SL Ginga is a steam locomotive has started its service as a symbol of the recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake. The locomotive travels on the JR Kamaishi Line from Hanamaki Station in Iwate prefecture to Kamaishi Station via Tono Station for approximately 4 and half hours.
This area is closely associated with Kenji Miyazawa, a world-famous author of children's literature, and there are a gallery and planetarium exhibit that are related to his works inside SL Ginga, and you can experience the atmosphere unique in Tohoku region through outlook of the world from his works.
In addition, for those who are not familiar with Kenji Miyazawa, they can enjoy the extraordinary atmosphere, including retro-flavored interior of the train, and the dynamism from the locomotive blowing the steam while it is running, along with the sceneries unhurriedly passing by.
If you did not have a chance to get on SL Ginga, there is another way to enjoy it:
There are many spots perfect for shooting the photo of SL Ginga along the Kamaishi Line, so you can get a rent-a-car and travel all of those spots.
Locals gather at the famous photo shooting spot called "Megane bashi (arch bridge)" when the time that SL Ginga travels on the bridge, and they see it off by waving at it.
The locomotive stops at Tono Station for over an hour to feed the water, and to throw away the ash.You can get inside the station if you purchase a platform ticket, so you can shoot the close-up image of SL Ginga.
If you are in this region, please experience SL Ginga's dynamic run.
Train schedule and details: http://www.jr-morioka.com/noccha/train/slginga/ (Japanese version only)
Event Information: http://www.city.tono.iwate.jp/index.cfm/32,22443,148,html
You can view the process which brought SL Ginga to the world, and the interior of the locomotive.