The Kyushu Railway Company presents the Kyushu Shinkansen, a Japanese high-speed train often referred to as a bullet train. Launched in 2004, rail the line connects the district of Hakata in Fukuoka Prefecture with the city of Kagoshima, located on the western tip of Kyushu Island (Japan’s southernmost and 3rd-biggest island).
There are two kinds of Kyushu Shinkansen trains presently serving the Hakata to Kagoshima route: the 800 Series and N700 Series. Both trains boast a maximum operating speed of 260kms per hour. Most Kyushu trains provide two seating class options: “Ordinary Car” (basically standard class) and “Green Car” (much like first or business class).
The Kyushu route spans approximately 257 kilometres, with an average travel time of 1 hour, 20 minutes. En route, the train makes a brief stop in several cities which include Kurume, Shin-Omuta, Kumamoto and Izumi (Kagoshima).
Simply purchase a Kyushu Rail Pass to board the Kyushu Shinkansen. This convenient, flexible pass lets you explore the entire island of Kyushu by train or just a specific area of Northern Kyushu. Available as 3 or 5 consecutive travel day passes.
Get your pass to exceptional value and flexibility as you plan an exciting journey through the captivating Kyushu region of Japan!
From: Hakata to Kagoshima
Train stations: Hakata and Kagoshima-Chuo
All stops: Hakata, Shin-Tosu, Kurume, Chikugo-Funagoya, Shin-Omuta, Shin-Tamana, Kumamoto, Shin-Yatsushiro, Shin-Minamata, Izumi, Sendai and Kagoshima-Chuo
Estimated travel time: 80mins.
Travel included with a: Kyushu Rail Pass
Passengers are allowed two pieces of luggage, up to a maximum weight of 60 kg and having total dimensions measuring no more than 250 cm (based on height, length and width). Delivery services are available.
Bicycles are permitted at no extra cost but must be folded or disassembled and packed inside carrying cases.
Small pets including dogs, cats and birds are allowed onboard. However, they must travel in a cage or similar container no bigger than 90 cm (based on height and length) and must weigh less than 10 kg.
Passengers in wheelchairs have access to special seating on the train but must make a request at the station they are boarding from 2 days in advance. Wheelchairs must conform to maximum size requirements and those with steering wheels are generally not allowed. Elevators and escalators at stations are wheelchair-friendly. Strollers can be carried onboard at no extra charge, as long as they are folded and placed either in front of the seat or in the designated luggage compartment.
Marine World Uminonakamichi (Fukuoka)
This public aquarium centers on the marine life of the Tsushima Strait, which separates Japan and Korea. There are 70 tanks in total for visitors to see, housing a variety of sea mammals including dolphins, sea otters, sea lions, spotted seals and 20 different species of sharks.
Tsurumaru Castle (Kagoshima)
Commonly referred to as “Kagoshima Castle”, the Tsurumaru was built in 1601. The castle is renowned for its small size and mediocre build quality, considering it was the main fortress for one of the wealthiest Japanese feudal lords of the time!
Nagashima Museum (Kagoshima)
Opened in 1989, the Nagashima Museum’s art collection consists of roughly a thousand items, all gathered by business tycoon Nagashima Kosuke. Included, are creations by Japanese painter Kuroda Seiki, French sculptor Auguste Rodin, and famed Russian-French artist Marc Chagall.
Tosu Stadium (Tosu)
Formerly the Best Amenity Stadium, this city sports arena was built in 1996 and can seat up to 24,490 spectators. The site is presently used to host the home matches for Sagan Tosu, an up and coming pro football club in Japan’s J1 League.
Tabaruzaka Park (Kumamoto)
Tabaruzaka Park is a site that commemorates an epic and violent 17-day battle that unfolded during the Satsuma Rebellion of 1877, nine years after the revolutionary Meiji Restoration. Park visitors can explore a restored warehouse marred by bullet holes and receive a battle history lesson at the on-site war memorial museum.
Nitta Shrine (Satsumasendai)
Known among the Japanese as the “Good Luck Shrine”, this temple is situated near the top of Mount Shinki; approximately 70 m from ground level. Awaiting visitors to the shrine, are the two magnificent guardian dog statues who stand sentry near the entrance. The site is a tribute to Nitta Yoshioki, a famous 14th century samurai warrior.