Seven Stars in Kyushu is a luxury sleeper train that takes riders on a unique tour full of culture, history and new experiences throughout Kyushu.
The train is made up of a diesel locomotive designed by Kawasaki Heavy Industries and seven passenger cars designed in collaboration between Hitachi Rail and Kyushu Kokura Works. It is named for the seven cars making up its body, as well as the seven prefectures of Kyushu that it travels within.
The train has been in operation since October 2013, but this year it is being renewed, with changes to both its interior and what it has on offer. The new ride and its courses will be in operation for its 21st term from October 2022 to March 2023, with reservations being accepted from today.

Below you will find details about the updated train and its courses, but here’s a brief breakdown of what’s new.

– Currently the train has a maximum capacity of 30 people, with 14 sleeping rooms available, but with the renewal that capacity will change – decreasing to a maximum of 20 people with 10 sleeping rooms. Whilst this may seem like a negative aspect, it’s actually an improvement as it means each person will get more space to relax in.

– Trips taken on the Seven Stars in Kyushu sleeper train are fully customizable, and can be tailored to fit the preferences of groups aboard the train.

– The renewal will expand the courses available on the Seven Stars in Kyushu, which before was limited to a minimum of 3 nights and 4 days aboard the sleeper. Now, for the first time ever, the train will offer a tour course that allows a single 1 night stay, which will be the perfect opportunity for a quick weekend getaway.

– The 3 night 4 day tour has two courses available depending on the season: Kirishima and Unzen.

Kirishima Course

Duration: 3 nights, 4 days
Season: October – December 2022

This 3 night and 4 day trip will take riders on a journey that introduces about 100 years of pottery and railway history in Kyushu.
During the excursion guests will experience the culture of Onta and Satsuma pottery whilst taking in the views of the nature-rich areas that spread across the foot of the Kirishima mountain range. On the final day the tour will end in Oita Prefecture’s Bungo-Ono UNESCO Geopark, which is famed for its volcanic forms and terrain.

Regular Suite: 1,250,000 yen Deluxe Suite B: 1,600,000 yen Deluxe Suite A: 1,700,000 yen

Unzen Course

Duration: 3 nights, 4 days
Season: January – March 2023

This tour takes riders on a cultural experience trip across northern Kyushu. Stopping by Yufuin, Unzen, Kumamoto and Nagasaki guests will be introduced to the charm of Kyushu. Buddhist temples like Taisho-ji of the Hosokawa Clan, the rich agricultural land of the Shimabara Peninsula and the long history of Japan’s gateway to the western world at Nagasaki are just a handful of things that riders will get to experience during this course.

Regular Suite: 1,150,000 yen Deluxe Suite B: 1,500,000 yen Deluxe Suite A: 1,600,000 yen

Kyushu Short Tour Course

Duration: 1 night, 2 days
Season: October 2022 – March 2023

This is a 1 night, 2 day course that aims to give a taster to riders for what both Kyushu and the Seven Stars in Kyushu sleeper train have to offer.
Guests will be able to mingle with other passengers on board the train, enjoy supper as the sun sets over the East China Sea, and make warm connections with locals from the small seaside towns at both west and east Kyushu.

Regular Suite: 650,000 yen Deluxe Suite B: 800,000 yen Deluxe Suite A: 900,000 yen

Car No. 2 – Salon and Tea Room

Car number 2 was formerly the carriage where guests would enjoy meals, but with the update part of it has been reborn as a “salon” where guests can meet, talk and interact with one another during the tour’s unique activities.

The other half of car number 2 has been transformed into a traditional Japanese tea room complete with washi sliding doors, tatami mats and retro decor from the Showa era. Visitors will be able to enjoy famous teas sourced from all across Kyushu that have been prepared by a tea master.

Car No.3 – Gallery Shop and

Half of the carriage of car number 3 is now dedicated to a gallery shop where guests can enjoy browsing and possibly purchasing various crafts of Kyushu.

The other half of car number 3 is where the bar is located. With the renewal this space has been updated to provide guests with further luxury. Serving up drinks and conversation are bartenders who have been trained to the highest degree.

The renewal will also see changes to the dishes available to guests onboard the Seven Star Kyushu sleeper train, all of which are sourced from producers located in Kyushu.

If you are interested in boarding the Seven Star Kyushu sleeper train the reservation period for its 21st term is now underway, with bookings able to be placed until the 13th of May 2022. Trip departures will take place from October 2022 to March 2023.

Bookings for the train can be made directly over the telephone (0570-550-779) or via the official online booking website.

By - Connie Sceaphierde.