Edo-Tokyo Museum
Ryogoku: Museum
Edo-Tokyo Museum: Ryogoku
Ryogoku / Museum
Open 9:30am-5:30pm (enter by 5pm; Saturdays -7:30pm). Closed Mondays.
Admission: adults Y600; college students Y480, junior and senior high school Y300
Average visit time: 1-2 hours

[Update: The Tokyo-Edo Museum will reopen mid-2025] This excellent museum is devoted to the history of Tokyo, formerly known as Edo. Entering the museum via escalator from the third-floor plaza below is an inspiring experience - the massive structure seems to hover several stories over the plaza like some giant spaceship.

The voluminous interior is just as dramatic - one enters the main exhibit area after crossing a life-size replica of Nihonbashi Bridge. Exhibits include lots of giant dioramas, and full-size recreated settings that illustrate life in the capital from around 250 years ago through the 1950s. There are also a couple of areas for temporary exhibits (including one down on ground level), two cafe-restaurants, and a big gift shop.

The building, completed in May 1992 after twelve years of planning and development, was designed by architect Kiyonori Kikutake, one of the founders of the Japanese Metabolist group. It stands 62 meters high, including a two-story base that contains administrative offices and a restaurant. The upper section is supported by four massive pillars, with 42-meter cantilvered portions jutting out over the plaza to the north and south.

Sumida-ku, Yokoami 1-4-1.
Sister sites:
Japan bar and restaurant guide
Animal Cafes
Cat, rabbit and bird cafe guide
Craft Beer Bars Japan
Bars, festivals and breweries
Neighborhood guides and top-five lists from Tokyo experts