Tokyo for otakus- the complete guide
- In: Sightseeing and Experiences
- Tags: Tokyo,anime,manga
This is a guide to all the anime, manga and gaming related Shopping, Museums, Theme Parks and Cafes found in Tokyo. The nearest train stations are listed beside the location. For more information on the locations, opening hours and closing days, click on the links provided! The hours provided refer to weekday hours, most businesses are open for slightly longer hours on weekends.
These are the main places to visit in order to find merchandise and all things geeky.
Akihabara (Akihabara Station)Although Akihabara had initially become famous for electronics, this shopping district now stands as the capital of anime, manga and gaming. Some shops you can't miss are:
Animate- Japan’s largest retail chain for anime goods. Akihabara has two branches. Hours- 10:00 to 21:00
Lashinbang- second hand anime goods store with cheaper prices. The Akihabara branch is the largest outlet in Japan. Hours- 11:00 to 21:00
Gamers- carries the latest magazines, CDs, manga, character goods and voice actor goods. Hours- 09:00 to 22:00
Don Quijote- Discount store where you can buy maid and cosplay items. Hours- 09:00 to 17:00
Kotobukiya- Entire sections are dedicated to specific anime series' and games' merchandise. Hours- 10:00 to 20:00Arcades- Club Sega, Adores and Gigo are all very popular for claw machines, video games and purikura. Just look for the Sega logo. Most arcade hours- 10:00 to 24:00.
Super Potato is a special arcade where entire floors are dedicated to retro games. Hours- 11:00 to 20:00
Mandarake stores, Bic camera (more on these below.)
Ikebukuro (Ikebukuro Station)Ikebukuro is home to Sunshine City and Otome road, which is commonly referred to as Akihabara for women, due to shops and items catered for female fans. Shops in Sunshine city you can't miss: Pokemon centre- the largest Pokemon centre in Japan. Has limited edition items. Hours- 10:00 to 20:00
Sanrio Vivitix- filled with Sanrio characters' merchandise, including Hello Kitty and Gudetama. Hours- 10:00 to 20:00
Donguri Republic- Studio Ghibli's official merchandise shop. Sells items related to the iconic Ghibli characters. Hours- 10:00 to 20:00
Shops in Ikebukuro you can't miss:
K books- Each store specialises in specific goods (voice actor/ cosplay/ doujins). Hours- 11:00 to 20:00
Bic camera- Department store with everything from electronics to gaming and anime CDs. Outlets can be found across Japan. Hours 10:00 to 22:00
Animate, Sega arcade and Lashinbang Ikebukuro Branches (see above for more information)
Mandarake stores (more on this below.)
Nakano Broadway (Nakano Station)This shopping complex is famous for its many stores selling anime and idol goods, inlcuding more than a dozen Mandarake stores, which specialize in used anime and gaming related goods. Each store specialises in different aspects of otaku culture, such as model cars, idol goods, video games, cosplay items and 3 used manga stores, where comics are in pristine condition. Hours- 12:00 to 20:00
Tokyo Character Street (Tokyo Station)A special shopping street under Tokyo Station that has 21 character shops, with each specialising in cute characters popular within Japan. Hours- 10:00 to 20:30. Some popular shops:
Pokemon store- a smaller version of the Pokemon centres
Rilakkuma store- store specialising in the very popular Rilakkuma bear and his friends
Hello Kitty shop- official Sanrio shop that specialises in everyone's favourite not-cat
Donguri Republic (see above for more information)
Harakuku (Harajuku Station)At the forefront of trendy teen fashion, Harajuku really stands out. Takeshita Street is a great place to find hobby items and cosplay shops. Some shops you can't miss here are:
Kiddy land- merchandise themed around popular characters like Hello Kitty and Rilakkuma. Hours- 11:00 to 21:00
Bodyline- clothing store selling Lolita fashion and accessories. Hours- 11:00 to 20:00
B point- An anime merchandise store that has merchandise of the latest anime. Hour- 10:00 to 19:00
G2?- A favourite of style icon Kyary Pamyu Pamyu that sells vintage fashion. Hours- 12:00 to 20:00
These are the museums and galleries dedicated to anime and Japanese characters. They often have cafes within them that sell themed meals and snacks.
Ghibli museum + Cafe (Mitaka/Kichijoji Station)The Ghibli museum is the hand crafted legacy of the legendary studio Ghibli, which has produced some of the most famous and iconic anime movies of all time. A must see for Ghibli fans!
For information on ticketing, click here. Prior booking is required, and tickets can strictly only be used on date & time booked. I recommend you try your best to buy tickets online instead of Lawson.
Fujiko F Fujiyo museum + cafe (Noborito Station, shuttle bus available from there)Better known as the Doraemon museum, this museum contains a collection of Fujiko F. Fujio's work, including original artwork from the well loved Doraemon series.
For information on ticketing, click here. Prior booking is required, and tickets can strictly only be used on date & time booked. Guides to get them from Lawson are found on the website.
Suginami Animation Studio (Ogikubo Station)This museum covers the history and production of animation in Japan. It offers an insightful look into the industry as a whole, with English audio guides.
