Upcoming Events


Shiozawa, Hatsuchi

Spring/Summer Exhibition: Stories of Wooden Toys – Let’s go around Seifen, Germany, the town of toys! ~ (second half)


Stories of the Erz region of Germany in wooden toys

The Erz region in eastern Germany has a more than 300-year history in the wooden toy industry. The Erz region originally prospered from the mining industry. However, when the mining industry declined, the woodworking toy industry, which had been a sideline business, began to take off in earnest.
Seifen, in particular, is world famous as a toy town. The town’s main street is lined with toy workshops of meisters, producing high-quality wooden toys such as the “Pipe Doll” and the “Nutcracker.
The subjects of the wooden toys are scenes deeply connected to the lives of the people of the Erz region, such as the mining industry, various occupations, familiar German stories, and traditional events such as Easter.
One of the traditional toys, the “pipe doll,” is rich in motifs of occupations that were rooted in people’s lives, such as “miner,” “toy seller,” and “doctor. In addition, many “nutcrackers” have a crowned king figure. According to one theory, this is because they reflect the image of a king who used to torment the common people in the past. In this way, wooden toys from the Erz region tell us about the lives of the people of that time.
This exhibition introduces various wooden toys made in Seifen, with a focus on the “Pipe Doll” and the “Nutcracker”. We hope that visitors will enjoy the atmosphere of the toy town of Seifen and learn about the history and culture of the Erz region, which is the motif of the toys.

0Exhibition of traditional toys such as “pipe dolls” and quiz to guess the occupation of pipe dolls.
Introduction to the various workshops in 0Zeifen

session (of a legislature)

June 15, 2022 (Wed) – October 3, 2022 (Mon)

Eltz Toy Museum, Karuizawa

Adult: 750 yen
Single theater junior high and high school students: 500 yen
Elementary school students: 350 yen

2-museum set ticket with Karuizawa Museum of Picture Book Art

Adults: 1,400 yen
Junior high and high school students: 900 yen
Elementary school students: 650 yen


Eltz Toy Museum, Karuizawa
*For more information, please go to the tourist facility information at the bottom of the page.

Hours of Operation

May-October: 9:30-17:00
March-April and November-January: 10:00-16:00
Last admission is 30 minutes before closing.

closed day

Closed on Tuesdays, but open every day from July to September.

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