6 Amazing Facts About Japan’s Trains and Railway Stations

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  • Very recently, Japan made headlines worldwide for breaking world record speed, when its Maglev trains reached a maximum speed of around 600 kph during test runs.

    But speed is not the only thing that’s amazing about Japan’s trains. Below are a few more interesting (and sometimes surprising) facts about Japan’s trains and railway stations:

    A station that opens only TWICE in a year

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    Tsushimanomiya Station of the JR Shikoku – Yosan Line open only at August 4 and 5 of every year for the summer festival at the Tsushima Shrine.

    Access

    Most of the world’s busiest stations are in Japan

    The Guinness Book of World Records recognizes Shinjuku as the world’s busiest train station, for being used by more than 3 million per day!

    But wait, the story does not end there. According to a report in 2013, 45 of the world’s 50 busiest railway stations are all in Japan! The list’s top 5 include: Yokohama Station (5th), Umeda Station (4th), Ikebukuro Station (3rd), Shibuya Station (2nd), and of course Shinjuku Station (1st).

    Shinjuku Station Access

    The world’s longest suspended monorail

    The Chiba Urban Monorail is currently the world’s longest suspended monorail. The entire track length of the monorail is 15.2 kilometers and has 18 stations.

    Website

    Longest and shortest train station names

    The station with the longest name is the Minami Aso Mizu No Umareru Sato Hakusui Kogen Station in Kumamoto. Despite this long name, the station is a very small provincial transportation hub.

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    The station with the shortest name is the Tsu Station in Mie Prefecture which can be written with only one kanji character or one hiragana character. Many other stations can be written with one kanji but only the Tsu Station can be written with just one hiragana character.

    Minami Aso Mizu No Umareru Sato Hakusui Kogen Station Access
    Tsu Station Access

    4 stations, same name

    In Japan, there are four stations with the name “Shiyakusho-Mae.”

    “Pushers”

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    During rush hours, railway station attendants called “pushers” or “oshiya” push passengers into the trains.