Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Birthday Trip to Japan in June 2013 ~ Section 5

Welcome to the fifth section of my birthday vacation in Japan in June 2013. This will be the final section of the report. The main topic that will be covered in this section will mainly be the return journey to Singapore from Tokyo (Narita) via Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi).

Part 1 ~ The Journey to Narita International Airport

After spending 12 days of enjoyable sightseeing, shopping and railways in Japan for a special birthday vacation, it was finally time to head back home to Singapore.

Part 2 ~ The Flight to Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi)

Airline: Thai Airways International
Flight No.: TG 643
From: Tokyo, Narita International Airport (NRT / RJAA), Narita, Chiba, Japan
To: Bangkok, Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK / VTBS), Bangkok, Thailand
Aircraft: Boeing 777-35R/ER
Registration No.: HS-TKT (Named "Srivibha")
Class: Royal Silk Class (Business Class)
Seat No.: 14K
Date: Monday, 17 June 2013

Part 3 ~ The Flight Back Home to Singapore

Airline: Thai Airways International
Flight No.: TG 401
From: Bangkok, Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK / VTBS), Bangkok, Thailand
To: Singapore Changi Airport (SIN / WSSS), Singapore
Aircraft: Boeing 777-2D7
Registration No.: HS-TJG (Named "Pattani")
Class: Royal Silk Class (Business Class)
Seat No.: 15A
Date: Monday, 17 June 2013

Pannada, I shall call her,

Monday, June 17, 2013

Birthday Trip to Japan in June 2013 ~ Section 4

Welcome to the fourth section of my special birthday vacation to Japan in June 2013. There will be a total of four topics that will be covered in this section. They will mainly be spending a day in Hakone and Gotemba Premium Outlets with a dear old friend, my Shinkansen train journey from Odawara to Hiroshima, another trip to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) and staying overnight at the ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Narita.

Part 1 ~ Spending a Day on a Boat Cruise in Hakone & the Gotemba Premium Outlets With a Dear Old Friend

The next morning, which was Thursday (13 June), we all woke up at around ten o' clock in the morning, after a well-earned good night's sleep. According to my parents, we would be meeting up with a dear old friend, by the name of Miss Yuko Yasuda, who taught me Japanese a few years ago. Together with Ms. Yasuda, we would go on a boat cruise around Lake Ashi in the town of Hakone, and to the Gotemba Premium Outlets.

With all of us up, we had a shower and changed into our day's attires before commencing the day. By the time we had finished preparing ourselves for the day, the clock was already showing 10.50 a.m.. We then headed down to the open-air car parking area, where we managed to find our car. On the way towards Hakone, we would stop over at Odawara Station to fetch Ms. Yasuda, who would arrive from Ikebukuro in Tokyo by the JR Tokaido Main Line.

We then left the compound of the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa at eleven o' clock towards Odawara Station to fetch Ms. Yasuda. Upon arriving at Odawara Station, I went into the Shinkansen concourse to wait for Ms. Yasuda. Once she had arrived, I escorted her to our rented car, where she was seated just behind my dad. Feeling quite hungry, we decided to stop at a restaurant somewhere near Hakone for lunch first upon leaving Odawara Station.


The view of my bedroom with the Western style beds shortly after we had woken up

Our rented car in the car parking area just before we left

Climbing down the hilly road from the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

The beautiful view of Sagami Bay from our car on the way to Odawara Station

The Tokaido Main Line trestle bridge between Odawara and Hayakawa Stations

Approaching Odawara Station

Arriving at a waiting area outside Odawara Station

Driving by a lush green hill between Odawara and Hakone

After driving from the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa via Odawara Station for approximately 35 minutes, we finally arrived at a local restaurant called Chowaro (千世倭樓) at 11.35 a.m.. This local restaurant in Odawara is said to specialise in soba noodles. While my dad went to park the car, we went into the restaurant and requested a table for the five of us. With the food and beverage menus distributed to us, we made a review through them before placing our orders for lunch.

In the menu of Chowaro, most of the food items in the menu came as set meals. After having a good review through the food and beverage menus, all the five of us made our lunch orders as the waitress came over to our table. While the others had their own set meals such as fish and tempura, I ordered myself a nice and tender beef stew lunch set. That afternoon, we all had a sumptuous lunch at Chowaro Restaurant Odawara before heading for a day cruise around Lake Ashi in the popular resort town of Hakone.


The exterior entrance to Chowaro Restaurant Odawara

The cover page for the food and beverage menu of Chowaro Restaurant Odawara

Reviewing the food and beverage menu of Chowaro Restaurant Odawara

The interior view of Chowaro Restaurant Odawara

A beancurd pot set for Ms. Yasuda

A nice, mouthwatering beef stew set for myself

A grilled hamburg steak set for my younger brother

After finishing our lunch sets at Chowaro Restaurant Odawara, we were all ready to resume our journey towards the popular tourist attraction town of Hakone. We headed over to the main reception counter to pay our bill, and headed out of the restaurant towards the car parking area just outside it.

Once we were all on board the car, we finally resumed our journey towards the popular resort town of Hakone towards the pier of Lake Ashi. On the way towards the boat cruise pier located at Lake Ashi, we passed by several lush and beautiful-looking green forests and waterfalls.


The interior view of Chowaro Restaurant Odawara just before we left for Hakone

The car parking area located just outside Chowaro Restaurant Odawara

Several restaurant areas located just across Chowaro Restaurant Odawara

Bypassing a lush green forest on the way towards the popular tourist resort town of Hakone

A lush green mountain covered in mists on the way to Hakone

Driving along a forested road on the way towards the Lake Ashi Hakone Pier

Bypassing a closed shophouse in the town of Hakone

After travelling along the forested roads between Odawara and Hakone, we finally arrived at the Lake Ashi Hakone Pier at 1.25 p.m.. Having all our belongings with us, we went into the boat cruise ticket office located inside the pier. There, we purchased tickets for the five of us on a boat cruise towards Togendai.

As it was a rainy day, we all had our umbrellas. Unfortunately, the wind blow was so strong that my umbrella was completely destroyed. To make up for this, my mum decided to lend me her mini umbrella. This was until I was to purchase another umbrella later on to replace the one that was damaged by the strong wind blow.


The car parking area near the Lake Ashi Hakone Town Pier

The view of Lake Ashi from the Hakone Town Pier

The boat cruise platform at the Hakone Town Pier

The Lake Ashi pirate ship-shaped boat, named Vasa, nearing the Hakone Town Port at Lake Ashi

The view of Lake Ashi with the Vasa pirate ship boat cruise approaching the pier

The interior of Hakone Town Port at Lake Ashi

The boat ticket office in Hakone Town Port at Lake Ashi

The departure information board in Hakone Town Port at Lake Ashi

After purchasing our First Class tickets for the Lake Ashi boat cruise, we checked the boat departure information board to see what time the nearest boat cruise bound for Togendai would leave the pier. According to the departure information board, the nearest boat bound for Togendai would depart Hakone Town Pier at 1.40 p.m..

Once the boat was ready for boarding, we walked along the pier and boarded the green pirate ship-shaped boat cruise known as Vasa. Upon stepping foot into the boat, we went up towards the uppermost deck, where the First Class seatings were located. Just below the First Class cabin, there is a small counter selling snacks and refreshments.

At exactly 1.40 p.m., the ship doors on the main deck were closed, and the Lake Ashi Vasa boat cruise bound for Togendai finally pulled out of the Hakone Town Pier for a journey time of 35 minutes towards Togendai via Moto-hakone. The views around Lake Ashi were extremely breathtaking and we all managed to pose for some photgraphs to be taken as part of very good remembrances, and for me to publish onto this blog report.


The green Lake Ashi pirate ship-shaped boat cruise, named Vasa, as we begin to make our way to the boarding entrance to the boat cruise

On the second floor deck area of the Vasa on the Lake Ashi boat cruise

The interior of the First Class cabin on board the Vasa boat on the Lake Ashi boat cruise

About to depart the Hakone Town Pier for a cruise around Lake Ashi

The main deck area of the Lake Ashi Vasa boat cruise

My parents posing for a photograph on the deck area of the Lake Ashi Vasa boat cruise

My younger brother, Ms. Yasuda and myself posing for a photograph on board the Lake Ashi Vasa boat cruise

Some lush green mountain views from Lake Ashi on board the boat cruise between Hakone Town Pier and Moto-hakone

The staircase towards the lower levels of the Lake Ashi Vasa boat cruise towards the lower decks

A bottle of Coca-cola and a packet of Oreo cookies purchased from the refreshment counter below

Bypassing a floating shrine in Lake Ashi as we approach the Moto-hakone Pier. I will be seeing something like this when I travel to Hiroshima the next day

Approaching Moto-hakone Pier

Some cloudy lush green mountain views of Lake Ashi between Moto-hakone and Togendai

The doorway towards the deck area from the cabin

Ms. Yasuda and I posing for a photograph in our seats

The beautiful but cloudy view of Lake Ashi from the boat cruise as we approach the Togendai Pier terminal

Approaching the Togendai Pier terminal

Finally docking onto Togendai Pier

After a very breathtaking boat cruise along Lake Ashi of 35 minutes, we finally arrived at the Togendai terminal pier at 2.15 p.m.. Having all our belongings with us, we alighted the boat and went into the pier building to keep warm. Pondering on what to do next, we decided to go for a cable car ride on the Hakone Ropeway between Togendai and Sounzan Stations and vice-versa. We then took the escalator up to the top floor of Togendai Pier and went to the nearest ticket office to purchase our Hakone Ropeway tickets.

Upon purchasing our round-trip cable car tickets from the Hakone Ropeway ticket office at Togendai Station, we walked along the staircase and a passageway, which led towards the Hakone Ropeway cable car platform. Upon reaching the platform at 2.40 p.m., we saw that there were several cable cars lining up for their passengers, though I could tell that we were the only passengers first.

Once the movable rope was opened by the station attendant, we were allowed to board the nearest cable car, which was painted blue and had the number 213 on it. Once we boarded the cable car, the doors closed, and we finally left Togendai Station for the scenic and breathtaking cable car ride through the mountains and mists. The journey time between Togendai and Sounzan took approximately 20 minutes.


The Hakone Sightseeing Cruise pier at Togendai Pier

The Hakone Ropeway ticketing concourse in Togendai Station

About to purchase our round-trip cable car tickets for the Hakone Ropeway

A cafeteria located in the ticketing concourse of the Hakone Ropeway in Togendai Station

A Hakone Ropeway model display by the ticketing office

Walking down the staircase towards the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise ticketing concourse

The Hakone Sightseeing Cruise ticketing concourse during the mid-afternoon hours

The passageway towards the Hakone Ropeway cable car platform in Togendai Station

The Hakone Ropeway cable car platforms at Togendai Station

The blue Hakone Ropeway cable car No. 213 which we would soon board towards Sounzan

About to pull out of Togendai Station

The beautiful view of Lake Ashi from the Hakone Ropeway cable car shortly after departing Togendai Station

Travelling above a bathhouse by an evergreen forest in the town of Hakone

The interior of the blue Hakone Ropeway cable car No. 213 with my parents and younger brother in the picture

About to stop at Ubako Station

A very rainy view of some lush green mountain forests after departing Ubako Station

Bypassing some mountain green forests on the way to Sounzan

The interior of the blue Hakone Ropeway cable car No. 213

The panoramic view of the Hakone Ropeway funicular cable lines as we near Sounzan

Bypassing one more forest before arriving at the Sounzan terminal station

The view of a volcano, named Owakudani, as we approach the Sounzan terminal station

After a short 20-minute ride on the Hakone Ropeway cable car from Togendai, we finally arrived at the terminal station, Sounzan, located at the top of the mountain at 3 o' clock. As we were to alight the cable car once we had reached the terminal station, we got off the cable car and had to go through the queuing passageway again before boarding another cable car bound for Togendai.

Soon, as we lined up again in the queuing line for the cable car, the station staff opened the rope to allow us to board the next cable car for the return trip towards Togendai. This time, we would board a red-liveried cable with the number 206 for the return trip between Sounzan and Togendai. Upon boarding the cable car, the doors were closed, and we finally departed Sounzan Station at 3.02 p.m. for another 20-minute return trip towards Togendai.


The Hakone Ropeway cable car platforms at Sounzan Station

The red Hakone Ropeway cable car No. 206 which we would soon board back to Togendai

About to pull out of Sounzan Station

The view of a volcano, named Owakudani, as we depart Sounzan Station

The beautiful mountain forest view as we head back down towards Togendai

The beautiful forest view with a narrow road as we head back down towards Togendai

Bypassing Ubako Station again

The beautiful view of Lake Ashi as we approach the Togendai terminal station

Finally approaching the Togendai terminal station

After a very scenic 20-minute ride on the Hakone Ropeway cable car, we finally arrived at the Togendai terminal station at 3.22 p.m.. Having all our belongings with us, we alighted the cable car and went down towards the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise concourse of the station in order to purchase our return boat cruise tickets towards the Hakone Town Pier.

We then went to check the departure information board to see what time the last Hakone Sightseeing Boat Cruise bound for Hakone Town Pier would depart. According to the ship departure information board, the last boat cruise bound for Hakone Town Pier would depart Togendai Pier at 3.40 p.m.. Without wasting anymore time, we went down the staircase towards the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise ticketing office to purchase our return boat cruise tickets towards Hakone Town Pier.


The beautiful view of Lake Ashi from the Hakone Ropeway platforms at Togendai Station

The stairway down to the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise ticketing concourse at Togendai Station & Pier

The Hakone Sightseeing Cruise ticketing concourse in the late afternoon hours

After purchasing our return Hakone Sightseeing Cruise tickets back to Hakone Town Pier, we rested in the waiting room before we were allowed to board the nearest boat cruise to Hakone Town Pier. Soon enough, all the passengers bound for Hakone Town Pier were finally allowed to board the boat cruise at 3.30 p.m., which was just in good time for a 3.40 p.m. departure from Togendai Pier.

