Japan as a country offers a rich culture and traditional heritage along with the pinnacles of modern development. This is the perfect mix which any traveler will find intriguing to explore. Along with the many popular tourist destinations, the country has a number of museums which will give you a detour of the Japanese culture, art, science, traditions, and technology from time immemorial till the present day. The museums in Japan have something of interest for everyone.
10 Awesome Japanese Museums
Here is a short compilation of the best museums in Japan that you must visit to gain insight into the country’s rich and intriguing history and culture:
1. Tokyo National Museum
In the list of the art museum in Japan Tokyo, this one tops the chart being the largest and oldest too. It houses some important artifacts and archeological things which holds immense historical significance from all the areas of Asia continent with the primary focus on Japan. The museum was opened in the year 1872. The museum is divided into five buildings which house different sets of exhibits. The collection is mainly related to traditional and ancient Japanese artworks and also some of them also have an Asian connection featuring the Silk Route area.
Timings: 9:30 AM – 5 PM (till 8 PM on Fridays and weekends) | Closed on Mondays
Entry Fees: INR 375
2. Edo Tokyo Museum
One of the most popular museums in Japan Tokyo, this was established in the year 1993. The place is designed to showcase the life and times of the city’s ancient civilization starting from the days when it was founded in the 1600s till today. The museum comprises of a permanent exhibition area on the 5th and 6th floors housing objects depicting the culture, history, and lifestyle of Tokyo city. Edo, an area which is still present in Tokyo, was founded around some 400 years ago by Tokugawa Ieyasu. The museum has life-size models of the architectural wonders of the past, the tools used by Edo men, the fashion and style sense of that era and many more interesting inventions and trends which were followed by the rest of the world. The museum is sure to be a delight for everyone.
Timings: 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM from Tuesday to Sunday | Open till 7:30 PM on Saturdays
Entry Fees: INR 400
3. Ghibli Museum
Ghibli Museum is one of the famous art museums in Tokyo Japan. It houses the animation works from the Japanese studio for animation named on the same lines. The place comprises a technology center, an art museum and an exclusive section for kids. There are many artworks placed inside which can be related to the movies made by the studio, popular all over the world. A copy model of the ‘Catbus’ from the 1988 animation film My neighbor Totoro and a Bouncing Totoro with all the main characters of this movie are some of the primary attractions among many more. The whole museum building itself is built with a unique design and concept. The place looks like it’s straight out of a storybook and definitely worth a visit to spend some relaxing time and take back loads of wonderful moments to cherish.
Location: Mitaka, Tokyo
Timings: 10 AM – 4 PM; Tuesdays closed
Entry Fees: INR 625 for adults; INR 435 for 13 to 18 years; INR 250 for 7 to 12 years; INR 63 for 4 to 6 years
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4. Hakone Open Air Museum
The first one of its kind open-air-museum in Japan, this place is famous for its collection of artworks, paintings and sculptures of world-renowned artistes amidst the beautiful mountains and valleys of Hakone. Located in the Ashigarashimo district, this museum has everything for an art lover. The highlight of the exhibits is a separate section featuring a number of Picasso’s paintings, sculptures, and murals. Some of the famous work that can be enjoyed here are Symphonic structure, Woods of Net and La Pleureuse. The interesting thing is that you can actually walk inside most of these awesome creations and get amazed by the wonderful creativity and craftsmanship of the artists.
Location: Kanagawa Prefecture, Ashigarashimo
Timings: 9 AM – 5 PM
Entry Fees: INR 1000
5. Nezu Museum
Another one among the famous museums in Japan Tokyo is Nezu Museum which showcases the works of artist Nezu Koichiro. The artist is world renowned for his works in the area of East Asian art and ancient Japanese artwork. The present structure which got a makeover in 2009 and now boasts of more than 7000 artworks, some of them being National treasures too. Another thing which is not to be missed is its extensive and beautiful Japanese style garden.
Location: Minato, Tokyo
Timings: 10 AM – 5 PM; Mondays closed
Entry Fees: INR 625
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6. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
After the tragedy struck Hiroshima in August 1945 and destroyed its existence, this museum was started in a collective effort by the residents of Hiroshima who all got together and helped in gathering the materials related to remnants of the bomb blast, personal belongings of victims of the blast and some rare photographs. The museum which is located inside the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park has shown a gradual makeover and renovation down the years and this place will take you to the horrors of the past, make you feel the pain and loss of the victims and once again remind you that why peace is any day important over a war.
Timings: 8:30 AM – 6 PM
Entry Fees: INR 130 for adults; INR 63 for students
7. Kyoto Railway Museum
This is a railway museum in Japan, located in Kyoto. It was started in 1972 with the name Umekoji Steam locomotive Museum but very recently in 2016, it has reopened with a modern look and a new name too. The exhibition areas are divided into five sections. The main attraction here is a roundhouse which dates back to the year 1914 and it is said to be the oldest car shed of concrete in the country. Spend a day among all types of railway engines and coaches starting from the steam running ones to the present day electric ones. There is also a section dedicated to Bullet trains.
Location: Kankijicho, Kyoto
Timings: 10 AM – 5:30 PM
Entry Fees: INR 750 for adults; concession for students till High School
8. Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum
If you want to know about our friends from the Mesozoic Era, then this place is a must visit. This is one of the most famous museums in the Asian continent, which houses all the interesting facts and specimens of dinosaurs and is located at Katsuyama in Fukui region of Japan. The exhibits include rare, preserved fossils belonging to the times at the onset of life on the Earth. One floor is dedicated to the evolution of life on earth from the earliest time to the present day. It is totally worth spending a day out here exploring and learning about our Earth’s natural history.
Location: Katsuyama, Fukui
Timings: 9 AM – 5 PM
Entry Fees: INR 500 for adults; INR 375 for students
9. Toyota Automobile Museum
Amongst one of its kind car museums in Japan, this one is a treat for all the car freaks. Started in the year 1989, in Nagakute, to commemorate the golden jubilee of Toyota Motors, there are about 140 different types of car models. After a recent makeover which got completed in 2017, the museum now also has on display some famous automobiles from the foreign shores too. The museum was designed to make the general public more aware of the history, development, and modernization of the world of automobiles.
Location: Nagakute, Aichi Prefecture
Timings: 9:30 AM – 5 PM; Mondays closed
Entry Fees: INR 315
10. Meguro Parasitological Museum
If you are someone who has interest in all the creepy creatures on the Earth and want to know more about them, then Meguro Parasitological Museum is the place for you. This can be termed as one of the weird museums in Japan, located in Meguro in the central part of Tokyo. This place is totally dedicated to different types of parasites and the science behind their existence. Established in 1953, the museum saw a makeover in the year 1993 and now boasts of a research center which has over 60000 specimens of these creatures for educational purposes. The star of the exhibit is a 29 ft long tapeworm which was actually found inside a person’s stomach and he supposedly got it from a meal of trout sushi.
Location: Shimomeguro, Meguro, Tokyo
Timings: 10 AM – 5 PM; Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays
With so many options for museums in Japan, you may get overwhelmed with choices and deciding the ones to visit. But we can guarantee they’ll provide a very enriching experience, no matter which one you pick! Simply take a trip to Japan, sit back and relax, and make the most of your holidays.
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