Guide to plan your trip. How to find Japan Railway’s timetables


If you are looking for the timetable of Shinknasen or major limited express trains, try to find it on JR Groups websites. Otherwise you can check the timetables on the following site, Hyperdia.


Hyperdia covers all railway lines and domestic flights schedule. This is the best website and help you to build your itinerary. It is simple but a bit tricky to use. Please see the other post, Hyperdia perfect guide, train timetable and route search engine. I show you everything about Hyperdia in this post.

JR Group’s website

All JR companies except JR West have English website and show some timetables.

JR Hokkaido timetable

JR Hokkaido is doing good job. They have all limited express trains, such as Super Kamui, Super Ozora, Super Hokuto and more, overnight express Hamanasu and most of local trains! Some of local trains are not on the timetable. But I think this is enough for the tourists from other countries.

JR East timetable

This website show you the timetables of Tohoku Shinkansen, Joetsu Shinkansen, Nagano Shinakansen, Akita Shinkansen, Yamagata Shinaksen, Narita Express, Odoriko/Super View Odoriko, Nikko/Kinugawa, Super Azusa/Azusa/Kaiji, Hakutaka and Super Hitachi/Hitachi. These are only trains that can be reserved online in ALL JR TRAINS.
This does not show any overnight trains, such as Cassiopeia, Hokutosei, Sunrise Izumo, Sunrise Seto and Akebono. And these overnight trains cannot be reserved online either.

JR Central (JR Tokai) timetable

This website shows the timetable of Tokaido Shinkansen between Tokyo and Shin-Osaka.
Westbound (from Tokyo to Shin-Osaka) | Eastbound (from Shin-Osaka to Tokyo)
This website does not show other JR Central trains, such as Wide View Hida, Shinano, Wide View Nanki.

JR West timetable

You are able to find the timetables in the middle of the link above.

It shows you the timetables for Sanyo Shinkansen (Shin Osaka-Hakata), Haruka (Kansai airport-Shin Osaka/Kyoto), Thunderbird (Osaka-Kanazawa/Toyama), Kuroshio (Kyoto/Shin Osaka-Shingu) and Kinosaki/Konotori/Hashidate/Hamakaze (Osaka/Kyoto-Kinosaki Onsen).

JR Shikoku timetable

JR Shikoku has English website. But it shows the timetables in Japanese. They put the numbers on all JR Shikoku stations and mention how to read Japanese timetable. However it is too complicated to read. I recommend to use Hyperdia.

JR Kyushu timetable

You can find the timetable of Kyushu Shinkansen and all limited express trains in Kyushu, such as Kamome, Sonic, Trans-Kyushu Limited Express, Hayato no Kaze, Umisachi-Yamasachi and more.

180 thoughts on “Guide to plan your trip. How to find Japan Railway’s timetables”

  1. Hi Takeshi san,

    We are visiting Japan next year and will go to Nagoya first. What is the earliest train and or bus ride from Nagoya to Osaka? We plan to leave Nagoya earliest possible to check-in at our hotel in Osaka and hoping to reach USJ before it opens.

    Thank You!

  2. Hi Takeshi,

    I bought the JR pass. I will be from USJ and heading back to Tokyo. How do I check for the last train back to Tokyo? I’ve tried to use Hyperdia, but it states that the last Shinkansen (Hikari) is at 8:20+pm. I assumed that the Shinkansen would end later than that. where can I double check this?


          1. Hello Takeshi-san,

            I understand that. I did look at the PDF. My question is, how do you read the timetable itself to figure out 20:37 is the last Hikari? It’s so confusing; so would appreciate the help of someone knowledgeable. Thank you 🙂

          2. Hi 日本が大好き,

            You can find “H”, “N”, “K”, “S” and “M” in the top of the table. These are train names, Hikari, Nozomi, Kodama, Sakura and Mizuho. Now you can find “Hikari 538” which leave from Shin-Osaka at 20:37. After this train, there are some more trains to Tokyo. But all of trains to Tokyo after 20:37 are “N” which means Nozomi. This is not covered by JR pass. If you need some more info about Shinkansen, please refer the link below:


            Takeshi /

          3. たけしさん、
            いろいろ教えてくれて、ありがとうございました! ^_^

  3. Hi Sanjay
    We will be in Japan this October,, is it possible to visit Hakone -to 5th station on 1 day.
    My plan is start from Tokyo at 6 am ( we already bought JR pass) to Odawara – buy Hakone Pass . At lunch take direct bus from Gotemba to Kawaguchiko station to 5th station.
    From 5th station to Tokyo ( hoping for a direct bus).
    Is this posssible in one day?

