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National Showa Memorial Museum

Yotsuya / Iidabashi
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Address: 1-6-1 Kudanminami, Chiyoda 102-0074, Tokyo Prefecture
Name/address in local language
Phone Number:
+81 3-3222-2577

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a look at civilian life during the war years

The museum stands nearly across the street from Yasukuni Shrine, but focuses on civilian lives during the war years. There are changing exhibits as well, related to that theme... read more

Reviewed 17 March 2016
Kalamazoo, Michigan
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58 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 7: English reviews
San Diego, CA
Level Contributor
35 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 May 2016

This museum was establish by families of Japanese soldiers who dies in World War II. As you would expect, the point of view shared is very different from the history you learn outside Japan. After visiting Hiroshima, my spouse opinion was 'why did we have to drop the bomb'. After visiting this museum and seeing the war chronicled from the... More 

1 Thank gravel11
Kalamazoo, Michigan
Level Contributor
130 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 March 2016

The museum stands nearly across the street from Yasukuni Shrine, but focuses on civilian lives during the war years. There are changing exhibits as well, related to that theme. There is some grimness, not surprisingly, but even children might find some of the exhibits fun to look at, especially those that show immediate post war life--the things people had in... More 

Thank hashihime
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
43 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 March 2016 via mobile

It is a very nicely done exhibition about life in Japan in the period during and just before/after the Second World War. The exhibits are very nicely organized into themes and aspects of everyday life and they do make you get a feel for how life was. There is an English audio guide as well, though it covers much less... More 

Thank Ledith
Cagnes-sur-Mer, France
Level Contributor
287 reviews
116 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 October 2015

Interesting museum that, though recitals, texts and photographs tells the grim story of life in Tokyo during WW2. A must for history buffs.

1 Thank teturtia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 26 June 2015 via mobile

This is a fantastic place to see WW2 artifacts that represent the various pre-, during- and post-war/ occupation periods in Japan. The exhibitions span two floors and are arranged in themes and time periods. There are quite a few really fascinating objects and the stories and demonstrations told through video screens in each section makes everything come to life. Visitors... More 

1 Thank Ivana R
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 June 2015 via mobile

The museum is conveniently located just at the front of Exit #1 at Kudanshita station. It cost only 300 yen for an adult admission ticket & also provided a free English audio guide. Unfortunately, both our audio guides stopped working quite early on ( ... not sure if that was on purpose or not!!). Interesting displays of everyday objects during... More 

1 Thank MittiLeTour
Kandahar, Afghanistan
Level Contributor
218 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 495 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 August 2014

This museum is very thorough and very thoughtful in the presentation on thousands of context-displayed artifacts that collectively give a very good picture of what life was like for the average citizen in 1930s-40s Japan. A bit challenging for the non Japanese speaker but you can rent the English language listening device.

2 Thank csundseth

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Staying in Yotsuya / Iidabashi

Neighbourhood Profile
Yotsuya / Iidabashi
Yotsuya and Iidabashi are areas that developed around the outer moat of the Imperial palace. Nearby in Kagurazaka, there is an old red-light district with a photogenic feel evocative of the ambiance of old Tokyo. Narrow paths with stone paving remain to this day, and there are long-standing restaurants with geishas and quaint old cafes in townhouse buildings.
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