Akihabara is a district in Tokyo, also known as the Electric Town. But amongst the numerous electronics store there is also a massive otaku culture. Contrasting to when I visited Ikebukuro, as soon as I stepped into Akihbara I knew this was Otaku heaven. All around me were pictures of anime characters, merchandise stores lined the streets and Akihabara’s famous maids greeted me and invited me to their cafes. I loved Akihabara, I was initially a little hesitant to go. I had heard that it was becoming too touristy, much like Harajuku. But I found it to be the perfect mixture of Japanese anime culture and tourist fans.
My first goal in Akihabara was to find some food! A quick google search recommended a store called ‘Marugo Tonkatsu’, and lemme say, Google got it right! The restaurant is right at the edge of a major laneway, it’s traditional feel almost as odds with the modern town. They are quite busy, and unfortunately do not have a waiting area. But the owner was so sweet, he got me an umbrella to block the sun as I waited for a seat. Once I was seated, I ordered the Katsu set meal for about 1600 yen. The way that they do the katsu here is a very special method. It was mouth watering, I don’t think I’ve ever had such good katsu! With the set meal I also got some pickles, rice and some miso soup. I really recommend checking this restaurant out – friendly staff, great food and a real authentic experience!
As you have probably seen in my other posts, gacha are quite popular in Japan. In Akihabara there are entire stores dedicated to gatcha machines. One such one is called Gacha Kaikan. The store houses floor to ceiling gacha machines, varying from anime to some which are just strange. If you are a fan of gachas I recommend saving your coins for shops like this!
Finally my haul! The first things I picked up were purely by chance, I walked past a store called ‘Surugaya Specialty Store’. I wasn’t planning on buying anything, actually just wanted to enjoy their air conditioning! But I found these two adorable Persona 4 charms and just couldn’t say no! I actually saw these online a while back and really wanted them but couldn’t find them for sale anywhere. Another stroke of good luck, the store was having a sale, and I got 100 yen off the two of them!
My second buy was at the aforementioned Gacha Kaikan, Besides selling Gacha machines they also have a section were people rent glass boxes to sell their old merchandise. I had seen in youtube videos these Madoka Magica soul gem straps, and fell in love with them. However the gacha machines for them are no longer produced. Luckily I found one in these rent boxes! So I managed to snag Madoka’s Soul gem for 200 yen!
My final purchases were at this great store called , which sold a mixture of figurines but focused mainly on One Piece, the Vocaloids and some . After about 10 minutes of digging I managed to grab these 3 figurines of Mami, Homura and Sayaka. Together they came to about 1900 yen! Which is an incredible prince, in Australia they could be anywhere from $20 – $30 each! The Mami and Homura figurines are unopened but the Sayaka one has been, and has a few marks on her. But overall I’m so happy with these, I’m just so sad I couldn’t pick up a Madoka one from the same series too!!
Remember to hit that follow button to keep up to date with my Japan adventures!