Located about 45 minutes away from Tokyo, The Railway Museum offers a day’s worth of railway-themed fun. The museum features 40 real-life train cars–most of which you can walk intoand take a seat. The collection spans over 140 years of railway history, starting with trains dating back to the early Meiji years (1868-1912).
Little ones will have a field day at the park next to the Kids Plaza, where they can test-drive several miniature driving trains along a 300m long track (¥210; participants selected via the Railway Museum Raffle app). Those aged six and above, including adults, can go for the more immersive experience by taking on the various train simulators on the museum’s second floor, including the chance to ‘drive’ the famous Tohoku Shinkansen Hayabusa (¥510; participants selected via the Railway Museum Raffle app). The simulator pods are perfect replicas of the respective trains’ original cockpits, plus the curved screen in front gives the ride an almost 3D feel. You can even don the classic white gloves just like an actual train driver.
When it’s time to fuel up, you could either grab an ekiben (boxed lunch sold at train stations) from the two ekibenya shops on site (from ¥900; train-shaped boxes from ¥1,280), or head over to the restaurant operated by the long-standing dining car operator Nippon Shokudo if you fancy a hearty meal such as beef stew, hamburg steak or beef curry.