Japanese Sword Museum
Ryogoku: Museum
Japanese Sword Museum: Ryogoku
Ryogoku / Museum
Open 9:30am-5pm (last entry 4:30pm). Closed Mondays.
Admission Y1000; free with Grutto Pass
Average visit time: 20-40 minutes

This small museum will mostly be of interest to Japanese sword enthusiasts and collectors. The facility is run by the Society for Preservation of Japanese Art Swords, and there are usually several dozen swords and other objects from their 190-piece collection viewable at any given time. In addition to swords, you can admire beautifully decorated fittings, scabbards and stands, and sometimes entire suits of armor. Foreign visitors will appreciate the extensive English-language captioning of the exhibits.

The third-floor deck offers a nice view of the neighboring Kyu-Yasuda Garden, and there's a small cafe area on the ground floor with vending machines dispensing coffee, also looking out onto the garden. Also on the ground floor is a sword-making information corner that's devoted to explaining the traditional manufacturing process, with illustrated exhibits and a short Japanese-language video.

In order to promote the practice of traditional crafts, the museum sponsors competitions in the areas of sword-making, polishing, and crafting of fittings. A small museum shop offers nice sword-themed picture books (in both Japanese and English), sword magazines, sword carrying bags, and hunks of metallic ore.

Sumida-ku, Yokoami 1-12-9.
5-7 minutes from Ryogoku Station (JR, Oedo lines)
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