Japan's Most Interesting Railway Museums 日本の鉄道博物館

Those who love them will take these trains...


In recent years, railway museums have flourished across Japan, to satisfy the many fans of the genre. The biggest museums are in Tokyo, Kyoto and Nagoya, but there are nice little establishments displaying beautiful trains in every region.


  • The Railway Museum in Omiya (Saitama Prefecture)

It is the largest of all railway museums , inaugurated in 2007 by JR East , the anniversary year of the 20th anniversary of the creation of this company. Very beautiful locomotives are exhibited there, including the very first that circulated in Japan in 1872.

In July 2018 , a new exhibition area will open to show even more beautiful materials and highlight strong themes of Japanese railways: work, history and the future.

Le musée ferroviaire d'Ômiya

Ômiya Railway Museum

Jerome Laborde

  • The Kyoto Railway Museum (Kyoto)

Inaugurated in 2016 by JR West , this museum is built on a space previously dedicated only to steam locomotives , the Umekoji museum, a former depot. Today, alongside these ancient and impressive machines, there are shinkansen that have made the history of high speed in Japan. In all, 53 trains are on display for visitors.

To read: The Kyoto Railway Museum

Matériels exposés au musée ferroviaire de Kyôto

Materials exhibited at the Kyoto Railway Museum

Wikimedia Commons

  • The Tokyo Metro Museum (Tokyo)

This museum tells you all about the history of the subway in Japan and especially in the city of Tokyo , since its beginnings in 1927. You can see the very first subway of the 01 series, which inaugurated the Ginza line at the time, as well than other historical materials of different lines.

You will have fun on a driving simulator, learn how a metro line is built, everything about safety, services and people.

Tokyo Metro 01 de 1927, exposé au Tokyo Metro museum.

Tokyo Metro 01 from 1927, on display at the Tokyo Metro museum.

Wikimedia Commons

  • The Tobu Museum (Tokyo)

The Tobu Company , with its 463 kilometers of lines, is one of the most important private lines in Japan. Already active in 1899 , with the portion between Kita-Senju and Kuki, it had to have its own railway museum to present its history and some emblematic trains. Among these, the Tobu 1720 series with such an imposing design, which can be appreciated right out of the Higashi-Mukojima access station, on the Tobu Sky Tree line.

Tôbu série 1720 exposé devant le Tôbu Railway Museum

The impressive Tôbu 1720 series exhibited in front of the Tôbu Railway Museum

Wikimedia Commons

Musée ferroviaire en plein air du col d'Usui

Usui Pass Open Air Railway Museum

Wikimedia Commons

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