Translated by Takuya Erik Watanabe
How To Navigate Your Way Through Hankyu Umeda Station
Written by Hiroki Matsumoto
Umeda Station is so huge that chances are you'll get lost on your first visit. In this article we share basic information to help you navigate through this labyrinth.
When traveling around the Kansai area from Osaka to Kobe or Kyoto, you will mostly be using the Hankyu trains. Especially if you have the Kansai 3-day pass (*1) you'll only have access to private railways, so you will inevitably be riding the Hankyu very often.
The Hankyu Railway passes not through Osaka Station, but a station adjacent to it called Umeda. This Umeda Station is huge and very complicated, so there's a pretty good chance of getting lost here if it's your first visit. So today we'll be sharing information about the different platforms since you probably wouldn't want to make a mistake here...
Photo from: Hankyu Railway Website
Use this route map to make sure you know where you're headed!
For Kyoto: Platforms 1-3
Platforms 1 to 3 are for trains heading to Kyoto. But you should be aware that there's a branch line that separates and goes to Senri-Chuo Station.
If you want to go to Kyoto, there's a limited express for Kawaramachi about every 10 minutes, so you should hop onto that. There are no worries of not reaching Kyoto if you use the limited express for Kawaramachi.
People visiting the famous Arashiyama should transfer to a train for Arashiyama at Katsura Station. Limited express trains stop at Katsura Station as well.
For Takarazuka: Platforms 4-6
If you are headed to Takarazuka, you will want to wait at platforms 4 to 6.
Trains will pass through stations like Toyonaka and Kawanishi-Noseguchi. If you have plans in the Nose direction, Kawanishi-Noseguchi is your transfer station.
For Minoh, transfer at Ishibashi Station to a train to Minoh.
For Kobe: Platforms 7-9
Trains for the Kobe area stop at platforms 7 to 9. Most limited express trains are for Shinkaichi. Stops on the way to Kobe include Nishinomiya-Kitaguchi, Sannomiya, and Kosoku Kobe.
Sannomiya is the center of Kobe and is also the station to get off at if you are here for shopping. You'll find a place called Harborland, where you can admire the sea, just nearby. This area also offers shopping and sightseeing attractions.
What did you think? Umeda has no fewer passengers than Osaka Station. With so many transfers and branch lines, your brain might get somewhat confused. We recommend noting down your transfers to your destination beforehand.