Doai Station is considered the most haunted station in Japan. Doai Station is the deepest railway station in Japan that lurks beneath the mountains smack-bang between Tokyo and Niigata. In a recent census, it was discovered that the station still attracts several passengers a day as of 2021.
Doai Station is operated by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) and has two different platforms, resting on two different levels, far, far apart from each other. This is because at the station just south of Doai, which is Yubiso Station, the Joetsu Line becomes double-tracked, meaning one direction goes one way, and the other another way.
The History of Doai Station
Doai Railway Station opened on Saturday, 19 December 1936 in Gunma Prefecture. By that time it was also a regular station and had no difference from hundreds of other stations across Japan. But after the addition of a northbound line in 1967, all that changed. With the privatization of Japanese National Railways on 1 April 1987, the Doai station came under the control of JR East.
The main terminal building and underground platform were opened in 1967 and during the intervening years, it’s evident that little has been spent on the station’s upkeep. This station has not been in activity since 2006 but the Shinkansen from Aomori to Hokkaido is still going through it.
How deep is Doai train station?
Doai station is 70 meters underground, and passengers have to climb a passage of around 338 meters or 486 steps deep, making it the deepest in Japan. With no escalators or elevators, visitors will need to crawl out of this train station on foot to escape back to the land surface.
From the platform to the entrance of the station, it takes about a 10-minute walk, depending on how quickly you can go up 486 steps. When reaching the 462nd step, there’s a sign on a broken door saying: “From top to bottom: Job well done! 462 steps. Distance from here to the ticket gate is 143 meters away, including two more stairways totaling an additional 24 steps. Good luck!“
Stunning Photos of Doai Station
How to get to Doai Station with public transport?
Doai station is located in the town of Minakami, Gunma Prefecture, and is accessible via bullet train from Tokyo in around 75 minutes.
- From Tokyo, take the Joetsu Shinkansen to Jomo-Kogen Station.
- At Jomo-Kogen Station transfer to the bus for Minakami Station. It will take approximately 25 minutes.
- From Minakami Station order a taxi (12 minutes) or take a walk for 8.2 kilometers to Doai Station.
Things To Do at Doai Station in Japan
- In front of Doai station is a bus stop that leads up to Mount Tanigawa, a popular hiking area, and a great place to take the ropeway up to the top of the mountain.
- In this unattended station, a cafe Mogura opened in August 2020, which was once Doai train station’s ticket office, but has now transformed into a lounge for visitors to stop by for a snack and a hot drink.
- 5 minutes from Doai station is a Japanese gift shop, where you can buy local specialities and sweets. Adjacent to that there a restaurant that sell lunches, such as curry and rice, pork cutlets, and udon and soba noodles.
Doai station on Satellite Map