Friday, May 18, 2012

Kid-friendly History at Tokyo's Fukagawa Edo Museum

Boathouse, small Yakitori Stall and Fire Watch Tower

Where do you go in Tokyo to explore Japanese history without your kids being bored to tears? Take them to the Koto-City Fukagawa Edo museum. We spent an hour wandering around the small alleyways of this recreated Edo period town. What's best about this place is that you can pick up and touch items. We could let the kids loose to freely explore. If you actually want to know what you're looking at, grab an English language map after you enter as there are no signs or docents inside.

Just getting to the museum was interesting. The surrounding area is a quiet little neighborhood without all the hustle and bustle that we found elsewhere in Tokyo. As we were walking from the subway station, a fire truck pulled up and firefighters jumped out. Since the side streets in this area are quite narrow, they had to unroll the long hose and pull it the few blocks where the truck could not fit.

The meowing of a small cat perched on a rooftop greeted us as we walked down the stairs to the main room of the museum. Her hame is Mame-suke, and she's here to play host. It was "night time" when we entered, but the lights gradually brightened, transforming the room into day. A cherry tree bloomed in one corner, and you could hear chickens and a temple bell. Before we left, the sun set and it became night once again.

"Yao-shin" Vegetable store
Rain barrel in the public space

The original platform shoe

Single room home in a row house

Pretending to cook over the wood stove

Two-story boathouse doubles as an eatery and gathering place

Choki-bune canal boats also serve as water taxis.

Milling brown rice at the Rice Store was a bit of a workout. You hang onto a bar in front of you and step onto a see-saw lever. As you move up and down, the other side smashes into the rice, breaking it free of the husk and bran. The kids really enjoyed this bit of hands-on history.

In fact, I think they liked everything about this place. Hubby and I liked it, too. Score! Everyone was satisfied. You can't beat that.

This post is part of Friday Daydreamin' at R We There Yet Mom?


  1. That looks like a great place to take the kids! Thanks so much for linking up with us today!

  2. It's always a challenge finding historical museums that kids will find interesting. This is a great find and looks like a wonderful place. i like that everything is "touchable".

  3. Museums that allow touching are the best - love the platform shoes!

    1. When my kids were younger, touchability was high on my criteria for a museum.


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