User avatar
allrite
Topic Author
Posts: 2476
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 11:28 pm

The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Mon Nov 13, 2017 3:42 am

To visit all the compass points of the Japanese railway network has been a long term dream of mine. I have passed through forty-five of the forty-seven prefectures in my fourteen years of visiting the country, but I had never made it to the farthest extents of their railway network. With JR Hokkaido threatening to close some of the lines to those points and the demographic challenges the whole country faces I felt an urgency to do so.

The journey between the points took seven days, with another seven spent in the company of my wife and eight year old son. I rode the entire north-south length of the Shinkansen network, but also caught many local trains along the way. I travelled all the way up to Wakkanai in the north and Nemuro (Higashi-Nemuro) in the east of Hokkaido, to Tabira-Hiradoguchi and Sasebo in the west and Makurazaki (Nishi-Oyama) in the south of Kyushu. There were also trips to Takayama and Unazuki Onsen and visits to the railway museums in Nagoya and Kyoto and Legoland and Universal Studios along the way.

(And no, I don't consider the Naha Monorail part of this railway network)

To reach Japan I flew Jetstar Australia alone from Sydney to Cairns on an Airbus A320 and then onwards to Kansai International with their Boeing 787-8. I returned the same way in the company of my family.

Apologies for not writing a proper report here, but it has taken me months to compile a massive (almost 30,000 word) detailed report in five parts with many photos and videos on both my flights and my travels at https://stories.allrite.at/category/jrnewstour/.

There is also a brief version (without the aviation stuff) at http://travelling.allrite.at/2017/11/the-compass-points-of-japanese-railway.html.

A small selection of photos:

Image
Early morning over NSW

Image
Salmon skies

Image
Descending over the coast north of Cairns

Image
Our 787-8 at Cairns International Airport

Image
Coral reefs

Image
Evening seas south-east of Japan

Image
On descent

Image
The Shinkansen from Shin-Osaka

Image
Wakkanai

Image
The Nemuro Line

Image
Riding the Kurobe Gorge Railway tourist train

Image
On board the Matsuura railway

Image
The end of the line at Makurazaki station.

Image
Nankai Rapi:t Beta train from Osaka to Kansai International Airport

Image
Flight back to Cairns

Image
Departing Cairns for Sydney

Image
Looping over Sydney Airport

Image
Out to sea again over the Royal National Park before turning back for a landing from the south

I hope you will take the time to read the full report and enjoy the photos and videos there, or check out my many previous detailed trip reports on airliners.net. Thanks!
I like artificial banana essence!
 
igtrader88
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:52 am

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:39 am

very interesting journey, i read your reports JRNEWStour. Japan is fascinating and the further you go from Tokyo and Osaka the better it gets :)
 
User avatar
allrite
Topic Author
Posts: 2476
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 11:28 pm

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:08 am

igtrader88 wrote:
very interesting journey, i read your reports JRNEWStour. Japan is fascinating and the further you go from Tokyo and Osaka the better it gets :)


Thank you! Yes, Tokyo, Osaka and Sapporo all set too full of tourists now! Yes, I am a tourist, but I like to pretend I'm not. :) Give me sometime where quiet!
I like artificial banana essence!
 
User avatar
XAM2175
Posts: 592
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2014 2:25 pm

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Sat Nov 18, 2017 2:09 pm

Fantastic mate! Japan's been on my travel radar for a long time and much more so for the railways than for the aviation, I must confess (though JAL's continued use of the 767 is far from disappointing).
 
User avatar
allrite
Topic Author
Posts: 2476
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 11:28 pm

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:38 pm

XAM2175 wrote:
Fantastic mate! Japan's been on my travel radar for a long time and much more so for the railways than for the aviation, I must confess (though JAL's continued use of the 767 is far from disappointing).


Thank you! I suspect it's the best country in the world for train travel. Others may have longer routes, faster trains, more extreme altitudes or depths or other records, but the Japanese love their trains and you can explore so much of the country on them.

Funny though how previously "boring" aircraft like 767s become more interesting as they age and are discarded from service (though in my case the 747 has never stopped being wonderful).
I like artificial banana essence!
 
User avatar
VapourTrails
Posts: 3085
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2001 9:30 pm

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:20 am

Hi allrite

Wow! You've put so much work into that report, but it is all worth it. Do you keep print versions also, or other electronic backups offline? It is so great that Alex will have these travel chronicles to keep for when he is much older. Special eh. Love that embedded video too, that site design is awesome. :thumbsup:

I've still yet to fly JQ, but I have booked my first TigerAir Australia flight. :thumbsup:

I see urbexers on YouTube also using the Japanese rail system. It is very impressive and second to none. :thumbsup:

Thanks for the update on your anxiety journey with flying. Mine is on and off. It got me at the boarding gate line up at the end of August on the outbound flight, but I was fine on the return flight. Thankfully I have made some positive progress in that area and next time I fly I am going to keep a blog from start to finish, I want to get it all down on paper, just for myself and my own understanding.

