The love for Pokémon never ceases to amaze. After the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan, Pokémon With You formed as a disaster relief campaign, providing a decorated train which offered children and adults an opportunity to escape from the devastating realities. Now in 2017, it’s time for the train to get a makeover.
The new exterior is covered with dozens of images of the franchise mascot, and the front corners of the lead car even sport rosy cheeks. The interior has been similarly pika-fied; a particularly nice touch is the variety of PokéBalls adorning the corner of the box seats, or “communication seats” as operator Japan Railways East Japan calls them, in keeping with its hope that the new train will help create fun travel memories for Pokémon-loving families. There’s also a special play area for kids who get antsy during the ride.
Every day, the train leaves Ichinoseki station at 11:01 am, arrives at Kesennuma at 12:51, then leaves in the other direction 15:08, and ends its journey at Ichinoseki at 16:49. Tickets can be booked up to a month in advance here via the JR East Japan website. JR East is no stranger to special extraordinary trains. Check out their super luxury train.