Having all our belongings with us, we walked through the jetty and boarded a red-liveried Hakone Sightseeing Cruise boat, known as Royal II. There, we boarded the boat, and went upstairs into the luxurious First Class cabin located on the upper deck of the boat. The First Class cabin was very bright and looked something like a traditional ship interior in the old days. Like all other Hakone Sightseeing Cruise boats, there was a small refreshment stand selling snacks and beverages on the main deck.

At exactly 3.40 p.m., all the ship doors were closed, and the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise Royal II ship finally pulled out of the Togendai Pier. Like the previous journey, the return trip between Togendai and Hakone Town Pier took no more than half an hour. The scenery of Lake Ashi was very spectacular and breathtaking, as always.


The pier of Togendai Pier with two Hakone Sightseeing Cruise boats in front of us

The beautiful view of Lake Ashi just before we boarded the Royal II Hakone Sightseeing Cruise boat bound for Hakone Town Pier

The refreshment counter on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi

The Standard Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi

The deck area on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi

About to depart Togendai Pier

The outer seating area on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi

The First Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi

The First Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi before we departed Togendai Pier

Finally departing Togendai Pier

The view of Lake Ashi First Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi shortly after departing Togendai Pier

My mum posing for a photograph in the First Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi

The First Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi between Togendai Pier and Hakone Town Pier

The view of the Hakone Town Pier as we approach it

The First Class cabin on board the Royal II boat on the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise around Lake Ashi just before we arrived at the Hakone Town Pier terminal

After a scenic Hakone Sightseeing Cruise trip around Lake Ashi from Togendai, we finally arrived back at the Hakone Town Pier at 4.10 p.m.. Having all our belongings with us, we alighted the boat and went towards the main area of the Hakone Town Pier. Following the sightseeing cruise trip around Lake Ashi, we decided upon going towards the Gotemba Premium Outlets again.

Miss Yasuda was excited as this would be her first time visiting the Gotemba Premium Outlets. Having all our belongings loaded into our rented car, we got on board and finally left the Hakone Town Pier by 4.20 p.m.. The road journey between the Hakone Town Pier and the Gotemba Premium Outlets took no more than 40 minutes via the mountain roads.


Finally arriving back at the Hakone Town Pier

The Hakone Sightseeing Cruise Royal II boat which we took from Togendai to Hakone Town Pier

Several ducks waddling near the Hakone Town Pier

One final shot of Lake Ashi shortly before we left for the Gotemba Premium Outlets

One final shot of Hakone Town Pier shortly before we left for the Gotemba Premium Outlets

Going through a toll gate between the Hakone Town Pier and the Gotemba Premium Outlets

A cloudy views of the mountains between the Hakone Town Piers and the Gotemba Premium Outlets

Bypassing a sightseeing area on a mountain between Hakone and Gotemba

The view of the city of Gotemba from a mountain

The view of a road junction in the city of Gotemba by the mountain roadway towards Hakone

The view of a road junction in the city of Gotemba near the Gotemba Premium Outlets

Driving by a secluded road near the Gotemba Premium Outlets

After a 40-minute mountain road drive from the Hakone Town Pier, we finally arrived at a parking area at the Gotemba Premium Outlets at five o' clock. Having our belongings with us and parking the car, we took the elevator down towards the first floor of the multi-storey car parking area and went into the Gotemba Premium Outlets. The very first thing we did upon entering the Gotemba Premium Outlets was to look through some shops selling footwear, handbags and timepieces.

Everything was relatively quiet in the area where we were shopping. Upon doing this, we went for some hot beverages at a cafeteria known as Tully's Coffee, and purchased a take-away fastfood afternoon tea meal at McDonald's cafeteria. In this outing, I can safely say that Miss Yasuda enjoyed herself at the Gotemba Premium Outlets, and so did I. Now, I think I can safely say that the Gotemba Premium Outlets is better than the Yeoju Premium Outlets in South Korea.


The multi-storey car parking area near the Gotemba Premium Outlets

One of the concourses of shops and resting areas located in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

The concourse heading towards the multi-storey car parking area in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

Several lineup of shops located near the Tully's Coffee cafeteria in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

The Tully's Coffee cafeteria in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

A passageway to the McDonald's cafeteria in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

The McDonald's cafeteria in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

A Timberland's footwear shop in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

Ms. Yasuda and I posing for a photograph at the Tully's Coffee cafeteria in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

After shopping and having tea at the Gotemba Premium Outlets, it was finally time for Miss Yasuda to head back home. Knowing that as her former student, I felt that it was only right if I accompany her as far as to Gotemba Station. There, I would take to JR Gotemba Line all the way to Numazu, and transfer to the JR Tokaido Main Line towards Nebukawa Station, where I would meet up with my family for the remaining journey back towards the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa.

As my parents bade farewell to Miss Yasuda, we both went to the bus stop to catch a near free shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station. Along the way, I showed Miss Yasuda the sights we had seen at the Gotemba Premium Outlets. I showed her the fountain at the outlets and the very steep valley from the outlet pedestrian bridge.


A row of shops as we walk along the freeway in the Gotemba Premium Outlets

The fountain in the Gotemba Premium Outlets on a cloudy late afternoon

A view of a small stream running beneath the Gotemba Premium Outlets shopper footbridge

Crossing the footbridge towards the other side of the Gotemba Premium Outlets

The view of the Gotemba Premium Outlets ferris wheel as seen from the shopper footbridge

The view of the Gotemba Premium Outlets near the bus stop

After walking by some various shops via the footbridge in the Gotemba Premium Outlets, Miss Yasuda and I finally arrived at the nearest bus stop outside the outlets at 6.15 p.m.. Prior to heading to Gotemba Station, Miss Yasuda went to a nearby bank to withdraw some money. Knowing that the next shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station would arrive soon, we decided to catch the 6.40 p.m. free Gotemba Premium Outlets shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station.

Once Miss Yasuda came back from the bank, we quickly boarded the next free shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station at 6.25 p.m.. As time went by, more people began to board the bus towards Gotemba Station. At exactly 6.40 p.m., the bus doors closed, and the Gotemba Premium Outlets shuttle bus finally departed the Gotemba Premium Outlets. The journey from the Gotemba Premium Outlets to Gotemba Station took no more than 15 minutes.

Gotemba Station (御殿場駅) is the main railway station that serves the suburban city of Gotemba, Shizuoka, Japan. This station is located on the Gotemba Line, operated by Central Japan Railway Company (JR Central). The station serves as one of the gateways to Mount Fuji and the Fuji Five Lakes (including Lake Kawaguchi and Lake Yamanaka). The Odakyu Romancecar Asagiri limited express terminates here from Shinjuku Station in downtown Tokyo and operates three times daily in each direction, and four times daily on weekends and national holidays.


The 6.20 p.m. Gotemba Premium Outlets free shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station about to depart

The Gotemba Premium Outlets free shuttle bus stop in the early evening

The 6.40 p.m. Gotemba Premium Outlets free shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station waiting at the bus stop

The interior of the 6.40 p.m. Gotemba Premium Outlets free shuttle bus bound for Gotemba Station

Finally departing to Gotemba Premium Outlets

Bypassing some open green fields in the city of Gotemba

Bypassing a mini-mart in the city of Gotemba

Bypassing Shoe Plaza in the suburban city of Gotemba

Bypassing a car rental station in the suburban city of Gotemba

After a short 15-minute shuttle bus ride from the Gotemba Premium Outlets, Miss Yasuda and I finally arrived at Gotemba Station at 6.55 p.m.. Upon alighting, Miss Yasuda found out that she was to have dinner with her daughter, and decided to take an Odakyu Bus back to her home in Mejiro, Tokyo.

There, I bid farewell to Miss Yasuda, and wished her a pleasant trip back home. It was such an enjoyable day meeting an old friend and teacher again in Japan. I then went up to the main station concourse towards the JR Ticket Office at Gotemba Station to purchase my Green Car (first class) Shinkansen reservation tickets, having planned to go to Hiroshima the next day.

Since I had already completed my two rides on NOZOMI trains on the Tokaido and Sanyo Shinkansen lines, I decided upon taking a direct early morning Shinkansen HIKARI service between Odawara and Hiroshima. As my mum had advised me, with a Japan Rail Pass on the Tokaido, Sanyo and Kyushu Shinkansen lines, it is always better to take HIKARI or SAKURA trains free of charge, rather than to pay extra fares and charges just to take NOZOMI or MIZUHO trains.

My itinerary for the journey back to Nebukawa would be to take a JR Gotemba Line local train bound for Mishima towards Numazu, which would depart Gotemba Station at 7.34 p.m., and arrive at Numazu Station at 8.06 p.m.. Upon arrival at Numazu Station, I would connect to the nearest Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami, which would depart Numazu Station at 8.19 p.m., and arrive at the Atami terminal station at 8.37 p.m..

After arriving at Atami, I would make a very quick connection to another Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Tokyo, which would depart Atami Station at 8.41 p.m., and arrive back at Nebukawa Station at 8.55 p.m.. According to the departure information board, the next JR Gotemba Line local train bound for Mishima via Numazu would depart at 7.34 p.m. from Track No. 3 . So, without wasting anymore time, I went through the ticket gates and headed down towards Tracks No. 2 and 3 in preparation for the first sector between Gotemba and Numazu.


The main entrance to Gotemba Station

The JR Gotemba Line railway tracks as seen from the main entrance to Gotemba Station

The main station concourse of Gotemba Station in the evening

The departure information board for trains departing for Mishima at Gotemba Station

The main ticketing gates at Gotemba Station

The station platforms of Gotemba Station in the evening

The station name plate of Gotemba Station

Tracks No. 2 and 3 of Gotemba Station serving the JR Gotemba Line trains to Susono and Numazu

The 7.34 p.m. JR Gotemba Line local train bound for Mishima via Numazu finally arriving at Gotemba Station on Track No. 3

After spending approximately, a 3-car 313 series EMU, operating on the JR Gotemba Line local service bound for Mishima via Numazu finally arrived at Gotemba Station at 7.33 p.m. on Track No. 3. I immediately boarded the train through the first carriage for the short 32-minute journey towards the suburban port city of Numazu. At exactly 7.34 p.m., all the doors were closed, and the JR Gotemba Line local train bound for Mishima via Numazu finally pulled out of Gotemba Station. I was then on my way for a short journey time of 32 minutes towards the suburban port city of Numazu.

Numazu Station (沼津駅) is the main railway station serving the suburban port city of Numazu, Shizuoka, Japan. Operated by Central Japan Railway Company (JR Central), the station is served by the Gotemba Line and Tokaido Main Line. The station is located approximately 126.2 rail kilometers from Tokyo Station.

The Odakyu Romancecar Asagiri limited express service from Shinjuku terminated at this station prior to 16 March 2012. However, from the start of the revised timetable on 17 March 2012, following the retirement of the lone JR Central 371 series set and the Odakyu 20000 series RSE EMUs from these services, services no longer operate to Numazu and terminate at Gotemba Station instead (passengers will have to change to the JR Gotemba Line to get to Numazu).


The interior of the 313 series EMU JR Gotemba Line local train bound for Mishima via Numazu

Finally departing Gotemba Station at 7.34 p.m.

Travelling through the city of Gotemba at night

Stopping briefly at Fujioka Station

Running on the JR Gotemba Line between Gotemba and Susono Stations at night

Running through the city of Susono at night

Travelling between Nagaizumi-nameri and Numazu Stations at night

Approaching Numazu Station at night

Finally arriving at Numazu Station on Track No. 6

After a very short 32-minute ride on the JR Gotemba Line local train from Gotemba, I finally arrived at Numazu Station at 8.06 p.m. on Track No. 6. Knowing that I only had less than 15 minutes left before my next Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami, I went up to the station pedestrian bridge to see what time the next train bound for Atami would depart.

According to the departure information board, the next Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami would depart Numazu Station at 8.19 p.m. from Track No. 4. Without wasting any more time, I immediately walked down the stairs towards Tracks No. 3 and 4 to prepare for my next section between Numazu and Atami.


Tracks No. 5 and 6 serving the JR Gotemba Line trains at Numazu Station

The overhead passageway towards the platforms at Numazu Station

The list of the JR Tokaido Main Line train departures from Numazu Station overhead passageway towards the platforms at Numazu Station

The departure information board for the JR Tokaido Main Line trains departing from Tracks No. 3 and 4 at Numazu Station

Tracks No. 3 and 4 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line trains bound for Atami, Odawara and Tokyo at Numazu Station

The 8.19 p.m. JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami finally at Track No. 4 at Numazu Station

After spending just five minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, the Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami finally arrived at Numazu Station at 8.14 p.m. on Track No. 4. The train service was operated using a 211 series EMU combined with a 313 series EMU, thus forming as one train.

I then boarded the train and went to the lead car of the 313 series EMU for the very short 18-minute journey towards the tourist resort city of Atami. At exactly 8.19 p.m., all the train doors closed, and the Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami finally pulled out of Numazu Station. I was then on my way for a short journey time of 18 minutes towards the tourist resort city of Atami.

Atami Station (熱海駅) is the main railway station serving the tourist resort city of Atami, Shizuoka, Japan. The station serves as an interchange station for the Tokaido Shinkansen, Tokaido Main Line, and Ito Line. On the Tokaido Shinkansen line, Atami is served only by KODAMA trains most of the time, as well as a very small number of HIKARI services. Therefore, the Shinkansen seldom stops in the resort city of Atami.


The interior of the 313 series EMU JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami

Travelling between the cities of Numazu and Mishima at night

Stopping briefly at Mishima Station

The interior of the 313 series EMU JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami between Mishima and the Atami terminal

Travelling through a dark tunnel between Mishima and Atami

Finally approaching the Atami terminal station

After a short 19-minute journey from the suburban port city of Numazu, I finally arrived at the Atami terminal station at 8.37 p.m. on Track No. 4. Knowing that I had only less than five minutes before my connecting Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Tokyo towards Nebukawa, I immediately checked to see which track the Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Tokyo would be departing from.

According to the departure information board, the Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Tokyo would depart at 8.41 p.m. from Track No. 3. Without wasting anymore time, I dashed over to Tracks No. 2 and 3, only to find a 15-car E231 series EMU awaiting departure from Track No. 3. I immediately boarded the train through Car No. 4, which was one of the bi-level Green Car carriages, and secured seats No. 7A and 7B for the short 14-minute journey to Nebukawa Station.

