San'yō Shinkansen

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San'yō Shinkansen
Shinkansen jrw.svg
N700A Series Shinkansen between Nishi-Akashi Station and Himeji Station, February 2021
Native name山陽新幹線
Owner JR logo (west).svg JR West
Locale Osaka, Hyōgo, Okayama, Hiroshima, Yamaguchi and Fukuoka Prefectures
Termini Shin-Ōsaka
Type Shinkansen
Operator(s) JR logo (west).svg JR West
Depot(s)Osaka, Okayama, Hiroshima, Hakata
Rolling stock500 series
700 series
N700 series
Daily ridership110,004 passengers per km per day (FY2014) [1]
Opened15 March 1972
Line length553.7 km (344.1 mi)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) standard gauge
Electrification 25 kV AC, 60 Hz, overhead catenary
Operating speed300 km/h (190 mph)
Route map
Sanyo Shinkansen map.png

The San'yō Shinkansen (山陽新幹線) is a line of the Japanese Shinkansen high-speed rail network, connecting Shin-Osaka in Osaka with Hakata Station in Fukuoka, the two largest cities in western Japan. Operated by the West Japan Railway Company (JR West), it is a westward continuation of the Tōkaidō Shinkansen and also serves other major cities in between on Honshu and Kyushu islands such as Kobe, Himeji, Okayama, Hiroshima, and Kitakyushu. The Kyushu Shinkansen continues south of Hakata to Kagoshima. The San'yō Shinkansen connects Hakata with Osaka in two and a half hours, with trains operating at a maximum operating speed of 300 km/h (186 mph) for most of the journey [2] Some Nozomi trains operate continuously on San'yō and Tōkaidō Shinkansen lines, connecting Tokyo and Hakata in five hours.


Rolling stock

As of March 2020, the following types are used on San'yō Shinkansen services.

Former rolling stock


Map all coordinatesin "Category:Sanyō_Shinkansen" using: OpenStreetMap  
Download coordinates as: KML

All stations on the San'yō Shinkansen are owned and operated by JR West, with the exception of Shin-Osaka which is run by Central Japan Railway Company (JR central). Kodama trains stop at all stations; other services have varying stopping patterns. All trains stop at Shin-Osaka, Shin-Kobe, Okayama, Hiroshima, Kokura, and Hakata. The Japan Rail Pass is not valid for travel on the Nozomi or Mizuho trains.


All trains stop
All trains pass
Some trains stop
StationJapaneseDistance from
Shin-Ōsaka (km)
Distance from
Tokyo (km)
Mizuho Sakura Nozomi Hikari Kodama TransfersLocation
Through services towards Tokyo via the Tōkaidō Shinkansen [3]
Shin-Ōsaka 新大阪0.0515.4 Shinkansen jrc.svg Tōkaidō Shinkansen (through service)
JRW kinki-A.svg JR Kyoto Line (JR-A46)
JRW kinki-F.svg Osaka Higashi Line (JR-F02)
Osaka Metro Midosuji line symbol.svg Midosuji Line (M13)
Yodogawa-ku, Osaka Osaka Prefecture
Shin-Kobe 新神戸32.6548.0 Kobe Municipal Subway Logo.svg Hokushin Line and Subway KobeSeishin.svg Seishin-Yamate Line (S02) Chūō-ku, Kobe Hyōgo Prefecture
Nishi-Akashi 西明石54.8570.2 JRW kinki-A.svg JR Kobe Line (JR-A74) Akashi
Himeji 姫路85.9601.3 JRW kinki-A.svg JR Kobe Line (JR-A85)
JRW kinki-A.svg Sanyō Main Line
JRW kinki-J.svg Bantan Line
JRW kinki-K.svg Kishin Line
Number prefix San-yo Railway line.png Sanyo Electric Railway Main Line (SY 43: Sanyo Himeji Station)
Aioi 相生105.9621.3 JRW kinki-A.svg Sanyō Main Line
JRW kinki-A.svg Ako Line
Okayama 岡山160.9676.3 JRW oka-S.svg JRW oka-W.svg Sanyō Main Line
JRW oka-L.svg Uno Line ( JRW oka-M.svg Seto-Ōhashi Line)
JRW san-V.svg Hakubi Line
JRW oka-T.svg Tsuyama Line
JRW oka-U.svg Kibi Line
Okayama Electric Tramway Higashiyama Main Line
Kita-ku, Okayama Okayama Prefecture
Shin-Kurashiki 新倉敷186.7702.1 JRW oka-W.svg San'yō Main Line Kurashiki
Fukuyama 福山217.7733.1 JRW oka-W.svg JRW oka-X.svg Sanyō Main Line
JRW oka-Z.svg Fukuen Line
Fukuyama Hiroshima Prefecture
Shin-Onomichi 新尾道235.1750.5  Onomichi
Mihara 三原245.6761.0 JRW hiro-G.svg Sanyō Main Line
JRW hiro-Y.svg Kure Line
Higashi-Hiroshima 東広島276.5791.9  Higashihiroshima
Hiroshima 広島305.8821.2 JRW hiro-G.svg JRW hiro-R.svg Sanyō Main Line
JRW hiro-P.svg Geibi Line
JRW hiro-B.svg Kabe Line
JRW hiro-Y.svg Kure Line
■M Hiroshima Electric Railway Main Line
Minami-ku, Hiroshima
Shin-Iwakuni 新岩国350.0865.4 Nishikigawa Seiryu Line (Seiryū-Shin-Iwakuni Station) Iwakuni Yamaguchi Prefecture
Tokuyama 徳山388.1903.5 Sanyō Main Line
Gantoku Line
Shin-Yamaguchi (formerly Ogori)新山口429.2944.6 Sanyō Main Line
Yamaguchi Line
Ube Line
Asa 厚狭453.3968.7 Sanyō Main Line
Mine Line
Shin-Shimonoseki 新下関477.1992.5 Sanyō Main Line Shimonoseki
Kokura 小倉497.81013.2 JRK number JA.svg Kagoshima Main Line (A28)
JRK number JF.svg Nippo Main Line (JF01)
JRK number JI.svg Hita-Hikosan Line (JI01)
Kitakyushu Monorail
Kokurakita-ku, Kitakyūshū Fukuoka Prefecture
Hakata 博多553.71069.1 Shinkansen-K.png Kyushu Shinkansen (through service)
Hakata-Minami Line (limited through service)
Kagoshima Main Line and Sasaguri Line (00)
Subway FukuokaKuko.svg Fukuoka Subway Airport Line
Hakata-ku, Fukuoka
Through services towards Kagoshima-Chūō via the Kyushu Shinkansen, [4] or to Hakata-Minami via the Hakata-Minami Line [5]

