The Tokaido Main Line is a railway line operated by JR East, JR Central, and JR West that connects Tokyo and Kobe stations. However, there are no trains that run the complete length of this line. JR Central operates the section of the line between Atami Station in Shizuoka Prefecture and Maibara Station in Shiga Prefecture.
At Nagoya Station services on the Tokaido Main Line run south east as far as Okazaki and Toyohashi, and north west as far as Gifu and Ogaki. All services on this line are covered by the Japan Rail Pass.
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Key Destinations between Nagoya and Toyohashi
At Nagoya Station trains for Okazaki and Toyohashi depart from platforms 1, 2, 3, and 4 and stop at the following stations.
Nagoya – Otobashi – Kanayama – Atsuta – Kasadera – Odaka – Minami-Odaka – Kyowa – Obu – Aizuma – Kariya – Noda-Shimachi – Higashi-Kariya – Mikawa-Anjo – Anjo – Nishi-Okazaki – Okazaki – Aimi – Koda – Sangane – Mikawa-Shiotsu – Gamagori – Mikawa-Miya – Mikawa-Otsuka – Aichi-Mito – Nishi-Kozakai – Toyohashi
There are also some through trains bound for Taketoyo that are diverted onto the Taketoyo branch line at Obu Station. Below are the key destinations and transfer points between Nagoya and Toyohashi with example train fares and train times given from Nagoya Station.
Exit here for the Nagoya/Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Transfer here to the JR Chuo Main Line, to Meitetsu Railway services, and to Nagoya Municipal Subway’s Meijo and Meiko lines. Kanayama Station is an important transportation hub in Nagoya and Meitetsu Railway express train services to and from Chubu Centrair Airport stop here.
Train fare: 170 yen
Train time: 3 minutes
Exit here for Atsuta Shrine which is said to be 1,900 years old and is one of Nagoya’s top attractions.
Train fare: 190 yen
Train time: 7 minutes
Transfer here to the Taketoyo Line for services bound for Higashiura, Handa, and Taketoyo. Some through train services from Nagoya run directly to Taketoyo via Obu Station.
Train fare: 320 yen
Train time: 23 minutes
Transfer here to the Meitetsu Mikawa Line.
Train fare: 410 yen
Train time: 18 minutes
Okazaki’s attractions include Okazaki Castle which dates from 1455, and Takisanji Temple which dates from the 7th century and holds a fire festival every February. Okazaki is also famous for a variety of red miso paste called “hatcho miso”, and the Maruya Hatcho Miso factory which dates from 1337 gives free tours in which you can learn how miso is made and try some for yourself. Transfer at Okazaki Station to the Aichi Loop Line.
Train fare: 620 yen
Train time: 30 minutes
There are several onsen hot spring resorts within the city of Gamagori. Gamagori is also home to Kongoji Temple which is famous for its giant statue of the monk Kobo Daishi, and the Lagunasia theme park which has rides, a ferris wheel, and spa. Transfer at Gamagori Station to the Meitetsu Gamagori Line.
Train fare: 970 yen
Train time: 42 minutes
This station serves the city of Toyokawa. The main attraction of this town is the shrine and temple of Toyokawa Inari which dates from 1441 and is sacred to both the Buddhist and Shinto traditions. Toyokawa Inari is famous for having thousands of statues of stone foxes, who are considered to be the messengers of Inari, the Shinto god of rice. Toyokawa Inari is a 18 minute taxi ride from Nishi-Kozakai Station.
Train fare: 1,140 yen
Train time: 55 minutes (take a Special Rapid to Gamagori then transfer to a local train)
Toyohashi’s main attractions are Yoshida Castle which dates from 1505, Toyohashi City Museum of Art and History, the Fukugawa-juku Honjin which is a preserved Edo era inn, and the Romanesque-style Toyohashi Public hall which dates from 1931 and is a designated National Important Cultural Property. Transfer at Toyohashi Station to the JR Iida Line, the Meitetsu Nagoya Main Line, and the Tokaido Shinkansen.
Train fare: 1,320 yen
Train time: 54 minutes by Special Rapid
Key Destinations between Nagoya and Ogaki
Trains for Gifu and Ogaki depart from platforms 3, 4, 5, and 6 and stop at the following stations.
Nagoya – Biwajima – Kiyosu – Inazawa – Owari-Ichinomiya – Kisogawa – Gifu – Nishi-Gifu – Hozumi – Ogaki
Below are the key destinations and transfer points between Nagoya and Ogaki with example train fares and train times given from Nagoya Station.
Transfer at Biwajima Station to Johoku Line services bound for Kachigawa Station.
Train fare: 190 yen
Train time: 4 minutes
Kiyosu’s main attraction is Kiyosu Castle, which is a reconstruction built in 1989 of the original castle which was built between 1394 and 1427 and demolished in the early 17th century. The interior of the castle is a museum of local history and there are fine views from the top.
Train fare: 200 yen
Train time: 8 minutes
This station serves the city of Ichinomiya in Aichi Prefecture. This city’s main points of interest are the Masumida Shrine which according to legend dates from 628 BC, and the 138 Tower Park. The park features a 138m high tower with an observation deck which is the tallest arched tower in Asia. Transfer from Owari-Ichinomiya to the adjoining Meitetsu-Ichinomiya Station for the Meitetsu Nagoya Main Line and the Meitetsu Bisai Line.
Train fare: 300 yen
Train time: 10 minutes
Gifu is the capital city of Gifu Prefecture. The city is best known for its castle which is located on top of Mount Kinka in the center of the city. The mountain also has a restaurant with an observation deck offering dramatic views over the city. Gifu’s other attractions include many museums, the Great Buddha Statue in Shohoji Temple, and summertime cormorant fishing in the Nagara River.
Transfer at Gifu Station to Takayama Main Line services bound for Mino-Ota and Takayama. Transfer at nearby Meitetsu Gifu station to the Meitetsu Nagoya Main Line and the Meitetsu Kakamigahara Line.
Train fare: 470 yen
Train time: 19 minutes
Ogaki City in Gifu Prefecture holds a Basho Festival dedicated to the haiku poet Matsuo Basho every November. Among the city’s attractions are a small Basho museum and the reconstructed Ogaki Castle which was first built in 1500.
Transfer here to the Mino-Akasaka Branch Line, the Tarumi Line, and the Yoro Line.
Train fare: 760 yen
Train time: 32 minutes
Article and original photos by Michael Lambe. All rights reserved.