Want to meet a beautiful calico cat that just so happens to be the Station Master of Wakayama Electric Railway's Kishi Station? Well head over to Wakayama, Japan for an adorable train ride through the country side!
4 years ago I was able to fulfill my dream to visit the famous Stationmaster Tama--a calico cat that served as the head of the station. I first heard of Tama while watching an episode that featured her on the Animal Planet show Must Love Cats. After the short segment I knew that seeing her in person would be the highlight of our first visit to Japan. The experience from start to finish was wonderfully cat-centric in every detail.
As soon as we arrived to the Kishigawa Line, we knew we were on the right track for finding the Tama Densha (or Tama Train).
We followed the cat paws to the correct platform for the Tama Densha, which we knew would take us all the way to Kishi Station, the station of residence, for Tama.
When the Tama Train Arrived, were were in awe of all of the detail. The front of the train looked like a calico cat's face, complete with a Station Master hat.
Tama, in cartoon form, adorned every inch of the exterior of the train.
Every inch of the interior was decked out too, including a chat-themed library, cat shaped chairs and lamps, Tama wallpaper, and Tama signage.
After our magical train ride, we finally arrived to Kishi Station, which is also shaped like a cat!
Every inch of the station is covered with Tama too! The Museum mostly featured photos of the original Tama, including some of her kitty station masters in training from the past and present.
Upon exiting the train platform at Kishi Station, everyone went straight to Tama's quarters, which is a mini home that she spends time in each day. Unfortunately, we visited about 1 week before Tama passed away, so she was at a vet visit when we arrived. We did get to meet her successor, Nitama, who is the current Station Master of Kishi Station.
We were hungry while visiting the station, but luckily there was a Tama cafe with more fun Tama artwork, cat-shaped chairs, and cat-themed treats.
Not to be left out, even the bathroom had Tama artwork and a hand-drawn sign with instructions from Tama on how to use a toilet.
We loved our visit to visit Tama. After she passed away, she ended up being elevated to a Shinto God, with her successors being just as popular as her. I even named my calico after Tama, who brings just as much happiness to me as I am sure the Japanese Tama did to her many fans.
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