Let a ride on the “Medetai Train”–“Joyous Train”–lift your spirits as we soar into summer!

Who doesn’t love riding in style on a themed train in Japan? Whether it’s on your friendly neighborhood Pikachu train up north, the irresistibly cute Hello Kitty bullet train down south, or on an actual rescue cat cafe train in central Japan, you certainly can’t go wrong with your final pick.

Speaking of which, Japanese Twitter user @akno721 recently shared some snapshots of her trip to southern Wakayama Prefecture. There, she had the chance to ride the ocean-themed “Medetai Train” on the Kada Line, a very local line within Wakayama City which runs between Wakayama Station and Kada Station by the shore:

▼ At first glance, it’s hard to tell whether these are photos or watercolor paintings!

This special train is just in time to celebrate the advent of summer as temperatures soar and families are beginning to visit the local beaches. Both the exterior and interior of the cars are painted in a refreshingly summery blue, and whimsical decorations such as handles in the shape of sea creatures and fish decals on the floor add a particularly playful touch.

It turns out that @akno721 only saw half of the decor because the train’s theme color actually changes every other month. The blue version that was running when she visited is nicknamed “Kai” (which is another reading of the kanji 海 meaning “ocean”). Kai pays tribute to the various sea creatures found locally as well as recreates the feeling of excitement everyone experiences when visiting the ocean.

▼ The interior of Kai

The pink version of the train is nicknamed “Sachi” (幸), which means “good fortune.” Sachi is meant to imbue its passengers with plenty of gentleness and warmth.

▼ The interior of Sachi

In a clever play on words, putting the two trains’ kanji together results in the phrase “umi no sachi,” which is one way of saying “seafood” in Japanese.

The Kada Line’s special themed train schedule can be found on the Nankai Electric Railway’s website here (Japanese only). In general, the pink Sachi is scheduled to run during odd-numbered months and the blue Kai during even-numbered months year-round, but be sure to check the website for any sudden changes.

Source: Togech
Featured image: Nankai Electric Railway Co. Ltd. 
Insert images: Nankai Electric Railway Co. Ltd.