan to travel between Asahikawa and Sapporo in the end of July (roundtrip) and was wondering if I could use Seishun 18 kippu for JR train travel between these two cities?

  2. xx says:

    Hi, I’ve been trying to look for the train schedule for both lines bound for Asahikawa but cannot seem to find them anywhere. JR Hokkaido Railway Company’s website doesn’t seem to display the train schedule (anymore). I’ve only managed to find from online articles that these trains depart every 30 minutes but am hoping for more specific timings as we are intending to collect a rental car at Asahikawa Station and would need to tie down a time with the rental car company. Thanks for your help!

  3. Andrea Della Malva says:

    Hi. Which train would be the best choice to go from Hakodate to Sapporo on April 13th?
    Thank you

  4. lily says:

    I want to ask about train bound for Asahikawa. I saw an announcement said that train bound for Asahikawa area have been canceled due to weather on Feb 5, 2019. is it true no train bound for Asahikawa? is there any alternative for going to Asahikawa from Sapporo? Thank you for your help

  5. faizah says:

    is that lilac and kamui covered by jr nationwide pass ?

  6. elisa says:

    I plan to take Norokko Train from Asahikawa to Lavender Farm. When I using,it shows fare (930yen) and reserved seat (520yen). Total is 1450yen, My question is, do I have to buy reserved seat or I can buy only basic fare?

    • Hi Elisa,

      You don’t need to pay for reserved seat fee. You can take this train by only base fare but your seat is not secured. You may need to stand up. In worst case, you cannot take this train if it’s completely full. I cannot say how busy this train will be when you take it.


      Takeshi /

  7. Josephine says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    I am planning to take a train from Sapporo to Asahikawa with luggage/suitcase. I notice in the photo that Kamui has luggage compartment at the back but not on Lilac. Is there luggage storage space on Lilac train? For wheeled suitcase mid to large size. Thanks.

  8. Edwin says:

    I have couple questions about tickets.
    I understand the number of reserved seats tickets is limited so they will be sold out on quickly in July.
    Is there a limit on the number of non-reserved seat tickets per train?
    Will standing be allowed on the non-reserved seat car when it is full?
    Thanks for the information provided in this site.

  9. Paween says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    May I ask you that as I already buy JR PASS (Ordinary pass 29,100Yen for 7 days) for my trip at 11-17 July and I plan to go Biei and Furano 1 day trip, do I have to buy
    a) Furano-Biei train ticket – Price is 6,500Yen
    b) Or Lavender one way ticket – price is 2,500Yen
    Both ticket are in this link in the PDF brochure page 2
    I guess that I don’t need to buy both tickets because I already have JR PASS.

    Last question, as you know I have JR PASS, do I need to buy any local train for station between Furano – Biei station?

    Thanks much for your answer in advance.

  10. Iris says:

    I am landing in CTS at 8:35pm on July 1. I need to get to Asakihawa that night. Are there trains running from CTS to Sapporo to Asakihawa that late at night?

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