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The Tokyo National Museum (“Œ‹ž‘—§”Ž•¨ŠΩ, Tōkyō Kokuritsu Hakubutsukan) is the oldest and largest of Japan's top-level national museums, which also include the Kyoto National Museum, the Nara National Museum and the Kyushu National Museum. It was originally established in 1872 at Yushima Seido Shrine and moved to its current location in Ueno Park a few years later.

The Tokyo National Museum features one of the largest and best collections of art and archeological artifacts in Japan, made up of over 100,000 individual items including nearly a hundred national treasures. At any one time, about 4000 different items from the permanent museum collection are on display. In addition, visiting temporary exhibitions are also held regularly. Good English information and audio guides are available.

The large museum complex is home to six separate buildings, each large enough to be considered a museum on its own, which specialize in different types of art and exhibitions. The main Honkan building was opened in 1938 and exhibits a variety of Japanese artwork from ancient times to the 19th century including antique Buddhist statues, painted sliding doors, scrolls, ceramics and maps in addition to cultural items such as masks, costume, armor and weapons among other historical artifacts.

To the left of the Honkan stands the Hyokeikan, the oldest building on the grounds, which was built in 1909 in celebration of the Taisho Emperor's wedding. The Hyokeikan is a representative example of Western-style architecture during the Meiji Period and is registered as an important cultural property. The building is primarily used for temporary exhibitions and has undergone several renovations over the years to maintain the structure.

To the right of the Honkan stands the Toyokan building, designed in 1968 by Japanese architect Taniguchi Yoshiro. The building features galleries displaying Asian art and artifacts from China, Korea, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, India and Egypt. Behind the Honkan stands the Heiseikan, a fairly recent addition to the museum built to commemorate the then Crown Prince's wedding in 1993. It houses exhibitions on ancient Japanese cultures as well as large scale special exhibitions.

The museum's newest building, the Horyuji Homotsukan or the Gallery of Horyuji Treasures, was built to house a collection of religious objects consisting mostly of small, intricate statues and copper relief images donated by Horyuji Temple in Nara. The building was designed by Taniguchi Yoshio (son of Toyokan architect Taniguchi Yoshiro) whose minimalist style can also be seen in his other projects including the Heisei Chishinkan at the Kyoto National Museum, the Sea Life Aquarium at Tokyo's Kasai Rinkai Park and the Mimoca Art Museum in Marugame, as well as the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Finally, just outside the museum grounds proper stands the Kuroda Memorial Hall, which was built from donations by Kuroda Seiki, a Japanese artist who is known as the father of modern Western-style painting in Japan. The hall houses a rotating collection of Kuroda's paintings and sketches as well as other artwork that has been donated by his family. In addition to the exhibition halls, the Tokyo National Museum also offers a Japanese-style garden and teahouses (open to the public in spring and autumn) located behind the Honkan, as well as multiple shops and cafes spread out around the grounds.

Getting there and around

The Tokyo National Museum is located in Ueno Park, a 5-10 minute walk from Ueno Station.

