How many cool Japan trains did you know? ~ West Japan ③~

Do you like Japan's trains? There are so many different kinds with varying design, speed, and function, let alone the range of shinkansen (bullet trains)! Here we take a look at a few of them. 

"National Railway Series 103": a popular colorful workhorse

The JNR Series 103 is an EMU (electric multiple unit) commuter train designed and manufactured by Japanese National Railways and introduced in 1963. It is 10 years since the trains stopped operating in urban areas and the number of cars still running in Japan is decreasing.

Series 103 trains distinguished by their orange-red color ran on the Osaka Loop Line for about 48 years since 1969 until the last service on 3rd October 2017.

On the last day of operation, many railway enthusiasts gathered from early morning at station platforms along the line to bid the train a sad farewell. 

Shirasagi: The "Egret" Crossing Japan

Shirasagi, named after the small white heron that is a familiar site along streams and in rice paddies and is a limited express train which is runs on the Tokaido Main Line and Hokuriku Main Line between Nagoya and Kanazawa via Maibara. You can enjoy beautiful scenery along the way as the train traverses three prefectures, Aichi, Gifu, and Ishikawa, passing through many hot-spring towns nestling in the Japanese Alps. If you get off at Maibara, you can visit nearby Sekigahara, the scene of the battle in 1600 that changed Japanese history and led to the establishment of the Tokugawa shogunate.

If you want to visit Gifu city, the Shirasagi is convenient because you can travel in shinkansen-style comfort from Nagoya or Kanazawa without transferring since there is no shinkansen service to Gifu station. 

"Kounotori 289 series": Single seats and wheelchair compatible

Kounotori, which is name for the stork which is the prefectural bird of Hyogo, went into service in October 2015, and operates between Kyoto/Shin-Osaka and Wakayama/Nanki. [Unfortunately it cannot be seen because it is currently under "Kounotori operation”, but it is really a luxury train.]  With the upgrade to Series 289, the cars have single seats which allow space for wheelchairs.

Please experience comfortable single seat travel in Japan!

What did you think of this? Which one of these trains have you taken before? Are there any of the trains we introduced that you want to try? Please share your opinion with us in the comment section!

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