The Cup Noodles Museum is a popular museum in the Minato Mirai district of Yokohama that is dedicated to the history of instant noodles and the story of their inventor Momofuku Ando.
Momofuku Ando (1910 – 2007) was an inventor and entrepreneur who became famous both as the founder of the Nissin Foods company and as the inventor of instant noodles. His most famous brand, Cup Noodles, is now a popular snack all over the world and has inspired many other companies to create similar products. Ando developed the first instant noodle product after a full year of experimentation in a wooden shed behind his home. Having perfected his flash-frying method he marketed his original brand of Chicken Ramen on August 25th, 1958. These flavored noodles which could be stored for a long time and made ready to eat by simply adding boiling water were an instant success. Chicken Ramen was followed in 1971 by the invention of Cup Noodles: instant noodles sold in a convenient cup-shaped package; and in 2005 by the creation of Space Ramen that Ando designed so that astronauts could easily eat noodles in zero-gravity conditions.
The museum celebrates Ando’s creativity with a mixture of physical exhibits, CG animations, and a recreation of the wooden workshop where he designed his first product, Chicken Ramen.
Exhibitions & Attractions
The Cup Noodles Museum is a family-oriented museum with bright, playful interactive displays and activities that are designed to stimulate the imagination of young minds. Below are some of the chief attractions:
Chicken Ramen Factory: This is a 90-minute workshop in which participants can experience the whole process of making instant ramen noodles. After the noodles are made you can take them home to eat. This workshop can be enjoyed by anyone over the age of 6. As there are a limited number of workshops each day, they require an advance reservation.
My Cup Noodles Factory: This is a 45-minute workshop in which participants design their own Cup Noodles packaging and taste combination. If you wish to join this workshop, pick up a numbered ticket at the first floor entrance.
Cup Noodles Park: This is a playground for children aged between 3 and 12 in which an obstacle course mimics the progress of noodles through a noodle factory
Instant Noodles History Cube: This is an impressive and colorful display of over 3,000 noodle packages dating from 1958 to the present day.
Noodles Bazaar – World Noodles Road: This food court mimics an Asian night market and has eight stands selling a variety of international noodles. Here you can buy half-sized bowls of steaming noodles so that you can try many different varieties and flavors. These include pasta from Italy, lagman noodles from Kazahkstan, laksa from Malaysia, mie goreng from Indonesia, and pho from Vietnam. Drinks and desserts are also available.
Cup Noodles Marble Coaster: This is a marble run display in which 4,000 bright red marbles travel at speed through a complex course designed to resemble a noodle factory.
Coin lockers are located on the first floor by the entrance.
A multilingual audio guidance system for the exhibits is available in English, Chinese, and Korean and can be borrowed for a deposit of 2,000 yen.
This museum has a barrier-free design which makes it accessible for wheelchair users. Wheelchairs can be borrowed from the first floor ticket counter.
There is a nursing room on the 1st floor for mothers with infants which has a diaper changing table and equipment for heating baby formula.
The museum shop on the first floor stocks a wide range of original noodle-themed souvenirs and accessories including cookies, sweet manju buns, cell phone straps, and stationary.
The Cup Noodles Museum is a 9 minute walk from Minato Mirai Station on the Minatomirai Subway Line and 17 minutes from Sakuragicho Station on the JR Negishi Line and Yokohama Municipal Subway Blue Line. This location is also convenient for the Cosmoworld amusement park and the Akarenga (Red Brick Warehous) commercial complex. Here is a map showing the museum’s location.
Opening Hours: 10.00 – 18.00 (Last entry: 17.00)
Closed: Tuesdays (open if Tuesday is a national holiday and closed the following day instead). Also closed for the year-end and New Year holidays.
Adults: 500 yen
Children (High school age and younger): Free
The following attractions require an additional fee: Chicken Ramen Factory (Adults: 800 yen, elementary school age children: 500 yen), My Cup Noodles Factory (400 yen per cup), Cup Noodles Park (400 yen), Noodles Bazaar (individual prices listed on the menu).
* Because of the Covid-19 pandemic it is currently necessary to buy advance tickets for this museum at a Lawson convenience store. For full details please visit the Cup Noodles Museum website.
Article and original photos by Michael Lambe. All rights reserved.