the winning photograph of the Koumi Line photo contest

There are numerous tiny train lines across Japan that are a dying breed. One of those is the Koumi Line, which connects Kobuchizawa Station in Yamanashi with Komoro Station in Nagano. The picturesque line, despite its views of mountains and rolling rice paddies, has been a victim of urbanization and depopulation particularly in rural areas of Japan. In an attempt to boost ridership and make up their budget deficit, the train has turned its advertisement space into a photo gallery and is hosting an in-car photo exhibition of the train submitted by users and train enthusiasts.


a train rider examines the winning photos

Winning entries from the Koumi Line Photo Contest will be on view, within the cars of the train itself, now through the end of Golden Week: May 9, 2023. Out of roughly 80 entries, a committee selected 20 to be on display within the space typically reserved for advertising, transforming the train cars into a gallery.

If you’re looking for a unique activity that’s surely off the beaten path, make your way to the Koumi Line to enjoy the views out the window but also in the car. Below are some additional photos of the train line from previous photo contests.

photo by huilan27

photo by 09_tetsu

photo by tomotomo_5656