Rapid train service to Nara from Osaka by Japan Railway, Yamatoji Rapid Service

221 series Yamatoji rapid at Nara stationKyoto, Nara
Yamatoji Rapid Service by 221 series
Yamatoji Rapid Service by 221 series (C)w0746203-1 (Own work) [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0, GFDL or CC-BY-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Yamatoji Rapid Service is the fastest local train that is operated between Osaka (=大阪) and Nara (=奈良). Most of local tourists take Kintetsu line (近鉄) to Nara. Because they have many more trains and very frequent. If you travel in Japan without Japan Rail Pass, you may use Kintetsu line. But most of travellers from foreign countries use Japan Rail Pass. So this Rapid Service is your best choice, because you don’t need to pay any extra by Japan Rail Pass. This line used to be very local and inconvenient. But JR West upgrade the trains and operate many Rapid trains. It is very convenient and frequent departure these days.

And there is no limited express train to Nara. So this Yamatoji Rapid Service is the fastest and best choice for accessing from Osaka.

Route, schedule and trip time

View Yamatoji Rapid Service (大和路快速) in a larger map


Sign of Yamatoji Rapid Service
Sign of Yamatoji Rapid Service

Most of trains are operated between Tennoji (=天王寺) and Nara (=奈良). In daytime, this Rapid Service is operated every 15-20 minutes between Tennoji and Nara, and every 30-40 minutes between Tennoji and Kamo (=加茂). Some of the trains extended to operate to Gojo (=五条) or Takada (=高田) on Wanakayama line (=和歌山線).

This Rapid Service departs from Tennoji and goes on Osaka Kanjo line (=大阪環状線) via Tsuruhashi (=鶴橋) and Kyobashi (=京橋) to Osaka (=大阪). Then it still goes on Osaka Kanjo line to Tennoji via Nishikujo and Bentencho. After making one circle trip on Osaka Kanjo line, this train takes Kansai line (=関西本線) to Nara.


Yamatojil Rapid Service stop at these following stations:

Tennoji-(stop at all stations on Osaka Kanjo line via Tsuruhashi and Kyobashi)-Osaka-Nishikujo-Bnetencho-Taisho-Shinimamiya-Tennoji-Kuhoji_Oji… After stop at Oji, all trains stop at all stations.

Travel time

Average travel time among the major sections are as follows:
Osaka – Nara about 55 minutes
Tennoji – Nara about 35 minutes

If you think about taking this train from Tsuruhashi or Kyobashi, don’t take this train. Take Osaka Kanjo line to Tennoji directly. (Opposite way to Osaka) Then take Yamatoji Rapid Service at Tennoji. It is much faster.


Yamatoji Rapid Service is operated by 221 series.


(C) w0746203-1 (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(C) R3’s web site


  1. Eddie says:

    Hi, got a late flight touching down at Kansai 9:45pm, what are the options from there to Nara station?

    Seems tough, considering the time needed to check out of the immigration.

  2. Vera says:

    Hi Takeshi San~

    Can I use Kansai area pass for Yamatoji Rapid service? Thank you!

  3. Jim says:

    Hi, I have the JR PASS, what is the best way to travel :
    1) from Osaka to Nagoya?
    2) from Osaka to Nara
    3) from Osaka to Kyoto
    4) what time is the first departure on shinkasen from shin-osaka station?

  4. Tiffany says:

    I’m traveling to Nara from Shin-Osaka station with a JR pass. Do I use the JR pass from Shin-Osaka to Tennoji then switch to Yomatoji Line? Do I need to get off and transfer train at this point? Thanks.

  5. Ivan says:


    We’ll be staying in Shin-Osaka and would be visiting Nara. We’ll be getting the Kansai Wide Area Pass. According to JP website it says that Rapid Services is included in the pass. Just like to confirm with you experts if this is true? and can we use “Yamatojil Rapid Service”?


  6. Ting says:

    Thank you very much for your kind reply and assistance.

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