Other than Disneyland Tokyo, what are the popular attractions in Tokyo which your school-age kids will like? If your kids like to explore the science museums and love to do hands-on experiments, then you will not regret visiting Miraikan-National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Koto-ku, Tokyo for a day trip.
If you had been in Museum of Science and Industry Chicago, Denver Museum of Nature & Science, Ontario Science Center in Toronto, Canada, you paid average USD 15-22 for an adult ticket and USD 11- 15 for a youth ticket on site. At Miraikan, you pay 620 Yen ( USD 5.50) for an adult and 210 Yen ( USD 2) for 18 years old and under. Even more, youths are free on Saturdays. You pay that price for a cup of coffee at Starbucks but here, with the same amount of money, you get an admission ticket to visit a world-grade science museum. All the exhibitions are displayed and explained in Japanese and English.
This science museum is located in Odaiba, which is a popular shopping and entertainment area. The easiest and the most affordable way to explore this area is buying a Yurikamome one-day pass for 820 Yen/adult ( USD 7) and 410 Yen/child (USD 3.50). With a one-day pass, you can hop on and off the train and have different arrangements which are best suitable to your family’s interests and schedule.
For my family’s day trip, we bought one-day passes and visited the Seaside Park first. At 11 am, we went to Aqua City to have lunch. The Aqua City is a comprehensive shopping center with many stores, restaurants and entertainment. There are many different food options. Then we went to Miraikan Museum. We spent the whole afternoon in the museum. With a lot of hands-on activities,a robot show, and a huge Geo-Cosmos display, I really thought that we should have come earlier or even planned this museum as our first destination that day. All three of my kids wanted to stay longer.
Many people prefer to stay in Odaiba until evening because the night scene there is pretty. However, we left after the museum closed. While we were on the train, my kids glimpsed a playground underneath. Taking advantage of our flexible schedule, we were off the train and tried to find it. About five-minute walking distance, we found the playground. It was nice, clean, and well-maintained. Then, I realized that it was Toyosu Park. After spending a few hours in the museum, having them play on a playground with various facilities was a pleasant way to finish the day. Educational, entertaining, and fun activities are all included in a day trip in Odaiba area. Kids were not only stretching their minds in the museum, but also on their bodies on the playground.