Look forward to your next adventures! Safe and smooth flying. Cheers. :wave:
Time now to spread your wings, to take to flight, the life endeavour - Savage Garden
 
User avatar
allrite
Topic Author
Posts: 2476
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 11:28 pm

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Wed Nov 22, 2017 10:56 am

VapourTrails wrote:
Hi allrite

Wow! You've put so much work into that report, but it is all worth it.



Thank you! Writing was the easy bit, the multimedia was the trouble and then I developed my WordPress theme for it because, well, that's my job. And now my host is running out of bandwidth from it all...*sigh*. I think I'll go back to Blogger next time as that is integrated with Google Photos, where my photos are automatically synched to.

VapourTrails wrote:
Do you keep print versions also, or other electronic backups offline? It is so great that Alex will have these travel chronicles to keep for when he is much older. Special eh.


I do keep copies of the text and images elsewhere, but I don't print it. I checked and this report is enough for a novelette. All my travel blog contents add up to a decent sized book. But my stories are the antithesis of the modern travel blogger. I'd rather go to the quiet, unfashionable places than take selfies in front of restaurants with pictures of Anthony Bourdain.

VapourTrails wrote:
I've still yet to fly JQ, but I have booked my first TigerAir Australia flight. :thumbsup:


Never flown Tiger. I'm happy with Jetstar and if I pay a bit extra I get my Qantas status points. Not that I can get enough to make anything of it for the second year in a row. I was going to fly Qantas up to Cairns a month or two ago with their double status point offer. I would have made silver. Except it got very windy outside and I cancelled and, well, I don't have the time anymore. And all I really want with status is to be able to prebook seats further up the aircraft so I'm over the centre of gravity by a window...

VapourTrails wrote:
I see urbexers on YouTube also using the Japanese rail system. It is very impressive and second to none. :thumbsup:


I love Japanese trains. They take you to quiet places that would have been shutdown years ago in Australia. And the Japanese themselves love their trains. There are so many I still want to catch.

VapourTrails wrote:
Thanks for the update on your anxiety journey with flying. Mine is on and off. It got me at the boarding gate line up at the end of August on the outbound flight, but I was fine on the return flight. Thankfully I have made some positive progress in that area and next time I fly I am going to keep a blog from start to finish, I want to get it all down on paper, just for myself and my own understanding.

Look forward to your next adventures! Safe and smooth flying. Cheers. :wave:


I could have flown again after Japan. But I haven't and the more time that passes between flights the harder I find it again. It's a year since I did the Fear of Flying course and, although I feel better equipped to deal with it, I still feel quite anxious in the lead up to a flight. I want to love flying again, but I have to admit that I've lost some of my passion for travel and thus the motivation. There are so many other interesting things to do in life. But Japan is the one place that keeps calling me back. I just want to get away from those crowds and back to the lonely rural towns with their Spirited Away magic.

I'm even thinking of driving next month to Canberra rather than flying. But I'm booked for Launceston in January with the family. On a Jetstar jet so hopefully that's as good as my last Tasmanian flights. And at least I keep looking up into the skies and dreaming.

It's good to hear that you can enjoy flying. I hope that you do document your next trips as reading your reports is one of the few things that keeps me returning to this site nowadays. Would love to read your blog (they are free and easy to set up if you haven't already got one). I'm going back to writing mine on a nightly basis when I'm travelling. It's just too much work writing it all up on my return!
I like artificial banana essence!
 
User avatar
XAM2175
Posts: 592
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2014 2:25 pm

Re: The Compass Points of Japan's Railway network with Jetstar

Sat Nov 25, 2017 3:01 pm

Ahh you do have me wanting to put a Japan trip together even more than ever now! I do have a special fondness for rail travel in Switzerland, which I've had the pleasure of experiencing a few times already, and I even have a few Armidale-Sydney-Melbourne trips under my belt (SYD-MEL in the sleeper - great fun if you're not in a rush :p ), but it does look like Japan offers something truly unique.

And the thought of little DMUs in the middle of nowhere reminds that's been way too long since I last rode the West Highland Line...

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: AH45, I LOVE EWR, MCGYVR, outbackair, retiredmx, shamrock137, Yahoo [Bot] and 38 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos