Three colorful new trains are now running on the Namboku Line in Osaka Prefecture in advance of the line’s extension to the city of Minoh next year. The trains are designed to help promote the charms Minoh – which is particularly famous for the beautiful scenery of its forested park and waterfall.
The first train is called “Minoh Shikisai Momiji” and is decorated with natural imagery: Colorful autumn leaves at the front of the train give way to images of other seasons and also of Minoh Falls – one of the most famous waterfalls in Japan.
This train is inspired by the beauty of Meiji-no-Mori Minoh Quasi National Park, which is known for its brilliant autumn colors, its scenic nature trails and which is also the location of Minoh Falls.
The other two trains are decorated with Minoh City’s mascot characters: Takinomichi Yuzuru and Momiji-inu.
Minoh is well-known for growing yuzu – a type of citrus fruit, so Takinomichi Yuzuru is a samurai figure with a yellow citrus fruit for a head. The Momiji-inu mascot is a white dog with a colorful maple leaf on her head. This mascot is often shown with a camera, so she probably likes taking pictures of Minoh’s autumn leaves.
The Namboku Line is operated by Kita-Osaka Kyuko Railway, but is effectively a northern extension of Osaka’s Midosuji Line, and so connects Osaka with the cities of Suita and Toyonaka. The Midosuji Line is one of Osaka’s busiest subway lines and runs north-to-south through the city linking important stops like the shinkansen terminal at Shin-Osaka Station and commercial districts such as Umeda and Namba. When the Namboku Line’s extension opens these locations will also be connected with Minoh City.
The Namboku Line’s extension is scheduled to open on March 23rd, 2024.
Article by Michael Lambe. Images courtesy of Kita-Osaka Kyuko Railway. All rights reserved.