Limited Express Sonic (883 series)

Express train to Oita and Beppu from Fukuoka (Hakata). Limited Express Sonic

Limited Express Sonic (883 series)
Limited Express Sonic (883 series)

This limited express train is one of most popular limited express train that is serviced by JR Kyushu. This connects Hakata and Kokura with Oita and Saeki. If you go to the popular hot springs resort, Beppu, this train is that you need to take after you get off Shinkansen at Kokura or Hakata. Of course this train is fully covered by Japan Rail Pass.

This train is operated by 885 and 883 series. I would like to share the information about this train in this post.

Route, schedule and trip time

This express train connect Hakata with Oita in 2 hours and 30 minutes, and connect Kokura with Oita in 1 hour and 30 minutes. Sonic services run every 20 to 40 minutes for daytime. In most of season, more than 30 round trips are operated a day.

You can check the timetable at JR Kyushu website (English).


View Sonic in a larger map

Stations

Hakata (博多)x
Yoshizuka (吉塚)*
Kashii (香椎)*
Fukuma (福間)*
Togo (東郷)*
Akama (赤間)*
Orio (折尾)x
Kurosaki (黒崎)x
Yahata (八幡)x
Tobata (戸畑)*
Kokura (小倉)x
Shimosone (下曽根)*
Yukuhashi (行橋)x
Unoshima (宇島)*
Nakatsu (中津)x
Yanagigaura (柳ヶ浦)*
Usa (宇佐)*
Kitsuki (杵築)*
Kamegawa (亀川)*
Beppu (別府)x
Oita (大分)x
Tsurusaki (鶴崎)x
Ozai (大在)x
Kosaki (幸崎)x
Usuki (臼杵)x
Tsukumi (津久見)x
Saiki (佐伯)x

x:All trains stop *:some trains stop

Accommodation

Sonic is operated two types of fleets, 885 series and 883 series. 885 is newer than 883. But 883 series has a good seat and more popular.

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

885 series

Limited Express Sonic (885 series)
Limited Express Sonic (885 series)

Sonic which is serviced by this series is called “White Sonic”. 885 series equip the leather seat for both Green and Ordinary. It looks good and have very sophisticated atmosphere, but this seat is a bit slippery and has leather smell.

The seat configuration on Green class 1+1+1 and the seat pitch is 1150 mm. The seat pitch on Ordinary class is 980 mm. The seat in car #2 of some train sets have the power outlet. You will see lots of Japanese modern art in this car. You can enjoy this car as art gallery.

Train formation

123456
GRRRNRNRNR

Images
Green seat Sonic 885 series Green seat Sonic 885 series Green seat Sonic 885 series Green seat Sonic 885 series Green seat Sonic 885 series Green seat

Ordinary seat Sonic 885 series Ordinary seat Sonic 885 series Ordinary seat Sonic 885 series Ordinary seat

Sanitary space Sonic 885 series sanitary space Sonic 885 series sanitary space Sonic 885 series sanitary space Sonic 885 series sanitary space Sonic 885 series sanitary space

Common space Sonic 885 series common space Sonic 885 series common space Sonic 885 series common space Sonic 885 series common space Sonic 885 series common space Sonic 885 series common space Sonic 885 series common space

883 series

This train is called “Wonderland Express”. When this train was introduced, the eccentric design was in the news. But now this train was renovated. This eccentric design had gone. But you will still see some originative items in the car. Green class has a lounge space just behind cockpit. You will get the power outlet at window seat on car#1, both Green and Ordinary.

Train formations

1234567
GRRRNRNRNRNR

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

Images
Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat Sonic 883 series Green seat

Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat Sonic 883 series Ordinary seat

Sanitary space Sonic 883 series sanitary space Sonic 883 series sanitary space Sonic 883 series sanitary space Sonic 883 series sanitary space Sonic 883 series sanitary space

Common space Sonic 883 series common space Sonic 883 series common space Sonic 883 series common space Sonic 883 series common space

51 thoughts on “Express train to Oita and Beppu from Fukuoka (Hakata). Limited Express Sonic”

  1. Hi,
    Could you please tell me from which platform the Sonic 54 to Hakata at 18:11 will leave?
    Thank you!
    Best regards,
    Mic

  2. Hi would you be able to let me know the timetable for jr kyushu limited train such as aso boy, yufuin no mori, sl hitoyoshi for april 2017. Thank you so much.