At exactly 8.41 p.m., all the doors were closed, and the Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Tokyo finally pulled out of Atami Station for a short journey time of 1 hour 48 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of the capital city of Japan. I was then on my way for a short journey time of 14 minutes towards Nebukawa Station, which was located near a hillside in the suburban city of Odawara.


Tracks No. 4 and 5 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line trains at Atami Station

The station concourse of Atami Station towards the platforms

Awaiting departure from Atami Station

The front view of the E231 series EMU Green Car (first class) cabin on the upper level while departing Atami Station

A view of my seat, 7A, while departing Atami Station

The rear view of the E231 series EMU Green Car (first class) cabin on the upper level shortly after departing Atami Station

Travelling in a tunnel between Atami and Yugawara

Stopping briefly at Yugawara Station

Travelling between the towns of Yugawara and Manazuru at night

The view of the E231 series EMU Green Car (first class) cabin on the upper level from my seat between the towns of Yugawara and Manazuru

Stopping at Manazuru Station

The front view of the E231 series EMU Green Car (first class) cabin on the upper level between Manazuru and Nebukawa Stations

The rear view of the E231 series EMU Green Car (first class) cabin on the upper level between Manazuru and Nebukawa Stations

Travelling between Manazuru and Nebukawa Stations at night

Finally arriving back at Nebukawa Station

The station platforms of Nebukawa Station at night

Our rented car located just outside Nebukawa Station

Finally arriving back at the door step of our chalet No. 2005 and the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

The view of our chalet's living room at night

The view of the tatami bedroom in my chalet at night

The view of the western-style bedroom in my chalet at night

After a short 14-minute journey from the tourist resort city of Atami, I finally arrived back at Nebukawa Station at 8.55 p.m. on Track No. 2. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went up to the main entrance of the station, where my family was waiting for me in their rented car. With my belongings loaded into the car, I boarded the car, and finally departed Nebukawa Station at nine o' clock for a short five-minute journey towards our chalet at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa.

With just a short five-minute drive over the hill from Nebukawa Station, we finally arrived back at our chalet No. 2005 at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa at 9.05 p.m.. As soon as we had parked our car at the secluded parking area, we went into our chalet and had a hot shower before preparing for dinner later that night.

After preparing all the food out in the kitchen, we all had a sumptuous home-made family dinner in our chalet that night. Upon finishing dinner at around ten o' clock, I went to prepare most of my belongings for the long journey towards Hiroshima the next day. At the same time, I set my alarm to five o' clock the next morning on my mobile phone, finally going to bed by 11.40 p.m. later that night.

Part 2 ~ Spending A Day in Miyajima and Hiroshima

The next morning, which was Friday (14 June), I woke up at five o' clock after my mobile phone alarm went off early. Knowing that I was to travel to Hiroshima on this day, I leapt out of bed and had a shower before changing into my day's attire to start off the day.

I was very lucky since I had prepared most of my belongings the night before the trip. As soon as I had packed the remainder of my baggage for the trip, I was all ready before 5.20 a.m.. My itinerary for the journey towards Hiroshima would be to take the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, which would depart Odawara Station at 6.15 a.m., and arrive at the Hiroshima terminal station at 10.01 a.m..

Noticing the time, my dad offered to give me a lift to Odawara Station. As I waited, my dad drove our rented car up to our chalet. Having all my belongings loaded at the back of the car, we finally left our chalet No. 2005 at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa at 5.30 a.m. for a short 20-minute drive towards Odawara Station.


The living room of our chalet No. 2005 in the wee hours of the morning

Several plantation areas near our chalet at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

Finally departing our chalet area at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

Bypassing the main hotel building of the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

Crossing a bridge that links between the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa and downtown Odawara

The lush green mountains of the city of Odawara in the early morning hours

Bypassing Nebukawa Station

The early morning view of the Sagami Bay and the mountainous road near my hotel

Bypassing a row of houses near the JR Tokaido Main Line tracks in the suburban city of Odawara

About to cross a bridge above the Tokaido Main Line tracks towards Odawara Station

Finally approaching Odawara Station

Going around a bend near Odawara Station

After a short 20-minute drive from the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa, we finally arrived at the Tokaido Shinkansen entrance to Odawara Station at 5.50 a.m.. Having all my personal belongings with me, I unloaded them from our rented car, with advice from my dad to stay safe at all times.

Leaving me to catch my Shinkansen train, my dad drove back to our chalet at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa to get some more sleep. As soon as I entered the station concourse, I went through the ticket gates and went to check which platform the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima would be departing from.

According to the departure information board, the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima would depart at 6.15 a.m. from Track No. 13. With that, I went to a nearby open station kiosk to purchase some beverages and went up towards Track No. 13 in preparation for my long Shinkansen train journey towards Hiroshima.

The Sanyo Shinkansen (山陽新幹線) is the second high-speed Shinkansen line operating between the cities of Osaka in Honshu and Fukuoka in Kyushu, Japan. Operated by West Japan Railway Company (JR West), the line was opened in stages between 1972 and 1975. The line has a maximum top speed of 300 km/h (186 mph).

As of 16 March 2013, 500 series, 700 series and N700 series sets in both 8-carriage and 16-carriage formations operate on the following five services, which are mainly the NOZOMI, MIZUHO, HIKARI, SAKURA and KODAMA services along the line. MIZUHO and SAKURA services offer through service to the Kyushu Shinkansen towards Kumamoto and Kagoshima-chuo beyond Hakata Station. NOZOMI and MIZUHO trains cannot be used by tourists travelling with a Japan Rail Pass.

HIKARI (ひかり) is a high-speed train service that operates on the Tokaido Shinkansen and Sanyo Shinkansen lines in Japan. Slower than the NOZOMI service but faster than the KODAMA service, the HIKARI is the fastest train service on the Tokaido and Sanyo Shinkansen that can be used with the Japan Rail Pass. Most of these services make stop in prefectures that contain popular tourist attractions, such as Hyogo, Kanagawa, Shizuoka and Yamaguchi Prefectures. The service is capable of reaching a top speed of 300 km/h (186 mph).

The service commenced operations on 1 October 1964, in collaboration with the Tokaido Shinkansen, using 0 series equipment at a top speed of 210 km/h (130 mph), until their retirement from service in late 2008. From 1985, 100 series sets were used on these services at 230 km/h (143 mph), along with 300 series sets from 1992 at 270 km/h (170 mph), until their ultimate retirements from service on 16 March 2012. From late 2000, 700 series sets were introduced on these services at a speed of 285 km/h (177 mph), along with newer N700 series sets from mid-2008, at a top speed of 300 km/h (186 mph).

On 11 March 2000, West Japan Railway Company (JR West) introduced a special promotional service, known as the HIKARI Rail Star (ひかりレールスター). The service uses special 8-car 700 series sets painted grey with black stripes over the windows, and sunny yellow stripes below the black stripes, at a maximum speed of 285 km/h (177 mph). The HIKARI Rail Star service was designed to compete with airliners between the two major cities of Osaka and Fukuoka. Green Car accommodation is not available on these services, but in the reserved seating carriages, the seats are arranged in a 2-2 seating configuration.

However, since the opening of the entire Kyushu Shinkansen line on 12 March 2011, many HIKARI Rail Star services are being replaced with newer SAKURA services to provide more direct connections between Honshu and Kyushu, as well as to provide more comfortable travel for many passengers. From the start of the revised timetable on 17 March 2012, HIKARI Rail Star services using the special 8-car 700 series sets became entirely non-smoking.

As of 16 March 2013, HIKARI services operating on the Tokaido Shinkansen and Sanyo Shinkansen lines as far as Okayama or Hiroshima mainly use 16-car 700 series and N700 series sets. Most of these services pull over at intermediate stations such as Hamamatsu, Himeji, Maibara and Shizuoka to allow faster NOZOMI services to pass through.


The Tokaido Shinkansen entrance to Odawara Station

The Tokaido Shinkansen concourse of Odawara Station in the wee hours of the morning

The Tokaido Shinkansen ticketing gates at Odawara Station in the early morning hours

The Tokaido Shinkansen concourse towards the platforms at Odawara Station

The departure information board on Track No. 13 indicating the first train departures bound for Osaka and Hiroshima

The Tokaido Shinkansen platforms of Odawara Station

After spending nearly 15 minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, a 16-car N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, finally arrived at Odawara Station at 6.14 a.m. on Track No. 13. Set No. Z35 was the very same N700 Series Shinkansen set, which transported me from Tokyo as the Shinkansen NOZOMI Superexpress No. 225 bound for Shin-osaka, when I went to Kansai International Airport just a few days earlier.

I then boarded the train through Car No. 9 (one of the Green Car carriages) and found my assigned Seat No. 9D for the long journey time of 3 hours 46 minutes towards the city of Hiroshima. At exactly 6.15 a.m., all the doors were closed, and the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima finally pulled out of Odawara Station. I was then on my way for a long journey time of 3 hours 46 minutes towards the city of Hiroshima located in the Chugoku region of Japan.


N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 小田原駅に入線シーン

The LED destination panel of the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, at Odawara Station

The rear view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493, bound for Hiroshima at Odawara Station

A view of my seat, 9D, for the long journey time of 3 hours 46 minutes from Odawara to Hiroshima


N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 小田原 (発車) ~ 熱海 (通過)

Travelling through a tunnel between Odawara and Shizuoka

Travelling through the city of Mishima in the early morning

Passing through Mishima Station

The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, between Odawara and Shizuoka

The rear view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, between Odawara and Shizuoka

Speeding through the city of Fuji in the morning

Passing by some paddy fields in the city of Fuji

Speeding through Shin-fuji Station

Crossing a river and field between the cities of Fuji and Shizuoka

The view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, from my seat as the train approaches Shizuoka Station

Bypassing Higashi-shizuoka Station

Some buildings in downtown Shizuoka as the train approaches Shizuoka Station

Making a brief stop at Shizuoka Station

Bypassing some rice paddy fields between the cities of Shizuoka and Kakegawa

Crossing a river between Shizuoka and Kakegawa


N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 掛川 (通過) ~ 浜松 (通過)

Bypassing some suburban housing areas near the city of Hamamatsu

Crossing Lake Hamana between the borders of Shizuoka and Aichi Prefectures

Several trees and plantations near Lake Hamana

Bypassing a suburban settlement near the city of Toyohashi

Bypassing a farming area near the city of Toyohashi

Running parallel towards the JR Tokaido Main Line tracks near Toyohashi Station

Bypassing some housing areas in the city of Toyohashi

Speeding past Toyohashi Station

Bypassing some farming areas between the cities of Toyohashi and Anjo

Passing by a resting station by some farming areas between the cities of Toyohashi and Anjo

Bypassing some greenery field areas near the city of Anjo

A view of some industrial houses near the city of Anjo

My Green Car Shinkansen ticket for the sector between Odawara and Hiroshima

Passing by an open plateau in the city of Anjo

Speeding through Mikawa-anjo Station

Passing a shopping mall in the suburban city of Anjo

Bypassing a housing apartment near the city of Nagoya

The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, as the train approaches Nagoya Station

The rear view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, as the train approaches Nagoya Station

Bypassing several urban infrastructure in the city of Nagoya as the train approaches Nagoya Station

Making a brief stop at Nagoya Station


N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 名古屋 (発車) ~ 岐阜羽島 (通過)

Bypassing a paddy farming area near the city of Hashima, Gifu

Travelling by a lush green forest between Gifu and Maibara Prefectures

Bypassing a farming area near the city of Maibara

Speeding through Maibara Station

Passing by some green fields in the city of Maibara

Speeding through the city of Omihachiman

Bypassing a vehicle scrapping area in the city of Otsu

Crossing a trestle bridge between Shiga and Kyoto Prefectures

Bypassing some suburban housing apartments in Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto

The view of the Hotel Granvia Kyoto as the train approaches Kyoto Station

Making a brief stop at Kyoto Station

Overlooking the JR Kyoto Line tracks after leaving Kyoto Station

Bypassing the suburban town of Shimamoto, Osaka

Bypassing the Shinkansen depot as the train approaches Shin-osaka Station

Making a brief stop at Shin-osaka Station

N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 新大阪駅から新神戸駅間

Stopping briefly at Shin-kobe Station

Travelling through a tunnel between Shin-kobe and Nishi-akashi Stations on the Sanyo Shinkansen

Bypassing several housing areas in the suburban city of Akashi

Making a brief stop at Nishi-akashi Station

An N700 Series Shinkansen train, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 99 service bound for Hakata (Fukuoka) bypassing my train at Nishi-akashi Station

Another N700 Series Shinkansen train, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 1 service bound for Hakata (Fukuoka) bypassing my train at Nishi-akashi Station

A view of my seat, 9D, while stopping at Nishi-akashi Station

The rear view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, while stopping at Nishi-akashi Station

The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, between Nishi-akashi and Himeji

Speeding through between the cities of Kakogawa and Himeji

Bypassing several suburban infrastructure near Himeji Station

Running parallel to the JR Kobe Line tracks near Himeji Station

A JR Central 700 Series Shinkansen Set No. B8 operating on a Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 462 service between Okayama and Tokyo stopping at Himeji Station

Making a brief stop at Himeji Station

Bypassing some suburban settlements in the city of Himeji

Speeding through a tunnel between the cities of Himeji and Okayama

Bypassing a mountain in the city of Aioi

Bypassing a lakeside settlement in the city of Aioi

Passing an industrial area between the cities of Aioi and Okayama

A roadbridge crossing a farming area in Higashi-ku, Okayama

Several downtown buildings in Kita-ku, Okayama as the train approaches Okayama Station

Making a brief stop at Okayama Station

N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 岡山駅から福山駅間

Making a brief stop at Fukuyama Station

Bypassing some housing areas in the city of Fukuyama shortly after leaving Fukuyama Station

The rear view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, between Fukuyama and the Hiroshima terminal

Passing through Shin-onomichi Station

The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z35, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima, between Fukuyama and the Hiroshima terminal

Bypassing some housing areas in the suburban city of Mihara

Speeding through Mihara Station

Passing by a mountain settlement between the cities of Mihara and Higashihiroshima

N700系新幹線 Z35編成 ひかり493号 広島行き 東広島 (通過) ~ 広島 (到着)

After a long journey time of 3 hours 46 minutes from the suburban city of Odawara, I finally arrived at the Hiroshima terminal station at 10.01 a.m. on Track No. 12. Upon having my belongings, I alighted the train and spotted a few more trains before heading down to the main station concourse for a lunch break. I then went down to the station concourse to check my belongings once more, only to find that I had accidentally left my umbrella on board the train I was on from Odawara.

