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Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21 21 Design Sight

Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21_21 Design Sight Roppongi

Walking into the Doboku: Civil Engineering exhibition at 21_21 Design Sight, was not a quiet, boring experience. From the moment you enter the exhibition your senses are alert to the varying sounds of construction, videos streaming on walls and fascinating objects to be touched, walked into and climbed through. Doboku, a Japanese word for “civil Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21_21 Design Sightengineering,” is written with two Chinese characters, “do 土” (earth/soil) and “boku 木” (wood). But this exhibition proves it to be so much more. Interactive, fun but full of information presented in an approachable way, the environment created here is vibrant and full of energy.

Doboku: Civil Engineering,  21_21 Design Sight

You can walk through a cascading waterfall of light and build your own dam re-routing the ‘water’ with your body, you can build mountains or dig craters around a building by hand with sand that changes colour depending on your body heat. You can even climb into a manhole. There is a big scale model of Shibuya Station the five levels under ground and the three levels above ground complete with Shibuya Crossing, videos showing the Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21 21 Design SightDoboku: Civil Engineering, 21 21 Design Sightconstruction of the longest tunnels in the world as well as big bubbles that demonstrate volume and how arches are constructed. All in all, it will be a good place to spend a few hours and the children can zoom around trying everything with no constraints. All signage is in both English and Japanese so, it is a real opportunity for the whole family to get the complete experience.

Doboku: Civil Engineering

Be sure to check out the, ‘Dam and Curry and Me,’ exhibit that is quintessentially Japanese as it displays varying types of fake food rice dams holding back curry sauces. After the exhibition you can take the family to Delhi (Galleria B1) for the ‘Dum chicken dam curry’ or to Grill & Wine Genie’s Tokyo (Plaza 1F) for the three different types of “Ginza Platinum Dam Curry” to Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21 21 Design Sightkeep the experience going.

Normally closed on Tuesdays, ‘Doboku’ is holding a special opening day on August 23, 2016 for families with children. Guardians accompanying children in junior high or younger will have a reduced admission rate of 500yen. Additionally, the Suntory Museum of Art (Galleria 3F) in conjunction with the Musee d’Orsay Emile Galle, is also offering a special summer vacation event, “Children’s Museum: Everything Open All Day!” Children who are junior high age or younger and their guardians will be granted free admission on the same day.

IMG_2424Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21_21 Design Sight Details

Exhibit Dates: June 24, 2016 – September 25, 2016
Hours: 10:00 – 19:00 (last entry 18:30), Closed Tuesday (except August 23rd – 10:00-17:00 with last entry at 16:30)
Address: 9-7-6 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Access: 5 min walk from exit to Tokyo Midtown Roppongi station on the Toei Oedo line, Exit 6 Roppongi station on the Tokyo metro Hibiya Line and Exit 3 Nogizaka station on the Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line
Phone: 03-3475-2121
Website:  www.2121designsight.jp
Admission: General ¥1,100 / University Student ¥800 / High School Student ¥500 / Junior High School Student and under may enter for free
*¥200 discount for a group of over 15 people
*With a certification of disability, admission is free as well as that of an accompanying care-giver.Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21 21 Design Sight Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21 21 Design Sight

Doboku: Civil Engineering, 21_21 Design Sight


This article was written by Best Living Japan contributorKimberley Wright. Kimberley is a mother, and 5 year Japan resident. Kimberley is a professional journalist having work for over 15 years for various global newspapers and publication. We hope you enjoy!


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