Japan Railway & Transport Review No. 18 (Back cover)

Japanese Railway Scenery 11
JR East: Harajuku Station

December 31 and January 1 are special days for Harajuku Station on JR East's Yamanote Line. The Yamanote Line is a circular line of 34.5 km surrounding central Tokyo, with about 320 trains per day in each direction. Among the 29 stations along the line, Harajuku is a modest one, because its neighbours include very big terminals such as Tokyo Central, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Ikebukuro and Ueno. However, Harajuku serves the famous Meiji Shrine, so it becomes Tokyo's busiest station from New Year's Eve through New Year's Day, as many Tokyoites visit the Shrine to pray for a happier, healthier, and wealthier year. Usually, trains do not run on the Yamanote Line from 01:00 to 05:00, but on New Year's Eve, trains run all night at an interval of 10 minutes or so.
(Photo: M. Mashima Photo Office)