Planning a trip to Japan? If Osaka is one of the cities you’re visiting, make sure to do the 2 hour trip to Iga City for a wholesome and educational Ninja Experience. Iga Prefecture, if you didn’t know, is THE origin of Ninja!
“A secret group of Ninja actually existed. Famed as a school of. Ninja who exhibited exceptional skills, they are said to have practiced intelligence based strategies su h as information gathering, analysing the enemy’s strength and diversionary tactics.”
You definitely want to introduce interesting Japanese history to your kids! This is how we homeschool, travelschool, worldschool, unschool or whatever you wanna call it😉
We honestly got lost on our way to Iga because we didn’t get on the right train at one of the stations 🙄 The 2 hour travel time turned into 4 hours (several train changes plus a bus ride) after our boo boos but it was still well worth the trip! You can see a vastly different scene from the industrial looking Osaka on your way to Iga City which me and my family appreciated.
TRAVEL TIP: Make sure you aboard the correct train. Japan is very precise with the timing of their trains so the time of departure is a better indicator than the color or direction of the train itself.
When you get to Ueno Park, head to the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum where you pay for the entrance. It’s just a short hike of about 10minutes. (Shorter if you aren’t carrying any tots with you) We waited only for about 5 minutes in line before entering the “Home of the Ninja”.
A lady wearing a ninja costume ushered us in and showed us the different components of a traditional Ninja house with animated explanations. There were revolting walls, secret trick door, an underground passage, a lookout place and a safe compartment all used by the ninjas during their time.
After the Ninja House, you are directed to the museum where you can see all the different ninja traditions and exhibits (the clothing and gears!!) illustrating the life and wisdom of the Ninja.
You can learn very interesting tidbits about the Ninja if you read from all the exhibits. Thankful they have English translations. Many museums actually do not have them. Loved this one about the cats eye! So informative!
I was pleased to learn that the Ninjas were also very much into strengthening the body and mind. Totally my kinda people 😍
Take your time at the museum unless the Ninja show is about to start then you can rush outside to the stage area and just come back in after the show is over. They’ll allow that, no worries.
You need to pay a separate fee for this before entering the outside arena. You can choose to skip this but I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this show! They practically showed how all the Ninja weapons (real ones!) were used in a comedic fashion. It was definitely the most entertaining non English live show my kids and I have ever seen. Sadly, they didn’t have English translations during the show but we kept up!
It is honestly more appropriate for the older kids, maybe 7 years and up (because there are loud sounds and a firecracker stunt at the very end) but they let me in with my 4 year old and 1 year old anyway!
Photos aren’t allowed to be taken during the show so I tried to sneak one before it started.
Iga-Ryu Ninja Museum
Ueno Park, Marunouchi, Iga City
9am to 5pm
Adults 700¥, Children 400¥
Ninja Show separate fee of 400¥