Before heading to a nearby cafeteria for lunch, I went to the nearest information centre located in the Shinkansen concourse to file a lost item report. Having accurately described what the umbrella was like and the train timings for my return trip towards Odawara, the ladies at the Shinkansen information centre were kind and listened carefully to my explanations.

Upon writing down my particulars in the lost item form, they told me that a search for my missing umbrella would be conducted and it would be found by the time I had return from my sightseeing trip in Hiroshima. I really should be more aware of my surroundings, as well as my personal belongings, no matter where I am.

Hiroshima Station (広島駅) is the central railway station serving the city of Hiroshima, Japan. It is located in Minami-ku, Hiroshima and serves as an interchange station for the Sanyo Main Line, Kure Line, Kabe Line and Geibi Line. All Sanyo Shinkansen services make stop at Hiroshima Station, while some services also start and terminate here.


The logo of the N700 Series Shinkansen train I took as the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 493 bound for Hiroshima earlier

The departure information board on Tracks No. 11 and 12 at Hiroshima Station

The LED destination panel of a 16-car JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen train, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 3 bound for Hakata

Tracks No. 11 and 12 serving the Sanyo Shinkansen trains bound for Hakata (Fukuoka) and Kagoshima-chuo at Hiroshima Station

The Sanyo Shinkansen waiting concourse in Hiroshima Station

The Sanyo Shinkansen concourse in Hiroshima Station

A lineup of shops and restaurants located in the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse of Hiroshima Station

A McDonald's fastfood cafeteria located in the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse of Hiroshima Station

Several Shinkansen wallpaper photographs in the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse of Hiroshima Station

After looking through the various restaurants available in the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse at Hiroshima Station, I managed to stumble upon a fastfood restaurant called McDonald's. Feeling hungry after my long Shinkansen train journey from Odawara, I headed into the restaurant for a nice, lunch break before continuing my journey towards Miyajima.

While having lunch had McDonald's, I ordered myself a pack of Mega fries and a box of five-piece Chicken McNuggets. This fastfood lunch was indeed very filling, with the Mega fries being the highlight of the meal, since it is a unique McDonald's product and my first time trying out such a food product.


The interior of the McDonald's Cafeteria in Hiroshima Station

My main meal: Mega fries with 5-piece Chicken McNuggets

The meal cashier counter in the McDonald's Cafeteria in Hiroshima Station

One more shot of the McDonald's Cafeteria in Hiroshima Station shortly before I left

A lineup of restaurants in the station concourse of Hiroshima Station

The JR Line concourse of Hiroshima Station

After having a lunch break at the McDonald's cafeteria in the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse in Hiroshima Station, the clock was finally showing 11.15 a.m.. Knowing that I wanted to go to Miyajima, I decided to check to see what time the nearest local train to Miyajima would depart in the Sanyo Main Line concourse of the station.

According to the departure information board, the nearest local train bound for Shimonoseki via Iwakuni would depart at 11.30 a.m. from Track No. 1. Without wasting anymore time, I went through the Sanyo Main Line concourse and took the escalator down towards Track No. 1, only to find a 115 series EMU, operating on a Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Shimonoseki via Iwakuni awaiting departure from the platform.

After arriving on Track No. 1 at 11.25 a.m., I immediately boarded the nearest JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Shimonoseki via Iwakuni and grabbed a seat for the short journey towards Miyajimaguchi Station. At exactly 11.30 a.m., all the doors were closed, and the JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Shimonoseki via Iwakuni finally pulled out of Hiroshima Station. I was then on my way for a short journey towards my sightseeing day in Miyajima.


The JR Line concourse with souvenir shops in Hiroshima Station

The JR Line concourse leading to the platforms in Hiroshima Station

Track No. 1 serving the JR Sanyo Main Line trains bound for Iwakuni and Shimonoseki at Hiroshima Station

The interior of the 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Shimonoseki via Iwakuni while awaiting departure from Hiroshima Station

Awaiting departure from Hiroshima Station

Finally pulling out of Hiroshima Station

The view of the Hotel Granvia Hiroshima as the train leaves the compound of Hiroshima Station

Making a brief stop at Yokogawa Station

Crossing a river bridge between Yokogawa and Nishi-hiroshima Stations

Making a brief stop at Nishi-hiroshima Station

Crossing another river between the cities of Hiroshima and Hatsukaichi

Making a brief stop at Itsukaichi Station

Passing a few houses in the suburban city of Hatsukaichi

Stopping briefly at Hatsukaichi Station

Bypassing a farming area in the suburban city of Hatsukaichi

The interior of the 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Shimonoseki via Iwakuni as the train approaches Miyauchi-kushido Station

After a 23-minute journey from the hustle and bustle of Hiroshima, I finally arrived at a station, of what I thought was to be Miyajimaguchi Station, at 11.53 a.m.. Checking the station name, I was dumbfounded that I had accidentally alighted at the incorrect stop, with the real name being Miyauchi-kushido Station.

Realising my mistake, I went up to the station concourse to see what time the next train to Miyajimaguchi would be departing the station. According to the departure information board, the next JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Iwakuni would depart Miyauchi-kushido Station at 12.10 p.m. from Track No. 1. With that, I simply waited on the small platform of Miyauchi-kushido Station before the next JR Sanyo Main Line train bound for Iwakuni arrived.


The station platforms of Miyauchi-kushido Station

The station name plate of Miyauchi-kushido Station

A 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Iwakuni finally arriving at Miyauchi-kushido Station

After spending approximately 15 minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, another 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Hiroshima finally arrived at Miyauchi-kushido Station at 12.10 p.m. on Track No. 1. I immediately got on board the train for the remaining journey towards Miyajimaguchi.

Soon enough, all the train doors closed, and the JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Iwakuni finally pulled out of Miyauchi-kushido Station for the remainder of its journey to the suburban city of Iwakuni in Yamaguchi Prefecture. This time, I ensured that I had stayed on board the train until my intended destionation, with the journey taking only six minutes.


The interior of the 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Iwakuni while awaiting departure from Miyauchi-kushido Station

Bypassing a farming area by some houses near Miyauchi-kushido Station

Making a brief stop at Ajina Station

A small housing village near Ajina Station in the suburban city of Hatsukaichi

Some housing areas located near Miyajimaguchi Station

Finally arriving at Miyajimaguchi Station

After a short 46-minute journey from the hustle and bustle of the city of Hiroshima, I finally arrived at Miyajimaguchi Station at 12.16 p.m. on Track No. 1. Having my belongings with me, I alighted the train and exited the station. Knowing that the JR Miyajima Ferry would be located at Miyajimaguchi Pier, I had to walk towards the pier, which was located just near Miyajimaguchi Station.

With that, I left Miyajimaguchi Station at 12.20 p.m. and walked through an underground passageway to the Miyajimaguchi Pier for the JR Miyajima Ferry towards Miyajima (Itsukushima). This place is known for a floating shrine, thus being famously known as Shrine Island. The walk between Miyajimaguchi Station and Miyajimaguchi Pier took no more than five minutes.


Track No. 1 of Miyajimaguchi Station serving the JR Sanyo Main Line trains bound for Iwakuni and Shimonoseki

The station name plate of Miyajimaguchi Station

The ticketing gates at Miyajimaguchi Station

The exterior view of Miyajimaguchi Station

The entrance to an underground passageway between Miyajimaguchi Station and Miyajimaguchi Pier

Walking through an underground passageway between Miyajimaguchi Station and Miyajimaguchi Pier

The view of downtown Hatsukaichi near Miyajimaguchi Station and Pier

The exterior view of Miyajimaguchi Pier across the road

Finally arriving at Miyajimaguchi Pier at 12.25 p.m.

After a short five-minute walk from Miyajimaguchi Station, I finally arrived at Miyajimaguchi Pier at 12.25 p.m.. Knowing that the JR Miyajima Ferry can be used free of charge with the Japan Rail Pass, I headed to the JR Miyajima Ferry pier, where the nearest ferry bound for Miyajima (Itsukushima) would depart at 12.40 p.m.. The pier was relatively crowded, with many visitors eager to visit Miyajima Island.

After spending approximately 10 minutes of rolling up and waiting on the pier, the nearest JR Miyajima Ferry bound for Miyajima finally arrived at the Miyajima Pier at 12.35 p.m.. As all the passengers from Miyajima alighted, the passengers bound for Miyajima rolled up to board the ferry. On board the first level of the ferry, there was a garage that could house vehicles going to Miyajima, and the passenger seating area was located on the second level of the ferry.

The ferry also had a name, known as "Nanaura Maru". At exactly 12.40 p.m., everyone was on board and the JR Miyajima Ferry bound for Miyajima finally pulled out of Miyajimaguchi Pier. The journey between the Miyajimaguchi Pier and Miyajima (Itsukushima) took no more than 10 minutes.


The JR Miyajima Ferry ticket office at Miyajimaguchi Pier

The view of the inland sea from the Miyajimaguchi Pier

The JR Miyajima Ferry boarding pier at Miyajimaguchi Pier

Waiting to board the JR Miyajima Ferry bound for Miyajima at Miyajimaguchi Pier

The interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajima during boarding at Miyajimaguchi Pier

Finally pulling out of Miyajimaguchi Pier

The inland sea between Miyajimaguchi Pier and Miyajima shortly after leaving the Miyajimaguchi Pier

The view of the suburban city of Hatsukaichi shortly after leaving the Miyajimaguchi Pier

The interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajima during approach to the Miyajima Pier

Finally getting a beautiful sight of the floating Itsukushima Shrine

The view of the Itsukushima Shrine and Miyajima Island interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajima

Finally approaching the Miyajima Pier

After a short 10-minute JR Miyajima Ferry ride from the Miyajimaguchi Pier, I finally arrived at the Miyajima Pier at 12.50 p.m.. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the ferry and decided on what to do for my afternoon in Miyajima. To stay safe, I decided to do my tour around the area near Miyajima Pier.

During my tour around Miyajima, I purchased an umbrella to supplement for the one that was destroyed by strong wind when I was in Hakone the previous day. Lots of tourists were visiting the island, though it was a baking hot summer's day, including local students on a school excursion to Miyajima.

On Miyajima Island, there are deers known as Sika deer, that have long been roaming the island. It is best to watch out for these deers when you are visiting Miyajima, since they have the tendency to steal food from visitors. One of the deers even stole a packet of nuts from a female visitor, which resulted in some deers being attracted to them, and one kept sniffing at my bag, but I kept saying that I had nothing to feed them with.


The JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" that took me from Miyajimaguchi Pier to Miyajima earlier

The interior of the Miyajima Pier with ticketing offices and machines in the background

A Sika deer outside Miyajima Pier sniffing at my bag as if I had food for him

The entrance to the JR Miyajima Ferry Miyajima Pier on a hot summer's afternoon

The exterior view of the JR Miyajima Ferry Miyajima Pier on a hot summer's afternoon

A bus stop in Miyajima leading to a local hotel on the island

A sign in Miyajima that reminds visitors about protecting Sika deers

Several deers resting in a shady park in Miyajima

A herd of Sika deers munching on a packet of nuts stolen from a female visitor

Several visitors touring the parks of Miyajima near Miyajima Pier

Two deers nudging each other in Miyajima

Outside the JR Miyajima Ferry Miyajima Pier on a hot summer's afternoon before heading back to Hiroshima

The view of the park near the JR Miyajima Ferry Miyajima Pier shortly before heading back to Hiroshima

After spending an entire mid-afternoon on the island of Miyajima, the clock was finally showing 2.15 p.m.. Feeling that it was too hot to stay on the island for another hour, I decided to head back to Hiroshima. I then proceeded to the Miyajima Pier in preparation for the JR Miyajima Ferry journey back to Miyajimaguchi Pier. In the pier, I went to check to see what time the nearest ferry bound for Miyajimaguchi Pier.

According to the departure information board, the next JR Miyajima Ferry bound for the Miyajimaguchi Pier would depart Miyajima Pier at 2.25 p.m.. Once the passengers were allowed to board the ferry, I walked along the pier and boarded the same JR Miyajima Ferry, "Nanaura Maru".

I then walked up to the second floor, and grabbed a seat by the window for beautiful views of the sea. At exactly 2.25 p.m., all the passengers were on board, and the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" finally pulled out of Miyajima Pier. Again, the journey from Miyajima Island back to Miyajimaguchi Pier took no more than 10 minutes.


The passageway towards the boarding area in the Miyajima Pier

The departure information board indicating that the next JR Miyajima Ferry bound for Miyajimaguchi Pier will depart at 2.25 p.m.

The inland sea as seen from the Miyajima Pier

Walking along the pier towards the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajimaguchi Pier

The interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajimaguchi Pier during boarding at Miyajima

The view of the suburban city of Hatsukaichi shortly after departing Miyajima Pier from the inland sea

The inland sea between Miyajima and Miyajimaguchi Pier shortly after leaving the Miyajima Pier

The view of the Itsukushima Shrine and Miyajima Island interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajimaguchi Pier

The interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajimaguchi Pier between Miyajima and Miyajimaguchi Pier

The view of the suburban city of Hatsukaichi during approach to the Miyajimaguchi Pier

Finally approaching to the Miyajimaguchi Pier

The interior of the JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" bound for Miyajimaguchi during approach to the Miyajimaguchi Pier

After a short 10-minute JR Miyajima Ferry ride from the offshore island of Miyajima, I finally arrived back at the Miyajimaguchi Pier at 2.35 p.m.. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the ferry and decided to head back to Miyajimaguchi Station, which was located just across Miyajimaguchi Pier. With that, I headed over to Miyajimaguchi Station via the same underground passageway where I had come through earlier. Soon enough, I finally arrived back at Miyajimaguchi Station at 2.45 p.m..

