Nezu Museum

This museum (which is in Omotesando, not near Nezu Station, go figure) is a jewel of an art museum that showcases beautifully curated exhibits, focusing on traditional Japanese arts and crafts. The price of admission includes wandering the paths of its delightfully secluded garden, which manages to feel uncrowded even during iris season.

The Nezu Museum is famous for these iris (which bloom much earlier than other iris, at the beginning of May) because their collection includes…
…this. A gold-leafed screen by Korin, which is exhibited once a year at the beginning of May, at the same time that the iris in the garden bloom. The ones in the garden are the same variety as those in the painting (photo courtesy of the Nezu Museum)
They have a large collection of Buddhist sculpture, which rotates in and out of the main lobby, and the special exhibitions tend to be the finest examples of traditional Japanese arts, like dollmaking…
…or swordsmithing
But they also exhibit unexpected treasures (like Meiji Era jeweled clocks)
After enjoying the exquisite art inside, don’t leave before meandering through the garden…
…and enjoying the small teahouses and stone lanterns
As you can see, it’s especially lovely in the rain…
…and there’s a rack of nice loaner umbrellas right outside the door to the garden, so you can enjoy the art tucked among the greenery without getting wet
I’ve always enjoyed the paths in this garden, which are paved in especially pleasing stone patterns
And the moss is to die for
…especially when it covers picturesque little trickles of water

Open: Every day except closed on Mondays, Dec 29 – Jan 3 and during exhibit preparation

Hours: 10:00 – 17:00

Admission: Adult ¥1100 (¥1300 for special exhibition), student (high school and above) ¥800 (¥1000 for special exhibition)

For the upcoming exhibition schedule, check the Nezu Museum website


Here’s more to do in the neighborhood, while you’re there:

Click here for more

Jonelle Patrick is the author of five novels set in Japan

For three hundred years, a missing tea bowl passes from one fortune-seeker to the next, changing the lives of all who possess it…read more

The Last Tea Bowl Thief was chosen as an Editor’s Pick for Best Mystery, Thriller & Suspense on Amazon

“A fascinating mix of history and mystery.” —Booklist

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