Orientation in Tokyo

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    • TOE LIBRARY Tokyo Asakusa
      Mid-range
      Located in Tokyo, near Honryuin Matsuchiyama Shoden, Great Tokyo Air Raid Memorial Monument and Honryuji Temple, TOE LIBRARY Tokyo Asakusa features free WiFi. Every unit features a private bathroom and bidet, air conditioning, a TV and a fridge. Some units include a terrace and/or a balcony. Popular points of interest near the apartment include Asakusa Fujiasama Shrine, Sanyabori Park and Imado Shrine. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda Airport, 23 km from TOE LIBRARY Tokyo Asakusa.
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    • HISAYO'S INN
      Budget-friendly
      Set in the Ota Ward district in Tokyo, 5 km from Tokyo International Airport Terminal No2 Observation Deck, HISAYO'S INN features air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi throughout the property. Each room has air conditioning and a safety deposit box. A shared kitchen comes with a refrigerator, stovetop, microwave, toaster and electric kettle. Bathrooms are shared and include free toiletries, towels, hairdryer, mouthwash and toothpaste. You will find a washing machine, tumble dryer and electrical adapter. Guests can try Japanese traditional haori jacket and have their photos taken free of charge. Rental bikes are available, and the staff can assist guests try on a yukata robe for female at a fee. Free luggage storage service is offered. Bike hire is available at this guest house and the area is popular for cycling. Oedo Onsen Monogatari is 8 km from HISAYO'S INN, while Fuji TV Odaiba is 9 km from the property. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 3 km from HISAYO'S INN.
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    • 7 Rooms Hotel & Cafe
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring 2-star accommodation, 7 Rooms Hotel & Cafe is situated in Tokyo, 1.3 km from Furukawa Shinsui Park and 1.5 km from Gyosen Park. The 2-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with a private bathroom and free WiFi. The property is non-smoking and is located 700 metres from Subway Museum. The rooms in the hotel are equipped with a kettle. All units will provide guests with a fridge. ? la carte and continental breakfast options are available daily at 7 Rooms Hotel & Cafe. Ukita Park is 1.6 km from the accommodation, while Shin Nagashima River Shinsui Park is 1.7 km away. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda Airport, 22 km from 7 Rooms Hotel & Cafe.
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    • Hotel Gajoen Tokyo
      Luxury
      Boasting chic decor with touches of Japanese traditional aethetics, Hotel Gajoen Tokyo is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. 7 dining options are featured, and free parking is available on site. JR Meguro Station is 6 minutes on foot and Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum is a 12-minute stroll. Free WiFi is provided throughout. All spacious rooms rooms include a satellite TV with cable channels, minibar, a coffee machine and handy smartphone. An en suite bathroom is fitted with a spa bath, free toiletries and hairdryer. For your comfort, some rooms include a sauna. Guests can unwind in a Japanese-style garden or at a library on site The front desk is open for 24 hours a day, and there are a pastry shop and gift shop at the property. Massage services and room services can be arranged. Shunyuki serves signature Chinese delicacies, while Tofutei offers an authentic Japanese kaiseki multi-course meal. Teppanyaki Japanese wagyu beed, American-style grilled dishes and Italian cuisine can be sampled on site. Live piano performance can also be enjoyed at an on-site cafe lounge in the day time. JR Shibuya Station is a 5-minute train ride, while JR Shinagawa Station is 8 minutes by train from Hotel Gajoen Tokyo. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 10 km away.
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    • Backpacker's Mini House
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring 2-star accommodation, Backpacker's Mini House is located in Tokyo, 300 metres from Bellesalle Kanda and 600 metres from Nikkei Hall. The 2-star hostel has air-conditioned rooms with a shared bathroom and free WiFi. The property is 3.4 km from the city centre and 400 metres from Kanda Children's Park. Popular points of interest near the hostel include Tokiwa Park, Kotoku Inari Shrine and Taira no Masakado's Grave. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda Airport, 19 km from Backpacker's Mini House.
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    • The Barn Tokyo
      Mid-range
      Featuring 3-star accommodation, The Barn Tokyo is situated in Tokyo, 400 metres from Calligraphy Museum and 500 metres from Nippori South Park. With a garden, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The property is non-smoking and is set 400 metres from Shikian. The units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. At The Barn Tokyo all rooms are equipped with bed linen and towels. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Kanei-ji Temple, Kanei-ji Temple Kompon Chudo and Kemmyo-in Temple. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda Airport, 23 km from The Barn Tokyo.
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    • Palace Hotel Tokyo
      Luxury
      Situated right in the heart of Marunouchi business district, Palace Hotel Tokyo is 5-star luxury accommodation boasting 7 restaurants, a spa and a free-access fitness centre and indoor swimming pool. It is directly connected to Otemachi Subway Station and an 8-minute walk from JR Tokyo Station. Free WiFi is provided in the entire area. Offering elegant and chic ambience, each spacious room comes with a large LCD TV, a blu-ray/DVD player and a safety box. A fridge and an electric kettle are also provided. The en suite bathroom includes a small TV, a bath tub and toiletries. While staying at Tokyo Palace Hotel, guests can enjoy a workout at the fitness gym, or receive rejuvenating treatments at the on-site Evian Spa Tokyo. The concierge desk can arrange various services for guests including mobile phone rentals. Tablet rentals, copy and fax services are available for an extra charge upon request at the front desk or club lounge. Guests can enjoy authentic Japanese culinary experiences in Wadakura restaurant, Tatsumi tempura restaurant and Kanesaka sushi restaurant. Esterre offers exquisite French cuisine and the city views, while Grand Kitchen serves international dishes throughout the day. Located right next to the Imperial Palace, the hotel is a 10-minute walk from Ginza shopping area, and a 5-minute train ride from Akihabara electric town. Popular Tsukiji Fish Market can be reached within a 10-minute taxi ride. Airport limousine buses are available to/from Narita and Haneda airports at an extra charge.
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    • The Okura Tokyo
      Luxury
      Composed of 2 buildings, The Okura Tokyo boasts a garden and bar. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and room service, along with free WiFi. The accommodation features a concierge, ticket service and currency exchange for guests. All rooms are fitted with air conditioning, a fridge, kettle and flat-screen TV with satellite channels. All guest rooms have a private bathroom with a bath, hairdryer, bidet and free toiletries. Located on 28-40 floors, Prestige Tower offers rooms with cityscape views. Guests staying in Heritage Wing can enjoy free access to the Club Lounge. Spacious rooms in Heritage Wing include complimentary welcome drink, steam sauna and spa bath. Guests at the hotel can enjoy a buffet breakfast. The Okura Tokyo also provides a business centre and guests can check the newspapers or use the on-site ATM machine at the accommodation. Popular points of interest near The Okura Tokyo include Iino Hall and Conference Centre, National Diet Building and Space FS Shiodome. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International, 22 km from the hotel, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.
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    • 328 Hostel & Lounge
      Budget-friendly
      Located just a 5-minute train ride from Haneda Airport, 328 Hostel & Lounge offers cosy accommodation fitted with free WiFi and a shared kitchen. Anamori Inari Train Station is a 5-minute walk away. The hostel offers modern dormitory rooms with air conditioning. Shared bathrooms come with a hairdryer. Guests at the 328 Hostel can unwind at the common lounge, or prepare their own meals at the kitchen. The hotel is a 15-minute train ride from Shinagawa Train Station.
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    • The Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho, a Luxury Collection Hotel
      Luxury
      Situated a minutesf walk away from Akasaka-Mitsuke Station of the Tokyo Metro Ginza and Marunouchi Line, The Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho boasts free WiFi throughout the entire property. There is a sake bar, a sushi restaurant and a teppanyaki restaurant on site, as well as a fitness centre and a 24-hour front desk. The hotel is directly linked to Nagatacho Station of the Nanboku Line. It is a 10-minute drive from Tokyo Station, and a 30-minute drive from Haneda Airport. Narita International Airport is a 100-minute drive away. The Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho features a spa and wellness centre and a sauna facility, and the front desk offers currency exchange. Laundry services are offered at an extra cost. All rooms are air-conditioned/heated and feature a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. Rooms come with a desk, minibar, electric kettle, a coffee machine, personal locker and a refrigerator. The en suite bathroom comes equipped with a bathtub and shower. Hairdryers, free toiletries, slippers and bathrobes provided. Guests can enjoy a variety of Japanese cuisine on site, and there are several restaurants within a 3-minute walk from Akasaka Mitsuke Station.
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