The world of anime in Japan is deeper and more nuanced than most foreign visitors can ever imagine. There are several locations in Japan that pay homage to the country’s obsession with anime that you may visit. Although some, like Akihabara and businesses with an anime-themed motif like Gundam Base Tokyo, are more well-known, there are many more that are just as interesting to fans of the genre.
These places range from cafes and amusement parks to full-fledged museums and even include real-world settings that served as inspiration for scenes in anime. Some of these real-world places were also the inspiration for fictitious ones. Here’s a rundown of the kind of places you should see if you want to create your own anime tour of Japan. When it comes to the anime tours you need to know the followings.
There are Anime Museums in Japan.
It’s only logical that Japan would have museums dedicated to anime, given the central role it plays in Japanese popular culture. It’s worth looking into whether or not your favourite anime has its own museum, since many of them are devoted to a certain studio or series of films.
Museum of Ghibli
In Japan, the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, a suburb of Tokyo, has more annual visitors than any other animation museum in the country. For animation fans, this museum dedicated to the legendary Studio Ghibli and including such classics as “My Neighbour Totoro” and “Howl’s Moving Castle” is a must-see. The museum provides an in-depth look at the studio’s animation process and showcases many of the artists’ original works.
Animation Museum of Suginami
Despite its little size, Tokyo’s Suginami Animation Museum is another anime-focused museum well worth your time and attention. This museum exhibit discusses both the development of anime and the process involved in its creation. Even though not all of the exhibits are exhibited in English, the museum’s free admission makes up for it, making it a fantastic bargain.
Places of Worship in Anime
When given the chance, anime fans would gladly watch their favourite episodes or movies again. This often involves dressing up in character at one of the numerous anime and cosplay conventions held around the country, such as the Toyako Manga Anime Festa in Hokkaido.
There is, however, another Japanese custom called seichijunrei (or “anime pilgrimage” in English), which is a trip to an anime convention. By using seichijunrei, anime fans may visit real-world locales that inspired or were used in their favourite scenes from the animated medium. A Japan Rail Pass will help you save money on the numerous train travels you’ll be taking while on your anime pilgrimage throughout the country.
Many fans of Spirited Away, largely considered the finest anime film ever produced, may be interested in staying at the Sekizenkan Ryokan, which is conveniently situated near the Shima Hot Springs. The bathhouse that Yubaba owns in the film is claimed to have been inspired in large part by this ryokan. One feature that aficionados will instantly recognise as being faithful to the original is the red bridge that can be found just outside the ryokan.
A Mute Passageway into Ignorance
The movie A Silent Voice, also known as Koe no Katachi, is a great resource for tourists. This video makes it easier to make connections between the screen and real life. Visiting the city of Ogaki will allow viewers to experience many crucial scenes from the film, including those filmed on the bridge. When you arrive there, you can see how Kyoto Animation used real-life surroundings to authentically portray some of the city’s most stunning places in the film.