This museum is completely free! No reservations are required, unless travelling with a large group. Click here for more information. Hours- 10:00 to 18:00
The Gundam Base Tokyo + cafe (Tokyo Teleport Station)The Gundam Base replaces Gundam front, focusing more on the shop which boasts more than 2000 products. There will be a museum gallery and even a workshop to build your own gunpla!
No admission fee. Opening 19 Aug 2017. Click here (Japanese) for more information. Hours- 10:00 to 21:00
Hasegawa Machiko Art Museum (Sakurashimmachi station)This art museum is dedicated to the creator of the original darling of anime and manga, Sazae San. She resonates with so many in Japan and holds the world record of the longest running animated series.
For information on ticketing click here (Japanese). No prior reservation required. Hours- 10:00 to 17:30
Akatsuka Fujio Kaikan (Ome station)A little far but still in Tokyo! This museum pays homage to the legendary Akatsuka Fujio, known as the gag manga king. He is most well known for Osomatsu Kun and Tensai Bakabon.
For information on ticketing, click here (Japanese). No prior reservation required. Hours- 10:00 to 17:00
Theme parks with games and rides dedicated to anime and Japanese characters. These parks often have cafes with themed meals.
J world + cafe (Ikebukuro Station)J world is an indoor theme park based on extremely popular Shounen Jump series. The park is divided into sections dedicated to each series, and there are plenty of photo opportunities and games.
For information on ticketing, click here. No prior booking is required. Hours- 10:00 to 22:00
Namja town (Ikebukuro Station)Although there are games, this is more of a food park, with a gyoza stadium and a dessert yokocho. Namja town often has collaborative events with popular anime featuring themed food and merchandise for limited time periods.
To check for anime events click here (Japanese). For ticketing information click here. Hours- 10:00 to 22:00
Sanrio Puroland + cafe (Tama center station)A theme park with musicals, rides, restaurants and gift shops all decorated with your favourite Sanrio characters. This one is not to be missed if you're a fan of the cute Sanrio characters.
For ticketing information, click here. No prior booking required. Hours- 09:45 to 18:00
One piece tower + cafe (Akabanebashi Station)A celebration of the most popular manga in Japan, the one piece tower has a similar concept to J world, with lots of photo opportunities and themed food. There is also a live show.
For information on ticketing, click here. No prior booking is required. Hours- 10:00 to 22:00
Tokyo Joypolis (Tokyo Teleport Station)A theme park filled with arcades, thrill rides and VR attractions owned by Sega. Rides include Initial D driving simulator, a Sonic racing game and a roller coaster combined with a music game.
For ticketing information, click here. No prior booking required. Hours- 10:00 to 22:00
Besides the cafes listed above, here are some more cafes not within a park or museum.
Gundam Wing cafe (Akihabara station)If you're a fan of mechs, this is the place to go! All the food and decor is inspired by the hugely successful Gundam franchise. Both set meals and a la carte options are available.
For more information click here. Hours- 10:00 to 21:00
Animax cafe (Suehirocho station)This is an anime themed cafe owned by the anime channel Animax. The staff are all aspiring voice actors and musicians. Sometimes on weekends, there even are actual voice actor and anime music performances (Reservations reccomended)!
Click here (Japanese) for more information. Reservations can be made but are not required. Hours- 12:00 to 21:00
Animate Cafes (various locations)The animate cafes regularly change their menus based on their on going collaborations. Past collaborations include Attack on Titan and My Hero Academia.
Click here (Japanese) for information on their on going collaborations and locations.
Cafe de miki (Tokyo Teleport station)Sanrio has remained immensely popularity all over Asia, and this cafe pays tribute to the one that started it all- Hello Kitty. The cafe has a British style and serves sweet dishes like pancakes.
For more information click here (Japanese). Hours- 10:00 to 21:00
Pompompurin cafe (Harajuku Station)Another one of Sanrio's cute character cafes, the pompompurin cafe is extremely popular. It serves both Savoury dishes and sweet desserts. Some of the desserts even come with a free souvenir mug!
For more information click here (Japanese). Hours- 11:00 to 21:00
Kamen Rider The Diner (Ikebukuro Station)A restaurant dedicated to the cult classic series featuring a grasshopper inspired motorcycle riding hero. Both desserts and meals are available. There are also official Kamen Rider gachapon.
For more information click here. Reservations can be made but are not required. Hours- 11:30 to 22:00
Eorzea cafe (Akihabara Station)Gamers, take note! This cafe is based on Final Fantasy XIV. There is a monster menu, primal menu, job class menu and character menu. You also receive a stamp card which when filled can be exchanged for merchandise.
Getting tickets (yes, you need a ticket in advance) is a bit tricky because you need to navigate through Japanese webpages/ Lawson in Japan. Here's a guide to help you, and information from their website.
8bit cafe (Shinjuku Sanchome Station)This cafe is a blast from the past with retro game cassettes, consoles and even books on game strategies. You can play vintage games and Nintendo classics while having drinks and snacks.
For more information click here. Hours- 18:00 to 00:00
Whew, we're finally done! While it's virtually impossible to cover everything, this pretty much covers most of the places made for those who enjoy gaming, manga and anime. I hope this guide is useful for your planning!