Travel Guide to Studio Ghibli Museum ︳Tokyo

Ghibli Museum could be one of the most inspiring museums I have ever visited, to experience the best of the museum, try to leave the way you are and the way you think outside the museum, and explore the museum with a kid’s heart, this way you will find more than you expect. Visiting the museum is like stepping into Miyazaki Hayao’s films: My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away and all those he created, weird elements combined together into this fascinated world, but there are more than the animate films, you can take a deeper glimpse at how Miyazaki Hayao work through those projects, and where he came up with those great ideas. No matter you are a big animate lover or not, you will be surprised at what you can get and feel after visiting Ghibli Museum.


Get There

Ghibli Museum is a fifteen minute walk from Mitaka Station on the JR Chuo Line (15 minutes, 220 yen from ShinjukuStation).

If you travel with family and children, better you take shuttle buses from the station to the museum (210 yen one way, 320 yen roundtrip, children are half price)  but I recommend a walk along Tamagawa Josui “Waterworks" to the museum, a better way which I believe Miyazaki Hayao will recommend, for most of the ideas in his films came up during a walk.


Arrive at the museum On Time or earlier. “Human Accidents" happened on train in Japan almost everyday, especially on JR Chuo Line, make sure to arrive earlier than the entry time, or else you will not be allowed to go in the museum if you don’t enter within 30 minutes from its entry time.

For detail info like ticket fare and how to buy the tickets outside Japan, pls check the official site.

See & Do
  • The delicate design of the building.  The entire building of Studio Ghibli Museum is a masterpiece of art. It’s like all the bizarre buildings jumping out of Studio Ghibli’s films, with those creeper on the walls. The building is like a big child’s toy. You can see all Ghibli characters features in a different form appear throughout the museum. It’s the place for painters to make a great sketch.
  • A great exhibits of animation process. I never doubt that the best way to learn is through a more entertaining way, and the way Studio Ghibli museum displays the process of animation is fantastic.  By hands-on exhibits featuring the characters in My Neighbor Totoro, the static characters on the paper start to move while you spin the film. There are so much more of it, you should really come and see the rest of them on your own.
  • Get to know how Miyazaki Hayao came up with all his ideas in the films. The museum houses lots of watercolor drafts and story boards of the Studio’s  famous films, and the Ghibli Studio room is decorated as same interior as the actual Ghibli Studio, by exploring the studio’s workplace, sketch wads scatter all over the ground and the worktables, bookshelves packed with books of architecture, animal, aircraft, you can see how an animate master figure out those creative characters and the movie scene.
  • Food and Souvenirs. There is a cafe outside of the building on second floor, it’s the only restaurant in the museum where you have rest and enjoy the beautiful outdoor of the museum. There’s a gift shop on the top floor where you can purchase lovely souvenirs featuring everything in Ghibli’s films.

Enjoy your day in Ghibli Museum, there’s no time limit once you enter the museum, feel relaxed, and make yourself a child to explore and get lost in the studio.


A walk through the Waterworks to the Ghibli Museum is a way to get inspired.


Very cheerful walk, there were shops and tennis courts along the trail.


So excited to see the entrance gate of the studio.


The museum was decorated all over with those climbing plants. It’s like that we have stepped into the sky city where trees grow up to the sky.


A giant zoetrope totoro welcomed us at the ticket center, but the real ticket window was behind the totoro.


keep observing, and you will find many coal elves throughout the corners of the museum.


Very serene place to watch the museum and make a sketch.



Views from outside of the museum.


Each floor had a door leading to the outside small garden, every single element is specially designed, even the stone wall had some kind of symbol on it.


A small round window climbed with plants, inside the window is the Saturn Theater where you can watch the short film specially made for Ghibli visitors.


Isn’t it like a giant face of totoro? And his teeth had spider webs on it.




Where you can enjoy a great meal.



One of the scene in Miyazaki Hayao’s film, have you recalled which one is it?


Outside the ground floor is a lovely yard where you can find lots of funny things out there.



Inside this window was the secret of May(the character in My Neighbor Totoro)







We were heading toward the abandoned city in the sky.


Air vehicle to help us up to the floating city?



Views from the city in the sky.


There’s the giant robot(ロボット兵) hiding in the bushes.




Roads paved with saw dusts lead us to the magical stone.


Laputa stone carved with abracadabra???, some kinds of magical charm

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