Kyushu Shinkansen 九州新幹線
From Hakata in northern Kyushu to Kagoshima further south takes 1 hour 20 minutes and from Hakata to Kumamoto 30 minutes. The trip from Osaka to Kagoshima takes 3 hours, 55 minutes.
Two new Kyushu shinkansen trains, the Mizuho and Sakura run between Osaka and Kagoshima. The quicker Mizuho is equivalent to the Nozomi shinkansen and the Sakura is similar to the Hikari shinkansen that run on the Tokaido and Sanyo shinkansen lines.
Both trains are based on the design of the N700 bullet train. The Tsubame shinkansen stops at all stations and is similar to the Kodama shinkansen of the Tokaido and Sanyo shinkansen lines. The Tsubame runs only between Hakata and Kagoshima-Chuo Stations.
The 257 km of track runs parallel to the Kagoshima main line: the Mizuho stops at Kumamoto and Kagoshima after Hakata; the Sakura stops at Shin-Tosu, Kurume, Chikugo-Funagoya, Shin-Omuta, Shin-Tamara, Kumamoto, Shin-Yatsushiro, Shin-Minamata, Izumi, Sendai (not to be confused with the Sendai in Tohoku) and Kagoshima, the Tsubame stops at Shin-Tosu, Kurume, Chikugo-Funagoya, Shin-Omuna, Shin-Tamana, Kumamoto, Shin-Yatsushiro, Shin-Minamata, Izumi, Sendai and Kagoshima.
Kyushu Connections & Japan Rail Passes
Change from the Kyushu shinkansen to the Kagoshima Main Line for connections to other destinations in Kyushu. Tosu Station (close to Shin-Tosu) connects with the Nagasaki Main Line to Nagasaki. Kurume connects with the Kyudai Main Line to Hita, Bungo Nakagawa, Yufuin and Oita.
Kumamoto connects with the Hohi Main Line with train services to Aso and Oita. Yatsushiro is the start of the Hisatsu Line to Satsuma Sendai. The approximately 117km-long Hisatsu Orange Railway is connected to the JR Kagoshima Line at both terminals and runs from Yatsushiro to Sendai via Yunoura, Shin-Minamata and Izumi.
The Ibusuki Makurazaki Line runs to Makurazaki from Kagoshima-Chuo.