Technically this should have been part of the Tokyo story, but I think this visit deserved it's own post. It took some doing, and I very much overpaid, but I secured a timed ticket to the adorable Ghibli Museum! Signs like the one below are peppered all over the town of Mitaka so you always know just how far away you are from the museum, but don't try to buy tickets there, there won't be any. Tickets must all be purchased via an agent ahead of time and only a certain number of people are allowed in every 4 hours. Pictures were not allowed inside the building, but I was able to sneak a few in. Movie references can be found in every nook and cranny of the house, including the rooftop garden and tiny doors that serve no apparent purpose.
Once you're in, there's a small theater that you can go into once to watch a short film produced by the studio and not widely available. I got to see the origin story of the catbus, or the story of the kittenbus. While there were no subtitles and I don't speak Japanese, it was still fairly self explanatory and adorable.
Not a real studio, the room was filled with reference materials and sketches that
were actually used in the production of the movies.
Happy water drain at the foot of a water well
Gorgeous stained glass in every window, this one of Kiki's Delivery Service
A small gated nook guards a lavish mural
Details are absolutely everywhere! Is that a totoro owl? I think so.