The Studio Ghibli Museum in Mitaka

Studio Ghibli is a Japanese animation film studio in Koganei, Japan. The studio was founded by Hayao Miyazaki, Toshio Suzuki, Isao Takahata, and Yasuyoshi Tokuma in 1985. The studio is famous for its animated films, tv commercials, films, and even video games. Studio Ghibli brings in millions of dollars every year and their products today are loved all over the world. The works of Studio Ghibli have been loved so much that in 2001 director Hayao Miyazaki designed the Studio Ghibli museum. Inspired by European architecture the museum showcases the history, toys, books, and many exhibits related to animation.

What is Studio Ghibli

Studio Ghibli in Mitaka welcomes thousands of animation lovers from all over the world every year. It is not your typical museum and it suits all age groups and even those who are not particularly interested in animation. Right in the Inokashira Onshi Park, the museum is surrounded by the beautiful forest of Mitaka. Even before you enter the museum itself you must stop and admire the surroundings as well as the exterior of the Ghibli museum. Stained glass windows, fresco painted facades, and beautiful tall trees that hug the museum, all that makes it look like a futuristic fairytale.

If you are feeling famished you can find places to eat at Studio Ghibli, you can either go for hot dogs and enjoy the outside terrace or the Straw Hat for a more filling meal and very cute interior decorations. When you visit Studio Ghibli make sure you pay attention to the little details when you are at the entrance look for a little round window below the ticket booth and you will find the little soot sprites. This place will be a surprise for everyone who comes because of the limited photos you can find online, there are no spoilers and you can explore yourself.

About the exhibitions

The interior of the Ghibli museum consists of a few small exhibitions and one main exhibition. The permanent exhibition room is a recreation of Hayao Miyazaki´s studio, it has intricate details and truly feels like the real things. This museum mostly focuses on the detail to make the experience unforgettable for all visitors. From the fine art to sketchbook displays it gives visitors an inside look at how the animation is created and how much love artists put into it. The museum also features interactive displays such as the interior of the flying ship of Laputa where you can touch and feel every decor and interior element.

Ghibli also has a mini theater that shows movies that have been created specifically for the museum and cannot be seen anywhere else. This place is not only for exploring, but it is also for learning. Do not be worried about the language barrier as the staff speaks English. Make sure to use the opportunity to learn for the Ghibli staff, ask them questions about how the movies are made as well as details on the exhibits.

Studio Ghibli Museum tickets

You have probably already looked into the ticket purchasing process and realized that it is not an easy process. Tickets sell out so quickly that you even have to find a spot on the pre-booking list. First, start by checking the Ghibli calendar online for closures as well as national holidays and museum exhibit updates. If you see a free spot and you already know when you will be in Japan, book your ticket even if it is 2 months until your departure.

You can book your ticket online or go to one of the Lawson convenience stores in Japan. Bear in mind that the tickets go on sale as of the 10th of every month, be quick and you might catch a discounted ticket.
If you are feeling lucky you might want to try the lottery and win your tickets on the official Ghibli lottery site, note that this site is only in Japanese.

How to get to Studio Ghibli Museum

If you are amongst those lucky ones who managed to the ticket, now it is time to plan your visit. You can find Ghibli at Ghibli Museum, Mitaka 1-1-83 Simorenjaku, Mitaka-shi, Tokyo 181-0013. You should hop in at either Kichijoji or Mitaka station that will directly take you to Inokashira Park and from there the museum will not be that far. Ghibli museum also runs a shuttle bus which departs every 10 minutes from Mitaka Station. For those who want to explore the city and do some shopping before visiting the museum, we recommend getting off at Kichijoji. Bear in mind that you cannot arrive at the Ghibli in your own car, they do not have parking spaces for visitors, so leave your rental at home.