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Monday, December 21, 2015

Kyushu Spring 2014 九州春季之旅 - Nishi Oyama JR Station 西大山駅

Visited 25.03.2014


Nishi Oyama JR Station, on Ibusuki Markurazaki line.

This is one of the many unmanned train station in Kyushu with only a bus stop equivalent shelter and is served by local trains. Yet with such simple infrastructure, why are people all flocking to this train station when they visit Ibusuki?

Map with locations of JR train stations at 4 extreme points of Japan.
Significance. Geographically, Nishi Oyama is JR's southernmost train station in Japan. Many people (railway fans in particular) made their way to this symbolic train station to capture a shot with the geographical marker erected on the platform. With mere 16 local trains making a stop here per day (total number in both directions), visitors need to be familiar with the train schedule prior the visit. From the train station, one can also capture a scenic view of blooming rapeseed field (in spring) and majestic Mt Kaimon in the background. With such significance and beautiful surroundings, Nishi Oyama JR Station has grown to become one of the many tourist attraction in Ibuski.

Sent a postcard home through the yellow postbox.
Bell of happiness & yellow postbox. Headed down to a nearby shop to purchase a proof of visit certificate (100 yen) which came with commemorative train station stamp (かいもん市場 久太郎). Apart from the certificate, one other goal of my visit was to drop a postcard in this unconventional yellow postbox located beside the train station. In Japan, locals deemed paying a visit to such symbolic places (e.g. the name, history, or in this case due to its geographical location) as a sense of achievement and it is said that one will be blessed with good luck or one's wishes will come true after that. The ritual that most visitors go through here is to first make a wish, followed by sounding the bell of happiness and lastly, send a letter/postcard through the yellow postbox. A simple action to fulfill the spiritual well being for some.     

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How to get there? 

* Did not come here by train due to the infrequent train service. Covered this attraction as part of my 3 hours sightseeing taxi hire in Ibusuki.

(1) By train.
From Ibusuki JR Station, catch a local train to Nishi Oyama JR Station. Duration is approx 17 minutes.
Ibusuki > Nishi Oyama: 0609, 0713, 1127, 1318, 1715, 1826, 1947, 2120 hrs
Nishi Oyama > Ibusuki: 0544, 0706, 0829, 0900, 1418, 1656, 1928, 2052 hrs

Check exact train schedule on Hyperdia: http://www.hyperdia.com/



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Video: Scroll to 33:25 for 遇约九州's feature on Nishi Oyama JR Station.

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Commemorative stamp:

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