Kiyosumi Shirakawa is a city in Koto-ku, Tokyo where you can feel the history of the city. There are many residential areas and temples, leaving behind the image of the good old days. In recent years, young people have begun to open their own shops, creating a unique atmosphere with old book stores. There are also many must-see galleries for contemporary art lovers.
In Kiyosumi Shirakawa, there is a museum that reproduces the cityscape of Fukagawa in the Edo period and the way of living.
About 3 minutes from Kiyosumi Shirakawa Station on the Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line. “Time trip” begins from Fukagawa Edo Museum Street where you can see the old town. The Fukagawa Edo Museum has a vast atrium space from the first basement to the second floor. If you take a step, it’s already the Edo period. The cityscape of Fukagawa, which is said to faithfully reproduce the situation at that time, is a scale that cannot be considered as one floor. It is a precious spot where you can experience the lives of the commoners in the Edo period, which was said to have mainly been a Daimyo residence.
Exhibits that were reproduced in full-scale, including nagaya (tenement house), fertilizer wholesalers that flourished at that time, shomai (milled rice) shops, and boat houses. The details are made into the room, and you’ll be surprised to see it.
The main difference from ordinary museums is that you can actually enter the building, touch the commercial tools and daily necessities, and experience the life of the people more realistically. You can see the different lifestyles of tenants like the shamisen master, shomai craftsman, and Kiba wood craftsman of Kiba.
In addition, there are exhibits such as the excavation that floats of chokibune boats reminiscent of Fukagawa at the time that flourished in water transportation, hinomi-yagura (fire watchtower), teahouse and tempura. The spacious building is packed with the attractions of the Fukagawa Edo Museum.
A further feature of this museum is that the daily flow of the town is effectively produced with sound and lighting. For example, at dawn, the sky becomes faintly brighter with a cry of “cock-a-doodle-doo!”. In the evening, thunder sounds in summer. Because it changes every 15 minutes, it suddenly becomes dark and surprised.
Speaking of the seasons, the “greengrocer” vegetables have changed to spring and autumn, and in summer the wind chimes are swaying in nagaya. It is a difficult work because it is inconspicuous. There will be a gorgeous decoration during the Tanabata and New Year holidays, so you can enjoy a different atmosphere depending on the season.
There is a Volunteer Guide who will give you detailed explanations about the exhibits. There are guides who can speak English for foreign tourists.
If you ask them, for example,
･ “Why are some houses with tatami mats and those without tatami mats?”
･ “The vegetables at this time used human excrement as fertilizer.”
･ “So the town of Edo seemed to be relatively beautiful.”
They will be willing to teach you knowledge that you wouldn’t have heard without hearing.
Volunteer guides are very thankful for knowing the lives of Edo people. If you find a guide with a nameplate, ask them to guide you.
Here is how to get to Kiyosumi Shirakawa where “Fukagawa Edo Museum” is located. Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line and Toei Oedo Line are in Kiyosumi Shirakawa Station. For example, from Tokyo Station, you can go to Otemachi Station on the Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line, which is directly connected, in about 7 minutes. From Shinjuku, it is possible to go on the Oedo Line in about 30 minutes.
Located in the Tokyo Fukagawa area, the “Fukagawa Edo Museum” is a tourism facility that you can learn about Fukagawa in the Edo period in a museum using scenic reappearance exhibits and life reappearance exhibits. If you enter the facility one step further, you can visit with a feeling like a time slip in the Edo period. Regular events are held in the recreation hall and the small theater in the facility, which is popular not only for tourists but also for locals.
Fukagawa in the Edo period was a commercial area where rice wholesalers and timber wholesalers stand, and was a residential area where celebrities such as Gennai Hiraga, Basho Matsuo, Tadataka Ino also lived. At Fukagawa Edo Museum, Fukagawa’s townscapes are reproduced in the hall and lifestyle tools in the Edo period are exhibited. The houses reproduced are made with settings that families of various occupations live in. Reality is felt because some houses are exhibited according to their family composition and occupation. It is popular as if you feel like you actually went there during the Edo period.
In the exhibition room which reproduced the townscape, chicken’s voice and bell’s sound, etc. imitating the time are being flowed. Changing the lighting within the facility also produces a change in time and plenty of presence. Besides this, there are directing such as the change of the moon phases and seasons.
Traditional arts such as Rakugo and lecture meetings are held in the hall. The lecture is not stiff but it is done for the purpose of being interested in traditional arts such as Kabuki, which is characterized by children’s easy to understand. Since the contents of the event and how to participate are posted on the official website, it is recommended to visit when the event is held.
The Fukagawa Edo museum is located in Shirakawa, Koto-ku from Tokyo Metro subway Kiyosumi-Shirakawa Station to three or four minutes on foot. The cityscape of the Edo period, reproducing a way of living of the common people of edo era are on display. This area called the Fukagawa area, and is known as the town where Edo culture prospered in old days.
This museum reproduce the town of Edo Fukagawa of approximately 150 years ago in the open ceiling part between the first basement floor to the second floor above the ground.
When you leave the introduction exhibition room and go down the stairs, the cityscape of Edo of the original size spreads in front of your eyes. There are the green-grocer, the rice dealer, the boat rental house, and the tenement houses where many common people lived in. The structure elaborate in detail, which just reproduced a lifestyle at the time, is the best part.
There are life tools being placed in each house, and you can touch those tools in that house.
In addition, it produces the one-day living of people by sound effects (including a voice of the vender and the “looking out for fire”) and lighting in one hour.
It exchange a life article or a flower depending on the change of the season, you can taste the sense of the seasons.
You can sense the emotion of Fukagawa of the last years of Edo era and experience the living of the common people of the Edo era.
|Name:||Fukagawa Edo Museum|
|Adresse:||Shirakawa 1-3-28 Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-0021 Japan|
|Access:||Tokyo Metro Hanzomon-sen Line “Kiyosumishirakawa-eki Station” (4 minutes walk)|
|Price:||400 yen (Adult)|
50 yen (Junior / High School Students)
Please refer the official web page.