Kanden Tunnel Trolleybus

Shigeki Naganuma

Mar 5, 2018

Kanden Tunnel Trolleybus

Originally the main mode of transportation throughout Japan in the 1960s, trolleybuses are now rare. In fact, the Kanden Tunnel Trolleybus is the only trolleybus line still operating in Japan today.

Connecting the prefectures of Nagano and Toyama, the trolleybus on the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route runs between Ogizawa Station in Omachi and Kurobe Dam Station in Tateyama. What’s really unique about this 6.1km route is that most of it runs in a tunnel.

Operated by the Kansai Electric Power Company, the trolleybus runs entirely on electricity, which is a lot friendlier to the environment than gas-powered vehicles. Unlike conventional electric vehicles that require regular charging, the trolleybus derives its power from an overhead cable – much like a tram. With the feel of a bus that’s powered like a tram, the trolleybus combines all the comforts of modern transportation with a nostalgic feel of bygone years.

Another fun fact about the trolleybus is it isn’t equipped with air conditioning. Not that it needs one anyway, as the temperature within the tunnel is a constant 10ºC whatever the season. I recommend bringing an extra layer of clothing when visiting in summer, as it gets a bit chilly especially when alighting at the Kurobe Dam Station.

ADDRESS: 〒398-0001長野県大町市平2117トロリーバス扇沢駅

OPENING HOURS: Every 30 minutes from 6.30am (Ogizawa Station), last bus leaves Kurobe Dam Station at 4.30pm (5.35pm from April to November). Bus schedule changes according to season, please check in advance.

PRICING: ¥1,540 for a one-way ticket, ¥2,570 for a round trip

TRANSPORT & MORE:

このトロリーバスは、ガソリンなどの石油燃料ではなく電気の力で走ります。排気ガスなどの公害がなく自然に配慮したエネルギーを使っているんです。電気自動車などは充電しないと走れないですが、このトロリーバスは架線があれば充電なしに走ることができ、国内でもなかなか見ることができない貴重な存在です。外装はどこかレトロさを残しながらも近未来的な色合いでおしゃれで、従来の電車とは違い写真を撮りたくなってしまうかっこよさを持っています。できれば列に並び、早めに先頭に座ってください。トンネルのため側面の席では景色を見ることができず、先頭ならばトンネル内を進んで行く様を見ることができます。このトロリーバス、名前はバスと言われていますが、実は鉄道の一種なんです。そして意外なことにクーラーがありません。関電トンネル内は夏でも10度ほどで涼しいためクーラーが必要ないのですが、トロリーバス下車後に関電トンネルを歩いてダムまで行く際、半袖では肌寒い場合があります。長袖の上着を持って行くことをおすすめします。始発駅はトロリーバス扇沢駅です。料金は大人1540円ですが往復だと2570円と少し高めのため、観光の記念に乗るといった感覚で乗るといいでしょう。

conversation | Review
Been here before? Why not add a review! Add a review
Loading Conversation
conversation | Review
conversation | Q & A
Got a question about the attraction? Ask away!
Loading Conversation
conversation | Q & A

Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route, ...

Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route was an all new experience for us. During our trip, my parents and I travelled by the various transpor...

Read more

Kuronagi Hot Spring

If you love hot springs, you will not mind walking 30 minutes from Kuronagi station to Kuronagi Hot Spring, a hotel cloistered in ...

Read more

Kurobe Gorge Railway Unazuki S...

The best way to enjoy the scenic delights of Kurobe Gorge is to take the open air sightseeing trains of Kurobe Gorge Railway on an...

Read more

Sarutobikyo

If there was one area that best represents the Kurobe Gorge, it’s Sarutabikyo. The most narrow part of the Kurobe river, its name ...

Read more