As of 2012, the maximum line speed is, West-bound 285 km/h (175 mph) between Shin-Ōsaka and Shin-Kobe, 275 km/h (170 mph) between Shin-Kobe and Nishi-Akashi, and 300 km/h (185 mph) between Nishi-Akashi and Hakata. East-bound it is 300 km/h (185 mph) between Hakata and Himeji, 275 km/h (170 mph) between Himeji and Shin-Kobe and 300 km/h (185 mph) between Shin-Kobe and Shin-Ōsaka. [2]


700 series Hikari Rail Star train Hikari-railstar-osaka-2004-04.jpg
700 series Hikari Rail Star train

Construction of the San'yō Shinkansen between Shin-Ōsaka and Okayama was authorized on September 9, 1965, and commenced on March 16, 1967. Construction between Okayama and Hakata commenced on February 10, 1970. The Shin-Ōsaka to Okayama segment opened on March 15, 1972; the remainder of the line opened on March 10, 1975. The first Hikari trains, using 0 series trains, made the Shin-Ōsaka to Hakata run in 3 hours 44 minutes. This was shortened to 2 hours 59 minutes in 1986 with an increase in maximum speed to 220 km/h (140 mph). 100 series trains, introduced in 1989, boosted maximum speed to 230 km/h (140 mph) and reduced travel time to 2 hours 49 minutes.

Tokyo to Hakata Nozomi services began on March 18, 1993, using 300 series trains. The Shin-Ōsaka to Hakata run was reduced to 2 hours 32 minutes, at a maximum speed of 270 km/h (170 mph). On March 22, 1997, the 500 series entered service on Nozomi services between Shin-Ōsaka and Hakata, reducing that run to 2 hours 17 minutes at a maximum speed of 300 km/h (186 mph).

The 700 series was introduced on Tokyo-Hakata Nozomi services on March 13, 1999, coinciding with the opening of Asa Station, and on March 11, 2000, 700 series trains were introduced on Hikari Rail Star services.

Ogori Station was renamed Shin-Yamaguchi Station on October 1, 2003.

The N700 series was launched on Nozomi services on July 1, 2007, with a top speed of 300 km/h (186 mph) (compared to 285 km/h or 177 mph for the 700 series).

From the start of the revised timetable on March 12, 2011, new Mizuho and Sakura inter-running services commenced between Shin-Ōsaka and Kagoshima on the Kyushu Shinkansen using new N700-7000 and N700-8000 series 8-car trainsets. This boosted JR West's market share in the Osaka-Kagoshima passenger market from 13 percent in March 2011 to 35 percent in March 2012. JR West began offering discounted advance purchase fares on this route in July 2013 in an effort to compete for market share with new low-cost airlines such as Peach. [6] With the launch of Mizuho and Sakura services, nearly all of the Hikari services operating solely on the San'yō Shinkansen (mostly Rail Star services) were discontinued as it was deemed redundant.


