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Newer Page 465 of 968 Older Full Trip Report
Japan Kitakyushu Kokura Monorail

21 November 2015

The busy side

Travelling from Shimonoseki to Kokura for dinner

This evening I went to Kitakyushu, where I walked to earlier, only this time I went via train.
The train still goes under the ocean, but its a different tunnel. It seems to go about 500kmph in a rattly old ww2 era single carriage, the noise it made in the tunnel was concerning.
You then have to change to a different train on the other side, which then takes you to the main station of Kitakyushu called Kokura, so I have a theory. JR west and JR Kyushu are two different companies these days, when the tunnel was built there was just JR. So now no one maintains that one train which for its whole life just goes continuously between the two islands.
The driver of this train, now 108 years old, continues as he feels it is his duty, but no one pays him because he technically works for neither company.

Whilst on the subject of trains, I decided once I got to the Kokura station, that it is a much nicer place to be early for your bullet train tomorrow than Shin-Shimonoseki, its also easier to get to because the train to it runs every 10 minutes.
So, whilst in Kokura station this evening, I waltzed into the ticket office with my ticket I had already purchased that goes from Shin-Shimonoseki, to Hakura (main station in Fukuoka) and said 'exchange please, Kokura to Hakata'. The girl snatched the ticket, and 8 seconds later handed me a replacement and change. I actually got refunded for the journey being slightly shorter, No change fee, no 'no refund', just service.

Thats a lot of place names in one story, we have Shimonoseki which is on the southern tip of Honshu, Shin-Shimonoseki which is about 10km north in the middle of nowhere, Kokura which is on Kyushu and the biggest commercial district of the Kitakyushu metropolitan area, and Hakata which is the bullet train station in Fukuoka on Kyushu, got it?

Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - Kokura station is not only huge, its also where the famous monorail track ends. Normally more is better, except for tracks, when one is better.

Kokura station is not only huge, its also where the famous monorail track ends. Normally more is better, except for tracks, when one is better.


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - Kokura has numerous covered shopping streets to wander around.

Kokura has numerous covered shopping streets to wander around.


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - Now I stared at this for a while and I am convinced its an excavator on the bottom of the river that should not be there. There were floating spill po

Now I stared at this for a while and I am convinced its an excavator on the bottom of the river that should not be there.
There were floating spill pontoon things surrounding the area, but they might put those up when they are digging anyway, however if it is a machine designed to work under water, how does it get power?
It would have to be diesel powered, and theres nothing there that looks like it might power it, so I think it was on a barge and slid off or sank.


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - Kokura is also encouraging buying day December 25.

Kokura is also encouraging buying day December 25.


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - Night castle. I climbed over a garden with keep off signs to take this photo.

Night castle. I climbed over a garden with keep off signs to take this photo.


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - There are at least 3 impressively sized department stores in the station area.

There are at least 3 impressively sized department stores in the station area.


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - So, I wandered into one of the stores, and it had 50 places to eat, its 7:30pm, the signs said restaurants open until 22:30, but no, closed signs star

So, I wandered into one of the stores, and it had 50 places to eat, its 7:30pm, the signs said restaurants open until 22:30, but no, closed signs started appearing. Time to decide where to eat, fast!


Japan-Kitakyushu-Kokura-Monorail - What I ended up with was like a pot pie you would get form a pub in Australia, only with rice on the bottom and an egg on the top. Very delicious.

What I ended up with was like a pot pie you would get form a pub in Australia, only with rice on the bottom and an egg on the top. Very delicious.


NewerPage 465 of 968OlderFull Trip Report