There was never really any plan to go to this museum directly after Usami Kannon-ji temple but as it was still early and I didn’t have to be home by midday I thought I’d take the train to Fudo station and walk for half an hour (uphill!) to this museum which is only 3.6 kilometres down the road from the Ayashii Shonen Shojo Museum (Mysterious Boys and Girls Museum). What is it about this area and weird museums?!!
This Japanese retro strange museum is accessed via some steps leading up to the ticket office window at a kind of crossroads from where the different zones can be explored. It is incredibly difficult to describe the details of this place so I hope the photographs in this post give you some idea.
This museum seems to contain more explicit material than the other one down the road. It didn’t seem to bother too many though as there were a few families present with young children whilst I was there. It was funny to hear the kids giggling when they saw some naked body parts!!
One of the zones was dedicated to the Showa Period (1926-1989) albeit in a very different way to the Showa Museum itself which I visited in Tokyo last year whilst using the Grutto Museum Pass. Stuff like the houses and pop-culture over the decades might have been similar to an extent but the ‘Drunken Street’ exhibits were on a different level and the various wax models in states of blood and horror took things up another notch!
As I look at the photos included in this post, it really is difficult to tell which zone each one is from! To be fair, I don’t think the museum is exactly consistent with it’s arrangement of exhibits as, like the Mysterious Boys & Girls Museum, it seemed like the items had just been dumped randomly around the place. This one made the other one seem moderately clean by comparison as it was filthy in places!
Warning: Naked pictures coming up which those of a sensitive nature may not appreciate!
So that was two zones finished but I still hadn’t seen the large buddha statue which I knew to be there somewhere. The problem was I just couldn’t work out where the third zone was! As it was, it was actually found by going through the souvenir shop behind the ticket office kiosk. This zone was themed along the lines of ancient civilization in the jungle and the greenhouse-like conditions of the room ramped all that up a bit. Amongst the lush green vegetation were some ancient Mexican and Egyptian artefacts as well as a some kind of Stonehenge mock-up.
More serious things like Olympic posters sit alongside Japanese anime or whatever but the highlight of this zone has to be the aforementioned gigantic buddha statue (below) which inevitably dominates the area.
I’m not exactly sure what the pictures below are about but it seems like it’s some kind of kitsune (fox) themed wedding. If this kind of thing seriously exists then I’m keen to see it and it would be a cool way of continuing, and indeed developing, the ‘On The Fox Trail…‘ series of posts on Tokyo Fox!
On my arrival at this museum I was approached by the lovely and warm hearted Hachinoko; a seasonal curator working outside the entrance area where there were a few stalls and some cosplayers. She was dressed as an anime character called Inu-Yasha (not that I have any idea who that is!) and spoke really good English too. Anyway, after I had finished inside the museum I returned to hang out with her for a while whilst chatting away, taking some photos and she (purposely) made me a terrible shaved ice drink concoction involving miso paste, wasabi and so on. It was very much designed to fit in with the quirkiness of the museum and helped create a warm and friendly atmosphere.
Maboroshi Museum is located at 413-0231 Itō-shi, Futo, 1310-1 Umenokidaira. It is open everyday between 9:15am and 5pm. Entry is 1200 yen.
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