In fiscal 2005, the Sanyo Shinkansen line ridership was 58 million passengers/year, or about 159,000 daily. [7]

Related Research Articles

Shinkansen Japanese high-speed rail system

The Shinkansen, colloquially known in English as the bullet train, is a network of high-speed railway lines in Japan. Initially, it was built to connect distant Japanese regions with Tokyo, the capital, to aid economic growth and development. Beyond long-distance travel, some sections around the largest metropolitan areas are used as a commuter rail network. It is operated by five Japan Railways Group companies.

West Japan Railway Company Japanese railway company

The West Japan Railway Company, also referred to as JR West, is one of the Japan Railways Group companies and operates in western Honshu. It has its headquarters in Kita-ku, Osaka. It is listed in the Tokyo, Nagoya and Fukuoka stock exchanges, is a constituent of the TOPIX Large70 index, and is also one of the only three Japan Railways Group constituents of the Nikkei 225 index: the others are JR East and JR Central.

<i>Nozomi</i> (train)

Nozomi is the fastest train service running on the Tokaido & San'yō Shinkansen lines in Japan. The service stops at only the largest stations, and along the stretch between Shin-Ōsaka and Hakata, Nozomi services using N700 series equipment reach speeds of 300 km/h (186 mph). The trip between Tokyo and Osaka, a distance of 515 kilometres (320 mi), takes 2 hours 21 minutes on the fastest Nozomi service.

0 Series Shinkansen Japanese high-speed train type

The 0 series trains were the first generation Shinkansen trainsets built to run on Japan's new Tōkaidō Shinkansen high-speed line which opened in Japan in 1964. The last remaining trainsets were withdrawn in 2008.

300 Series Shinkansen Japanese high-speed train type

The 300 series was a Japanese high-speed Shinkansen train type, with a top operational speed of 270 km/h, which operated on the Tokaido and Sanyo Shinkansen lines in Japan between 1992 and 2012. When first introduced, they were used on the fastest Nozomi services, being capable of 270 km/h (170 mph). As more were delivered they replaced earlier units on Hikari service and allowed the thus displaced 100 series units to finally in turn displace 0 series units on almost all services.

500 Series Shinkansen Japanese high speed train type

The 500 series is a Shinkansen high-speed train type operated by West Japan Railway Company (JR-West) on the Tōkaidō Shinkansen and San'yō Shinkansen lines in Japan since 1997. They were designed to be capable of 320 km/h (200 mph) but operated at 300 km/h (185 mph), until they were finally retired from the primary Nozomi service in 2010. The trainsets were then refurbished and downgraded to the all-stations Kodama service between Shin-Ōsaka and Hakata.

700 Series Shinkansen Japanese high speed train type

The 700 series is a Japanese Shinkansen high-speed train type built between 1997 and 2006, and entering service in 1999. Originally designated as "N300" during the development phase, they formed the next generation of shinkansen vehicles jointly designed by JR Central and JR-West for use on the Tokaido Shinkansen, Hakata Minami Line and the San'yō Shinkansen. Though it has since been withdrawn from service on the Tōkaidō Shinkansen, it still operates on the San'yō Shinkansen and Hakata Minami Line.

Tokaido Shinkansen Shinkansen (high-speed railway) line between Tokyo and Osaka

The Tokaido Shinkansen is a Japanese high-speed rail line that is part of the nationwide Shinkansen network. Along with the Sanyo Shinkansen, it forms a continuous high-speed railway through the Taiheiyō Belt, also known as the Tokaido corridor. Upon its opening in 1964 between Tokyo and Shin-Ōsaka, it was heralded as the first high-speed rail line in the world. Since 1987 it has been operated by the Central Japan Railway Company, prior to that by Japanese National Railways (JNR). Besides being the oldest HSR line, it is also one of the most heavily used.

<i>Hikari</i> (train) Shinkansen service

Hikari is the name of a high-speed train service running on the Tokaido and San'yō Shinkansen "bullet train" lines in Japan. Slower than the premier Nozomi but faster than the all-stations Kodama, the Hikari is the fastest train service on the Tokaido and Sanyo Shinkansen that can be used with the Japan Rail Pass.