My itinerary for the return journey to Odawara would be to take a JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Hiro via Hiroshima, which would depart Miyajimaguchi Station at 3.03 p.m., and arrive at Hiroshima Station at 3.31 p.m.. Upon arrival at Hiroshima, I would have a layover of 1 hour 45 minutes before connecting to the Shinkansen SAKURA Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka, which would depart Hiroshima Station at 5.17 p.m., and arrive at the Shin-osaka terminal station at 6.45 p.m..

After arriving at Shin-osaka Station, I would have a short layover of 20 minutes before connecting to the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo, which would depart Shin-osaka Station at 7.13 p.m., and arrive at the Tokyo terminal station at 10.10 p.m.. After arriving at Tokyo, I would connect to a JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Odawara, which would depart Tokyo Station at 10.32 p.m., and arrive at the Odawara terminal station at 11.57 p.m..

According to the departure information board, the nearest JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Hiro via Hiroshima would depart from Miyajimaguchi Station at 3.03 p.m. from Track No. 3. Without wasting anymore time, I entered through the ticket gates, and walked across the overhead footbridge towards Tracks No. 3 and 4 of Miyajimaguchi Station.


The JR Miyajima Ferry "Nanaura Maru" that took me back to Miyajimaguchi Pier from Miyajima earlier

The entrance to the JR Miyajima Ferry Miyajimaguchi Pier

The roads of the downtown Hatsukaichi as seen from the Miyajimaguchi Pier

The exterior view of Hiroden Miyajimaguchi Station

Crossing a road towards the entrance to the underground passageway to Miyajimaguchi Station from Miyajimaguchi Pier

The entrance to the underground passageway to Miyajimaguchi Station from Miyajimaguchi Pier

Walking along the underground passageway from Miyajimaguchi Station to Miyajimaguchi Pier

The entrance to the underground passageway between Miyajimaguchi Station and Miyajimaguchi Pier

Finally arriving back at Miyajimaguchi Station at 2.45 p.m.

The ticketing gates in the station concourse of Miyajimaguchi Station

Track No. 1 serving the JR Sanyo Main Line trains bound for Iwakuni and Shimonoseki at Miyajimaguchi Station

The station name plate for Miyajimaguchi Station

The overview of the station platforms of Miyajimaguchi Station from the overhead footbridge

Tracks No. 3 and 4 serving the JR Sanyo Main Line trains bound for Hiroshima and Okayama at Miyajimaguchi Station

The departure information board for JR Sanyo Main Line trains bound for Hiroshima departing from Track No. 3 at Miyajimaguchi Station

After spending nearly 15 minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, a 4-car 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Hiro via Hiroshima, finally arrived at Miyajimaguchi Station at 3.03 p.m. on Track No. 3. I immediately boarded the train and secured a seat for the short 28-minute journey towards the hustle and bustle of Hiroshima.

Soon enough, all the doors were closed, and the JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Hiro via Hiroshima finally departed Miyajimaguchi Station. I was then on my way for a short journey time of 28 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of Hiroshima. Since this was just a short ride, I didn't shoot any videos for this sector.


A 4-carriage 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Hiro via Hiroshima finally arriving at Miyajimaguchi Station on Track No. 3

Finally pulling out of Miyajimaguchi Station

The interior of the 4-carriage 115 series EMU, operating on a JR Sanyo Main Line local service bound for Hiro via Hiroshima

A department store located in the suburban city of Hatsukaichi

The commercial of the upcoming Hokuriku Shinkansen on the JR Sanyo Main Line local train bound for Hiro via Hiroshima

Running parallel to the Hiroshima Electric Railway tracks in the city of Hatsukaichi

Stopping at Miyauchi-kushido Station, where I had alighted earlier by mistake

Bypassing some houses located near Miyauchi-kushido Station

Stopping at Hatsukaichi Station

Making a brief stop at Itsukaichi Station

Bypassing some suburban areas in Saeki-ku, Hiroshima

Stopping briefly at Nishi-hiroshima Station

Crossing underneath a roadbridge towards Hiroshima

Crossing a river bridge between Nishi-hiroshima and Yokogawa Stations

Making a brief stop at Yokogawa Station

Crossing a river between Yokogawa and Hiroshima Stations

Overlooking the Sanyo Shinkansen tracks as the train approaches Hiroshima Station

Finally arriving at Hiroshima Station on Track No. 7

After a short 28-minute Sanyo Main Line journey from Miyajimaguchi Station, I finally arrived back at Hiroshima Station at 3.31 p.m. on Track No. 7. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went up via the escalators towards the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse of the station. As soon as I had arrived at the information centre, the ladies at the counter were expecting me.

Much to my relief, they informed me that my umbrella had just been found on board the train I was on earlier that morning by one of the train cleaners. With that, I headed down to the 'Lost and Found Items' office, where my black-handled umbrella was returned to me in no time. Upon filling up all of my particulars, I decided to head back up to the main station concourse.


Tracks No. 5 and 7 serving the Sanyo Main Line and Kure Line trains at Hiroshima Station

Heading to the Sanyo Shinkansen station concourse of Hiroshima Station

The Sanyo Shinkansen ticketing concourse at Hiroshima Station

After claiming my black-handle umbrella from the 'Lost and Found Items' office located just below Hiroshima Station, I went back up to the Sanyo Shinkansen concourse to check the departure time for the Shinkansen SAKURA Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka from the station. According to the departure information board, the Shinkansen SAKURA Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka would depart Hiroshima Station at 5.17 p.m. from Track No. 14. Though it was still early, I went up to Tracks No. 13 and 14 and decided to spot some Shinkansen trains on the platform to pass the time. During my Shinkansen spotting, I also saw a MIZUHO train, as with in Hakata Station when I went to Fukuoka a few days earlier.

SAKURA (さくら) is one of the train services that operates on the Sanyo Shinkansen and Kyushu Shinkansen lines in Japan. Slower than the MIZUHO but faster than the TSUBAME, the SAKURA is the fastest train service on the Sanyo and Kyushu Shinkansen lines that can be used with the Japan Rail Pass. The stop patterns for the SAKURA service is the same as for the HIKARI service that operates on the Tokaido and Sanyo Shinkansen lines. The service can reach a top speed of 300 km/h (186 mph) on the Sanyo Shinkansen, and 260 km/h (160 mph) on the Kyushu Shinkansen.

The service commenced on 12 March 2011 (the day after the Great East Japan Tsunami), following the opening of the entire Kyushu Shinkansen line between the cities of Fukuoka and Kagoshima. It currently uses 6-car 800 series sets, and special 8-car N700 series sets, which are painted in a very distinctive livery and designed to provide direct service between Honshu and Kyushu.

Green Car accommodation is not available on services operated by 6-car 800 series trains, which are used solely on the Kyushu Shinkansen lines, as 800 Series Shinkansen trains are completely monoclass trains. However, on the 8-car N700 series sets, operated by JR West and JR Kyushu, Green Car accommodation is provided in half of one carriage (Car No. 6) of the 8-carriage formation, seating up to a total of 24 passengers. There is no smoking permitted on services operated by 800 series trains, truncated to the Kyushu Shinkansen line. However, of the 8-car N700 series sets, Cars No. 3 and 7 have segregated smoking compartments for smokers.


The LED destination panel of a 16-car JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z80, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 136 bound for Tokyo at Hiroshima Station

The Sanyo Shinkansen station platforms of Hiroshima Station in the late afternoon

The LED destination panel of an 8-car N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R3, operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 560 bound for Shin-osaka at Hiroshima Station

An 8-carriage N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R11, operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 561 bound for Kagoshima-chuo arriving at Hiroshima Station on Track No. 12 at 4.26 p.m.

The LED destination panel of a 16-car JR West 700 Series Shinkansen Set No. C16, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 180 bound for Tokyo at Hiroshima Station

700系新幹線 C16編成 のぞみ180号 東京行き 広島駅から出発シーン

A 16-carriage N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. N3, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 33 bound for Hakata (Fukuoka) arriving at Hiroshima Station on Track No. 12 at 4.35 p.m.

The LED destination panel of a 16-car JR West N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. N3, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 33 bound for Hakata (Fukuoka) at Hiroshima Station

A 16-carriage N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z22, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 44 bound for Tokyo awaiting departure from Hiroshima Station on Track No. 13

N700系新幹線 S19編成 みずほ628号 新大阪行き 広島駅で到着と出発シーン

The departure information board for Sanyo Shinkansen trains bound for Shin-osaka and Tokyo departing from Track No. 14 at Hiroshima Station

A 16-carriage 700 Series Shinkansen Set No. B12, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 182 bound for Tokyo at Hiroshima Station on Track No. 13

Tracks No. 13 and 14 serving the Sanyo Shinkansen trains bound for Shin-osaka and Tokyo at Hiroshima Station

The LED destination panel of a 16-car JR West 700 Series Shinkansen Set No. B12, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 182 bound for Tokyo at Hiroshima Station

Tracks No. 13 and 14 of Hiroshima Station with two Shinkansen "NOZOMI" trains bound for Tokyo

After spending 1 hour 20 minutes of waiting on the platform, an 8-car JR Kyushu N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5, operating on the Shinkansen SAKURA Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka finally arrived at Hiroshima Station at 5.16 p.m. on Track No. 14. I then boarded the train through the front of Car No. 6, and went into the Green Car (first class) cabin, settling into my assigned Seat No. 14A for the short journey time of 1 hour 28 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of downtown Osaka.

At exactly 5.17 p.m., all the train doors closed, and the Shinkansen SAKURA Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka finally pulled out of Hiroshima Station. I was then on my way for a short train journey time of 1 hour 28 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of the city of Osaka in the Kansai Region of Japan, and for the first segment of my return trip towards the suburban city of Odawara.


N700系新幹線 R5編成 さくら562号 新大阪行き 広島駅に入線シーン

The LED destination panel of the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka at Hiroshima Station

The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka at Hiroshima Station


N700系新幹線 R5編成 さくら562号 新大阪行き 広島 (発車) ~ 東広島 (通過)

Speeding through a tunnel between Hiroshima and Mihara Stations

Passing by some farming areas between the cities of Higashihiroshima and Mihara

Running parallel to the Sanyo Main Line tracks in the suburban city of Mihara

Speeding through Mihara Station

Passing through Shin-onomichi Station

Bypassing some houses in the suburban city of Fukuyama near Fukuyama Station

Making a brief stop at Fukuyama Station

My return Green Car (first class) Shinkansen ticket for the journey between Hiroshima and Tokyo. Note that I was still in midst of my first segment between Hiroshima and Shin-osaka


N700系新幹線 R5編成 さくら562号 新大阪行き 福山駅から岡山駅間

Making a brief stop at Okayama Station

The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka between Okayama and Himeji

A view of my seat, 14D, during the journey to Shin-osaka

A pair of Green Car seats on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka

Bypassing some suburban settlements in the suburban city of Bizen, Okayama

Crossing a lake between the borders of Hyogo and Okayama Prefectures

Bypassing some farming areas in the city of Ako


N700系新幹線 R5編成 さくら562号 新大阪行き 相生 (通過) ~ 姫路 (通過)

The view of the Green Car cabin from my seat on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka between Himeji and Shin-kobe

Bypassing some housing areas in the suburban city of Himeji

Crossing the Kakogawa River between the cities of Himeji and Kakogawa

Bypassing some housing areas in the suburban city of Kakogawa

Bypassing a rice paddy farming area near the city of Kakogawa

The view of the Seto Inland Sea from the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5, operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka

Bypassing Nishi-akashi Station

The beautiful sunset view of the Akashi-kaikyo Bridge as seen from the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka

Travelling through a tunnel between Nishi-akashi and Shin-kobe Stations on the Sanyo Shinkansen

The view of the Green Car cabin from my seat on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka as the train approaches Shin-kobe Station

Arriving at Shin-kobe Station


N700系新幹線 R5編成 さくら562号 新大阪行き 新神戸駅から終点新大阪駅間

After a journey time of 1 hour 28 minutes from the city of Hiroshima, I finally arrived at the Shin-osaka terminal station at 6.45 p.m. on Track No. 20. Knowing that I had approximately 20 minutes before my connecting train towards Tokyo, I decided to go down to a nearby station kiosk to purchase something to eat, as I was feeling rather hungry.

From the station kiosk located in the Shinkansen concourse, I purchased a beef tongue lunchbox (gyutan bento). According to the departure information screen, the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo would depart from Shin-osaka Station at 7.13 p.m. from Track No. 25. Without wasting any more time, I immediately proceeded up to Tracks No. 25 and 26 in preparation for my connecting train towards Tokyo.


The front view of the Green Car cabin on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 bound for Shin-osaka shortly after arriving at the Shin-osaka terminal station

The LED destination panel of the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5 operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 575 bound for Kagoshima-chuo

The departure information board for trains departing from Track No. 20 at Shin-osaka Station

The logo of the 16-car JR West N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5, operating on the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 575 bound for Kagoshima-chuo

The N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. R5, which brought me back here from Hiroshima as the Shinkansen "SAKURA" Superexpress No. 562 earlier on Track No. 20 at Shin-osaka Station

The departure information board for "HIKARI" and "KODAMA" trains bound for Tokyo in the Shinkansen concourse of Shin-osaka Station

The Shinkansen concourse of Shin-osaka Station in the early evening hours

Tracks No. 25 and 26 of Shin-osaka Station in the early evening hours

The departure information boards for trains departing from Tracks No. 25 and 26 at Shin-osaka Station

The departure information board for trains departing from Track No. 25 at Shin-osaka Station

Tracks No. 25 and 26 of Shin-osaka Station, with an N700 Series Shinkansen train, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 50 bound for Tokyo about to depart

Tracks No. 25 and 26 of Shin-osaka Station just before the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo arrived at the station

After spending about 10 minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, a 16-car JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3, operating on the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo, finally entered Shin-osaka Station at 7.07 p.m. on Track No. 25. Once the doors swung open, I boarded the train through Car No. 8, which was one of the Green Car (first class) carriages and went to my assigned Seat No. 8A for the journey time of 2 hours 57 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of the Tokyo metropolitan area.

