Joetsu Shinkansen

Joetsu Shinkansen service began in 1982, linking the Pacific seaboard side of Honshu with the coast bordering the Sea of Japan. Departing from Tokyo and traveling past Takasaki, you pass the Echigo and Mikuni Mountain Ranges, which yield a panorama of rice fields before arriving in Niigata, one of the most prominent rice-growing areas of Japan. In 1990, Gala-Yuzawa Station in Niigata Prefecture opened seasonally to provide direct ski resort service, and each winter, the trains are filled with the merry sounds of skiers.

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The Train Line-up

Series E2

Series E2

Toki: Tokyo - Niigata
Tanigawa: Tokyo - Echigo-Yuzawa

Series E4

Series E4

Max Toki: Tokyo - Niigata
Max Tanigawa: Tokyo - Echigo-Yuzawa

Notes

Service is extended to Gala-Yuzawa Station during the ski season.

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Interior Layout of Cars

Toki and Tanigawa Series E2: 10-car trains

Non-smoking cars

Toki and Tanigawa Series E2: 10-car trains

Toki and Tanigawa Series E2: 10-car trains

Max Toki and Max Tanigawa Series E4: 8-car, double decker trains

Non-smoking cars

Max Toki and Max Tanigawa Series E4: 8-car, double decker trains

Max Toki and Max Tanigawa Series E4: 8-car, double decker trains

Notes: Some runs may include 16 cars.

  • Green cars (First class)
  • Changing bed
  • Lavatory
  • Restrooms
  • Men's toilet
  • Women's toilet
  • Seats for wheelchair users
  • Accessible facility
  • Telephone
  • Conductor's room

Google Street View

Enjoy the view inside the train with 360 degree panoramic imagery

Series E2

Green cars (First class)
Ordinaly Car

Series E4

Green cars (First class)
Ordinaly Car(2F)

Timetables and Seat Reservations

Shinkansen and Limited Express Timetables (Opens in a new window.)

JR-EAST Train Reservation (Opens in a new window.)

Places of Interest

Joetsushinkansen Map

Echigo-Yuzawa
GALA Yuzawa is a ski resort located only 77 minutes from Tokyo. The ski center immediately outside the ticket gate offers a full array of ski gear and clothing. After a day of winter sports, the area offers hot springs and accommodations for relaxation. In summer, the Echigo-Yuzawa area offers fishing, trekking, camping and other fun activities.
Access: Take the Joetsu Shinkansen to Echigo-Yuzawa Station.
Niigata
Sandwiched between the great Shinano and Agano Rivers, Niigata Prefecture flourished during the Edo Period as an important stop for ships travelling from Osaka to the northern portions of Japan. This resulted in the development of a unique variety of food and culture. Of particular note are the abundance of seafood from the Sea of Japan and the sake brewing developed for the plenitude of rice in the region.
Access: Take the Joetsu Shinkansen to Niigata Station.
Sado
Sado Island can be reached from Niigata Port in about 60 minutes by jetfoil. Most of the island is designated as national or prefectural parkland, preserving the beautiful natural scenery. A special treat to enjoy is the old-fashioned tarai boats, essentially washtubs used for boats, as well as the ocean views. A visit to the old gold mine is another attraction, where visitors take a trip back in time when Sado was known as the Island of Yellow Gold.
Access:Take the Joetsu Shinkansen to Niigata Station, then transfer to the Sado jetfoil, about a 60-minute marine trip.