3 Important Japanese World War II Places To Visit In Tokyo
It is important to educate yourself on history and understand why certain events took its course. A visit to the Yasukuni Shrine and the Japanese military and Tokyo War Musuem (Yushukan) proved to be a very eye opening experience.
- What: Tokyo War Museum & Yasukuni Shrine
- Why: Educational experience on the military history of Japan
- Where: 3-Chome-1-1 Kudankita, Chiyoda, Tokyo [Map]
- Hours: 9:00am - 4:00pm
- Price: ¥800 Yen ($7.25 USD) per person
- Travel Itinerary: 7-day Tokyo Itinerary for an amazing Tokyo trip
- Related: Yamato Museum in Kure, for world's biggest battleship
- Book Now: Toshogu Shrine Tour for just $108 USD
After experiencing the best sushi in the world at Sukiyabashi Jiro, I set my sails for an educational experience at the Yasukuni Shrine and the Yushukan War Memorial Museum.
1. Yasukuni Shrine
Controversial shrine commemorates anyone who had died in service of the Empire of Japan
Japanese military and war museum located within Yasukuni Shrine
3. Edo-Tokyo Museum
Mesmerizing elevated museum with a detailed section on Tokyo during World War II
It was initially created by Emperor Meiji to commemorate any individuals who had died in service of the Empire of Japan during the Meiji Restoration.
The shrine's purpose has been expanded over the years and now lists the names, origins, birthdates, and places of death of 2,466,532 men, women and children from conflicts spanning from the Boshin War of 1867 to the end of World War II.
The Yasukuni Honden shrine only lists the names of those who died in service of the Empire of Japan as it was created by Emperor Meiji specifically for this purpose.
The Yasukuni Chinreisha shrine was created by the priesthood to commemorate those who fought in opposition to the Empire and everyone else who had died in war; it includes the Japanese soldiers of the Tokugawa Shogunate and Republic of Ezo as well as those representing foreign militaries such as the British, US, Chinese, Korean and South East Asian forces.
The Yushukan is a Japanese military and war museum located within Yasukuni Shrine. The museum contains various artifacts and documents concerning Japanese war casualties and military activity from the start of the Meiji Restoration to the end of the Pacific War. If time permits, visit Kure City's Yamato Museum (near Hiroshima) where they have a 1/10 scale model of the largest battleship ever built, the Yamato by the Japanese navy.
The Tokyo War Museum was established in 1882, and describes itself as the first and oldest war and military museum in Japan. The museum has been accused of containing revisionism in its accounts of Japan's actions in World War II, as well as glorifying Japan's aggressive militaristic past.
I finsihed my day with a refreshing iced coffee at the Tokyo Canal Cafe which has been around since 1918, located east of the Yasukuni Shrine. Next, I recommend you read my other stories from Japan. Also, if you are planning a trip to Japan and Tokyo, please make sure to bookmark my 7-day Tokyo Itinerary which took over a decade of traveling to Tokyo to put together. You will be guaranteed an epic trip to Tokyo!