Hankyu Railways have introduced a new train specifically targeting foreign visitors. The aptly named Kyo Train operates on the limited express service between Umeda Station in Osaka and Kawaramachi Station in Kyoto.
The exterior of the trains is the same dark burgundy livery, but with the addition of some traditional fan designs. The interiors are meant to evoke the refined elegance of a Kyoto townhouse or machiya.
There are three different styles in the six carriages. All feature a dark brown floor evoking the dark earth of the entrance to a traditional townhouse and interior doors with a bamboo pattern. Two carriages have rich red seats with a flowering orchid design, two carriages have dark green seats with a hemp pattern, and two carriages have a mixture of browns and ochres. These last two carriages have tatami incorporated in the seat backs and a frosted glass partition making for a semi-private compartment feel.
They also feature small wooden shelves for drinks and the entrances have dark wooden lattices. One of the most noticeable features of the train is the complete lack of advertising within the carriages. There are however some hanging scroll type prints by Kyoto artist Eriko Horiki.
Each carriage has a rack of pamphlets on tourist information in English, Chinese, and Korean. All the station announcements are made in English, Chinese, & Korean as well as local sightseeing announcements The Kyo Train runs on weekends and holidays and there are no reservations needed. The standard fare applies.
Kyo Train (on Hankyu Railways)
Inside Track Japan For Kindle