Most Singaporeans are used to the idea of cat cafes—but when it comes to themed cafes, Singapore is not quite at Japan’s level yet.
Did you know that you can cuddle up to a stranger, play with an owl and even have vampires serving you in a cafe? Sounds crazy but these thematic cafes really do exist.
From Alice In Wonderland Cafes, Owl Cafes, Robot Restaurant to Penguin Cafes, here are 10 themed cafes in Japan that you should check out the next time you visit the country.
#1 ALICE IN WONDERLAND CAFE
Fans of Alice in Wonderland will be thrilled to dine in Japan’s Alice in Wonderland-themed cafes. There are such unique cafes in Ginza and Shinjuku districts of Tokyo, where visitors get to immerse themselves in the highly acclaimed novel.
Building 3 B1 171-0022 Tokyo Toshima-ku
2-16-8 Minami-Ikebukuro Fujikyu building east
Mon to Sat: 5pm – 11pm
Sun: 5pm – 12am
#2 CUDDLE CAFE
A cuddle cafe might sound bizarre, but it is seriously what it is. Located in Tokyo’s quirky electronics district, Akihabara, customers basically pay a fee to sleep in the arms of a pretty girl or receive a foot massage. Their eccentric services range from 20 minutes to 7 hours.
KN Building 3F, 2-11 Sakumacho, Chiyoda-ku
Akihabara, Tokyo, Japan
#3 FISHING RESTAURANT
Tokyo’s Fishing Restaurant operates on a simple yet fascinating philosophy—you eat what you fish. Visitors are given the option of letting the waiter fish for them, or they could catch fishes on their own. These fishing restaurants can be found across Japan in areas including Kyushu, Kanto, Kansai and Tokai.
High Manten Jinnan Building B1F,
Mon to Fri: 11.30am – 2.30pm, 5pm – 11pm
Sat & Sun: 4pm – 11pm
#4 MAID CAFES
Maid cafes are the epitome of quirkiness. Waitresses are dressed like maids and the dishes served here are inherently cutesy. Think heart-shaped omelettes served by ‘kawaii’ cosplay girls. These maid cafes have different themes such as pop idols or Warring States Period.
Mitsuwa Building 4F-7F, Soto-Kanda 1-11-4, Chiyoda-ku
Tel: +81 (0)3 3526 3131
#5 NINJA CAFES
If you have always dreamt of meeting a ninja, then pay a special trip to Tokyo’s Ninja Cafe. The interiors of this cafe are designed to mimic an ancient Japanese castle and waiters are dressed up as ninjas to complete your dining experience. A meal here is far from cheap, but the experience is certainly worthwhile for those who love ninjas.
Tokyu plaza Akasaka 1F
2-14-3, Nagatacho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Tel: +81 03-5157-3936
#6 OWL CAFES
Over at Tokyo’s Akiba Fukurou Cafe, patrons get to interact with an owl for a period of one hour. Reservations are highly recommended and it costs ¥1,500 / S$16.65 for an entrance fee which includes a soft drink of your choice. Flash photography and disturbing of sleeping birds are prohibited.
7 Kanda Neribeicho, Chiyoda
Tel: +81 3-6206-4095
Mon, Wed to Fri: 12pm – 6pm
Sat & Sun: 12pm – 7pm
(Closed on Tuesdays)
#7 PENGUIN CAFES
Penguin cafes are very popular and one can find several of such themed cafes and even bars across Japan. The concept lies in the idea where you can watch penguins behind glass doors. Depending on the company, some establishments allow you to interact with these creatures during feeding times.
COSMY1 1st Floor, 2-38-2 Ikebukuro,
Toshima-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Tel: +81 03 5927 1310
Daily: 6pm – 4am
#8 REPTILE CAFE
Move over, furry cutesy animals. Reptile Cafes are now catering to people who love cold-blooded creatures such as snakes and other scaly reptiles. Customers too must accept the fact that Reptile Cafes are not held responsible if they were to get bitten. Not one for the faint-hearted, indeed.
Sampo Sogo building 8F, 6-5-6 Jingumae,
Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Tel: +81 3-6427-9912
Mon, Wed to Sun: 11am – 8pm
(Closed on Tuesdays)
#9 ROBOT RESTAURANT
Tokyo’s Robot Restaurant is situated within a six-minute walk from Shinjuku Station and the dining establishment is unmistakable. Expect a loud and vibrant atmosphere featuring a multi-coloured dance floor, twirling disco balls and fembots! It is best to book online to avoid disappointment.
1-7-1 Kabukicho Shinjuku-ku
Daily: 3.30pm – 11.30pm
#10 VAMPIRE CAFE
Tokyo’s Vampire Cafe has been in operations since a decade ago and it is designed to reflect Dracula’s castle. Each host’s dramatic make up and outfit make them look like gothic lolitas and of course, every single dish is named after a vampire. Visitors can anticipate bizarre drinks such as The Virgin’s Fresh Blood.
La Paix Building 7F 6-7-6 Ginza Chuou-Ku
Tel: +81 03-3289-5360
Daily: 5pm – 11pm