Tickets as souvenirs

Most people like to collect a few souvenirs on holiday, and in Japan there’s an almost bewildering selection of things to buy everywhere you go. But don’t overlook the souvenir you’ll be given every place you go: the humble admission ticket.

Japan doesn’t seem to do the humble variety of admission ticket, though. Not to its major tourist attractions, at least; there are, of course, a good many places which have far more mundane tickets, but a lot of places you go will give you little works of art when you hand over your fee.

They’re worth holding on to long after you’ve given away all the chopsticks, wrapped mobile phone danglies up as Christmas presents, and put that yukata in the bottom drawer. And rather than talk about why, I’m going to show you.


Nijō Castle, Kyōto


Ryōan-ji, Kyōto


Tō-ji, Kyōto


Sanjūsangendō, Kyōto

For places with a lower footfall, a more sedate entry ticket can usually be expected, such as this, from Kyōto’s Manga Museum:


The ticket for Kinkakuji, Kyōto, doubles as a fortune charm which you can place at your shrine at home, if you have one:


Finally, I always like to keep bus and train tickets. Mostly because I’m a bit of a transport geek.


This ticket for the bullet train has been paid for with a Japan Rail Pass, which is what the long red stamp says. The tiny little wonky red stamp is proof that the on-train inspector has checked this ticket.

As you can also see, there’s little to worry about with buying a Japanese train ticket. In the above case this is a reserved ticket, meaning I’ve requested and been allocated a specific seat on this train. The date and time of the train, as well as the location of my seat, are clearly printed. No fretting necessary.


This is a day bus pass for Kyōto. The date it’s valid for is printed on the rear of the pass. The pink ring on the front of the pass shows you the limits beyond which the pass isn’t valid, and a map from the bus station will have this information in English. The odds that you’ll want to go beyond this ring by bus are slim.


11 thoughts on “Tickets as souvenirs

  1. I like to save the tickets too, I even saved the subway tickets once. These tickets look lovely and now I want to obtain them as well.

  2. I absolutely agree – admission tickets are an awesome souvenir. Looks like you’ve found some really great ones. Great post, you’re really making me get the itch to see Japan!

  3. I do this too! I still have all my Japan and China ticket stubs, they are stuck on the wall in the spare room, along with maps and pictures from my travels. This is such a lovely post, great idea!

  4. I do this on all my trips! Glad to see plenty of others do it too ha! Once I’m home I make them into collages and then put them in a glass frame to hang on my walls. I just finished my one from my Japan trip the other day actually, although I should stop being slack and actually hang it up haha! Ace post Trudi 🙂

  5. Pingback: That Time I Collated My Travel Tickets | That Time In

  6. Pingback: Ticket stubs and memories | Chinarama

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