Shin-Kobe Station is the high-speed shinkansen terminal for Kobe and is linked to the rest of the city by an underground subway station. It is a relatively small station, so it is quite easy to find your way around. At the east end of the station on the 2nd floor is the entrance to the shinkansen platforms and at the west end is the entrance to the subway station which has services bound for Kobe city center and for the north of the city.
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Shin-Kobe Station is a three-story building with two shinkansen platforms on the 3rd floor and ticket gates on the 2nd floor.
Escalators, stairs and elevators at the west end of the 2nd floor lead to the subway station which is beneath the station building.
Most of the station facilities can be found on the 2nd floor.
The shinkansen station has two platforms. Trains leaving Platform 1 are west-bound services for Okayama, Hakata, and Kagoshima-chuo.
Trains leaving Platform 2 are east-bound services for Shin-Osaka, Nagoya, and Tokyo.
Departure information is provided at both platforms in English and Japanese.
Shin-Kobe Subway Station
Shin-Kobe Subway Station is located beneath the station building and can be accessed by stairs, escalators and elevator from the 2nd or 1st floors of the station building.
The subway station has three platforms.
Platform 1 serves Hokushin Line trains bound for Tanigami Station. Passengers bound for Sanda or for the hot spring resort town of Arima Onsen should transfer at Tanigami Station to the Shintetsu Arima Line.
Platforms 2 and 3 both serve Seishin-Yamate Subway Line trains bound for Sannomiya, Myodani, and Seishin-Chuo. Sannomiya is the main downtown area in central Kobe and also its main transportation hub. The travel time between the Shin-Kobe and Sannomiya subway stations is roughly 2 minutes.
Departure information is provided at all platforms in English and Japanese.
2nd Floor Facilities
The ticket gates for the shinkansen platforms are located on the 2nd floor. Digital signs at the gates show the departures at each platform in both Japanese and English.
Automatic ticket machines are located beside the gates. The ticket machines have English and Japanese language options and are easy to use.
However, you can also buy tickets at the ticket office which is beside the ticket machines.
Directly opposite the ticket office is a tourist information counter where you can ask about sightseeing attractions, transport inside Kobe, accommodation, and car rental. Staff here can speak English and telephone translation is available for Korean and Chinese.
There are waiting areas with seating both inside and outside the ticket gates.
There is a kiosk inside the ticket gates where you can buy drinks and snacks. Outside the ticket gates there is a café and restaurants serving noodles and western style dishes.
This floor also has a shop selling bento lunch boxes, a convenience store, and a large store selling a wide range of souvenirs. Inside the convenience store you can find 7-Bank ATMs which are multilingual and accept most major international bank cards.
Banks of coin lockers of various sizes can be found at the west end of the 2nd floor near the stairs that lead to lower levels and near the toilets. The lockers are operated by touch screens that have English, Japanese, Chinese and Korean language options.
The railway police office is also located on the 2nd floor near the lockers.
The station can be exited at the 2nd floor or 1st floor. There is a taxi rank just outside the 2nd floor exit and also a bus stop for services heading to Arima Onsen, Minotani, and Kobe-Kitamachi.
1st Floor Facilities
On the 1st floor of the station building you can find the office for JR Highway Bus and the Eki Rentacar service.
Highway express buses also depart from the 1st floor to destinations which include Tokushima, Takamatsu, Awaji Yumebutai, Higashiura, and Sumoto.
Around the Station
Sightseeing attractions near Shin-Kobe Station include the Shin-Kobe Ropeway which takes gondola cars up to the Nunobiki Herb Garden on Mount Rokko. Also nearby are a beautiful series of waterfalls called the Nunobiki Falls which can be reached by a 20 minute woodland hike.
The ANA Crowne Plaza Kobe hotel is located directly across from Shin-Kobe Station and can be accessed by a walkway from the 2nd floor of the station building. This walkway also leads to the Shin-Kobe Ropeway.
Article and original photos by Michael Lambe. All rights reserved.