At exactly 7.13 p.m., all the doors were closed, and the Shinkansen HIKARI Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo finally pulled out of Shin-osaka Station for its evening journey time of 2 hours 57 minutes towards downtown Tokyo. I was then on my way for a journey time of 2 hours 57 minutes towards the busy hustle and bustle of the capital city of Japan, and for the second segment of my return journey towards the suburban city of Odawara.


N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 新大阪駅に入線シーン

The LED destination panel of the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo at Shin-osaka Station

A view of my seat, 8A, during the boarding process at Shin-osaka Station

The front view of the Green Car interior of the JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo

The rear view of the Green Car interior of the JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo

Awaiting departure from Shin-osaka Station


N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 新大阪駅から京都駅間

Making a brief stop at Kyoto Station

My beef tongue lunchbox (gyutan bento) for the journey

Travelling between the urban cities of Kyoto and Otsu

Watching Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets on my laptop

The view of the Green Car cabin from my seat on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo between Kyoto and Maibara

Running parallel to the JR Tokaido Main Line tracks as the train approaches Maibara Station

Stopping briefly at Maibara Station

The LED destination panel of the N700 Series Shinkansen train operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 523 bound for Shin-osaka at Maibara Station

A 16-carriage N700 Series Shinkansen train operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 52 bound for Tokyo bypassing my train at Maibara Station

My return Green Car (first class) Shinkansen ticket for the journey between Hiroshima and Tokyo. Note that I was still in midst of my second segment between Shin-osaka and Tokyo

Travelling between Shiga and Gifu Prefectures at night

Stopping briefly at Gifu-hashima Station

A 16-carriage 700 Series Shinkansen train operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 184 bound for Tokyo bypassing my train at Gifu-hashima Station

Entering the city of Nagoya at night

Making a brief stop at Nagoya Station


N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 名古屋 (発車) ~ 三河安城 (通過)

Travelling between the cities of Anjo and Toyohashi at night

The view of the Green Car cabin from my seat on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo between Nagoya and Toyohashi

Stopping briefly at Toyohashi Station

Travelling between Aichi and Shizuoka Prefectures at night

Travelling through the city of Hamamatsu at night

Speeding through Hamamatsu Station

The rear view of the Green Car interior of the JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo between Toyohashi and Shizuoka

The front view of the Green Car interior of the JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo between Toyohashi and Shizuoka

A view of my seat, 8A, during the journey to Tokyo

N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 掛川 (通過) ~ 静岡 (通過)

Travelling between the cities of Shizuoka and Fuji at night

Speeding through Shin-fuji Station at night

Travelling through the city of Mishima at night

Speeding through Mishima Station

Running through a tunnel between the cities of Mishima and Atami

N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 熱海 (通過) ~ 小田原 (通過)

Travelling between the city of Chigasaki at night

Travelling between the city of Hiratsuka at night

The rear view of the Green Car interior of the JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo between Odawara and Shin-yokohama

The front view of the Green Car interior of the JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo between Odawara and Shin-yokohama

Travelling through the city of Yokohama as the train approaches Shin-yokohama Station

The view of the Green Car cabin from my seat on the N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3 operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo as the train approaches Shin-yokohama Station

Making a brief stop at Shin-yokohama Station

N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 新横浜駅から品川駅間

N700系新幹線 Z3編成 ひかり534号 東京行き 品川駅から終点東京駅間

After a journey time of 2 hours 57 minutes from the hustling and bustling city of Osaka, I finally arrived at the Tokyo terminal station at 10.10 p.m. on Track No. 18. Knowing that I had less than 20 minutes left before my connecting JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Odawara, I took the escalator down and transferred to the JR Line councourse of Tokyo Station. I then went to check which platform the nearest JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Odawara would depart from.

According to the departure information board, the nearest JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Odawara would depart Tokyo Station at 10.32 p.m. from Track No. 7. Without wasting anymore time, I headed up to Tracks No. 7 and 8. to prepare for my final segment of the day between Tokyo and Odawara, only to find a 15-car E217 series EMU still being serviced for its late night JR Tokaido Main line local service bound for Odawara.


The logo of the 16-car JR Central N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. Z3, that brought me here as the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 534 bound for Tokyo earlier on Track No. 18

Tracks No. 18 and 19 with two out-of-service N700 Series Shinkansen trains late at night

The deserted Tokaido Shinkansen concourse of Tokyo Station late at night

The relatively crowded JR Line station concourse of Tokyo Station late at night

Tracks No. 6 and 7 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line at Tokyo Station

The JR Tokaido Main Line platforms of Tokyo Station with commuters waiting to get home

After spending approximately a few minutes of waiting on the platform, the doors of the E217 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara, were finally opened at 10.25 p.m.. I then boarded the train through Car No. 4, which was one of the bi-level Green Car (first class) carriages, and managed to secure Seats No. 11C and 11D for the short late night journey time of 1 hour 25 minutes towards the suburban city of Odawara.

From the number of passengers boarding at Tokyo Station, the load was relatively light in the Green Car (first class) carriages. At exactly 10.32 p.m., all the train doors were closed, and the JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Odawara finally pulled out of Tokyo Station. I was then on my way for a short late night journey time of 1 hour 25 minutes towards the suburban city of Odawara.


The front view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E217 series EMU operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara at Tokyo Station

A view of my seats, 11C and 11D, for the short late night journey back to Odawara

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E217 series EMU operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara from my seat at Tokyo Station

E217系 東海道本線 普通列車 小田原行き 東京駅から新橋駅間

Stopping briefly at Shimbashi Station

Pulling into Shinagawa Station

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E217 series EMU operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara from my seat between Shinagawa and Kawasaki

Travelling through the suburban city of Kawasaki at night

Making a brief stop at Kawasaki Station

Travelling through the suburban city of Kawasaki and downtown Yokohama at night

Making a brief stop at Yokohama Station

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E217 series EMU operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara from my seat between Yokohama and Fujisawa

Pulling into Totsuka Station

Stopping briefly at Ofuna Station

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E217 series EMU operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara from my seat between Ofuna and Hiratsuka

Making a brief stop at Fujisawa Station

Travelling between the suburban cities of Fujisawa and Hiratsuka at night

Making a brief stop at Hiratsuka Station

Stopping briefly at Ninomiya Station

Running between Ninomiya and Odawara at night

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E217 series EMU operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Odawara from my seat between Hiratsuka and Odawara

Making a brief stop at Kozu Station


E217系 東海道本線 普通列車 小田原行き 国府津駅から終点小田原駅間

After a short late night journey time of 1 hour 25 minutes from the hustle and bustle of Tokyo, I finally arrived back at the Odawara terminal station at 11.57 p.m. on Track No. 5. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went down towards the Tokaido Shinkansen concourse of the station, where my family would be waiting for me. Given that it was already so late at night, everything was starting to close business for the night.

After arriving at the Tokaido Shinkansen concourse of Odawara Station at five minutes past midnight, I found my parents and younger brother waiting for me by our rented car. Soon enough, we departed Odawara Station by 12.10 a.m., and decided to go for a late night coastal drive towards some coastal towns at night. The night explorations to the seaside towns of Manazuru and Yugawara took approximately 45 minutes.


Track No. 3 of Odawara Station shortly after I had arrived from Tokyo

Tracks No. 3 and 4 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line trains towards Atami and Numazu

The JR Tokaido Main Line ticketing gates of Odawara Station late at night

The JR Tokaido Main Line station concourse of Odawara Station late at night

The Odakyu Odawara Line concourse of Odawara Station late at night

The Tokaido Shinkansen concourse of Odawara Station late at night

Driving through the suburban city of Odawara late at night

Travelling along a coastal road between Odawara and Manazuru late at night

Driving between the towns of Manazuru and Yugawara late at night

A small road by a petrol station in the town of Yugawara late at night

Several restaurants by the small road in the town of Yugawara late at night

Our rented car by a nearby restaurant area in the town of Yugawara at night

Driving along the coastal roads of Yugawara and Manazuru late at night

Driving along the coastal roads of Manazuru towards the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa late at night

Stopping at a Lawson convenience store located in the coastal town of Manazuru late at night

After a very nice and quiet late night drive through the towns of Manazuru and Yugawara, the clock was finally showing 12.55 a.m.. Knowing that it was already late into the night, we decided to head back to our chalet at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa. The view of the Izu Peninsula was very beautiful, especially at this time of night.

Upon arriving back at our chalet No. 2005 at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa at around 1.25 a.m., we parked our car and went into the chalet in preparation for the night. Since I was feeling really tired from my long Shinkansen train journey to Hiroshima, I had a nice hot shower and changed up, finally turning in by 2.30 a.m..

Part 3 ~ Another Shopping Trip to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The next morning, which was Saturday (15 June), I woke up late at around 11.30 a.m. after having a nice, long sleep. Feeling that there was nothing better to do on this day, I decided to take another trip to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport). With that, I had a nice, hot shower, changed up and prepared my belongings for the day.

My itinerary for the in-bound journey towards Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) would be to take a JR Tokaido Main Line Rapid Acty service bound for Tokyo between Nebukawa and Shinagawa, which would depart Nebukawa Station at 1.18 p.m., and arrive at Shinagawa Station at 2.30 p.m.. Upon arrival at Shinagawa Station, I would connect to the JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line towards Hamamatsucho, and then transfer to the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line towards Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport).

Soon enough, I finally left my chalet at 12.30 p.m. and headed towards the main hotel building. Knowing that it was a Saturday, and that no free shuttle bus services run between the resort and Odawara on Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays, I decided to catch a free shuttle bus towards Nebukawa Station, with the nearest bus departing at 1.05 p.m.. With that, I had a drink in the main hotel lobby while waiting.


The chalet houses at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa on a bright summer's afternoon

The exterior view of the main hotel building of the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa on a bright summer's afternoon

The interior of the main hotel lobby inside the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa on a bright summer's afternoon

After spending approximately 25 minutes of anticipated waiting at the main hotel lobby, the free Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa shuttle bus bound for Nebukawa Station finally pulled up at the main entrance to the hotel at one o' clock. Having all my personal belongings with me, I boarded the shuttle bus and settled down for the short five-minute journey towards Nebukawa Station.

At exactly 1.05 p.m., the bus door closed, and the free Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa shuttle bus finally pulled out of the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa. Throughout the short five-minute journey between the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa and Nebukawa Station, I was the only passenger in the bus.


The free Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa shuttle bus bound for Nebukawa Station

The interior of the free Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa shuttle bus bound for Nebukawa Station

The main parking area outside the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

Finally departing the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

Finally leaving the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa chalet area

Crossing the bridge that links between the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa and downtown Odawara

The view of the lush green mountains near the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa on a clear summer's afternoon

Bypassing some lush green mountain forests near the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa on a clear summer's afternoon

Finally arriving at Nebukawa Station

After a short five-minute shuttle bus ride from the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa, I finally arrived at the entrance to Nebukawa Station at 1.10 p.m.. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the bus and checked to see what time the nearest JR Tokaido Main Line Rapid Acty train bound for Tokyo would depart.

According to the departure information board, the next JR Tokaido Main Line Rapid Acty train bound for Tokyo would depart at 1.18 p.m. from Track No. 2. With that, I headed down to Tracks No. 2 and 3 in preparation for the first sector of the day between Nebukawa and Shinagawa.

Nebukawa Station is a railway station located in the suburban city of Odawara, Kanagawa, Japan. It is an unstaffed station and serves the JR Tokaido Main Line. All rapid and local trains make stop here. There are daily direct shuttle buses provided to the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa, with the journey time taking only five minutes in each direction.


The main station concourse at Nebukawa Station

The departure information board in the station concourse of Nebukawa Station for the JR Tokaido Main Line trains bound for Tokyo

The overall view of the station platforms of Nebukawa Station from the overhead footbridge

A 185 series EMU, operating on the Limited Express "Odoriko" No. 174 bound for Tokyo passing through Nebukawa Station

The station platforms of Nebukawa Station on a clear summer's afternoon

Track No. 2 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line trains bound for Tokyo at Nebukawa Station

After spending approximately five minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, a 15-carriage E231 series EMU, operating on the Rapid Acty service bound for Tokyo finally arrived at Nebukawa Station at 1.18 p.m. on Track No. 2. I immediately boarded the train through Car No. 5, which was one of the bi-level Green Car (first class) carriages and managed to secure Seats No. 10A and 10B for the short journey time of 1 hour 18 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of Shinagawa in downtown Tokyo.

Soon enough, the train doors closed, and the Rapid Acty train bound for Tokyo finally pulled out of Nebukawa Station, heading for its short journey time of 1 hour 21 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of the capital city of Japan. I was then on my way for a short journey time of 1 hour 18 minutes towards the hustle and bustle of Shinagawa in downtown Tokyo.


E231系 東海道本線 快速アクティー 東京行き 根府川駅に入線シーン

The front view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line Rapid "Acty" service bound for Tokyo, at Nebukawa Station

E231系 東海道本線 快速アクティー 東京行き 根府川駅から小田原駅間

Making a brief stop at Odawara Station

Passing by some suburban infrastructure in the suburban city of Odawara

Crossing the trestle bridge over a river in the suburban city of Odawara

Passing through Kamonomiya Station

Passing by a lush green farming area in the suburban city of Odawara

Making a brief stop at Kozu Station

Passing some housing areas in the town of Ninomiya

Bypassing Ninomiya Station

Passing through Oiso Station

Bypassing some housing areas in the suburban city of Hiratsuka

Making a brief stop at Hiratsuka Station

Crossing a river bridge between the suburban cities of Hiratsuka and Chigasaki

Making a brief stop at Chigasaki Station

Bypassing some suburban housing flats in the suburban city of Fujisawa

Making a brief stop at Fujisawa Station

Bypassing a train depot near Ofuna Station in the suburban city of Kamakura

Making a brief stop at Ofuna Station

A view of my seat, 10A, during the journey between Nebukawa and Shinagawa

The rear view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line Rapid "Acty" service bound for Tokyo, between Ofuna and Yokohama

The front view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line Rapid "Acty" service bound for Tokyo, between Ofuna and Yokohama

Making a brief stop at Yokohama Station

Bypassing some suburban housing areas in Nishi-ku, Yokohama

Making a brief stop at Kawasaki Station

E231系 東海道本線 快速アクティー 東京行き 川崎駅から品川駅間

After a short journey time of 1 hour 18 minutes from the little hillside village of Nebukawa in the suburban city of Odawara, I finally arrived at Shinagawa Station at 2.30 p.m. on Track No. 5. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went up towards the main station concourse to see what time the nearest Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line Rapid train bound for Minami-urawa would depart from.

