comScore
Ghibli Museum picture in Tokyo
Pete Birkinshaw / Flickr

Key Info

Price & Hours

  • 1,000 yen (about $9) for adults; 700-100 yen ($6.50-$1) for kids 18-4; free for kids 4 and younger
  • Wed-Mon 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Details

  • Museums Type
  • 1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
3.8
Overall
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Scorecard

  • Value
    3.0
  • Facilities
    4.0
  • Atmosphere
    4.0

Read about how we rank Things to Do.

Both avid and amateur anime fans love the Ghibli Museum. The museum showcases the work of Hayao Miyazaki's Studio Ghibli – the famous Japanese animation company that produced films like "Spirited Away" and "Ponyo." Don't expect formal, indoor exhibits. The facility's quirky interior design mimics the animation studio. There's also a play area for kids (which comes equipped with a life-size, fuzzy Cat Bus), a reading room full of books recommended by the museum and a rooftop garden that features character sculptures, including the silent robots from "Castle In The Sky." You can even watch a short film that plays exclusively at the museum and rotates each month. 

Considering how difficult it is to secure tickets and the museum's removed location, travelers say visiting this attraction is only worth the extra effort if you're a Miyazaki fan. Devotees loved having the opportunity to get lost in the director's magical world, which many say the museum executed just about perfectly. The only complaint? The expensive gift shop. Even avid fans were disappointed with some of the shop's high prices. English travelers also warned that English signs and placards are few and far between here. 

You can find the Ghibli Museum in the Mitaka-shi neighborhood within Inokashira Park, located in eastern Tokyo. Take the JR Chuo line to the Mitaka subway station and then walk along the Tamagawa Josui "waters" for about 15 minutes to reach the museum. Visitors are welcome 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Monday. Note that you must buy tickets in advance. Tickets are available to purchase online on the 10th of each month for visits a month in advance. Travelers say it's best to be online the moment tickets become available, as they are known to sell out in less than an hour. For adults, admission costs 1,000 yen (around $9) for adults over the age of 19. There are also numerous discounted admission rates based on age. To purchase tickets, and to find out more information, head to the Ghibli Museum's website.

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#1 Tokyo National Museum If you're looking to learn a little (or a lot) about Japan's history, the Tokyo National Museum is the place to go. This museum is one of the ... Read more » haru__q / Flickr

#2 Meiji Shrine The Meiji Shrine is a Shinto (Japan's original religion) shrine dedicated to Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken. Japanese history credits Meiji for modernizing Japan by incorporating Western principles into Japanese ... Read more » Marc Buehler / Flickr

#3 Sensoji Temple The oldest religious site in Tokyo is also its most visited. The Sensoji Temple sees about 30 million annual visitors and dates all the way back to year 628. Despite ... Read more » chee.hong / Flickr

#4 Imperial Palace You'd think the Imperial Palace would be mobbed with tourists, but it's not. You can credit the lack of crowds to an application policy, which limits the number ... Read more » Marc Buehler / Flickr

#5 Odaiba Envision a mini Atlantis rising out of the water, conveniently right next to downtown Tokyo. That's Odaiba. This neighborhood/mini-island situated on the Tokyo Bay is a hub of ... Read more » Putt Sakdhnagool / Getty Images

#6 National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, commonly referred to as the Miraikan, attests to Tokyo's entrepreneurial spirit and penchant for science and technological innovation. This high-tech museum ... Read more » inefekt69 / Flickr

#7 Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building There are plenty of skyscrapers that provide bird's-eye lookouts in Tokyo. So what makes the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Tower special? It's free! At 202 meters high (662 feet ... Read more » taka4332 / Getty Images

visualspace / Getty Images

#9 Edo-Tokyo Museum For a greater understanding of Tokyo's evolution, head to the gigantic Edo-Tokyo Museum. This expertly designed museum showcases the city's history with large- and small-scale models chronicling Tokyo ... Read more » kanegen / Flickr

#10 Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden Just to the west of downtown Tokyo lies a gorgeous urban oasis. Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden comprises 144 acres of green space and is unique in that it incorporates three ... Read more » Bohistock / Getty Images

#11 Akihabara Akihabara is nirvana for techies. Tokyo's premier electronics district, which is also referred to as "Akiba," has gadgets of all kinds found in booths on side streets and main ... Read more » Yongyuan Dai / Getty Images

#12 Tokyo Sea Life Park Across the water from Tokyo Disneyland, the Tokyo Sea Life Park provides educational fun for the whole family. This well-designed aquarium features numerous habitats that mimic bodies of water from ... Read more » Zengame / Flickr

#13 Ghibli Museum Both avid and amateur anime fans love the Ghibli Museum. The museum showcases the work of Hayao Miyazaki's Studio Ghibli – the famous Japanese animation company that produced films like ... Read more » Pete Birkinshaw / Flickr

#14 Tokyo Tower The Japanese remake of the Eiffel Tower serves a predominately practical purpose. The orange and white tower, which rises 1,092 feet into the air, serves as a radio and ... Read more » NanoStockk / Getty Images

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Meiji Shrine picture in Tokyo
Sensoji Temple picture in Tokyo
Imperial Palace picture in Tokyo
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Ginza picture in Tokyo
Edo-Tokyo Museum picture in Tokyo
Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden picture in Tokyo
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Ghibli Museum picture in Tokyo
Tokyo Tower picture in Tokyo
Tokyo National Museum picture in Tokyo
Meiji Shrine picture in Tokyo
Sensoji Temple picture in Tokyo
Imperial Palace picture in Tokyo
Odaiba picture in Tokyo
National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation picture in Tokyo
Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building picture in Tokyo
Ginza picture in Tokyo
Edo-Tokyo Museum picture in Tokyo
Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden picture in Tokyo
Akihabara picture in Tokyo
Tokyo Sea Life Park picture in Tokyo
Ghibli Museum picture in Tokyo
Tokyo Tower picture in Tokyo

The Tokyo National Museum houses about 116,000 pieces of art and artifacts that cover the longest recorded history of Japan, including samari armor and swords.  haru__q / Flickr

While at the Meiji Shrine, travelers recommend contributing to the prayer wall. All you have to do is write down a wish and tie it onto this wall.  Marc Buehler / Flickr

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The Imperial Palace is where Japan's emperor and the royal family reside. Getting admitted is tough, but still stop by to visit the verdant East Gardens.  Marc Buehler / Flickr

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The Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden is the perfect place for an afternoon rest. Bohistock / Getty Images

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You'll find this bizarre statue along with many others at animator Miyazaki Hayao's (creator of "Spirited Away") Ghibli Museum. Pete Birkinshaw / Flickr

The Japanese remake of the Eiffel Tower, Tokyo Tower offers two observation points. Travelers suggest coming here at night to watch the city twinkle, as well as listen to music at the sky-high Club 333.  NanoStockk / Getty Images

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