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Ryōgoku Kokugikan, Sumida

4.4
#30 of 859 in Sightseeing in Tokyo
Tourist Spot Arena / Stadium
Experience the blend of Japan's culture and athleticism at Ryōgoku Kokugikan, a venue for the national sport of sumo wrestling. The complex seats 13,000 people and hosts annual "honbasho," or sumo tournaments, including the Hatsu (New Year) in January, the Natsu (summer) in May, and the Aki (fall) in September. Besides sumo, the venue also hosts indoor events such as boxing, pro wrestling, and music concerts. Stop by to visit the onsite museum to learn about sumo's history and view color prints, wrestlers' aprons, and other temporary exhibitions. Pick up some sumo-themed souvenirs at the gift shop. Use our Tokyo trip generator to add Ryōgoku Kokugikan and other attractions to your Tokyo vacation plans.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
653 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Already coming out of the subway station at Ryogoku you can taste the air of sumo wrestlers are famous walls wall murals, the imprint of their hands with the autographs and measures of their tonnage to the wall on which to confront, then cross the road you arrive at the stadium, and disappointment is closed only open the gift shop. I understand that not always there are meetings or just let go as is inside without having to go around to empty it would be nice to also charge.
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  • Sumo tournament takes place 3 times a year in Tokyo. Luckily we were there for the May tournament. The sits for tourists are quite at the top of the arena but you can still see clearly the sumo wrestl...  more »
  • Kokugikan went to visit Nagoya location during weekdays. Panel of 4 was placed before the National Museum. Grand Champion 4 times were considered so rare that good go to Ryogoku Kokugikan on this occasion. There were a lot of Endo on the Panel beside the Grand Champion 4. I'm still is popular among the young.
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Google
  • I spent six days here during the 2017 Natsu basho, and had an absolutely wonderful time. I'm reasonably sure there are no bad seats in the house. This is a small arena by American standards. It seats about 11,000, but many of those seats are on the tightly packed floor where the audience sits on cushions Japanese-style four to a box. You would probably halve its capacity by installing all Western-style seating, as they feature in the upper level. So even in the nosebleed seats, you're not all that far away from the action. Although I never sat in the unreserved seats that are the very farthest back, I sat in both the upper level A and B sections and always had an excellent view. Here are some hints to maximize your sumo viewing pleasure: The action starts at 8 am with the lower division competition. If you think your tolerance for sumo will be limited, don't show up then even though it seems you'll be getting the most for your money. You'll get tired of it well before the most exciting and important bouts of the day, which take place in the upper division starting about 4 pm. But if you *do* show up early, be aware that they don't bother checking tickets for the lower level seating until about 1 pm. That means you can just walk into the lower section and watch from very close-up until the real seat holders come in. The place is practically empty for lower division competition, and most of those present will only be true sumo lovers and quite knowledgeable if you have any questions. Early action may be difficult to follow though, since they only publish the bout schedule (torikumi) for the lower divisions in Japanese. Bout schedules for the upper two divisions -- Juryo and Makuuchi -- are available in English. But don't sit in on the green cushions. Those are for sumo stable supporters, and it will be very noticeable that you don't belong. It might seem more desirable to sit up front all the time, but unless you're used to sitting Japanese style it can get very uncomfortable after about an hour. I'd recommend section A arena-style seating if you can get it. In common with arenas everywhere in the world, you pay a premium for food and drink. But it's not as much of a premium as I've experienced at, for instance, NBA games, so it's not as bad as you might expect, and the food is actually pretty good. However, if you want beer I recommend buying cans rather than draft as it's a better value. Canned beer can be had at any stand where they also sell bento boxes.
  • Worth your bother as a first-timer - and the kids go nuts for their sumo heroes. But, beware the sweet and salty dried seafood snacks - off-the-charts bad :0
  • It was a great experience. This was the first time that I saw live sumo tournament.
  • Second time hitting the January basho here and it's always a blast. It's an older facility but you won't notice once the wrestling begins. A little tough with a stroller (hey kids like sumo, too!) but there is a stroller parking area on the second floor and some lockers outside the east and north entrances (although they were all taken when we arrived mid afternoon). We'll be back!
  • What a fun place! No need to come with a tour, just get here early morning and buy your tickets same day. We had lots of fun here. Very cool day out

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