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Updated: July 20, 2022

Shinkansen trains speeding in and out of Tokyo Station is synonymous with the fast-paced and modern image of the city.

You can catch a glimpse of the iconic bullet trains at various places throughout the city, but for the real experience, book a ticket and take a trip on one of the sleek speedsters. The bullet train network fans out across Japan to most major cities.


It is possible to book shinkansen tickets online, even before you step foot in Japan. The trains can get very busy on weekends and during holiday periods, so booking in advance is highly recommended. It is also possible to purchase tickets from JR Stations—either from a ticket machine, or from the manned Midori-no-Madoguchi ticket offices.

Rail Passes

It is possible to use your JR Pass on the bullet train, but be aware that it cannot be used on the Nozomi Shinkansen—the fastest train that runs from Tokyo down to Hakata in the southern island of Kyushu. Also note that the JR Tokyo Wide Pass is not valid on the Tokaido Shinkansen.