Fragglepuss Visits Japan: Studio Ghibli Museum
By: John Fragglepuss Evans
I finally made it to Japan! It was even better than I could have imagined. To provide recommendations for those traveling to the Land of the Rising Sun, I present this series of places to visit while in Japan.
Studio Ghibli Museum
If you fancy yourself a Ghiblihead…Nevermind, I hate that term. Let’s pretend I never wrote it. If you’re a fan of Studio Ghibli and are visiting Japan, you must go to the museum. Opened in 2001, the museum has expanded as the years pass. The museum includes:
- Cat Bus Room for children age 12 and younger
- The Reading Room Tri Hawks – Browse through recommended children’s literature and picture books
- Museum Shop “MAMMA AIUTO!”
- Where a Film is Born – Enter the world of animators, from initial inspiration through completion of a film
- Special Exhibit Room – New exhibitions are shown here annually
- Straw Hat Café and Café Deck Area
- Screening Room Saturn Theater – Come see the Museum’s original short animation
- The Beginning of Movement – Experience the fun of “moving images” through various slideshow-style displays
The Studio Ghibli Museum is a magical place to visit. “Where a Film is Born” recreates an animation workshop and has actual Ghibli film drawings on the wall. The screening room always shows a short film seen exclusively at the museum. The movement room is breathtaking. You can get a Ghibli beer at the café! The museum does not allow photos inside, but for good reason. They say they want it to be a special experience for everyone that visits, making sure you’re seeing things for the first time. However, outside and on the roof you can take photos, which include a Laputa robot, the café, some of the beautiful stain glass windows, and the Totoro ticket taker.
Buying tickets can be complicated due to the high demand. Tickets are not available for sale at the museum. I recommend buying them before you travel. The first place to check is the museum’s website: http://www.ghibli-museum.jp/en/ticket-information/. That will give you information on the two online locations to purchase tickets. They go on sale at different times so check a few months ahead if possible. Keep in mind that you must buy tickets for a specific date and time, so know when you can go before you buy.