Although many people choose to fly or take a bullet train to move around Japan, the popular night trains of this country continue to offer a chance for tourists to save time and money.
Besides the popular Sunrise Express, which connects Tokyo with the Izumo and Sea of Seto areas, the Moonlight Nagara between Tokyo and Ogaki is also included in the JR Pass.
Moonlight Nagara itinerary
This train runs seasonally during the busy periods of spring (two weeks from late March to early April), summer (late July to the end of August), and the Christmas and New Year holiday season.
This train, which started operating seasonally in 2009, is nowadays an overnight rapid transfer between Tokyo, Nagoya, and Ogaki, very close to Hikone. As it is connected to other local trains, it also facilitates the connections between Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka.
It has 11 stops in total: Tokyo, Shinagawa, Yokohama, Odawara, Numazu, Shizuoka, Hamamatsu, Toyohashi, Nagoya, Gifu, and Ogaki. However, only the train to Ogaki stops at Odawara station, and only the train to Tokyo stops at Toyohashi station.
Moonlight Nagara schedule
|Tokyo to Ogaki||Time||Ogaki to Tokyo||Time|
How to book a seat
Despite being included in the JR Pass, you cannot reserve a seat online and the tickets are on sale one month prior to departure date.
You need to get a reserved seat before you ride but it is actually very hard to reserve a seat as all cars are reserved seat only, this means that there are no green cars or even non-reserved cars either. We recommend you visit one of JR offices in one of the main stations of Tokyo or Nagoya.