According to the departure information board, the nearest JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line Rapid service bound for Minami-urawa would depart Shinagawa Station at 2.34 p.m. from Track No. 3. Knowing that I had no more time to lose, I immediately proceeded to Tracks No. 3 and 4, only to find a 10-carriage E233 series EMU, operating on a JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line Rapid service bound for Minami-urawa, awaiting departure from the platform. Without wasting anymore time, I immediately boarded the train for the short five-minute segment between Shinagawa and Hamamatsucho.

At exactly 2.34 p.m., all the doors were closed, and the JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line Rapid service bound for Minami-urawa finally pulled out of Shinagawa Station. I was then on my way for a short journey time of five minutes towards Hamamatsucho. Since this was just a short ride, I didn't shoot any videos during this sector.

Shinagawa Station is a major railway station located in Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan. It serves as a major interchange station for the Yamanote Line, Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line, Tokaido Main Line, Yokosuka Line, Sobu Main Line and the Keikyu Main Line, as well as the Tokaido Shinkansen.

The station also serves as an important stopping point for many trains bound for the Miura Peninsula, Izu Peninsula and the Tokai region. The Tokaido Shinkansen platforms opened on 1 October 2003 in order to ease overcrowding at Tokyo Station. Since then, all Tokaido Shinkansen trains make stop here; prior to the start of the revised timetable on 15 March 2008, alternating services served this station.


Tracks No. 5 and 6 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line trains bound for Tokyo

The JR Line platforms of Shinagawa Station on a clear summer's afternoon

The JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line concourse of Shinagawa Station

Tracks No. 3 and 4 serving the Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line trains at Shinagawa Station

Awaiting departure from Shinagawa Station

The interior of the E233 series EMU, operating on the JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line Rapid service bound for Minami-urawa

Bypassing a rail depot near Shinagawa Station

Crossing a rail junction yard between Shinagawa and Tamachi Stations

Travelling parallel to a 700 Series Shinkansen Set No. C21, operating on the Shinkansen "HIKARI" Superexpress No. 466 service bound for Tokyo from Okayama

Making a brief stop at Tamachi Station

The Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line tracks as the train approaches Hamamatsucho Station

Finally arriving at Hamamatsucho Station

After a short five-minute journey from the hustle and bustle of Shinagawa, I finally arrived at Hamamatsucho Station at 2.39 p.m. on Track No. 1. Having all my belongings with me, I immediately alighted the train, and proceeded to the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse of the station.

That afternoon, there were choices of Haneda Express, Rapid and Local trains towards Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport). Wanting to catch the fastest service, I went to check to see what time the nearest Tokyo Monorail Haneda Express train bound for Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) would depart. According to the departure information board, the next Tokyo Monorail Haneda Express train bound for Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) would depart at 2.48 p.m..

With that, I showed my Japan Rail Pass to the ticket managers and went up to the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line departure platform. On the platform, there were relatively a lot of passengers queuing up to board a local service train bound for Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport).


The JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line platforms at Hamamatsucho Station in the afternoon

The JR Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line concourse at Hamamatsucho Station in the afternoon

The Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse at Hamamatsucho Station

The escalators towards the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line platforms at Hamamatsucho Station

The departure information board in Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line departure platform at Hamamatsucho Station

A 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMU, operating on the 2.44 p.m. Tokyo Monorail Local service bound for Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) at, Hamamatsucho Station

東京モノレール2000形 (2026F-2021F) 空港快速 東京国際空港行き 浜松町駅に入線シーン

After spending approximately a few minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, a 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMU unit finally arrived at Hamamatsucho Station at 2.45 p.m.. The train had arrived from Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) as a Rapid Service train earlier, and was to become the Haneda Express train bound for Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport).

With that, I boarded the train through the first carriage at the Tokyo International Airport end and secured an observation seat by the driver's cab in the middle. At exactly 2.48 p.m., all the train doors were closed and the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Express train bound for Tokyo International Airport finally pulled out of Hamamatsucho Station for its short journey time of 19 minutes towards Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) in Ota-ku, Tokyo.

I was then on my way for a scenic and panoramic journey time of 19 minutes towards Tokyo International Airport. For now, I shall let these two videos do all the talking for the segment between Hamamatsucho and Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport).


東京モノレール2000形 (2026F) 空港快速 東京国際空港行き 浜松町駅から羽田空港第2ビル駅間 (1/2)

東京モノレール2000形 (2026F) 空港快速 東京国際空港行き 浜松町駅から羽田空港第2ビル駅間 (2/2)

After a short 19-minute very scenic Tokyo Monorail journey from the hustle and bustle of Hamamatsucho, I finally arrived at the Haneda Airport Terminal 2 terminal station at 3.07 p.m. on Track No. 1. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went up towards the main station concourse of the station.

Upon showing my Japan Rail Pass to the ticket officers, I exited the station and decided what to do next. Feeling very hungry already, I decided to have lunch first before doing anything else. With that, I took the elevator up to the upper floors of the terminal building to see what good restaurants were there to eat at for lunch.


A typical interior of a Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMU unit

The 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMU which took me as the Haneda Express service from Hamamatsucho earlier

Two Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMUs at Haneda Airport Terminal 2 Station

The station concourse of Haneda Airport Terminal 2 Station towards the platforms

An information desk located in the main station concourse of Haneda Airport Terminal 2 Station

A view of the restaurants located on the upper floors of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

The view of the departures and check-in area of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

The escalators leading up to the upper floors of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

Stumbling upon Don Sabatini Italian Restaurant again

After looking through the various restaurants in the terminal building, I finally managed to stumble upon Don Sabatini Italian Restaurant again. This restaurant was familiar to me, since I had first eaten here just a week earlier.

Feeling very hungry already, I went into the restaurant and requested for a non-smoking table for myself. With the food and beverage menus distributed to me, I decided to make a review through them before placing my orders for lunch.


Inside Don Sabatini Italian Restaurant in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

The cover page for the food and beverage menu of Don Sabatini Italian Restaurant in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

Reviewing the food and beverage menu of Don Sabatini Italian Restaurant in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

After having a good review through the food and beverage menus, a waiter came by to my table to take down my main meal orders for lunch. I ordered some assorted sausages and my usual spaghetti alla carbonara.

To accompany the meal, I also ordered two glasses of white wine. That afternoon, I had a sumptuous Italian lunch again at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport). The white wine was a really perfect accompaniment to such a fine lunch like this.


A fine glass of white wine to accompany my lunch

My assorted plate of sausages with my glass of white wine

My usual mouthwatering plate of spaghetti alla carbonara

After having a nice and  sumptuous Italian lunch at Don Sabatini Italian Restaurant, I was finally stuffed to the brim. Feeling that there was still more to see around Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport), I paid up my bill and left the restaurant.

The first thing I decided to do was to do some plane-spotting from the observation deck on the fifth floor of Domestic Terminal 2. With that, I took the escalator all the way up to the topmost level of the terminal building, and there, I spotted several All Nippon Airways aircraft.


The entrance to the observation deck in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

An All Nippon Airways Boeing 747-481D, registered JA8966, resting at Gate No. 65 after arriving from a domestic flight. Sadly, these will be a sight no more for All Nippon Airways as the airline is currently planning to eliminate them from service by 2014

An All Nippon Airways Boeing 777-281, registered JA8969, being serviced for her next domestic journey

Two All Nippon Airways aircraft parked at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

The tarmac view of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

An All Nippon Airways Boeing 777-281, registered JA705A, being towed away for another domestic journey at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

The fifth floor of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

Several season banners in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

Looking down at the lower levels of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2

After spending some time of plane-spotting in the observation deck of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2, the clock was finally showing 3.55 p.m.. As I knew that there was still things to see around the airport, I decided to go over to Domestic Terminal 1 to shop for some more model aircraft.

With that, I took the elevator all the way down towards the first basement of the terminal building, arriving back at the main station concourse of Haneda Airport Terminal 2 Station. Upon arriving there, I walked through the underground passageway that linked to Domestic Terminal 1, bypassing Haneda Airport Domestic Terminal Station. The walk between both terminals took no more than 10 minutes.


The entrance to the passageway between Domestic Terminals 1 and 2 in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) near Haneda Airport Terminal 2 Station

The underground passageway between Domestic Terminals 1 and 2 in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) near Haneda Airport Domestic Terminal Station

The underground passageway between Domestic Terminals 1 and 2 in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The ticketing gates at Haneda Airport Domestic Terminal Station

The entrance to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 1 from Haneda Airport Domestic Terminal 1 Station

The main station concourse of Haneda Airport Terminal 1 Station

An information counter selling train tickets near Haneda Airport Terminal 1 Station

Inside the main terminal building of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 1

Stumbling upon JALUX Blue Sky Shop in Domestic Flight Terminal 1 at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) again

After spending approximately 15 minutes on foot from Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 2 to Domestic Terminal 1, I finally stumbled upon JALUX Blue Sky Shop again at 4.10 p.m.. Entering the shop, I went to see what kind of attractive aircraft models were there to suit my interests. While shopping there, I purchased two Herpa Wings Scale 1:500 aircraft models. They were, as follows:

1) TAP Portugal Airbus A340-312 Herpa Scale 1:500 (506186)

TAP Portugal Airbus A340-312 Herpa Scale 1:500 (506186)

2) UPS Airlines Boeing 747-44AF/SCD Herpa Scale 1:500 (519298)


UPS Airlines Boeing 747-44AF/SCD Herpa Scale 1:500 (519298)

After purchasing my Herpa Wings commercial aircraft models from JALUX Blue Sky Shop, the clock was finally showing 4.20 p.m.. Knowing that I had one more stop to make before finishing my visit to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport), I decided to make a brief stopover at the International Passenger Terminal.

Without wasting anymore time, I immediately proceeded to the bus stop, which was located just outside the terminal building and headed towards the free inter-terminal shuttle bus, where it arrived at the stop at the same time. Once I was on board the free inter-terminal shuttle bus, it finally pulled out of Domestic Terminal 1 at 4.25 p.m.. The journey between Domestic Terminal 1 and the International Passenger Flight Terminal took no more than five minutes.


The bus stop located outside the entrance to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) Domestic Terminal 1

The free inter-terminal shuttle bus at the Domestic Terminal 1 bus stop at Tokyo International Airport

Inside the free inter-terminal shuttle bus at Tokyo International Airport

The multi-storey car parking area at the Domestic Terminal 1 at Tokyo International Airport

A large bus bay at the compound of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

A large suspension-like road bridge in the compound of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

Bypassing a maintenance building in Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line tracks near the international flight terminal

Finally arriving at the international passenger terminal

After a short five-minute free shuttle bus ride from Domestic Terminal 1, I finally arrived at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal at 4.30 p.m.. Having all of my belongings with me, I alighted the bus and went into the terminal building. As soon as I went into the terminal building, I took the elevator all the way up to the departures and check-in area, which was located on the third floor. Once I was on the third floor, I took the escalators all the way up to the fifth floor, and decided to see what shops were of interest to me.


The free inter-terminal shuttle bus at the International Terminal bus stop at Tokyo International Airport

The ground floor of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal

The departures and check-in area of the International Passenger Flight Terminal at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The international flight information screens on the third floor of the International Passenger Flight Terminal at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The escalators that link between the fourth and fifth levels in the Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Passenger Flight Terminal

Near the Hakuhinkan Toy Park in the fifth floor of the International Terminal at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

After looking through the various shops available on the fifth level of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal, I finally stumbled upon the Hakuhinkan Toy Park again. Once again, this shop mainly caters to selling toys for young children, but it also sells model aircraft for adults who are big fans of aviation.

While shopping at the Hakuhinkan Toy Park in the International Terminal, I purchased one more new Herpa Wings Scale 1:500 commercial model aircraft, which was an Airbus A330. The model was as follows:

1) Hawaiian Airlines Airbus A330-243 Herpa Scale 1:500 (519137)


Hawaiian Airlines Airbus A330-243 Herpa Scale 1:500 (519137)

After I had purchased my Hawaiian Airlines Airbus A330 Herpa Wings aircraft model, I was starting to get rather bored. To relieve my boredom, I went outside towards the aircraft observation deck to do some of my plane-spotting activities. Again, the view of the airport from the aircraft observation deck was very scenic and breathtaking. Plane-spotting here is also quite fun, as always.


Overlooking the airport compound from Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal

A Cathay Pacific Boeing 777-367/ER, registered B-KPO, about to taxi to the runway in preparation for her late afternoon journey back home towards the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region as Cathay Pacific flight CX 549 bound for Hong Kong

The overall view of the airport tarmac of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) as seen from the International Terminal

The list of foreign airliners serving Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The airport tarmac near Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal

The exterior view of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal from the observation deck

After spending almost a couple of hours at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport), the clock was finally showing 4.45 p.m.. Feeling quite tired already, I decided that it was time to head back to Odawara for a family dinner. My itinerary for the return journey back to Odawara would be to take the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Express train bound for Hamamatsucho, which would depart Haneda Airport International Terminal Station at 5.23 p.m., and arrive at the Hamamatsucho terminal station at 5.37 p.m..

Upon arrival at Hamamatsucho Station, I would connect to a JR Yamanote Line Outer Loop Train, which would depart Hamamatsucho Station at 5.51 p.m., and arrive at Shinagawa Station at 5.57 p.m.. After arriving at Shinagawa, I would connect to a JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami, which would depart Shinagawa Station at 6.15 p.m., and arrive at Odawara Station at 7.30 p.m..

