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Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Shikoku Autumn 2014 四国秋季之旅 - Anpanman Museum アンパンマンミュージアム

Visited 23.11.2014

Anpanman hiding on the rooftop!
Familiarity. Made a last minute decision to visit this place on the last day in Shikoku. Anpanman Museum definitely did not emerged top in my list of attractions to visit, even so for my parents who have not come across Anpanman before. Throughout our stay in Shikoku, the images of this adorable character and his friends have infiltrated into our lives subtly. On this island, we rode on a series of Anpanman themed trains, shopped for Anpanman related merchandises and ate bread depicting the characters in this popular anime. Subconsciously, I felt like I have known this character enough over the last few days and wanted very much to visit Anpanman Museum, located right in the place where the creator of Anpanman, Takashi Yanase, grew up in. The thought eventually gave rise to this late insertion into my itinerary.


Not only a museum but a themepark! As soon as I exited from Tosa Yamada JR Station, it felt like I have breezed into a Anpanman themepark. Kami city information center, which stood right outside the train station, was surrounded by Anpanman and his companions. I was warmly welcomed by the staff from the information center and she eagerly demonstrated to me the features of this melodious Anpanman clock hung on the wall. Even the buses which run the route to Anpanman Museum, are colourfully wrapped with the cartoon characters. That is not the end. More Anpanman can be found in the interior such as ceiling and seats, to accompany all passengers on the joyous journey to the museum.

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Highlights



Priceless gift. Anpanman Museum is located in Kami city, tucked away in the countryside, surrounded by hills. On a personal note, I felt that the location of Anpanman Museum is what makes this attraction worthy a visit. In front of the museum is a large open field with playground facilities for kids to run around tirelessly and happily. This is truly a wonderful place for parents to spend quality time together with their children while coming closer to nature. Hearing the infectious laughter of children is doubtlessly a priceless gift to all parents. There are two statues of Anpanman and Giant Dadandan (constructed in a way that they were in a fight) standing right outside the main building. Pay attention to the top right hand corner of the building and you may find Anpanman waving at you from there!  

Giant Dadandan statue.

Anpanman is everywhere!
There is plentiful details at different corners of Anpanman museum for visitors to uncover: 
- The glass storage room displaying an exhaustive range of Anpanman character goods/merchandises introduced over the years.
- Stay tuned for the hide-and-seek tree near the entrance; a huge mechanical wall clock in which Anpanman characters will appear from the tree hourly.
- Named Anpanman World (アンパンマンワールド), a miniature model replicating the world where Anpanman and his companion existed in is showcased in the basement floor. Visitors get to "sneak" into Uncle Jam's bakery too, where you can find a variety of bread replicas (which are in fact the "heads" of many superheroes that appeared in the popular anime). 

Top right: Hide-and-seek tree; Bottom right: Anpanman's world.
- My favourite spot goes to Yanase Takashi Gallery is located on the fourth floor. Huge paintings of Anpanman and his companions in various themes, precious draft versions of drawings and comic strips were displayed in this art gallery. The pictures were beautifully drawn and it is hard not to express excitement while deciphering the meaning behind these drawings. I like this particular drawing which depicted Anpanman sacrificing a small portion of his head to a hungry and stranded rabbit. Despite photo taking is allowed in the museum, it is hard to capture shots of these pictures/drawings because of the reflection created by the glass frames. If you like any of the pictures/drawings, do head down to the shop located on the first floor as the art works are available in postcard forms for visitors to send back home! Apart from that, there are also exclusive merchandises released by the museum sold in the shop here. 

Beautiful paintings of Anpanman characters in Yanase Takashi Gallery; Top right: Bought a postcard featuring my favourite drawing from the museum shop.
- The ticket includes entrance to Poem and Märchen Gallery (詩とメルヘン絵本館) housed in a separate building on the opposite road. This exhibition hall displays all of Yanase Takashi's artworks which were previously published in Shitomeruhen (Poem and Märchen) magazine.
- Stone statues of Anpanman characters are put up in various spots in surrounding compound as well, making them wonderful photo taking spots for kids.
- To my surprise, there is no cafe/restaurant within the museum. The nearest cafeteria is found in Nirounosato (韮生の里), a local product and souvenir shop located a stone throw away from the museum.

Nirounosato (韮生の里), located just in front of Anpanman Museum.
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Anpanman Museum アンパンマンミュージアム
〒781-4212 高知県香美市香北町美良布1224-2
http://anpanman-museum.net/
Opening hrs: 0930 - 1700 hrs; 0900 - 1700 hrs (20 Sep - 31 Aug). Last entry at 1630 hrs.
Admission fee: 700 yen (adult); 500 yen (child)

How to get there?

By bus. From Tosa Yamada JR Station (土佐山田駅), take JR Bus Ototi Line (JRバス大栃線) and alight at bus stop in front of Anpanman Museum (アンパンマン). Bus fee = 620 yen.
Bus schedule: http://www.jr-shikoku.co.jp/bus/businfo/rosen_tosa/tosa-ototi.htm


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Video: Anpanman Museum was featured in Go Go Japan. 

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