We often recommend products we like. If you buy anything via links on our site, we may earn a small commission.
Outside of Japan, we enter our favorite boring coffee shop, only to order the same thing as we did yesterday and sit at the same, dull table. What if we could turn our whole routine upside-down?
That’s what Japan has done—quirky themed cafes have popped up all over the country, giving its guests a unique experience during every visit. There’s no doubt that you’ll want to visit the following themed Japanese cafes.
The Kawaii Monster Cafe aims to embody the colorful Harajuku culture in one restaurant. That’s why the cafe is filled with neon colors, life-sized sculptures, and a wait staff that looks like they’re from another dimension.
The food tastes and looks just as unique as its surroundings. Choose from a variety of kooky cocktails, and pair that with a wild entree like the rainbow spaghetti or chocolate chicken.
Have you ever wanted to feel like a star in a ninja movie? Once you enter Ninja Akasaka, you’ll get the ninja experience that you’ve always dreamed of.
On your way to the ninja village, you’ll venture through a dark, mazelike path that leads to your table. The entertainment doesn’t stop there—your ninja waitstaff will have some cool tricks to show you while you eat your ninja-themed food.
Japan popularized cat cafes, which influenced even more cat cafes to open up around the world. However, cat cafes aren’t the only animal-themed restaurant in Japan—it’s also home to hedgehog cafes.
Who doesn’t want to relax and pet hedgehogs? Here, you can hold and play with these adorable creatures. If you fall in love with one, you can even adopt it.
4. Gundam Cafe
For any Gundam fan, visiting Japan’s Gundam Cafe is a fantasy. A life-sized Gundam will greet you outside of the restaurant, making you feel small in comparison. Inside the futuristic cafe, you can chow down on mech-themed food, and indulge on lattes decorated with characters from the Gundam series.
After you’re done eating, you can head to the gift shop that’s filled with plenty of collectibles and Gunpla models. The Gundam Cafe is also one of the only restaurants that makes a trip to the bathroom exciting. Press the button on the bathroom wall, and you’ll suddenly get transported to the inside of a mech.
5. The Lockup
Horror and escape room fans will love The Lockup, a creepy, prison-themed restaurant. The staff will lead you to a prison cell, where you’ll spend your dinner drinking cocktails from test tubes and eating eyeball-covered food.
At some points during your meal, you might notice the lights go out. Prepare yourself for a scare—the staff will dash around the restaurant, trying to frighten the “prisoners” in each cell.
You may have heard of the Moomins, a family of fictional characters originally found in a Finnish comic strip for kids. These adorable hippo-like creatures now have their own restaurant in Japan, as well as South Korea. The Moomin Cafe and Bakery promotes togetherness—whether you come alone or with friends, a Moomin character will keep you company.
The staff will seat a Moomin plush doll in a seat next to you as you eat. While it may seem childish, it has definitely made an impact on lonely customers. In addition, the menu features delicious European specialties that you can eat in a quaint, welcoming environment.
7. Vampire Cafe
Don’t worry, japan’s Vampire Cafe doesn’t feature any sparkling vampires. This delightfully dreary cafe is filled with red, black, and bloodstained furniture that gives you a goth vibe. You’ll sit behind a velvet curtain, as you wait for your vampire host to take your order.
Aside from the impressive environment, the food also suits the chilling theme. Dine on devilish food such as “Van Helsing’s dead body” (steak), or even the “Dead Forest” (salad).
8. Pokémon Cafe
The Pokémon Cafe sits inside the Pokémon Center, a gift shop for all things related to the Pokémon franchise. The cafe is outfitted with statues of your favorite Pokémon, and has the most adorable Pokémon-themed food.
Order an Eevee teriyaki chicken burger, and you’ll get a burger patty in between a bun that resembles Eevee. Similarly, the Pikachu curry features a smiling Pikachu face made from rice.
Are You Planning Your Trip Yet?
These creative cafes are yet another reason why you should visit Japan. They immerse you in their environment, and make you feel as if you’re in a different universe.
Not only does Japan have amazing themed restaurants, but they also have awesome arcade games. We especially wish that these Japanese arcade games would come to the West!