The excellent Kyoto International Manga Museum (wwww.kyotomm.jp) is the world’s first museum entirely devoted to Japanese comics. A joint project between Kyoto City and Seika University, it’s housed in an old elementary school, which has been remodelled to accommodate the huge, all-encompassing collection of manga (see Manga & anime), as well as provide plenty of space for art workshops (held at weekends) to teach the techniques of manga, as well as international conferences to discuss research. The great thing about the museum is that most of the manga can be taken outside and read on the lawn, and there is also a small international section with some English-language manga.

At Kyoto station don’t miss Tezuka Osamu World which continuously shows anime by comic-book genius Tezuka (see Manga & anime), plus that of other artists, in their smallish but comfortable theatre. If you don’t have time to visit the museum devoted to Tezuka at Takarazuka, near Ōsaka, this is a good place to see some of his work. The shop next door is filled with a surprisingly tasteful array of AstroBoy and other Tezuka-associated character goods.

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