If you’re planning to visit or even move to Japan, we’re sure you’ve already had a good amount of time to look into Japan in general, and how to travel around places. If that’s the case, you’ve probably heard of the Japanese train network and how they can truly be the gateway to your freedom when exploring Japan.

From gazing out the carriage windows at the stunning countryside in the Iya Valley to being in Tokyo watching the commuters play Japanese games on their phones while making their way to work, there is always something to see and do when you’re on board a local train. Here’s our top tips to make the most of it.

Keep your Cost Down using a Rail Pass

Japan has a notorious railway system, spanning all over Japan. Whilst buying individual tickets to visit remote locations, you could always buy a Rail Pass that allows you unlimited access to Japan’s railways no matter where you are in Japan.

These rail passes are only given to people who are from another country and visiting Japan. If you are a Japanese resident, you are unable to buy this ticket unless you qualify for one. By getting a Japanese rail pass, you are able to visit a range of stations using it however many times you wish, allowing you to explore the wonders of Japan regardless of if you’re based in Tokyo. Take a look at a Japan Rail Pass to get the most out of the trains in Japan.

Explore in Tranquility even on the Train

There’s no question that Japan has some of the best scenic views in Asia, and if not the world. When traveling, you may find yourself wanting to stop off at some random location on the way to your destination but as you know – you're not able to simply stop a train.

In Japan, train carriages are usually the most tranquil places to be when traveling, as the Japanese don’t like to disturb others' silence , so have the utmost respect to people traveling by train. You could look out of the train windows when visiting remote locations and take in the surroundings simply by listening to the train noise and nothing else.

Japan is one of the only countries to have this as an unwritten rule, and is one of the reasons that travelling and exploring in Japan by train has its benefits.

Trains are the Fastest Option

If you’re simply visiting Japan and have a limited time in a few locations, using trains to explore Japan will be your fastest and most efficient way to explore. Japan is known for its amazing ‘Bullet Train’ that can reach speeds of up to 200mph - with ev en faster speeds on the horizon.

To put it simply , if you are wanting to visit some more rural, or remote and secluded locations in Japan, hopping on a bullet train will get you there at top speed. In some cases, if you travel by train you could get from Tokyo to Kyoto in 2 hours, whereas by car you could be looking at upwards of 6.

Using your time efficiently in Japan is crucial for you, especially if you're only visiting for a week or so. Using a train will get you to A-Z much faster than any other transport, so it’s really a no brainer.

Take the Overnight Trains

On the surface, you may not want to use an overnight train as this will be pretty dark and you won’t be able to see the natural surroundings of the railway lines when visiting far-out remote locations. But there is a benefit to this.

Overnight trains can be used to get you from point A to point B very quickly, but why not take a quick sleep on it? Although this might be a little annoying to some people, if you reserve a seat on a train using your rail pass, you can easily go to sleep with the peacefulness around you and wake up at your destination feeling refreshed to explore even more of Japan.

There are only some lines that consider an overnight train, but by using this – you may be saving yourself crucial time, and money when exploring Japan.

Other Advantages

The list of advantages for using a train in Japan are numerous , so we’re combining a few into one category on this list! Did you know that in Japan, you are able to reserve seats for free if you hold a rail pass? No more do you have to stand up on long journeys, when you can book a seat!

Not only this, but if you have a Japan Rail Card (Green Pass) you will be riding in luxury with more room that you’ll know what to do with. These are all benefits for you when exploring Japan, and making your travel easier, and more luxurious each time you board a train.

With the Tokyo Olympics just around the corner, Japan is really at the centre of travel opportunities and there aren’t many better ways to explore the country than by rail.