Saturday, November 3, 2012

Japan (Sep 2012) Day 4: Day trip to Wakayama then to Kyoto (Part 1)

Day breakdown:
0922-1004: Took the Ltd Express Kuroshio 3 from Tennoji station to Wakayama station (42mins, covered by JR Kansai Area Wide Pass)
1020-1038: Took the special themed "Ichigo" (strawberry) train from Wakayama station to Idakiso station  (used 1 day pass for Kishigawa line).
1038-1138: Roamed about nearby area in Idakiso, and also bought a snack from nearby convenience store.
1138-1150: Took the special "Tama" (Cat) train from Idakiso station to Kishi station. (used 1 day pass for Kishigawa line)
1150-1256: Roamed around Kishi station area and visit the Cat Stationmaster Tama-chan.
1256-1312: Kishi station to Idakiso station
1341-1358: Idakiso station to Wakayama station for lunch
1410-1440: Lunch at Wakayama station
1450-1508: Wakayama station to Idakiso station (again)
1557-1614: Took the first special train departure of "Omoden" (Toy) train from Idakiso station to Wakayama station.
1647-1750: Ltd Exp Kuroshio train from Wakayama to Shin-Osaka station. (covered by JR Kansai Area Wide Pass)
1809-1832: Haruka Express from Shin-Osaka to Kyoto station. (covered by JR Kansai Area Wide Pass)
????-????: Kyoto station to Tofukuji station, then transfer line, and Tofukuji station to Gion-Shijio station.
????: Arrival at my accommodations at Kyoto (Rakuza Guesthouse, 1min walk from Gion-Shijio station)

142yen: Pocari Sweat
200yen: Locker for my bag at Wakayama train station
650yen: 1 day Kishigawa line's rail pass (for the themed trains)
1300yen: Cat stationmaster souvenirs
700yen: Lunch (Katsudon) at Wakayama station
470yen: Wakayama version of One Piece Zoro mobile strap
150yen: Keihan line's train ticket from Tofukuji station to Gion-Shijio station.
147yen: Pocari Sweat (yeah, drank loads of these)
180yen: Rice (dinner from supermarket)
213yen: Chicken nuggets (Dinner from supermarket)
78yen: Mineral Water

This day is 1 of the highlights of this trip. It is to go to Wakayama to take 3 themed trains and also to visit the 2 Cat stationmasters.  (Official website:

First, I had to take a JR Ltd Express train from Tennoji station in Osaka to Wakayama station. This particular journey is covered by my JR Kansai Area Wide Pass.

And then at Wakayama station, I don't even need to exit from the station, because I can just walk over to platform 9 to take the special themed train. Just follow the paw prints you see on the ground. 
The themed train is called the Kishigawa line. There is a mini ticketing office at Platform 9 which sells the 1 day Kishigawa line train pass at 650yen. If you are planning to hop on and hop off often, then I strongly recommend this pass.

There as special timings for the themed trains, and only certain days will you see all 3 themed trains running in operation. Best if you check the website for schedule before you go. 

After Wakayama, I headed over to Kyoto where I would be staying for the next 3 nights.

Ltd Express train Kuroshio. From Tennoji to Wakayama. Yes, there's toilet on the train.

Just follow the pawprints at Wakayama station to get to Platform 9 for the Kishigawa Line.

The mini-ticketing office at Platform 9.

1 day Pass for Kishigawa Line (650yen)

 This is the Ichigo (Strawberry) train. It is 1 of the 3 themed trains that runs on Kishigawa line (between Wakayama station to Kishi Station). 
The trains on this line only have 2 train carriages, and there's no toilet facilities onboard the train.

If you are not using the 1 day pass, then you pay for your train fare onboard the train just before you alight.


Alighted at Idakiso station to visit Nitama (the 2nd Cat Stationmaster). 
Too bad she (?) was sleeping when I arrived. 
There are a variety of Cat Stationmaster souvenirs sold at this station (as well as at Kishi station).

Idakiso station.

Nitama's "office"
The snoozing Nitama


Exterior of Idakiso station

One Piece figurines with Pepsi Nex Zero sold at a convenience store near Idakiso station. I didn't buy it though since there's no Luffy nor Zoro. Only Usopp and Sanji left.

As I seldom find spicy food in Japan, therefore this is 1 of my source of spice on my Japan travels. This is a spicy chicken nuggets, usually sold at Lawson convenience stores.

Train schedule for the day
Red: Strawberry train , Blue: Toy train, Brown: Cat Train.

 After a short trip to the convenience store and have a snack, I headed back to Idakiso station to await for my next train (the Cat train) towards Kishi station.

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