While my sister was visiting last month, I knew that one place she had to visit was Hakone. Up in the mountains, close to Mt. Fuji, with gorgeous views and lush greenery, Hakone was right up her alley. I've been to the Hakone shrine before, but another place in Hakone high on my list was the Hakone Open-Air Museum.
Here are the specifics for the museum:
Parking is only 500 yen ($5 US)/day.
Adults: 1,600 yen
University and high school students: 1,200 yen
Elementary and middle students: 800 yen
There are two restaurants and two cafes, but you're also welcome to bring your own food.
If you have children, you might think they won't be too interested in an art museum... but this is no ordinary art museum. Hakone's Open-Air Museum has plenty of artwork that you can't touch, but it also has several areas dedicated specifically to children and their exploration of art. That's right - this art museum has art that is made to be played upon. Two areas are outdoors, but there is also an indoor area as well (we didn't go in because of time constraints). My girls had a blast, and my sister and I just laid in the grass and enjoyed the mountain air while the girls tired themselves out. It was the best visit we've ever had to an art museum.
|The first play area we came upon. Only children were allowed to climb on the art, and I was jealous!|
|That's my kid tangled up in there.|
|She's not so sure about climbing up this high....|
|There were lots of tears coming down these stairs. The girls did not like the height.|
|Me and my sister. :)|
|There is also a free footpath that we had to try out. It felt great.|
|Most days, I feel just like this guy.|
|This was our favorite play area. It was like a big maze of plastic bubbles.|
**My girls loved this area, but my 4.5 year old had trouble at times climbing through it. It would be almost impossible for younger children to climb, though they'd probably have a good time anyway. Climbing did become a lot easier when we let them take off their socks and shoes.**
|I love this shot!|