One of the first signs to indicate the coronavirus situation was serious in Japan was the sudden closure of Tokyo’s Ghibli Museum on Feb 25. As one of the first major sites to close in the city, the museum hoped to re-open in mid-March, and then April, but after the pandemic showed no signs of easing, the re-opening was postponed indefinitely.
The first glimmer of hope that Studio Ghibli’s museum was kicking back to life was the one-day re-opening on July 26, which was limited to a select number of local lottery winners. However, the museum has now announced it will be re-opening its doors to everyone again from Sept 5, and tickets are set to go on sale from 10 a.m. on Aug 25, with a few small changes.
The first change is the museum’s opening times, which will be limited to Sept 5, 6, 7, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 for the first release of tickets. The timed entry slots will be on the hour from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. inclusive on weekends (with a closure time of 6 p.m.) and 10 a.m.-1 p.m. on weekdays (with a closure time of 4 p.m.).
▼ Gray indicates days the museum is closed.
Opening times and tickets for Sept 16 onwards will be announced at a later date, suggesting the museum is taking a cautious approach with the reopening, as the coronavirus situation may change at any time.
While entry to the museum has always been limited to a certain number per time slot, admission numbers will now be further reduced to allow for more space between guests inside the museum. And when it comes to sanitisation and social distancing measures at the site, the museum has released a number of videos showing the work that’s being undertaken to keep visitors safe.
Visitors will also be required to adhere to a number of new entry requirements, such as temperature checks upon entry, compliance with wearing masks and sanitising hands with alcohol.
While the new opening will come as welcome news to many, the Ghibli Museum has also announced that the entire facility will be closed for large-scale maintenance in November and December, with the hope that general admission at normal levels will finally resume sometime next year.
So if you want to visit the museum, now’s the time, with tickets only available from Lawson ticket machines from Aug 25.
Source: Ghibli Museum
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