Aomori, Japan - April 22 2018: The Aomori Museum of Art houses both temporary and permanent exhibits The museum's permanent collection includes three impossibly large paintings by Marc Chagall

Getty Images

Aomori Museum of Art

Top choice in Aomori Prefecture

Looking like a modernist sculpture, the geometric white facade of the Aomori Museum of Art was designed to blend in with the landscape when blanketed with snow. The permanent collection features works by Aomori icons, including pop artist Yoshitomo Nara (and his 8.5m-tall dog) and master printmaker Munakata Shikō, alongside international artists. The showstopper is four huge ballet backdrops painted by Marc Chagall, which hang on the walls of the gallery's central atrium. Contemporary temporary exhibitions are elegantly staged.

The museum is about 5km west of JR Aomori Station, adjacent to Sannai Maruyama. City buses leaving from stop 6 at the JR station for Menkyō Center stop at Kenritsu-bijyutskan-mae (¥270, 20 minutes), across the road from the museum.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Aomori Prefecture attractions

1. Sannai Maruyama

0.27 MILES

Excavation of this site turned up an astonishing number of intact artefacts from Japan's Jōmon era (10,000 to 2000 years ago), which are on display at the…

2. Nebuta no Ie Wa Rasse

2.37 MILES

Even if you miss the Nebuta festival, you can still gawk at the awesome artisanship of the floats at this well-curated museum on the waterfront. On…

3. ASPAM Building


The observation deck on the 13th floor of Aomori's unmissable A-shaped ASPAM Building on the rejuvenated waterfront offers stellar views over the port,…

4. Hakkōda Ropeway

11.1 MILES

For anyone wanting a taste of the alpine without having to brave the steep ascent, this scenic ropeway whisks you quickly up to the summit of Tamoyachi…

5. Neputa Mura

18.18 MILES

Come here to see some of Hirosaki's huge Neputa festival lanterns and try your hand at the giant taiko (drums). There are also exhibitions of local crafts…

6. Hirosaki-jō

18.59 MILES

At the heart of Hirosaki-kōen lie the ancient remains of this castle, originally constructed in 1611. Rather tragically, only 16 years after it was built…

7. Hirosaki-kōen

18.66 MILES

Perfect for picnicking, this enormous public park has been shaped over the centuries by three castle moats, and landscaped with overhanging cherry trees …

8. Fujita Memorial Garden

18.86 MILES

The former home and garden of the wealthy Fujita family, this beautiful example of a manicured Japanese garden is the second largest in Tōhoku. Meandering…