Japanventures: Part 2 – Ikaho Toy, Doll & Car Museum


Tons of Showa era toys are showered all through the “tunnels” in the museum.   Original Ultraman toys, robots and random vintage vinyls are all displayed in masses.  There’s even a room dedicated to WWE style wrestling, where of course the Japanese wrestlers have dominated the sport.  Eventually when you are so hungry to look at some cars that you are ready to punch the next teddy bear you see in the face, a glimmer of hope emerges from down the hallway.  Vintage car posters are becoming more frequent and then you see the lovely orange elephant ride on toy that lets you know… the cars are coming!

There was quite a large tribute to “Tiger Mask” (Satoru Sayama), a WWF and NWA World Junior Heavyweight Champion.  His alter ego was then associated with a popular comic book character at the time which helped promote the pro wrestlers career.  

I still have no idea how they managed to cram so many small cars into one hallway but all of the cars are shown, “stacked” on top of each other, with the occasional diorama to break up the density.  You can tell the attention to detail in this corridor as all the hub caps are facing vertical and of the cars are in immaculate condition.  The cars shown in this hallway seem to be classic “kei” cars until you get to the Mini section, of which the museum is exceptionally proud.  It seems to be that the original Mini Coopers are extremely popular in Japan right now at least in the area that I live in as I see them driving around on the daily.


So many fender mirrors!
Not surprising that there would be a Subaru 360 lurking in this museum.  The Subaru plant and Visitor center is less than an hour away from this museum in Ota City, Gunma. 

After the Mini car madness, you hit a fork in the museum where you can continue upstairs to view the Yokota car collection or make a right into the gift shop that has been so conveniently adorned with Initial D memorabilia ranging from candies to toy cars and everything in between.  If you miss the stairs to the car collection, there is no other way to get to it without backtracking through the entire museum maze again, and let’s face it… no one needs that kind of sensory overload twice in one day. 

Walking up the unusually sterile stairs there is a small window on a landing.  Looking directly in it’s easy to miss but once you're closer and you look down to the bottom floor, there’s a Toyota 2000GT sitting on a car lift with a mannequin mechanic working on the car.  Yup, I’m in the right place.  Continuing up the stairs, the first display is of the infamous ?????? (Fujiwara Tofu Shop) and Takumi’s Hachiroku. Unfortunately, the actual tofu shop has long been out of business but the original owners donated the store front as a memory of the once real tofu shop complete with cooking utensils from when the tofu restaurant existed.  This second floor is home to a plethora of old 60s and 70s Japanese touring cars that make you yearn for a time in history where cars were built to last and quirky styling cues were welcomed with open arms.


The first thing as soon as you get up the stairs is this display set up from Initial D.  Complete with actual kitchen utensils and store front from the once real tofu shop that was located near by.


    1. I don’t know if they have a website or an email, but here’s their address and phone number!

      Yokota Kyodo Museum
      474 Shimoyokota
      Okuizumo-cho, Nita-gun
      Shimane Prefecture 699-1822
      Tel: 0854 52 1112

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