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We Board Japan’s ‘Setsugekka’ Resort Train And Have An Incredible Journey Through The Heartland

On the sightseeing train Echigo Tokimeki Resort Setsugekka, you are treated to memorable gourmet dishes that are the pride of Niigata as it weaves its way through a luxurious natural setting providing spectacular views of the Japan Sea and majestic Mt. Myoko.

It is an incredible three-hour tour spent marveling on the dramatically changing landscape viewed through the large carriage windows. I was able to fully enjoy the scenery and cuisine all at once without missing anything on this amazing Japanese sightseeing train!

All Aboard the Echigo Tokimeki Resort Setsugekka!

In recent years, sightseeing trains noted for their elegant interiors and exteriors that enable you to fully enjoy the charms of a region while savoring gourmet dishes have gained much attention. The Echigo Tokimeki Resort Setsugekka, which I shall refer to as Setsugekka, is one of these.

You can enjoy the gourmet dishes of Niigata on this sightseeing train as it makes its way through western Niigata Prefecture going from Joetsu Myoko Station to Itoigawa Station, wending its way through the Myoko Highlands, while enjoying magnificent views of the Japan Sea and the grandiose Myoko Mountains through the largest carriage windows in Japan.

▲ Mt. Myoko and Setsugekka are symbols of Myoko City (photo provided by Echigo Tokimeki Railway)

Two trains are operated only on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, one in the morning and the other in the afternoon. The morning train departs from Joetsu Myoko Station and goes to Itoigawa Station (French cuisine), while the afternoon train runs in reverse leaving Itoigawa Station and returning to Joetsu Myoko Station (Japanese cuisine). On a Shinkansen train this journey would take about 15 minutes, but the Setsugekka travels at a more leisurely pace stretching the journey out to about three hours.

It costs a uniform 17,500 yen (meal and tax included). By the way, on the day you take it, with this fare you can also ride regular trains and fast trains on the Echigo Tokimeki Railway as much as you like at no extra cost.

In this article we will tell you about the French cuisine and luxurious experience we enjoyed on the morning train that departed from Joetsu Myoko Station.

“All made in Niigata” quality space!

It is necessary to make reservations and pay in advance to ride the Setsugekka. Reservations can be made by phone and after payment has been confirmed you will be sent a “boarding pass”.

▲ This is the boarding pass that is sent in the mail.

To get to Joetsu Myoko Station, which is the starting point, it takes approximately 1 hour and 50 minutes by the Hokuriku Shinkansen from Tokyo, and approximately 2 hours by express train from Niigata Station. Get off at JR Joetsu Myoko Station, a…

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