The art of Japanese comics transcends culture and nationality. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that the Kyoto International Manga Museum is popular with both locals and travelers alike.

Built into a repurposed elementary school, this is one of the most impressive manga repositories in the world. There are more than 300,000 titles in its collection, with around 50,000 available to visitors at any given time. For most patrons, the museum acts more like a library, but you don't have to be a seasoned comics collector to enjoy a visit. There's something for everyone, with events, workshops, performances and rotating exhibits throughout the year.

Once inside, parents of little ones should head to the Children's Library, a shoes-off space on the first floor with around 3,000 picture books to peruse. Nursing and diaper-changing facilities are right around the corner. The grassy lawn is just outside, so when the weather is nice there's always a place to run around.