Without wasting anymore time, I went for a quick washroom break and purchased some bottled drinks from a vending machine as I was feeling rather thirsty before proceeding to Haneda Airport International Terminal Station. The walk between the observation deck and Haneda Airport International Terminal Station took no more than five to ten minutes.


Walking down the escalator towards the departures and check-in area of the International Passenger Flight Terminal at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport)

The departures and check-in area of the International Passenger Flight Terminal at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) just before I went down towards Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

The arrivals and meeting area of Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) International Terminal

After a short walk from the observation deck via the arrivals area, I finally reached Haneda Airport International Terminal Station at five o' clock. Having a good drink, I decided to check to see what time the last Haneda Express train bound for Hamamatsucho for the late afternoon would depart.

According to the departure information board, the last Haneda Express train bound for Hamamatsucho for the late afternoon would depart at 5.23 p.m. from Track No. 2. Without wasting anymore time, I showed my Japan Rail Pass and went up to Track No. 2 for the journey back towards Hamamatsucho. While waiting for my Haneda Express train, I spotted some Tokyo Monorail trains on the platform.


The Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

The JR East Travel Service Center in the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

The departure information board in the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse of Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

The passageway towards Track No. 2 serving the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line trains bound for Hamamatsucho at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

The overall view of the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line platforms at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

A 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMU, operating on a 5.04 p.m. local service bound for Haneda Airport Terminal 2, arriving at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

Track No. 2 serving the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line trains bound for Hamamatsucho at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

A 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 1000 series EMU, painted in a special Pokémon Monorail livery, departing Haneda Airport International Terminal Station on a 5.11 p.m. Haneda Express service bound for Hamamatsucho

A Tokyo Monorail 1000 series EMU, operating on a 5.14 p.m. Haneda Express service bound for Haneda Airport Terminal 2, arriving at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

A Tokyo Monorail 1000 series EMU, painted back into the original livery of black and white with red stripes (a.k.a. History Train), operating on a 5.16 p.m. local service bound for Haneda Airport Terminal 2, at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

The departure information board on Track No. 2 serving the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line trains bound for Hamamatsucho at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

A 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 2000 series EMU, operating on a 5.20 p.m. local service bound for Hamamatsucho, about to depart Haneda Airport International Terminal Station

After spending almost approximately 25 minutes of waiting on the platform, a 6-carriage Tokyo Monorail 1000 series EMU, operating on the 5.23 p.m. Haneda Express service bound for Hamamatsucho, finally arrived at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station at 5.23 p.m. on Track No. 2. Having everything with me, I boarded the train for the short 14-minute hop towards the hustle and bustle of Hamamatsucho.

As all the seats were taken up, I was left with no choice but to stand throughout the journey, but still wanted to take a panoramic video of the entire sector between Tokyo International Airport and Hamamatsucho. Soon enough, all the doors were closed and the Haneda Express train bound for Hamamatsucho finally departed Haneda Airport International Terminal Station. I was then on my way for a short 14-minute hop towards the hustle and bustle of Hamamatsucho in downtown Tokyo. Now I shall let this sole video do all the talking.


東京モノレール1000形 (1067F) 空港快速 浜松町行き 羽田空港国際線ビル駅から浜松町駅間

After a short 14-minute Tokyo Monorail train ride from Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport), I finally arrived back at the Hamamatsucho terminal station at 5.37 p.m.. Having all my personal belongings with me, I alighted the train and headed down towards the main station concourse by 5.40 p.m..

Upon reaching the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse, I showed my Japan Rail Pass to the ticket officers and made my way down towards the JR Line concourse. Arriving there by 5.45 p.m., I immediately made my way down towards Tracks No. 3 and 4 in preparation for the short JR Yamanote Line Outer Loop segment between Hamamatsucho and Shinagawa.


The Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line arrival platform at Hamamatsucho Station

The busy Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse of Hamamatsucho Station during the early evening rush hours

The Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line concourse at Hamamatsucho Station during the early evening rush hours

The escalators between the Tokyo Monorail Haneda Airport Line and Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line concourses of Hamamatsucho Station

The Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line ticket gates of Hamamatsucho Station

The Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line concourse of Hamamatsucho Station during the evening rush

Tracks No. 3 and 4 serving the Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line trains towards Shinagawa at Hamamatsucho Station

The Keihin-Tohoku Negishi Line and Yamanote Line platforms at Hamamatsucho Station

Track No. 3 just as an 11-carriage E231 series EMU, operating on a JR Yamanote Line Outer Loop service, approaches Hamamatsucho Station

After spending approximately five minutes of anticipated waiting on the platform, an 11-car E231 series EMU, operating on a JR Yamanote Line Outer Loop service, finally arrived at Hamamatsucho Station at 5.51 p.m. on Track No. 3. I then grabbed my belongings and boarded the train in preparation for the short sector between Hamamatsucho and Shinagawa.

Soon enough, the train doors were closed, and the JR Yamanote Line Outer Loop train finally departed Hamamatsucho Station. I was then on my way for a short journey time of six minutes towards the hustle and bustle of Shinagawa. Since this was just a short journey, I didn't shoot any videos between Hamamatsucho and Shinagawa, other than a few images.


The interior of the E231 series Yamanote Line Outer Loop train at Hamamatsucho Station

Running alongside a 16-carriage N700 Series Shinkansen Set No. N16, operating on the Shinkansen "NOZOMI" Superexpress No. 119 service bound for Hiroshima from Tokyo. Note that on certain days, as of 16 March 2013, this service may continue on to Hakata (Fukuoka) instead of terminating in Hiroshima

Making a brief stop at Tamachi Station

Travelling past a large railway yard near the Tokaido Shinkansen flyover between Tamachi and Shinagawa

Bypassing the large train depot near Shinagawa Station

Stopping at Shinagawa Station

After a short journey time of six minutes from Hamamatsucho, I finally arrived at Shinagawa Station at 5.57 p.m. on Track No. 2. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went up to the main station concourse. Since it was already the early evening rush hour, the station was really packed with commuters. I then went to check to see which platform the nearest JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami would depart from.

According to the departure information board, the nearest Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami would depart at 6.15 p.m. from Track No. 12. Without wasting anymore time, I proceeded over towards the Tokaido Main Line Tracks No. 11 and 12 in preparation for the journey back towards the suburban city of Odawara.


Tracks No. 1 and 2 serving the JR Yamanote Line trains at Shinagawa Station

The busy JR Yamanote Line concourse of Shinagawa Station during the evening rush hour

The busy Tokaido Main Line concourse of Shinagawa Station during the evening rush hour

The departure information board in the Tokaido Main Line concourse of Shinagawa Station during the evening rush hour

A large luxury department shop located in the busy Tokaido Main Line concourse of Shinagawa Station during the evening rush hour

Tracks No. 11 and 12 serving the JR Tokaido Main Line trains bound for Odawara, Atami and Numazu at Shinagawa Station

After spending approximately 10 minutes of waiting on the platform, a 15-carriage E231 series EMU, operating on a JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, finally entered Shinagawa Station at 6.14 p.m.. I then boarded the train through Car No. 5, which was one of the bi-level Green Car (first class) carriages, and managed to secure Seats No. 8A and 8B for the short journey time of 1 hour 15 minutes towards the suburban city of Odawara.

At exactly 6.15 p.m., all the train doors were closed, and the JR Tokaido Main Line local train bound for Atami finally pulled out of Shinagawa Station for its remaining journey time of 1 hour 45 minutes towards the small resort city of Atami. I was then on my way for a short journey time of 1 hour 15 minutes towards the suburban city of Odawara.


E231系 東海道本線 普通列車 熱海行き 品川駅に入線と乗車

E231系 東海道本線 普通列車 熱海行き 品川駅から川崎駅間

Stopping over in Kawasaki

Passing some suburban housing apartments in Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama

Bypassing Higashi-kanagawa Station

Making a brief stop at Ofuna Station

Bypassing a train depot near Ofuna Station in the suburban city of Kamakura during sunset

Making a brief stop at Fujisawa Station

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, from my seat at Fujisawa Station

Bypassing some sparse areas between the cities of Fujisawa and Hiratsuka during sunset

The rear view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, between Fujisawa and Hiratsuka

The front view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, between Fujisawa and Hiratsuka

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, from my seat between Fujisawa and Hiratsuka

Crossing a river between the cities of Fujisawa and Hiratsuka

Making a brief stop at Hiratsuka Station

A 15-carriage out-of-service E231 series EMU resting in a siding near Hiratsuka Station

Making a brief stop at Oiso Station

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, from my seat between Oiso and Ninomiya

Bypassing some farming fields between Oiso and Ninomiya

Arriving at Ninomiya Station

A view of my seat, 8A, while stopping briefly at Ninomiya Station

The view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, from my seat between Ninomiya and Odawara

Travelling between Ninomiya and Kozu Stations during nightfall

The rear view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, between Hiratsuka and Kozu

The front view of the upper level Green Car cabin of the E231 series EMU, operating on the JR Tokaido Main Line local service bound for Atami, between Hiratsuka and Kozu

Arriving at Kozu Station

E231系 東海道本線 普通列車 熱海行き 国府津駅から小田原駅間

After a short journey time of 1 hour 15 minutes from the hustle and bustle of Shinagawa in downtown Tokyo, I finally arrived back at Odawara Station at 7.30 p.m. on Track No. 3. Having all my belongings with me, I alighted the train and went down towards the Tokaido Shinkansen concourse, where my family was waiting for me.

Upon meeting up with my family in the Tokaido Shinkansen concourse, we went towards the other side of the station again, passing the JR Line and Odakyu Line concourse along the way. There, we decided to look around to see where to eat at for dinner.


Tracks No. 3 and 4 serving the Tokaido Main Line trains bound for Atami and Numazu at Odawara Station

The JR Tokaido Main Line ticketing gates at Odawara Station

The Tokaido Main Line concourse of Odawara Station in the mid-evening hours

The Tokaido Shinkansen ticketing gates at Odawara Station in the evening

The JR Central Ticket Office at Odawara Station in the Tokaido Shinkansen concourse

The Odakyu Odawara Line concourse of Odawara Station in the mid-evening hours

The other side main entrance towards Odawara Station

The station building of Odawara Station at night

Stumbling upon Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara again

After walking through the concourse of Odawara Station towards the restaurant alley, we finally stumbled upon Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara again. We were familiar with this restaurant since we had first eaten here a few days earlier.

Entering the restaurant, we requested for a table for the four of us. The elderly waitresss also seemed to be quite familiar with us. With the food and beverage menus provided for us once were all in the restaurant, we had a good look through them before placing our orders for dinner.


The interior of Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara

Reviewing the grand menu of Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara

After having a good review through the food and beverage menus, the elderly waitress of the restaurant finally came down to our table to take down our meal orders. We ordered several of the food items we had a few days earlier, since they looked very appetising. That night, we had a nice and sumptuous family dinner at Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara.


A mouthwatering platter of Japanese style fried omelette, known as tamagoyaki

A small basket of fried potatoes and chicken nuggets for my younger brother

A grilling hot plate of beef steak for myself

Our two mouthwatering platters of chicken bishop (bonjiri) yakitori

A plate of deep-fried crispy fish for us

Our two mouthwatering platters of chicken skin yakitori

A platter of grilled scallops in miso sauce

A mouthwatering platter of deep-fried shishamo for us

The interior of Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara during dinner

After having a wonderful family dinner at Tsubohachi Restaurant Odawara, we were finally stuffed to the brim. Knowing that the clock was already showing 8.55 p.m., we paid up our bill and left the restaurant for our journey back to our chalet at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa.

Upon reaching Odawara Station, we then walked via the Daiyuzan Line, Tokaido Main Line and Odakyu Line concourses, arriving at the car parking area outside the Shinkansen concourse by nine o' clock. Once we were all ready, we finally left Odawara Station by 9.05 p.m. for a short 20-minute drive towards our chalet No. 2005 at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa.


The overall view of the station building of Odawara Station at night

The JR Tokaido Main Line concourse of Odawara Station at night

Several shops and cafeterias in the Tokaido Shinkansen concourse of Odawara Station late at night

Finally departing the compound of Odawara Station

Driving along the roads of Odawara at night

Climbing up the hill back towards the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

Finally at the doorstep to our chalet No. 2005 at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa

After a short 20-minute drive from Odawara Station, we finally arrived back at our chalet No. 2005 at the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa at 9.25 p.m.. Unloading our belongings from the car, my dad went to park the car, while the rest of us went into the chalet.

Once we were all in the chalet, we all had a nice, hot shower before packing up most of our baggage for the journey back to the city of Narita the next day. Soon enough, we were finally left to our own devices to keep us company for the remainder of the night before we finally toddled off to bed between one and two o' clock late that night.

Part 4 ~ An Overnight Stay at the ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Narita

After spending an enjoyable eleven days of trains, cities, food and sightseeing, it was finally time to head back to the suburban city of Narita. There, we would be staying at the ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Narita before heading back home to Singapore the next day.

On Sunday (16 June), we all woke up at around nine o' clock in the morning after having a well-earned good night's sleep. Having a nice, hot shower and changing into our day's attire, we packed up the remainder of our baggage before checking to see that nothing was left behind in the chalet.

Having all our belongings ready after that, my dad went to the remote car parking area to claim our rented car, and drove up towards our chalet. Knowing that our first thing to do was to return our chalet key and check out of the resort at the main hotel building.

After we had loaded all of our belongings into the car, we climed aboard and drove up towards the main hotel building of the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa. There, we returned our room key, and checked out of the resort, where the hotel staff thanked us for our stay and hoped for us to come again. In summary, I can say that the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa was not bad, but a little bit too secluded.

After checking out of the Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa, the clock was finally showing 10.40 a.m.. Having our own ways to get to the ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Narita, my family decided to drive all the way there, whereas I decided to reach there by train. Our Japan Rail Passes were also due to expire on this day.

This officially brings the fourth section of my special birthday vacation in Japan in June 2013 to a close. The remaining two sections of the holiday report will be published with the best quality images and videos.