<i>Kodama</i> (train) One of the three train services running on the Tōkaidō/Sanyō Shinkansen

Kodama is one of the three train services running on the Tōkaidō and San'yō Shinkansen lines. Stopping at every station, the Kodama is the slowest Shinkansen service for trips between major cities such as Tokyo and Osaka. The Kodama trains are used primarily for travel to and from smaller cities such as Atami. Travelers between major cities generally take the Nozomi or Hikari services, which make fewer stops. The name of the train comes from the Japanese word kodama, which means "echo".

Hakata-Minami Line Extension of the Sanyō Shinkansen in Fukuyama Prefecture, Japan

The Hakata-Minami Line is an 8.5 km long railway line in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan, connecting Hakata Station in Fukuoka with Hakata-Minami Station in Kasuga. It is operated by the West Japan Railway Company.

Kyushu Shinkansen

The Kyushu Shinkansen is a Japanese high-speed railway line between the cities of Fukuoka and Kagoshima in Kyushu, running parallel to the existing Kagoshima Main Line and operated by JR Kyushu. It is an extension of the San'yō Shinkansen from Honshu. The southern 127 km (79 mi) was constructed first because the equivalent section of the former Kagoshima Main Line is single track, and thus a significant improvement in transit time was gained when this dual track section opened on 13 March 2004, despite the need for passengers to change to a Relay Tsubame narrow gauge train at Shin-Yatsushiro for the remainder of the journey to Hakata. The northern 130 km (81 mi) section opened on 12 March 2011, enabling through-services to Shin-Osaka.

<i>Tsubame</i> (train)

The Tsubame (つばめ) is a train service operated by Kyushu Railway Company on the Kyushu Shinkansen in Japan since 2004.

Kokura Station Railway station in Kitakyushu, Japan

Kokura Station in Kokurakita-ku is the main railway station in Kitakyushu, Japan. It is part of the JR Kyushu network and the San'yō Shinkansen stops here. It is the second largest station in Kyushu with 120,000 users daily. In the late 1990s, the Kokura station area was expanded and remodelled.

N700 Series Shinkansen Japanese high speed train type

The N700 series is a Japanese Shinkansen high-speed train with tilting capability developed jointly by JR Central and JR West for use on the Tokaido and San'yō Shinkansen lines since 2007, and also operated by JR Kyushu on the Kyushu Shinkansen line.

Midori (train)

The Midori is a limited express train service which runs between Hakata and Sasebo in Kyushu, Japan, operated by the Kyushu Railway Company.

Sakura (train)

The Sakura is a high-speed shinkansen service operated between Shin-Osaka and Kagoshima-Chūō in Japan since 12 March 2011.

Mizuho (train)

The Mizuho (みずほ) is a limited-stop shinkansen service operated between Shin-Osaka and Kagoshima-Chuo in Japan since 12 March 2011, following the completion of the Kyushu Shinkansen. The name was formerly used for a limited express sleeping car service operated by JNR from 1961, which ran from Tokyo to Kumamoto, and was discontinued in December 1994. The name "mizuho (瑞穂)" literally means "abundant rice" in Japanese and "harvest" in the figurative sense. It was also an ancient name of Japan.

WIN350 Japanese experimental high-speed train type

"WIN350" was the name given to the 500-900 series (500系900番代) 6-car experimental high-speed Shinkansen train developed in 1992 by the West Japan Railway Company in Japan to test technology to be incorporated in next-generation shinkansen trains expected to operate at speeds of 350 km/h (217 mph) from 1994. Initially given the designation "500X", the name "WIN350" stood for "West Japan's Innovation for operation at 350 km/h".

Sanyō Main Line Major railway line in Japan

The San'yō Main Line is a major railway line owned by JR Group companies in western Japan, connecting Kōbe Station and Moji Station, largely paralleling the coast of the Inland Sea, in other words, the southern coast of western Honshu. The San'yō Shinkansen line largely parallels its route. The name Sanyō derived from the ancient region and highway San'yōdō, the road on the sunny (south) side of the mountains.


  1. 区間別平均通過人員および旅客運輸収入(平成26年度) [Average passenger figures and revenue by line (Fiscal 2014)](PDF) (in Japanese). Japan: West Japan Railway Company. 2015. p. 58. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-01-09. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  2. 1 2 300km/hのトップランナー[300 km/h Top Runners]. Japan Railfan Magazine . Vol. 52 no. 612. Japan: Kōyūsha Co., Ltd. April 2012. p. 14.
  3. Only Nozomi, Hikari and Kodama services that run in formations of 16 car sets run through to the Tōkaidō Shinkansen.
  4. Only Mizuho and Sakura services that run in formations of 8 car sets run through to the Kyushu Shinkansen.
  5. Only Kodama services that run in formations of 8 car sets run through to the Hakata-Minami Line.
  6. "Budget airlines challenge Shinkansen". Bloomberg. 11 July 2013. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  7. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2010-12-19.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)