A Guide to Edo Tokyo Museum
If you want to understand Tokyo in a deeper way, Tokyo Metropolitan Edo-Tokyo Museum will definitely be a good option for you! In this article, its Permanent Exhibition Area will be properly introduced. Situated at the 5th and 6th floor, it covers a wide range of things which were common in Tokyo in bygone days and what is common present. Not only does Edo-Tokyo Museum introduce Tokyo’s history and culture, but it also provides visitors with detailed information concerning Tokyo in different perspectives.
Not sure of the location of Edo-Tokyo Museum? Don’t worry! It is easy to find its location as the architecture is distinctively built. As its name suggests, this museum introduces the history of Japan in Edo Period as well as Tokyo’s development: the city's past, present, and most importantly, her future to visitors. For Japanese history lovers, Edo-Tokyo Museum would provide you with much information and you will find it interesting for sure. Just come in and stroll around there!
First Thing You Have to Do: Buy tickets
Right at the entrance, there’s an information center on the 1st floor, where the special exhibition area and souvenir shop are located. Visitors are required to purchase tickets before entering the permanent exhibition area (that is on 5th and 6th floor). Or, you can buy tickets by making use of ticket machines on 3rd floor. Remember to bring your card if you are a student. Discount will be offered!
After Buying Tickets…
Just take the elevator and go up to the 6th floor directly.
What You Can See on 6th Floor?
To be exact, this floor is known as Edo Zone. “Edo” here indicates “Edo Period”, which lasted from 1603 to 1868. When you enter the permanent exhibition on 6th floor, the first thing which appears should definitely be the life-size replica of the medieval “Nihonbashi” (meaning “Japan Bridge” in English). By crossing this bridge, visitors can experience how Nihonbashi was like in the bygone days. While you are crossing the bridge, take a look at your right hand side, there is a huge newspaper office.
By glancing at the real-size models, you can imagine how Japanese architecture was like in the past. Alongside these life-size structures, there are a number of nicely-designed models for visitors to have a better understanding of the progression of Japanese culture and style.
As a visitor, these models really took me by surprise.
Not only does this model show the real life of the Japanese during Edo Period, but it also displays the architecture during Edo Period vividly. Apart from that, the displays of the Edo castle and villages are so beautiful and fascinating that visitors can learn history and culture in a really cool way and immerse themselves into Edo Period to the fullest. Want to know more about how shops in Edo Period were like? Take a look at this one!
In the past, sushi was a kind of snack and with affordable prices. A sushi shop could be found on the street easily.
What to See on 5th Floor?
Exhibits concerning Tokyo’s commerce, trading, people’s livelihood, etc. can be found on 5th floor. Visitors can learn Japanese history in an interactive way. For example, they can pose for pictures and sit on the rickshaw and old bicycle so as to experience people’s daily life in the past. There are also small models demonstrating Edo Period’s transportations, just like this one: a tiny rickshaw!
If you are interested more about people’s daily life during Edo Period, the graphs on 5th floor can reflect much! Say for example, this graph shows the annual income difference between the Edo era and that of today.
In this graph, housewives’ lifestyles also change vastly from 1915 to 1961. In 1915, they had to spend much more time doing household chores but in 1961, the time used lessened. Aside from that, people’s houses, school uniforms in Edo Period were also demonstrated.
Additional Information: The Edo-Tokyo Museum Library 7th Floor
You should be very hungry for sure after hanging around 2 floors. Don’t worry, 7th floor provides you with a large number of food choices. When you first arrive at 7th floor, what comes into your mind should definitely be the multifarious restaurants. But, take a glimpse of 7th floor in detail, there’s also an audio library near the restaurants. This museum library is a specialist one paying emphasis on the history and culture of Tokyo from Edo Period until now. Inside, visitors can find a large collection of books, documents, secondary materials, etc. filled with topics about Tokyo. Before you leave, pay attention to the view near the museum library. If the weather is good, you can definitely take a picture like this below!
Points to Note
- In most areas, photos are allowed but sometimes flash light is not allowed. Beware of that!
- Special exhibitions on the 1st floor change from time to time. If interested, please check for further information beforehand.
- Remember to stop by the souvenir shop on 1st floor if you have time!
1-4-1 Yokoami, Sumida-ku, Tokyo 130-0015
Tuesday – Sunday (Except Saturdays): 09:30–17:30 (Last Admission: 17:00)
Saturdays: 9:30–19:30 (Last admission: 19:00)
Closing: Mondays and Regular holidays
Admission Fee for Permanent Exhibition
Aged or Over 65: ¥300
Jr. High and High School Students**: ¥300
* Includes university and vocational college students
**Free admission for junior high school student residents studying in Tokyo
Foreign Language Guides / Interpretation / Audio Guides
Volunteer guides in Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, French, German and Spanish languages are provided but the language(s) offered by the museum differ every day and most importantly, it is actually free-of-charge! Don’t miss this opportunity to get to know more about Japanese history!
*Remember to check online beforehand if you are in need of a foreign language guide.
- 3-minute walk from JR Ryogoku Station West Exit;
- 1-minute walk from Subway Ooedo Line Ryogoku Station
For more information about Edo-Tokyo Museum, please click here.