    1. Hi Hazel,

      You can do but you need to get Fuji Hakone Pass at Odawara.

      Please see the timetable in the links below.

      You must complete Hakone in the morning. And after lunch, you need to leave Hakone. Otherwise you cannot have a time at 5th station.

      By the way, Sanjay is one of reader.


      Takeshi /

  4. Takeshi san,
    Kon ban ha. Can you please inform me how to travel in Hiroshima from Gembaku Dome Mae station to Miyajimaguchi station, by using JR PASS to best possible way.

  5. Hi!
    We are travelling to Japan and want to plan a visit to Tateyama Kurobe Alpen route on Oct 28 from Kanazawa. We want to buy Tateyama Kurobe Option ticket along with JR pass. I am planning to take a return journey to Kanazawa via Nagano. Please suggest best route I should follow.

      1. Takeshi san, Mail o arigatou gozaimasu.
        As I am staying in Kanazawa and has JR PASS, I need recommendation from you
        1. Whether I should do Alpen route as Kanazawa – Tateyama – Nagano – Kanazawa


        Kanazawa – Nagano – Tateyama – Kanazawa

        2. I want to travel on October 28, 2017. Where can I buy Tateyama – Kurobe Alpen Route Option ticket? Can I buy it on Narita Airport on October 17, 2017 or at Kanazawa on October 26?
        Onegai shimasu.

        Sanjay Ranade

        1. Hi Sanjay san,

          1. I recommend you to take Kanazawa-Tateyama-Nagano-Kanazawa. If you go to Nagano first, you will spend many more minutes to get Alpine route.

          2. You can purchase it at Narita. You can pick up the date to use the ticket when you purchase.


          Takeshi /

  6. Hi!. My family is visiting our friends in Misawa. We are arriving early morning of June 27, 2017 at about 7:00 am. i am looking at the timetable of the JR Tohoku line but the train schedule is rather confusing for me. Since we are coming in through Narita Terminal 1 airport i believe we will be taking the Narita express going to Tokyo and then get on a shinkasen train to Hachinohe where our friends are picking us up.

    We will be purchasing our JR East Pass for 5 days online but i need to know, if the trains (Tohoku Line and Nex) operate 24 hours and if not, what is the earliest trip from Hachinohe to tokyo to Narita so we can catch our 9:15 am flight back to the Philippines. Or should we just stay around narita airport the day before to make sure we get on our flight on time.

  7. Hi Takeshi-San,
    It’s joyful shinkansen between echigo-yuzaw and niigata operating in august?
    Also can I reserve shikoku ‘s 麵包超人(bread superman)train before I head to shikoku? I’m afraid it’s quite popular and need to be reserved in advance.

    1. Hi Joe san,

      Those trains will run in August but not sure which date these will run now. The operation dates will be released in late May.
      I think you mean Anpanman train. You can book a seat in advance at any major JR station.


      Takeshi /

  8. Hi Takesi,

    I have a draft itinerary for my Japan trip in Oct, but i am not very confident with my plans. If you could advise me on the routes, transportation or maybe change of city it would be really great.

    Day 1Arrive in Narita and head to Kyoto
    Day 2 Kyoto
    Day 3 Kyoto
    Day 4 Takayama
    Day 5 Shirawakago
    Day 6 Kanazawa
    Day 7 Alpine Route
    Day 8 Matsumoto
    Day 9 Hakone
    Day 10 Toyko
    Day 11 Northern Tohoku
    Day 12 Northern Tohoku
    Day 13 Tokyo
    Day 14 Tokyo and fly back to Australia

    I have a feeling this trip will be very hectic and messy, but i would love to go to the alpine regions. A bit of dilemma and uncertainty.

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