When it comes to museums, I like ones that feel real.
Face it, going through a dim room where everything is hiding behind glass, untouched for years, is simply boring. Life was meant to be lived, not watched. Unless you're a reality TV show producer. So museums which just put old things on shelves to be looked at usually don't appeal to me.
Dynamic exhibits, like some of the ones I saw at the Fukushima Prefectural Museum, are better. Looking at the dioramas help me to picture how life was back "then" - whenever "then" was. Art museums with hands-on areas add to the experience; one of the reasons I like modern art museums is that artists use a wider variety of media, sometimes adding tactile or auditory components.Science museums that are more kid-friendly are usually on my itinerary when I go to new cities.
When it comes to history, perhaps the best kind of museum is the open air museum. Getting to explore authentic buildings and settings really helps me imagine I'm back in the past. I've been to a few in Japan: the Edo Tokyo architectural museum, Glover Garden, and Bukeyashiki were all nice. The Abashiri Prison Museum was amazing! But just a bit better is the Meiji Mura open-air architectural museum, located outside Inuyama.
There are six shops, including the main museum shop. A couple of them are specialty shops, including a glass shop and a candy shop. The streetcar, train, and bus can be ridden during the day (sometimes the streetcar and train are out of service). Also, it is possible to rent costumes for a short period for photographs.
Museum Meiji Mura is located outside Inuyama. To get there, take a train to Inuyama (about 30 minutes from Nagoya), then a 20-minute bus ride to the museum (every 20-30 minutes). Admission is a bit high at 1700 yen, but the size and quality of the museum makes well worth every coin. Visitors can take a stroll for a couple hours, but planning to spend several hours and really looking through every building will make this trip really memorable. It's open daily from 9:30 to 17:00 (til 4:00, closed Mondays, November-February).