Transport

Kushiro to Abashiri on the JR Senmo Line | Train Trip

The scenic JR Senmo Line (釧網本線) connects Kushiro with Abashiri, cutting across Kushiro Shitsugen and Akan-Mashu national parks. Although this line is best done with stopovers over two or three days, you can easily visit the breathtaking viewpoints, picturesque lakes and coastal wildflower gardens.


THE ROUTE

  • DISTANCE: 169.1km

  • DURATION: 3 hours

  • ORDINARY FARE: ¥2860 (Valid for 2-day)

  • BEST TIME: June to September for warm weather. January to March for winter wonderland.


BEST STOPOVERS


0km

Kushiro

Kushiro is Eastern Hokkaido’s largest port town. Summer is often cool and grey, but a foggy night on the river bank is fantastic. A wide variety of tasty seafood and sushi fascinates many travelers.
From Kushiro, the scenic rail lines head east for Nemuro on the JR Hanasaki Line and west for Sapporo via the JR Sekisho Line.


0km to 20.0km

Kushiro to Toro

From June to late September, the Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko Train has two daily runs slowly from Kushiro to Toro (50min / ¥640) along the east side of Kushiro Shitsugen National Park, stopping at Kushiro-shitsugen (23min / ¥440) near Hosooka Viewpoint. Reservation seat fee is ¥530. For the fine views, sit on the left side heading from Kushiro.


20.0km to 73.4km

Toro to Mashu

Toro is a turning point of the seasonal Kushiro Shitsugen Norokko Train. The surrounding marshland area is a good for strolling and canoeing. From here, the line runs on the western shore of Shirarutoro-ko. After passes through the wetland, the train stops at Shibecha, where local buses run to Shibetsu on the Nemuro Strait.



73.4km

Mashu

Eastern Hokkaido’s first onsen town founded in 1883, Mashu (formerly known as Teshikaga) is a convenient location for exploring both Mashu-ko and Kussharo-ko by public transport. There is a free open-air ashi-yu (footbath) outside the train station.


89.3km

Kawayu-onsen

A 10-minute bus journey north of the train station, Kawayu Onsen is one of Eastern Hokkaido’s most recommended places to soak and a good base for exploring the town. The train passes through Senpoku Tunnel (549m) at the border between Kushiro Region and Okhotsk Region.


119.9km

Kiyosato-cho

With its picture-book countryside and windproof forests, Kiyosato is one of the loveliest rural towns in Okhotsk Region. Look out for the majestic Shari-dake, known as the ‘Matterhorn of Eastern Hokkaido’.


131.8km

Shiretoko-Shari

Shiretoko-Shari is a main gateway for the Western part of Shiretoko Peninsula and Utoro Onsen along the Sea of Okhotsk. Most travelers pass through this town, but there are picturesque rural landscape views against the mountains.



131.8km to 157.6km

Shiretoko-Shati to Kitahama

The train follows the shoreline of the Sea of Okhotsk. In winter you might be able to see ryuhyo (drift ice). After leaving Hama-Koshimizu the line sandwiched between the sea and the brackish lake Tofutsu-ko.
The seasonal station Genseikaen (May-Oct) is located beside the sandbank wildflower garden Koshimizu Genseikaen, with over 40 species of flowers bloom from June to July.


157.6km

Kitahama

This lovely wooden train station has a charming cafe and an observation deck overlooking the sea. A 10-minute walk east of Kitahama Station, the pleasant lake Tofutsu-ko is visited by many birds, especially in winter.


169.1km

Abashiri

Abashiri is the historical and cultural heart of Okhotsk Region. The town has varied museums, lakes and places to stay, which makes it an ideal place for explore. In winter most tourists take an drift icebreaker cruises into the frozen sea.
From Abashiri, the JR Sekihoku Line heads west to Asahikawa. There are also frequent buses to Memanbetsu Airport.


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