For Miyazaki fans, visiting the Ghibli Museum is a must while in Tokyo. But it can buy hard to figure out how to buy tickets to the Ghibli Museum. In this guide, I will show you the easiest and cheapest way to buy the Ghibli museum tickets online — as well as show you what to do if they’re sold out.
How to buy Studio Ghibli Museum tickets online in 5 easy steps
The best and cheapest way to buy Ghibli Museum tickets is through the Lawson website. Lawson is a Japanese convenience store that also sells tickets to events.
Buying tickets through Lawson is the cheapest way to buy tickets to the Ghibli Museum online because Lawson doesn’t charge any extra fees. An adult ticket costs about $9 per person.
Here’s exactly how to do it:
1. Visit the website at the right time – Ghibli Museum tickets go on sale on the 10th of every month at 10 a.m. Japan time. I recommend setting a reminder on your phone as they usually sell out within a few hours.
2. Pick your time slot – When buying your tickets, you will have to choose a time slot. The museum is open 6 days a week (closed Tuesdays).
There are four time slots available per day:
- First Admission: 10:00 (until 10:30)
- Second Admission: 12:00 (until 12:30)
- Third Admission: 14:00 (until 14:30)
- Fourth Admission: 16:00 (until 16:30)
3. Pay for your tickets – To buy the tickets, you will have to provide your credit card.
Here are the ticket prices:
- Ages 19 and over: ¥1,000 ($9)
- Ages 13 to 18: ¥700 ($6.50)
- Ages 7 to 12: ¥400 ($3.50)
- Ages 4 to 6: ¥100 ($1.00)
- Children under 4: admitted free of charge
4. Get the confirmation email – After you purchase your tickets, you will receive a confirmation email notifying that your payment went through.
The email you receive will look like this:
5. Print out your tickets – To print out your tickets, click the link in the confirmation email that will take you to your account on the Lawson website.
There, you will find a PDF of your tickets. Make sure to print out the PDF before your trip, as you need to print out your tickets to enter the museum.
How to buy sold-out Ghibli Museum tickets
If you miss the sale on the 10th, don’t panic — you can still buy tickets from a reseller, though it will be more expensive.
I recommend buying last-minute Ghibli Museum tickets from Viator, which has a rating of 4.5 stars. Viator will send you paper tickets by mail, guaranteeing you access to the museum.
How to get to the Ghibli Museum
The Ghibli Museum is located in Mitaka, a city about an hour east of Tokyo. The easiest way to get there is via the Tokyo subway.
To ride the subway, I recommend buying a SUICA card, which is a reloadable transit card you can buy in the subway station. Read more about buying a Suica card in this post.
Tips for visiting the Ghibli Museum
1. Print out your tickets. At the museum entrance, they will check that you have a print-out of your tickets. This is a crucial step, which is why I’ve mentioned it twice!
2. Bring your passport. One person in your group will need to present their passport at the ticket counter.
3. Don’t take pictures inside the museum. Photography is not permitted in the museum. However, you can take pictures of the grounds.
4. Stop by the gift shop. I recommend stopping by the gift shop, which has amazing Studio Ghibli merchandise. I bought the cutest soot sprite pin, and then have lots of Totoro and Kiki’s Delivery Service merchandise.
5. Don’t miss the Straw Hat Café. Before leaving, stop by the Straw Hat Café, and adorable café that sells food, beverages, and desserts. There is often a long line to eat inside the restaurant, but you also stop by the outdoor food and beverage booth, where the line is usually much shorter. The booth sells ice cream, beer, and other treats. They even sell a delicious craft beer that has a Howl’s Moving Castle theme — it’s called Kaze No Tane.
6. Take time to explore the grounds. The grounds are definitely worth exploring. Visit the roof, where you will find an enormous Laputa robot — see him in the picture below?
Is the Ghibli Museum worth visiting? An honest review
Before visiting Japan, I looked up tons of reviews of the Ghibli Museum. Some were so negative that I debated visiting at all.
But now that I’ve visited myself, I can honestly say the Ghibli Museum is 100% worth visiting.
The key thing to remember is that the Ghibli Museum is a museum, not a theme park. So if you’re expecting rides and rollercoasters, head to Disneyland instead.
The museum is comprised of several sections:
- A tour of Miyazaki’s studios where the walls are papered with his drawings
- A theatre showing Studio Ghibli short films
- A huge Totoro Cat Bus that kids can climb on
- The Straw Hat Café
- A gift shop
Even if you have to buy more expensive tickets from a reseller, I would still say it’s worth visiting.
The museum reminded me that Miyazaki is not only a world-class filmmaker; he’s also a brilliant artist. I loved walking through his studio, which is full of doodles and gouache paintings. I honestly teared up a little.
The Ghibli Museum is also a great place to bring kids. There’s even a Totoro Cat Bus that only kids are allowed to play on — it’s so cute!
Other Studio Ghibli attractions in Tokyo
While you’re in Tokyo, you may want to check out a few other Studio Ghibli attractions. Here are some good ones:
1. Hike through Totoro’s Forest – About an hour from central Tokyo, you’ll find “Totoro’s Forest”, which inspired the forest in My Neighbor Totoro. Through Airbnb Experiences, you can hire a guide to show you around. You can book the activity on Airbnb here.
Free $15 Airbnb coupon code! Sign up for Airbnb HERE and get $15 off your first $50 Airbnb Experience
2. Stop for Totoro pastries at Shirohige’s Cream Puff Factory
Shirohige’s Cream Puff Factory is a must-visit for fans of My Neighbor Totoro. Owned by Miyazaki’s sister-in-law, this cafe is famed for its delicious Totoro-shaped cream puffs, which come in four different flavors.
Shirohige’s a great place to stop on your way to the Ghibli Museum as it’s on the way from Central Tokyo. See a map here.
3. Shop for Studio Ghibli merchandise at Kiddyland
To shop for more Studio Ghibli merchandise, head to Kiddyland. Kiddlyand is a multi-story toy store located in Harajuku. Their Studio Ghibli collection is very impressive, with toys from beloved films like My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Howl’s Moving Castle, and more.
Are you a Studio Ghibli fan? Would you ever visit the Ghibli Museum?