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Usui Pass Railway Heritage Park 碓氷峠鉄道文化むら

Usui Pass Railway Heritage Park Usui Pass Railway Heritage Park
Usui Pass Railway Heritage Park Usui Pass Railway Heritage Park

Drive a train and explore Japan's railway history

Usuitouge Railway Heritage Park in Annaka, which straddles the mountainous border between Gunma and Nagano prefectures, is a mecca for rail enthusiasts. Of particular interest here is the option to drive a locomotive.

Quick Facts

The Usui Pass has been an important mountain route since the eighth century

The first rack-and-pinion railway in Japan went through Usui Pass

Trains traversed the pass between 1893 and 1997, but services were stopped when the Shinkansen came along

How to Get There

You can get close to the area via the Joetsu Shinkansen or a highway bus from Tokyo.

The Joetsu Shinkansen from Tokyo takes about an hour to Takasaki. Buses from Tokyo also go to Takasaki and take a little over two hours. From Takasaki, take the JR Shinetsu Line to Yokokawa Station, which is 33 minutes away. The park is next to Yokokawa Station.

Model trains and railroad memorabilia

Look at a variety of diesel engines and other locomotives and purchase train-related souvenirs, from tote bags and enamel badges to full train sets.

Drive a locomotive yourself

If you have ever dreamed of being a train driver, make a reservation to operate a train all by yourself. This is the only park in Japan offering such a service. You will need to be able to speak and read Japanese and have an address in Japan to make a reservation.

* The information on this page may be subject to change due to COVID-19.

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