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Tokyo, Japan

Meguro Parasitological Museum

Meet the world's longest tapeworm in a collection that really gets under your skin 

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Billing itself as the only establishment in the world entirely devoted to parasites, this quirky little museum has become a popular offbeat attraction - and even date spot - in the relatively quiet Meguro neighborhood of Japan's sprawling capital.

The ground floor might seem harmless enough - lights flash on oversize maps of Japan to show where different parasites are present - but go up the stairs and things take a more gruesome turn.

Photographs show the severely distended testicles of the unfortunate human host of a tropical bug. Nearby, a giant herpetological parasite pokes out of a bottled turtle's head. The museum has over 45,000 immersed and prepared parasite specimens in its collection.

But the prize attraction is undoubtedly the world's longest tapeworm - all 8.8 metres of it - accompanied by a rope the same length that you can "play with" to get a real "feel" for its dimensions. The small gift shop sells a cheery range of parasite-themed T-shirts, keyrings, and birthday cards.

Know Before You Go

15 minutes walk from JR Meguro station (a map is available from their website).

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