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Tours

Edo-Tokyo Open air Architectural Museum Tour

Overview

Many precious historic buildings have been lost in Edo (old Tokyo) due to fires, floods, earthquakes and warfare. In 1993 the Edo-Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum opened for the purpose of relocating, restoring, preserving and exhibiting historical buildings of great cultural value that cannot be preserved at their original sites and has made possible the passing down of these valuable cultural heritages to the next generation. The museum is located inside the huge Koganei Park near the atelier of Studio Ghibli. Miyazaki Hayao is known for being a fan of this museum as well. Some buildings are portrayed in his masterpiece "Spirited Away".

Highlights

  1. You will get to see various types of old Japanese residence and learn how Japanese people in different classes lived in old Tokyo.
  2. You will get to know the history of Tokyo that has been damaged by various disasters.
  3. You will get to see Le Corbusier's Japanese apprentice Kunio Mayekawa's achievement in his private residence.
  4. You will find out how Western European architectural design was adopted into Japanese-style houses.
  5. If you are a Ghibli film fan, you will get to see various familiar scenes that appeared in films and it must be fun to immerse yourself in the world of Ghibli.

Itinerary

The tour starts by observing a house by Kunio Mayekawa who worked under Le Corbusier and Antonin Raymond and contributed to the development of modern architecture in Japan. The house was built during the Second World War, however Mayekawa’s sophisticated design influenced by world-renowned architects still attracts many visitors.
The next site is a house by Koide which was designed by the architect Sutemi Horiguchi who introduced Dutch architecture for the first time to Japan. The house was built in 1925 just after Horiguchi returned from a trip to Europe. The Art Deco style and De Stijl (Duch for “The Style”) composition are also seen in the traditional Japanese rooms and it’s very unique.
After that, we can see the luxurious interior decorated in the residence of the Mitsui family which is said to be one of the richest families in Japan.
The latter half of the tour can enjoyed especially by Ghibli film fans. Many familiar scenes which appeared in “Spirited Away” including the bathhouse, Kamaji-the boiler man’s studio, one-way train and so on are found in the downtown area where a lively atmosphere can be experienced. There are plenty of photo spots and you can enjoy the day even after the tour.

Meeting point

In front of the ticket gate (north exit side) of Musashi-Koganei station of JR Chuo Line.

Tour fee

14,000yen for a single guest
21,000yen for 2 guests (10,500yen p/p)
28,000yen for 3 guests (9,335yen p/p)
35,000yen for 4 guests (8,750yen p/p)
40,000yen for 5 guests (8,000yen p/p)


What's included

・Guiding fee by a friendly English-speaking licensed guide who is familiar with architecture both traditional and urban design of Tokyo.
・Entrance fee to the museum (400yen/adult).
(Please note that transportation fee to/from Musashi-Koganei station will not be included in the tour fee.) *180yen/bus 1,000yen/taxi

Duration

3 hours
Morning tour starts at 10:00am and ends at 13:00pm
Afternoon tour starts at from 13:00 pm and ends at 16:00pm
Also a tour of 3 hours from your preferred time can be arranged upon request.


Notes

Please keep in your mind that this is a walking tour, so you will be walking fair bit of distance (but with breaks in between).
No age limit, however children who can enjoy walking together till the end of tour may join.
Since this is a small group tour, last-minute reservations cannot be accepted.


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