All Aboard the Japan Rail Shinkansen (Bullet Train)

The JR Shinkansen is an testimony to functional infrastructure - connecting distant cities with ease and comfort

Once arriving to Tokyo Station from the Conrad Tokyo, we were dropped off immediately at the center area entrance. This worked out well, as the ticket area for the Shinkansen was right in front of us, when we entered the metro station.

Now, it might seem a little disorienting because Tokyo Station is HUGE. But, it’s super easy once you get your anxiety in check.

The hotel concierge printed out an estimated train sheet of departures from the station. So, I pointed to the one that we wanted to take. The agent was kind enough to let us know which upcoming train had two seats together, next to the window. As the train is in a 3 – 2 configuration, this was EXTREMELY beneficial. The ticket cost is about $90 per person.

The lounge area was a hot place to sit and relax without air conditioning. Honestly, I wasn’t complaining. All I needed was a safe space to start transferring my photos from my camera.

But, I will stress that the lounge is efficient. There are places to sit, it is across from the bathroom and it has wifi.

About 15 minutes before our train was scheduled to depart, we made our way to Track 17. Lining up was orderly. Once we got on the train, we immediately stored our luggage in the oversized luggage storage area and took our reserved seats.

Now, the great thing about the Nozomi is that it is the train is the fastest train with the least amount of stops. But, what I must also say is that the train is NOT like the movie Bullet Train. At all. It’s a very clean, very efficient high speed commuter train. But, I really, really wanted it to be as cool as in the movie.

Was I a little sad that it wasn’t like the movie? Yes. Was I happier to have a window seat and watch the country side of Japan pass by comfortably? Even more so.

During the train ride, there was a service card that came by twice. Unlike other European and US experiences, you are given a trash bag with your order.

The train ride was efficient and comfortable. There is a security guard that walks up and down the train to ensure that everything is good. Within about two hours and 15 minute, we were in Kyoto and ready for our next adventure.

Our second ride on the Shinkansen was from Kyoto to Osaka. Riding a high speed train to another major city in Japan within 15 minutes was a testimony to investing in infrastructure.

I wish California’s proposed high speed train actually had the possibility of being built and completed.

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Japan Rail Shinkansen

Various Station Stops
Tokyo, Japan
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