Natsume Soseki Memorial Museum
Ushigome-Yanigicho: Museum
Natsume Soseki Memorial Museum: Ushigome-Yanigicho
Ushigome-Yanigicho / Museum
Open 10am-6pm (last entry 5:30pm). Closed Mondays.
Admission Y300
Average visit time: 10-20 minutes

Open since September 2017, this tasteful and expensively produced museum is devoted to the work of esteemed novelist Natsume Soseki (1867-1916), whose portrait appeared on the face of the Japanese 1000-yen note from 1984-2004. The museum will mainly be of interest to fans of Soseki's work who wish to learn more about the author.

The centerpiece here is a reconstruction of a book-filled room used by Soseki as a study and living room for visitors. Other than that, there are a few dozen illustrated panels tackling themes like Soseki and Painting, Soseki and Food, Soseki and Plants, Soseki's Student Days and so on. Captions are mostly in Japanese, but there's an English-language audio guide that covers the bulk of the content.

One of his famous novels is "I am a Cat," and cats are a recurring decorative theme throughout the museum (and indeed the neighborhood). The Soseki Cafe, at the entrance to the museum, has a cat logo and serves coffee, tea, butter cake, and bean-jam-filled monaka sweets. There's a bust of Soseki in front of the building, and a cat memorial in back, with a pile of stones.

Shinjuku-ku, Waseda Minamicho 7.
7 minutes from Ushi-Yanagicho Station (Oedo line)
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