The JR 山手線 (Yamanote Line ) is probably the most famous train line in Tokyo.
It’s a one-hour loop around 29* stations in the heart of the city. (* a new station is planned to be added soon).
Every train and subway line in Tokyo has a unique color to make them easy to identify. These colors are used on train and subway maps, on platform signs and the trains themselves are painted those colors (either a solid color or, more commonly nowadays, two-tone silver and the “line color”).
The Yamanote Line‘s color is lime-green.
For the past thirty years or so, the Yamanote Line has been using “205 series” trains. Older model trains have been phased out of use many years ago.
But, this year only, the Yamanote Line has re-introduced the older “103 series” trains back into service.
This is because the 103 series trains were first used on the Yamanote Line in 1963…fifty years ago. So, the older model trains can be ridden until December 2013!
Here are some photos that I took last weekend of the special 50th anniversary 103-series Yamanote Line trains:
(By the way, if you were in Tokyo four years ago, you may remember the only time that some Yamanote Line trains were brown instead of green. Click here to read a post about it.)