Cosmo Clock 21
On our third day, our group split up to visit our own point of interests. K and I took the train to Yokahama from Shibuya and it took just under an hour. Our trip today was to visit the Cup Noodle Museum! The closest station to get off is the Minatomirai Station. On our walk towards the museum, we saw the Cosmo Clock 21 which is at the Cosmo World amusement park. It is the world’s largest clock! There are rollercoasters around the ferris wheel as well. Pretty neat and kids seemed excited to be there.
It was a burning hot day, but the views in Yokohama were beautiful. Similar to Odaiba, you see a lot of blue skies and water here. It also lies on the Tokyo Bay as well. Yokohama is actually the second largest city by population in Japan, just after Japan!
An 8 minute walk or so, and you will see a large square building – the Cupnoodles Museum. If you’re lost, just follow children with their parents. They’re most likely going to the same place!
This is definitely a place for kids, since there were more kids than adults. However, if you love cup noodles, you will enjoy your time here! I believe admission was 500 yen for adults. Not too bad.
The museum has 4 floors. The first floor is the gift shop and admission booth. You then take the escalator and will arrive at the Instant Noodles History Cube. Here, it shows all the different instant ramen that exist. It all began with the Chicken Ramen!
I thought it was pretty interesting that by the year 2000, most of the instant ramen were in bowl form. Shows how we are so lazy to even cook noodles in a pot!
Over 3,000 product packages!
Here is Momofuku Ando – the inventor of instant noodles and cup noodles! He was actually Taiwanese, but moved to Japan to work.
Because Japan was suffering from a shortage of food after war, Ando decided to find a way to make sure everyone had food – especially noodles which are dear to heart for the Japanese.
That’s when he created the first pre-cooked instant noodles! It was called Chiken Ramen.
In 1971, he came up with the first Cup Noodle – something that would be even more convenient to eat!
And in 2005, the first Space Ramen was invented!
This whole room basically talked about how the noodles came about. Most of it are pictures with Japanese captions. There is at least one line written in English so you can get a gist of it. However, it’s definitely not very detailed. If you want, you can purchase the audio guide in English or another language at the admission booth. This one was pretty interesting. It showed the consumption of cup noodles by country. Loved how Hong Kong, China came first. The Chinese do love to eat cup noodles since they have such busy lives!
Continue walking and you’ll find a model of Momofuku’s Work Shed. This is a model of the shed that Momofuku worked in and created the first Chicken Ramen.
I guess he let the noodles sit outside to rest.
Very simple tools and equipment.
A pasta roller was already invented I guess?
Looks like a double boiler?
The third floor is where the fun is at! When you purchased your admission on the first floor, they will ask you whether you want to create your own cup noodles. If so, they will provide you with time slots. Choose a time, and they’ll print off a ticket for you. When you arrive at your chosen time slot, you show your ticket to the employees and you can stand in line at the “My Cupnoodles Factory”! To make a cup noodle, it costs 300 yen. I wanted to make more than one, but it said we were only allowed one per person due to huge line ups.
After collecting your cup, you will be directed to tables with markers. Here, you can decorate your cup for as long as you want.
Here is mine! It is the Sapporo Zoo Bear! They advise you to write down the date you made it since you need to eat your noodles within a month.
The front of my cup!
Here are our creations!
While lining up for the next step, we saw the Chicken Ramen Factory in process. Here, you can actually make the Chicken Ramen from kneading the doll to drying it with a hot oil drying method. It looked pretty cool, but I think you need to do advance booking for this as spots are limited. It is 500 yen for adults.
After designing your cups, you can now head over to create your cup noodle. The noodles are already made in advance.
Give your cup to the lady and she will place a noodle under the cup.
Now spin the wheel! The noodles will fall into your cup at the end. I guess this isn’t very necessary, but they want to give some interaction for the kids I guess.
Then you get to select your ingredients! You can choose 1 soup base. There is Chili Tomato, Original Chicken, Seafood, or Curry. For the ingredients, you can choose 4 out of the 12. Some of the choices included green onion, imitation crab, corn, shrimp, egg, pork, narutomaki (cured fish with a chick pattern), cheese, kimchi, and garlic chips. I’m not sure what the others were since it’s all written in Japanese.
Here is mine! I chose the curry base with pork, imitation crab, cheese, and narutomaki. Love the cute little chick pattern! By now, I’ve had a taste of my noodles, and they were very good! It was full of curry flavour! Yummy!
The next step is to place the seal or lid on your cup. The machine will press the seal down.
Then, the lady will take it and put some saran wrap on it.
It goes through a machine to vacuum seal your cup noodles so it maintains freshness.
Going through the vacuum seal machine!
And then it drops out, and there you have it!
My finished product – looking like it came off the shelf!
After that, we went to the fourth floor, where there was a resting balcony outside. When you walk out, you get to see the beautiful bay. Gorgeous!
Yokohama is also known to be one of the major ports now.
Heading back in, we went to the Noodles Bazaar – World Noodles Road.
Outside, they have a brief overview of the different noodles from major countries.
Inside, it’s dimly lit and filled with people, tents, tables and chairs. It’s trying to make you feel like you’re at an Asian night market. The bazaar features 8 varieties of noodles while Momofuku was traveling and searching for ideas for his ramen.
We found the Original Chiken Ramen. I love how they still spell it as Chiken. There is a vending machine next to the stalls and you can order your ramen here. For the Chiken Rame, it is 130 yen.
The Chiken Ramen is seriously a small bowl of ramen! More like for kids. You can finish this in 3 bites! You can only choose two additional ingredients. I chose the kelp and cha-shu (pork). I feel like I’ve never actually had chicken ramen before. I normally get other flavours. The broth was surprisingly quite good, and the noodles were cooked so they were al dente. Not bad, but such a small amount!
K got the Chiken Ramen with cha-shu (pork) and corn.
The museum takes roughly 1.5 hours including making the cup noodles. We were most interested in making the actual noodles than going through the exhibit since it’s catered for the children. We then headed back to the first floor to check out the Gift Shop! Lots of unique cup noodle themed items! We got this set but I have yet to try it. It had some pretty interesting flavours I’ve never seen in Canada!
These were so cool. Japanese pancake stuffed with sweet bean jam, but shaped like cup noodles!
The Cupnoodle Matryoshka is supposed to be simliar to a set of Russian dolls. The container holds the different ramen ingredients. The cup, noodle, tamago, ebi, niku, and negi. Cute!
A cup noodle candle…Wonder what it smells like…
At the base of the stairs, there is a huge cup noodle with the chick!
There is a huge cup noodle statue as well!
After the museum, we decided to head over to World Porter’s. It’s a huge shopping mall with shopping, food, and entertainment. We found a bakery selling these cute ducks! I think they were just bread.
And these bear paws were so cute!
Take the elevator to the top of the shopping mall, and you’ll reach the roof top. Here, you’ll find an outdoor go-kart course as well as a mini golf course! You can also see the Cosmo Clock 21 here and some beautiful views of Yokohama. Definitely worth checking out Yokohama if you have some spare time. We only spent half a day here since we needed to meet our friends back in Tokyo, but there is definitely more to see!
Address: 2-3-4 Shinko, Naka-ku, Yokoham