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I hope this website will help you to travel by rail in Japan!

4,789 thoughts on “Forums”

  1. Hi Takeshi,

    I will be travelling solo to Japan at the end of Nov.

    Question 1: Will the JR Rail Pass be applicable if I land in Osaka and intend to take a train from Osaka to Naoshima? Will it also cover the ferry ride?

    Question 2: I understand the JR Pass covers Hiroshima and Miyajima?

    Question 3: If these are the only places i intend to cover, would it be better to buy individual tickets or just purchase JR Pass Green?

    Your help would be much appreciated.

    1. Hi Danielle,

      1. Ferry is not covered. You can get Uno station.

      2. Yes.

      3. JR pass is too expensive. You cannot get the worth of it. I recommend you to use Kansai Hiroshima area pass. It does not cover ferry for Uno to Naoshima either. But you can get Uno, Hiroshima and Miyajima by this pass.


      Takeshi /

  2. Hi Takeshi,
    My family of 5 will be arriving at Narita Airport on 4 Dec for 9 days trip. What pass should we purchase? Below are our itinerary:
    Dec4 Narita to Shinjuku
    Dec5 Mt. Fuji day trip
    Dec6 karuizawa day trip
    Dec 7 Tokyo
    Dec 8 Tokyo or Nikko day trip
    Dec 9 Tokyo to Kyoto
    Dec10 kyoto
    Dec11 kyoto back to Tokyo
    Dec 12 Tokyo to Narita Airport

    Thank you in advance


  3. Dear Takeshi

    I wish to use the JR Kansai Hokuriku Pass to get from Okayama to Itoigawa (my destination is actually Hakuba). May I check with you if the Limited Express Thunderbird, Shinkansen Hakutaka, Shinkansen Sakura, Shinkansen Kodama, and Shinkansen Hikari can be used with this pass? And as long as I do not book a reserved seat, the pass will cover these rides?
    Thank you.

      1. If I book unreserved seats, do I still have to pay for the seat fee when using this pass?
        It becomes very expensive if the unreserved seat fees in the shinkansen are added on the costs.

        1. Hi Rin,

          It’s covered. You can take non reserved seat car without any additional tickets. All you have to do is showing your pass at the ticket gate, find the seat on non reserved seat car and ride on the train.


          Takeshi /

  4. Hello!
    Visiting to Kansai region 4 adults and would like some ideas/suggestions/comments on my current itinerary covering the Kansai region and which passes should we get.
    Will be landing at KIX in end-November for 10 days. As the first arrival time is night time and departure in the morning on last day, so the actual sightseeing is 8 days – Kyoto -> Nara -> Osaka & day trip to Kobe and Himeji area
    Day 1: Transfer from KIX to Kyoto hotel about mid night time.
    MIMARU KYOTO HORIKAWA ROKKAKU -> Fushimi Inari Shrine – visit early 7am -> Kiyomizu temple and street ->Around Yasaka shrine area -> Gion area walking -> Dinner at Pontocho
    MIMARU KYOTO HORIKAWA ROKKAKU -> Kinkakuji temple -> Tenryuji garden -> Bamboo grove -> Togetsukyo bridge -> Kyoto Station
    Day 4: MIMARU KYOTO HORIKAWA ROKKAKU -> Kyoto station for breakfast -> day trip to Nara transfer to Osaka, use luggage locker to store our luggage.
    Nara Park -> Todaiji -> Nigatsudo -> Kasuga Taisha
    Check in hotel near to Kishinosato station.
    Evening time to explore ”Shinsekai” or Namba shopping street
    Day 5: Kobe
    Day 6: Kobe factory outlet by direct bus or train?? /Himeji
    Day 7: Himeji/Hiroshima
    Day 8: Osaka
    Day 9: Osaka
    Day 10: 7am morning transfer from Tengachaya station (Nankai line) to KIX , 11am flight back home.
    As we are 4 adults traveling together;
    Consider taking taxi for Kyoto sightseeing Hotel to Fushimi Inari Shrine, Hotel to Kinkakuji temple and from Kinkakuji temple to Arashiyama area.
    Day 1 to day 3 is fixed, should I get any pass for the Kyoto sightseeing.
    Should I get the ICOCA to reduce the hassle to buy train/bus ticket?
    Day 4: can be changeable whether to do Nara or Kobe first. If move from Kyoto->Nara->Osaka (Kishinosato station or Tengachaya station).
    Should I get any pass such as JR pass or Kintetsu rail pass.
    Is JR Haruka covered by JR Kansai Hiroshima Area Pass?

    1. Hi Wilson,

      You require Kansai Hiroshima Area Pass from day 4 because you go to Hiroshima. I don’t recommend you to visit Hiroshima and Himeji on same day. Trip to Hiroshima is such a big trip:

      This pass coves only JR trains. It doesn’t cover subway, city bus and other bus, such as direct bus to outlet. You may add Kansai one pass on top of it. It’s same as ICOCA but this card offers discount at many attractions:

      You can use Kansai Hiroshima area pass to get Nara, Kobe and Himeji. But you can get the worth of this pass by only trip to Hiroshima easily.

      You don’t need any passes in Kyoto because you will take a taxi. You may use Kansai one pass in Osaka too but you can find other deal in the link below:

      Kansai Hiroshima area pass covers Haruka. But if you want to take it, you have to start using it on day 6. In this case, you have to go to Osaka on day 4 and do sightseeing in Osaka on day 4 and 5. You can visit Kobe, Himeji, Hiroshima, Nara after day 6.


      Takeshi /

  5. Hello,
    I noticed your page about Tennoji Station. As I will probably stay in APA Hotel Tennoji ekimae near the station, I would like to ask: Is there any way to get to the hotel from Tennoji station without crossing the pedestrian bridge outside? I have 2 elderly parents and it would be difficult to climb the stairs carrying suitcases.

    any information is appreciated

    1. Hi Christian,

      Actually I’m not 100% sure but probably no. There are lots of bridge and underground path. But mostly there is stairs only. Probably you can go to the hotel by crossing walk but it may be walking more. I have never walked from the station to this hotel. I cannot say much. When you arrive in Tennoji, you may call to your hotel and ask the best route. I think they know it.


      Takeshi /

  6. Thanks for the reply.

    Would you know where I can find a copy of the train diagram for the Tohoku Shinkansen?

    Train Diagrams seem to be popular with Japanese Train enthusiasts and are regularly published in magazines.

    But my english language searches can only find some Tokaido ones.

  7. Hi Takeshi,

    I am hoping to spend a little time watching trains pass at full speed on the Tohoku Shinkansen.

    1. Would you know which station/s have trains passing at near top speed? I was thinking maybe Ichinoseki.

    2. Where can I find the passing times for the trains not stopping at stations? For example, I was planning on visiting Ichinoseki to watch Hayabusa 10 and 3 pass through.



    1. Hi Pete,

      1. It’s hard to say. The top speed is 320km/h and train reach this speed between Utsunomiya Sendai, and between Sendai and Morioka. I don’t know which segment the train runs at this speed.

      2. It’s hard to say too. It’s not shown on the timetable. All we can do is comparing Hayabusa and Yamabiko (or Hayate) timetable and calculate the travel time for each segment.


      Takeshi /

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