Getting to Kyoto on the Haruka Express


The Haruka is the only train that goes directly to Kyoto without requiring a change of trains.  There is at least one per hour, sometimes two (in the red ovals).

After exiting from the immigration control, take an escalator up to the 2nd floor and take the bridge across the road to the train station which you see in the above picture.  The ticket machines are on the far left, the entrance to the JR station on the far left (under the panel colored blue. (The red panel entrances are for the Nankai private railway to south-central Osaka.)

Find a machine like the one above, with a touch panel screen.

Touch the button to select “English”.

Select the Haruka.  Non-reserved is recommended because the train is rarely crowded. Reserved seating requires extra steps not illustrated here.

Select “Kyoto”.

Select “One person” if travelling alone.

Select the route.


Insert bills or a credit card to pay for the ticket.  Don’t forget to take your change!

Upon arrival in Kyoto (the terminus) walk towards the front of the train and continue walking straight until the end of the building where you will find an escalator going down to the Karusuma Subway line.  A ticket to “Karasuma Oike” station costs ¥210, “Kitaoji” |250 and “Kokusai Kaikan” ¥280.

8 Responses to “Getting to Kyoto on the Haruka Express”

  1. James Bakker says:

    Nicely organized site with lots of information, instructions, and photos! This is useful for visiting tourists who only know English.

    I’m an ESL teacher and I think your site is quite good. Keep up the good English :-)

  2. Annie Ooi says:

    I read fr this web site : http://nicklee.tw/index.php?load=read&id=837
    The JR rail Pass need a photocopy of flight ticket n itinery , then only can purchase , can some1 advice ? Tqvm

  3. Admin says:

    The JR Rail Pass can only be purchased outside Japan and the first time you want to use it, you need to activate it by showing your passport at the train station.

    These measures are there to protect against a black market in rail passes. People overseas could purchase them and then sell them in Japan. If you are coming to Japan, you should have no trouble obtaining a pass locally.

  4. Brian says:

    I will be going to Kyoto arriving on the evening of the 14th October and leaving on the morning of the 28th October which is 14 nights so would a two week Haruka express pass (JR rail pass?) purchased online cover the period for arrival at Kansai International airport to Kyoto and back or would the number of actual days make it invalid and should I just buy the single ticket to Kyoto and get a separate normal price one for the return??

  5. Admin says:

    The period of validity is measured in days, not hours, so if you start to use a pass on 14 October, you can only use it until 17 October midnight. Now if you are only talking about a roundtrip ticket for the Haruka, the price difference is trivial. If you are talking about a JR pass, then you will end up paying for the fare one way if you travel on the 15th day.

  6. Laine says:

    If I buy the ICOCA & HARUKA card, I do not need to go through these machines? I asked because I see that one of the card slot has an ICOCA label on it.

  7. Admin says:

    The ICOCA card has an IC chip and is touched to the flat panel on top. For the Haruka you also need an express payment which will give you a printed ticket. This does not have to be passed through the machine, but just shown to the conductor on the train. The ICOCA card will just deduct the standard fare when you get off the train, but will not deduct express charges.

  8. Admin says:

    I don’t know what a Haruka Card is. If you have an Icoca card, you can use it to enter the station. When you get off the train, the regular far will be deducted from it. The conductor will collect the express free from you on the train.