  3. Dear Takeshi,

    If we take Limited Express Yufuin no Mori train trip from Hakata via JR Rail Pass and we back to Hakata via limited express Sonic also cover by JR Rail Pass, where we should take limited express Sonic transit to Hakata

    thanks,

      1. Thank for answering my question
        But i have more to ask

        1. If i take Yufuin no Mori trip. from Hakata to Beppu, there is some transit. Which transit should i stop and go to look around
        2. Is there at Beppu any a day pass to go attractions place

        Thanks

          1. Thanks again Takeshi san
            Info for buses at Beppu area i just found it. That link so helpful.

            New Questions for you

            1.Kyushu Odan Tokkyu route is from Beppu to Kumamoto according this link.

            http://www.jrkyushu.co.jp/english/train/oudan.jsp

            but why at Kyushu Railway Company Timetable (no 2) only state from Beppu to Aso only. There is missing 2 more station that i can get actual time to arrive at Kumamoto. If there i need to catch any train form Aso or table not up to date, can you help me for this.

            http://www.jrkyushu.co.jp/english/pdf/2016.3.26_2017.2.28.pdf

            Thanks

  4. Hi Takeshi,
    I am planning to get the Northern Kyushuu JR pass, and I am planning to take the Yubuin no Mori to Beppu from Hakata, do you know how I can reserve the sits online with the JR pass?

    Thank you!

  5. Dear Takeshi,
    our first time in Japan, Fukuoka actually..5 days,4nights, and would like to cover Fukuoka, Nagasaki and Beppu. Will buying the 5day Jr pass cheaper or bus commute is a better option. Thanks

    1. Hi diday,

      I don’t have much information about bus. So I cannot compare bus and train.
      Kyushu Rail Pass is a good option anyway. It will be much cheaper than single fare. If you stay in Nagasaki and Beppu for one night each, even 3 days Northern Kyushu Rail Pass 3 days at 8,500 yen is okay.

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  6. Dear Takeshi-San,

    I’m goin to Saiki this Friday dec/18 . What is the last trip from tenjin to Saiki? And also how many hours is the travel time?

    From Saiki goin back to tenjin , what time is the first trip of the train back to tenjin? How much is the ticket also thank you so much! Have a great day! Regards, Fay

  7. HI Takeshi-san,

    First of all, thank you for this website as it helped me very much in planning our trip in Japan.

    Hope you can help me out with my question in a part of our trip.

    We are planning to go to Beppu->Hiroshima via Ltd Exp Sonic then transfer to the fast train Nozomi 44.

    I see from Hyperdia that if we leave Beppu by 14:20 we will arrive at Kokura Station at 15:37, arrival track 4.

    While the Nozomi will be leaving at 15:49 at departure track 13 . MY question is can we make the 12 min transfer between tracks?

    Thank you very much!

    1. Hi Jam san,

      You can do it. Shinkansen platforms are located on 3rd floor and conventional lines (Ltd Sonic) platforms are located on ground floor. But it’s not much far. There are lots of sinage. It takes 5 minutes. Especially if you transfer to Shinkansen, just follow the sign that says Shinkansen. It’s quite easy.

      The following PDF links shows you the map of Kokura. It’s in Japanese but it may help you to find the direction.
      http://www.jrkyushu.co.jp/pdf/kokura_st_kounai.pdf

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  8. Hi, this is our first trip to Japan. We only have 5days 4nights and plan to spend 1 night in Fukuoka then take sonic train to Kamegawa to stay in Beppu Bay 2nights before returning to Fukuoka for 1 night.

    Is it still worth getting the North Kyushu Rail Pass? Will that cover the subway from the Fukuoka International Airport to Hakata and return?

    Thank you.
    Rgds
    Marie

  9. We are planning to travel in North Kyusu in March 2015, using the JR 5 days pass. Can we use this pass to travel from Hakata to Beppu, then from Beppu to Aso, Aso to Kumagawa, from Kumagawa to Nagasaki, and finally from Nagasaki to Fukuoka airport.

  10. This is our first time to Japan and we like to make a trip to Yawata Steel Works.
    I very much like to know how much it will cost travelling with a JR train from Hakata station to Tobato
    and back, where I can find information about the trip. what tickets we should make reservations for and how long the trip will last.
    Thank you for your asistance

    1. Hi Prof. dr. Edward E. E. Frietman,

      Yawata Steel Works is located at Tobata station, not Totato.
      It takes 60 minutes by local train. You don’t need to make a reservation because it’s just commute train.

      If you want to take express train, you can take it. You can find the timetable and fares at Hyperdia.
      http://www.hyperdia.com/en/

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JP Rail

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