U.S. President Barack Obama’s message of peace at the Hiroshima Peace Museum

Foreign tourists pick the top 10 must-visit museums in Japan

By Koh Ruide, SoraNews24

Japan is packed full of wonderful places for both foreign and local tourists alike. Taking in beautiful scenery or soaking in an onsen can be a great way to spend a holiday in Japan, but museums offer deeper and often enlightening cultural insights not found anywhere else.

Travel website Trip Advisor has compiled a list of the world’s most popular museums in 2017, as chosen by tourists. Broken down by country, here’s Japan’s top 10 museums:

  1. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum (Hiroshima Prefecture, Hiroshima City)

  2. The Hakone Open-Air Museum (Kanagawa Prefecture, Hakone-cho)

  3. Samurai Museum (Tokyo, Shinjuku)

  4. Edo-Tokyo Museum (Tokyo, Sumida)

  5. Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum (Nagasaki Prefecture, Nagasaki City)

  6. Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology (Aichi Prefecture, Nagoya City)

  7. Hiroshi Senju Museum (Nagano Prefecture, Karuizawa-cho)

  8. Himeyuri Peace Museum (Okinawa Prefecture, Itoman City)

  9. Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History and Human History (Fukuoka Prefecture, Kitakyushu City)

  10. Ghibli Museum (Tokyo, Mitaka City)

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum instantly transports visitors to World War II, offering a haunting peek into how nuclear warfare changed Japan forever. Tourists often flock to see the message of peace left by President Obama in 2016, making the museum the most popular in Japan by far.

Hiroshi Senju Museum

Another notable entry is the Hiroshi Senju Museum, an art museum boasting sleek architectural design that showcases numerous paintings. The beautiful coral reef garden, calm atmosphere, and curved walls combine seamlessly, making the museum an art piece in itself.

If gigantic monuments and dinosaurs are your thing, perhaps a visit to the Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History and Human History is in order. Filled with ancient relics and artifacts from ages past, the museum also houses two colossal Tyrannosaurus skeletons that’ll awe even the most well-traveled tourists. The entrance fee is a reasonable 500 yen.

The Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History and Human History

The Samurai Museum is located in downtown Shinjuku, and is home to a collection of armors and swords from ancient Japan, allowing visitors to feel the power of honor flow through them by donning a samurai armor of their choice.


Visiting museums lets tourists delve beneath the surface of society and discover what makes Japan the exciting country it is today. Once you’ve had your fill of cultural enlightenment, hitting a few of the top 20 coolest sightseeing spots can be a fantastic way to finish a travel itinerary.

Source: PR Times

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Japan’s 30 best travel destinations, as chosen by overseas visitors

-- The top 20 places to visit in Tokyo, as chosen by travelers

-- Life-size Totoro FOUND! Live out your Ghibli fantasies in Tochigi Prefecture

© SoraNews24

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

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The Edo Tokyo Open Air Museum in Koganei Park is well worth a visit to see some old architecture. I've been to 1, 2, and 4 on that list and they are all good, I would like to visit the JR East Railway Museum in Saitama too.

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Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History and Human History looks awesome.

Doesn't Osaka have any proper museums? All i know is the cupramen one?

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Ther are many more good museums throughout the country, hidden gems, with fewer visitors in them. Spend some time doing the research, and get away from the crowds!

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One of strangest I've been to was a museum with torture contraptions. I think it was part of Chuo University near Ochanomizu.

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No. 2 is huge letdown. Yes, "oPen air" with huge artworks on grass, but the visitors are forced to view from a distance on concrete paths. The grass areas - one of the attractions - are roped off from the public. Conveys the sense that in Japan, even in natural areas in the countryside, nature is denied, and humans must be controlled, herded and confined to hard surfaces. Sorry, the concept is seriously flawed.

The cafeteria is really good, though.

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