Anyone heard of the Moomin comic strip? I hadn't either, but apparently it is a popular Finnish comic strip/book series that follows the adventures of the Moomin family (who have an hippopotamus-like appearance), in Moominvalley.
So, leave it to the Japanese, to have reconstructed their own Moominvalley, to pay homage to this series. The girls couldn't wait to explore!
Here is the map of Moominvalley. Isn't it idyllic?
The Moomin's main residence was darling, inside and out.
We entered into a large room that served as the living room, with an awesome curved staircase.
The vaulted ceiling in the main room was incredible. I couldn't get over the woodwork of this place!
There were lots of plaques in each room, which I am assuming told about the lives of the Moomin's.
Lots of cute doorways, perfectly cut for kids.
And great, whimsical windows, too.
The attention to detail in this house, was amazing. Even under the stairs, were what the girls called "fairy rooms." (Look closely and you can see tiny furniture.)
The "fairy rooms" were a huge hit with all the girls.
There were even tiny belongings to look at.
This bed was about the size of a Barbie.
Also, very small bunk beds, and a tent? Not sure what the tent was for, but the girls had a marvelous time imagining scenarios for the fairies and what they believed their lives were like.
We loved all of the hideouts, and secret spots, too.
Here are the adventurers; Kiki, Jaden, Kiley, Eva and Ella.
The basement was a big open room, that the girls called the "dance room", and immediately began their own choreography.
And a darling door, of course!
You could even walk outside to a tiny terrace and take in the view. I loved the curved staircase.
While "taking in the view", I saw a Japanese school group heading our way. We were so happy that we got an early start and had the house completely to ourselves the entire time. A rarity in Japan!
See how Japanese kindergartener's organize their shoes? Amazing!
The second building was a "shrine"of sorts, to the Moomin cartoon strip, which included a large room of artifacts. Kind of odd, but apparently they really love the Moomin's!
There was a really cute library area, as well.
The books were all in Japanese, but it's still fun to look.
The grounds were just as fun as the house. The girls loved hiking to this bridge, which also had little windows perfect for spying.
The best adventures for Ella always include a tree to climb!
There were also some random wooden structures which provided great "look out" spots.
And the blue gazebo at the pond was a hit!
Always on the lookout for koi. And in Japan, they're usually not hard to find.
Such a fun adventure today, full of day dreaming and scenario making. The girls were dying to live here. And, so was I!
***A side note- A few days later, the girls and I were at the mall and passed a store selling very nice ladies handbags. The prominent display at the front of the store was the Moomin Collection. So, apparently Moomin fever is not limited only to children's playgrounds. So random...so Japanese!