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Frequently Asked Questions

About the Kyoto National Museum
What kind of institution is the Kyoto National Museum?

The Kyoto National Museum was established in the late nineteenth century as an institution for the collection and preservation of cultural properties. It opened in 1897 at its current location near the foot of the Higashiyama, or "eastern hills," of Kyoto. The museum's collection includes archaeological artifacts, ceramics, Buddhist sculpture, painting, calligraphy, decorative and applied arts (textiles, lacquerware, metalwork) and other works of unique cultural significance. In addition to exhibiting its collection to the public, the museum conducts related research and conservation projects.
About the KNM

Museum Guide (PDF)

Museum Guide (PDF)
Japanese (2022)
English (2019)

About Visiting the Museum
Where is the Kyoto National Museum located?

The Kyoto National Museum is located at the following address:
527 Chaya-cho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto, Japan 605-0931

The closest train stations are Shichijo Station (Keihan Railway) and Kyoto Station (JR and Kintetsu). For details, visit the Getting Here page.

What are museum hours?

In general, the museum is open 9:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Hours may change during special exhibitions. When visiting the museum during a special exhibition, please check the times on the Special Exhibitions page.

When is the museum closed?

The museum is closed on Mondays and during New Year's holidays. When Monday is a national holiday, the museum remains open on Monday and closes instead the following Tuesday.
In addition, the entire museum occasionally closes for exhibition installations or for other reasons. For details on museum closures, please visit the Hours and Admission page.

How much does admission to the museum cost?

Admission fees vary depending on the exhibition. General admission prices for adults are as follows. Please view the Hours and Admission page for more information.

  • Collection Exhibitions: 700 yen
  • Museum Garden Only (periods when the museum galleries are closed): 300 yen
  • Special Exhibitions: Please check the Special Exhibitions page for admission prices.
Are reservations required for group visits?

Group ticket reservations for exhibitions are generally not necessary, but advanced reservations are required in order to park a microbus or tour bus on the premises. For details, visit the Group Visits page.
There are no group discounts for Collection Exhibitions or for Museum Gardens Only days. For group admission prices during Special Exhibitions, please visit the Special Exhibitions page.
For details, see Group Visits on the museum website.

What about admission for teachers leading school groups or other guides?

Please see Group Visits on the museum website.

Is there parking at the museum?

Paid parking is available near the museum entrance on Shichijo Street. Parking discounts are available for visitors to the museum. Please visit the Getting Here page for more details.

Is there parking for bikes?

Yes. Museum parking is located along Shichijo Street. Bicycles and motorcycles may park for free.

What else is there to see around the museum?

The Higashiyama-Shichijo area around the museum is a historically rich part of Kyoto with many famous temples and shrines. We hope that the museum's artworks will inspire visitors to take a walk and explore nearby cultural sites that have deep ties to the museum's collection.
Map of the Higashiyama-Shichijo area

Is the museum accessible to people in wheelchairs or with strollers?

The exhibition galleries are accessible for visitors in wheelchairs and those with baby strollers. The museum also has a limited number of wheelchairs and strollers for visitors to borrow.
When exhibition galleries are particularly crowded, the museum may ask visitors to refrain from using baby strollers inside the galleries. Our staff can keep your stroller for you while you view the exhibits. We appreciate your cooperation.
Wheelchair accessible toilets and diaper changing stations can be found in the multipurpose restrooms located in on each floor of the Heisei Chishinkan Wing as well as in the South Gate ticketing area and the Garden.
For details, please visit the Accessibility page.

About the Exhibitions
What exhibitions are coming up?

Please check the Exhibitions and Calendar pages for upcoming exhibition information.

What is the difference between “special exhibitions,” “collection exhibitions,”
and “museum gardens only” days?

These are the three general classifications of exhibitions held at the Kyoto National Museum.

  • Special Exhibitions

    These are large-scale loan exhibitions that typically make use of almost all museum galleries in the Heisei Chishinkan Wing. Hours and admission vary depending on the exhibition.

  • Collection Exhibitions

    These are exhibitions of works from the museum's collection, including works owned by the museum and works on long-term loan. Admission for adults is 700 yen.
    Collection exhibitions are often organized by genre and medium in individual galleries dedicated to ceramics, archaeological artifacts, various genres of painting and calligraphy, textiles, metalwork, lacquer, and sculpture.
    Other sub-categories of collection exhibitions include feature exhibitions, in which works of various genres and materials are exhibited together under a common theme, and special viewings, in which works borrowed from external institutions are exhibited alongside objects from the Kyoto National Museum's collection.

    * Collection exhibition admission fees include access to feature exhibitions, special viewings, and all galleries.
    * Collection exhibitions are held in the Heisei Chishinkan Wing galleries but are partially or fully deinstalled for special exhibitions. When special exhibitions are underway, visitors cannot buy a separate ticket for collection exhibitions; all visitors must purchase special exhibition tickets.

  • Museum Gardens Only Days

    During the installation and deinstallation of exhibitions, the Heisei Chishinkan galleries are closed, but the museum gardens remain open. During such times, the public may access the gardens and outdoor exhibits.

Why are the galleries so dark?

Many of the artworks and cultural properties kept at the museum are highly sensitive to environmental changes. In order to prioritize the preservation of these works, the museum uses low levels of lighting and maintains appropriate temperature and humidity levels, even though these conditions may not be ideal for all visitors. We ask visitors for their understanding as we try to protect and preserve these treasures in the best possible condition for future generations.

How often do the objects on view change?

Because many of the traditional materials used for East Asian artworks and cultural properties (including silk and paper) are vulnerable to damage from prolonged exposure to light and other environmental elements, these works cannot be exhibited for long periods of time. Exhibitions of painting and calligraphy are rotated almost monthly, decorative and applied arts are rotated after approximately six weeks, and works of ceramics, sculpture, and archaeological materials may be displayed for approximately three months.
Exhibition information is listed on this website, so please feel free to check what is on view before visiting the museum.

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