Sightseeing Train Offers Aromas And Flavors Of Kumamoto

Sightseeing train offers aromas and flavors of KumamotoWith pleasant wood aromas filling the carriages of Kyushu Railway Co.’s new sightseeing train, and delicious food and drinks on offer to enhance the experience, the “Kawasemi Yamasemi” promises a feast for the senses.
The train, which was unveiled to the media at JR Kyushu’s Kokura Sogo Sharyo Center rail yard here on Feb. 27, smells so inviting, thanks to the use of Japanese cypresses and cedars.

Local woods were used for the carriages’ interior panels, floors, chairs, tables, bench sheets and lighting decorations, also adding to the sense of warmth.

Running through earthquake-ravaged Kumamoto Prefecture, the train is intended to play a part in rebuilding the area.

“We aim to make the Kawasemi Yamasemi a symbol of Kumamoto’s recovery, and we put local people’s wishes and hopes into the train,” said JR Kyushu President Toshihiko Aoyagi.

At a corner bar inside the train, passengers can relax while sipping a Kuma Shochu, a local specialty “shochu” distilled spirit made from rice, types of which vary seasonally.

Special “bento” boxed lunches and cakes will also be sold to accompany the drinks.

The Kawasemi Yamasemi will start operations from March 4, making three daily round trips between Kumamoto Station in Kumamoto and Hitoyoshi Station in Hitoyoshi, both in Kumamoto Prefecture.

One-way tickets for reserved seats from Kumamoto to Hitoyoshi stations cost 3,270 yen ($29) for adults.