What's new

Travel Rail travel in Japan

letslearn

先輩
Joined
Sep 11, 2013
Messages
890
Reaction score
14
East side of Japan from Hokkaido to Tokyo may still have considerable damage from the 311 earthquake and tsunami.
That's Great advice. I hadn't even thought about it. I remember there had been exessive damage, I wonder if some of the lines will never be repaired?
This is why I wan't to start planning now. things such as that you mentioned as well as accomodation that is available etc. Just like Aspenx said
"Trust me, you do not be out in the cold for hours on holiday waiting for some local train/bus just to visit/get out of one "must see" attraction. Much less in the cold of winter"
What if there was no accomodation?
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
Mar 15, 2002
Messages
16,454
Reaction score
2,227
Some of the most rural "stations" are nothing more than a short elevated platform alongside the track in the middle of nowhere, with no staff, no buildings, no waiting room, and perhaps not even an awning.
 

letslearn

先輩
Joined
Sep 11, 2013
Messages
890
Reaction score
14
Some of the most rural "stations" are nothing more than a short elevated platform alongside the track in the middle of nowhere, with no staff, no buildings, no waiting room, and perhaps not even an awning.
I think if I get that rural I will be seeing them soley from the inside of the train. I imagine that a lot of backpakers and campers would enjoy those areas in the summer months though.
 

aspenx

Kouhai
Joined
May 13, 2014
Messages
49
Reaction score
14
What was your favourite destination on your loop of Tohoku?
Fortunately (?), I liked so many places enough to not have a favourite. Also, my trip was done in early summer. The landscape/attraction is totally different. One of my stops was Sakata which was the main filming location for Departures, the first Japanese film to ever win an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film (?). If you have watched the movie, you will agree with me that it is not the best place to be trapped in winter.

Besides Sakata and Matsushima (in Sendai), my loop of Tohoku involved less well-known sites so I'm afraid my information may not be very useful.

Perhaps there is one. At unmanned train "stations", do your very best to find a box that will verify where you have boarded. This ticket will be called a 整理券. Without it, you will have a tough time explaining yourself to the train driver/conductor (often, it is just one person doing both roles) when you alight. You might also end up paying a significant fare.

Of course, this is a non-issue if the train ride is within what is stipulated on the pass you have purchased. For buses, the 整理券 (if required) is to be retrieved after you board. I don't think I have come across any trains that work that way but you might want to do some research on that if you want to be more prepared.
 

aspenx

Kouhai
Joined
May 13, 2014
Messages
49
Reaction score
14
To add on to Mike's comment, there are "stations" out there that nobody but railway maniacs alight/board at. Apparently this "station" that they featured on a TV program had only one old guy using it. He would come down from his house in the mountains to take the train only if he had an errand to run. The "station" is more like an open bus stop with zero amenities.
 

letslearn

先輩
Joined
Sep 11, 2013
Messages
890
Reaction score
14
Fortunately (?), I liked so many places enough to not have a favourite. Also, my trip was done in early summer. The landscape/attraction is totally different. One of my stops was Sakata which was the main filming location for Departures, the first Japanese film to ever win an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film (?). If you have watched the movie, you will agree with me that it is not the best place to be trapped in winter.

Besides Sakata and Matsushima (in Sendai), my loop of Tohoku involved less well-known sites so I'm afraid my information may not be very useful.

Perhaps there is one. At unmanned train "stations", do your very best to find a box that will verify where you have boarded. This ticket will be called a 整理券. Without it, you will have a tough time explaining yourself to the train driver/conductor (often, it is just one person doing both roles) when you alight. You might also end up paying a significant fare.

Of course, this is a non-issue if the train ride is within what is stipulated on the pass you have purchased. For buses, the 整理券 (if required) is to be retrieved after you board. I don't think I have come across any trains that work that way but you might want to do some research on that if you want to be more prepared.
The movie Departures was really enjoyable. I haved watched it many times. I will be getting the appropriate JR card. "Sakata and Matsushima" I will have to look those up.
Thanks everyone for your advice, including the OP and other contributers, the information has been first rate and very beneficial Thank you all for sharing. I hope I have as much fun as others here have had on their rail trips.
 

Toby123

Registered
Joined
Jul 12, 2015
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Does the JR pass include travel from Narita and Haneda airports?
 

Popo Miyagi

Kouhai
Joined
Apr 25, 2019
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
If you're a first-timer, be sure to know the train etiquette on riding trains in Japan! Here's are the few things to remember when riding trains in Japan:
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Top