5 Best Weird Museums in Japan

5 Best Weird Museums in Japan

The world is full of weird museums, but Japan takes the cake. From donning a poo hat in a museum dedicated to toilets to exploring a castle made of beetles, here are 5 of the best weird museums in Japan.

This unique museum exhibits all kinds of unwanted parasites that infest human bodies. It will make you squirm!

1. Chinsekikan Museum

Located two hours northwest of Tokyo, Chinsekikan Museum is home to a unique collection of rocks with natural divots and craters that resemble faces. Known as “Hall of Curious Rocks,” it has over 1,700 oddly shaped stones, 900 of which are face-like.

The museum was started by a man named Shozo Hayama, who collected strange-looking rocks for 50 years. He suffered from a mental condition called pareidolia, which is the ability to see faces in shapes and etchings on other surfaces. He only asked that the stones be unaltered and natural.

Hayama passed away in 2010, but his daughter Yoshiko still operates the one-of-a-kind museum. She explains that to classify a rock as having a face, it needs reasonably aligned eyes and a mouth.

Despite the fact that there are many different rocks in the museum, it’s not hard to spot a few familiar faces among them, including Elvis, Mickey Mouse, and Nemo from Finding Nemo. You can even see stone counterparts of politicians like Boris Yeltsin and video game characters like Donkey Kong.

2. Museum of Comics

The Museum of Comics is the world’s first dedicated to the art form. Incorporated into an architectural building and taking the shape of speech balloons, it demonstrates how cartoons have advanced from a often-censored low-art medium to one celebrated around the globe. Dedicated artists, collectors, and fans have changed our expectations of what qualifies as good art.

The exhibits show how cartoons have influenced other arts, including film, fashion, painting, design, the avant-garde and literature. The museum also presents proto-comics, sketches and early drawings that came before the creation of comics.

Visitors can enjoy the exhibitions and learn how to produce their own comics in the workshop. The exhibitions include original pages by some of the most famous comic artists in the world, sketchbooks, scripts and historic and rare publications. Costumes used in films based on comics and set designs are also displayed.

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3. Meguro Parasitological Museum

A scream-inducing experience awaits you in this two-story exhibit space dedicated to all things parasitic. The display is sure to thrill children interested in science and adults with a morbid fascination for parasites. While most of the information is in Japanese, a small counter in the back of the museum sells a parasitology-themed guidebook in English, along with t-shirts and pendants featuring actual parasites emblazoned on them.

This spine-tingling spot is located about a fifteen-minute walk from JR Meguro Station. Despite its grotesque nature, the museum has gained popularity among travellers looking for an out-of-the-ordinary Tokyo experience. The museum is free to enter, but donations are encouraged to support research and preservation efforts. There is also a gift shop on-site where you can purchase parasite-themed souvenirs to bring home for friends and family.

4. Museum of Crime and Punishment

The Crime and Punishment Museum is a one-of-a-kind experience that allows visitors to see and learn about law enforcement, crime scene investigation (CSI) and the history of criminal acts.

A forensic science lab and a replica of a courtroom are part of the exhibits, as well as a jail cell and several means of capital punishment. Visitors can also step into the shoes of police officers and try out a mock police station with a booking area, police line-up, lie detector test and jail cell. Children can have their fingerprints taken and become a part of the police force for the day, or play CSI and solve a murder.

The museum is open daily from 9:30am to 5:00pm. Tickets are date- and time-specific and are cheaper when purchased in advance.

5. Mayonnaise Museum

Museums are usually associated with dull school trips and glazed over eyes but in Japan they do things a little differently. The country is home to a poop museum, a cat museum and even a museum dedicated to cup noodles.

It’s not hard to see why the world’s most popular mayonnaise has a museum dedicated to it, the country loves the stuff so much they put it on almost everything. The Mayonnaise Museum (MayoTerrace) gives visitors a factory tour, a chance to learn about the history of Kewpie mayonnaise and even gets to take a little home.

There’s also a section dedicated to the art of origami which is surprisingly fascinating, especially seeing some of the intricate creations in person. A visit is free but you’ll need to bring your passport as the entry forms are in Japanese only.

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