If you are in Odaiba and need to fill in some time, look no further than the History Garage. And if you are a car lover, it'll probably be the closest thing to heaven on earth! The museum is run by Toyota, but you can see vehicles from many different companies and time periods. There might be bigger and better museums of this type in Japan, but this is probably the best of its type in Tokyo.
The museum has two floors filled with cars, but most of them are one the second floor in a Japanese garage-type area along with some other shops. The first floor also has the Alessandra Nannini cafe, a gift shop with loads of models to buy or just look at. There is even a working garage where you can see the mechanics at work.
When I visited the History Garage in December 2018 some of the cars on display included: 1) a Nissan Skyline GTR 2000; 2) a Publica; 3) a Cadillac Series 62; 4) a Datsun 16 from 1937; 5) a Delorean DMC-12; 6) a Toyota Celica GT-Four rally car from 1985; 7) a Honda s800, and; 8) a Toyota 2000GT which appeared in the James Bond film, “You Only Live Twice”. There are also special displays change regularly.
The cars get changed every so often, which can be both good and bad. It just depends on what kind of cars you like. For example, on one visit in 2016 there were American muscle cars from the 1960s on display, but in 2018 it was mostly domestically produced Japanese vehicles. I doubt it’ll be a big problem for any petrolhead as all the vehicles on display are excellent.
The History Garage is a great place for a visit, and it isn't only about cars. With it being located in the Venus Fort shopping center, there is a lot to do after you've finished a visit. Of course you can shop and eat, but there is more to do in Odaiba, such as walk across Rainbow Bridge, go shopping, take pictures of the Statue of Liberty,or check out the Gundam cafe and Fuji Television’s Hachitama observatory. The museum's homepage can be seen here.
How to get to the History Garage?
The History Garage is located in the Venus Fort shopping center in Odaiba. There are two ways to get there. For those coming from Shinbashi, use the Yurikamome monorail, get off at Aomi station and Venus Fort will be across the road. You can also use the Rinkai line from Shinjuku or Shibuya and get off at Tokyo Teleport. If you are walking to Venus Fort from somewhere else in area, but not sure of the direction just look for the giant Ferris Wheel and head towards it. Here is a Google Map to help you:
It is open seven (7) days a week from 11am to 9pm, however it is closed one Monday per month. Please check the website to see which Monday.
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Japan Open-Air Folk House Museum - learn about Japanese houses
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Telecom Center - a small observatory with truly amazing views of the city