Pippu Station - Hokkaido

Pippu Station (比布駅) is a train station on the Soya Main Line of JR Hokkaido. It is located at 2-chome, Nishimachi in the town of Pippu in Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan.

比布駅
Pippu Station

Pippu Station details

Pippu Station, located in Pippu Town, Hokkaido, has a rich history dating back to its opening in 1898. Originally part of the Hokkaido Government Railway Teshio Line, which is now known as the Soya Main Line, Pippu Station played a pivotal role in the rapid development of the Pippu Plains.

比布駅
Pippu Station - Pippu town, Hokkaido Prefecture

During its early years, the station facilitated the growth of Takasu Village, which eventually became Takasu Town. Its influence was so significant that it led to the independence of Pippu Village in 1906. The station's first building was completed in 1898, and it served as a bustling hub for the region.

Pippu Station Facade




Unfortunately, as time passed and the Japanese National Railways (JNR) implemented rationalization policies, Pippu Station experienced cutbacks in its services. The handling of cargo ceased in December 1978, and the handling of luggage followed suit in February 1984. Subsequently, the station was unmanned by November 1984.

Inside Pippu Station




Despite the decline in services, a local clock shop owner recognized an opportunity to revive the station's vitality. In July 1987, the shop owner opened a coffee shop inside the station building. However, due to various reasons, including the closure of the coffee shop in June 2010, Pippu Station ultimately became completely unmanned.


Aware of the deteriorating condition of the station building, JR Hokkaido, the owner of the first station building, initially considered minimizing the scale of the renovation. Nevertheless, Pippu-cho, the local town, envisioned the station as a key element in revitalizing the central city area. As a result, it was decided to rebuild the station on a larger scale, preserving its historical significance.


Pippu Manhole Covers


In 2015, the original station building closed its doors and was replaced by a new building in 2016. The new station building not only serves as a functional railway station but also functions as an exchange space for the community.


The Pip Elekiban standee

Interestingly, Pippu Station gained widespread recognition beyond its local significance through a television commercial. In 1980, the station lent its name to a TV commercial for a home magnetic therapy device called "Pip Elekiban." The commercial featured actresses Kirin Kiki and Isao Yokoya, who was Chairman Fujimoto at the time. The humorous advertisement showcased Yokoya attempting to say "Pip" as the express train passed by, and Kiki responded with her variation of "Nanpippu." This unique commercial sparked a trend of visitors flocking to the station, with 1,000 admission tickets sold in a single day.


Strawberry soft cream

To commemorate the station's history and its role in the commercial, Pippu Town released a promotional video imitating the iconic advertisement in 2015. The video aimed to showcase the town's charm while paying tribute to the station's fame.

Team Nicerio visits Pippu Station



My family and I visited Pippu Station for the first time last September 18, 2022, during our September 17 – 19 Road Trip. It was my 321st day in Japan as an ALT under the JET Programme. We went to Pippu Station because we were “hunting” for the Pokemon manhole covers. It was only later when I was researching about the station that I learned about its importance to the town. During our visit, my daughter and I tried the strawberry soft cream. It was a great alternative since we missed the strawberry-picking event in Pippu last July.


Pippu Station Fees

It’s FREE to park, enter, and explore Pippu Station grounds except for the track area. However, I suggest that visitors bring cash in case they want to buy products that are sold in the Pipikafe Pippu Station (ピピカフェ比布駅)store inside the station. I highly recommend the strawberry soft cream.

Pippu Station Operating Hours

Pippu Station is open 24/7 but the Pipikafe Pippu Station is open from 9 AM – 6 PM only.

Why visit Pippu Station?

Pippu Station stands as a testament to the town's history and serves as a vital transportation hub for locals and visitors alike. With its renovated building and ongoing community initiatives, Pippu Station continues to play a crucial role in the development and revitalization of the area. Aside from that, if you’re looking for Pokemon Manhole Covers (Pokefuta), the Pippu Pokefuta is installed outside the station. It features the Alolan Vulpix and Piplup.

Getting to Pippu Station

 

From Asahikawa Station, board the Local Pippu train of the Soya Line and board down at Pippu Station.

Travel time: 23 minutes
Fare: 440 yen

Ratings

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Cleanliness

Overall rating


Comments

  1. Oh wow! A Pokemon manhole cover.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's right. The Pippu Pokefuta is installed outside Pippu Station.

      Delete

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