5 Cool Things to Do in Akihabara
Are you traveling to Tokyo soon? Are you looking for cool things to do in Akihabara? Read more to get some in-depth ideas of one of Tokyo’s most interesting neighborhoods.
Akihabara or, Akiba, is one of Tokyo’s most fascinating districts. It’s also one of my favorites to explore because it’s so weird. This is pretty much where you find a lot of weird Tokyo things to do. Akiba is the scene of Tokyo’s otaku culture, and with that, it’s one of the main districts in Tokyo where you can truly experience this side of its culture.
Akihabara is commonly known as “Electric Town” so anyone with an inner geek and a curious mind is bound to enjoy exploring this side of the city. So here are some quick things to do in Akihabara.
1. Shop at Yodobashi Camera | Essential Things to Do in Akihabara
One of my favorite things to do in Akihabara is to shop at the larger electronics super chains, and my personal favorite is Yodobashi Camera. From the moment you walk into the store, you are hit with its catchy jingle that perfectly sums up the experience.
If you want to experience why Japan is lightyears ahead in the electronics department, wander in here. The photo above is Yodobashi Akiba. You can’t miss it when you head out of the train station.
I can spend three hours wandering around every department, from photography to audio. I once spent nearly three hours testing high-end headphones in the audio department. This was my first introduction to Hi-Res audio, and there was no turning back.
They also carry a vast selection of phone cases with designs you’d never find anywhere else. And of course, if you’re into photography, you can play with tons of cameras and find nearly every piece of photography equipment you can ever need.
2. M’s Pop Life Adult Department Store
One thing not on the typical tourist path is M’s Pop Life Adult Department Store. But it’s definitely one of the more interesting things to do in Akihabara. Only in Japan can you find an entire department store devoted to sex shop items. Let’s just say it’s an experience.
3. AKB48 Theater Donki
Here’s one of AKB48’s most popular songs called 恋するフォーチュンクッキー! Fortune Cookie in Love. Seriously, if this song doesn’t put you in a good mood, something’s wrong! I love the video!! It’s so Tokyo.
One of the must-do things in Akihabara is to check out its most famous band. If you’ve never experienced the world of J-Pop before, now’s your chance. AKB48 is a phenomenon of sorts. It’s an all-girls pop band of over 130 members, and for an extended period of time, it was the most popular band group in Japan with an almost obsessive cult-like status.
AKB stands for Akiba, which is where the band originated. You can visit the AKB 48 Cafe & Shop in Akihabara, and you can also visit their home performance theater located in the Don Quijote. There are live performances every day located on the 8th floor of Donki.
Otaku: is a Japanese term for person with obsessive interests, especially in anime and manga. Akiba is the Otaku capital.
4. Akihabara Maid Cafes
Walking through the streets of Akiba, it’s impossible to miss the young girls dressed up in maid costumes soliciting customers. What is all this? It’s a strange sub-culture, but visiting a maid cafe is one of those only in Japan things to do as well as one of the top things to do in Akihabara. But which one do you choose?
My recommendations are Cafe Mai: lish, which is a cosplay maid cafe based on the Steins; Gate anime series. It’s a more traditional cafe, and it serves signature Japanese dishes and is more low key.
Also, @ Home Cafe is known for being the cutest “kawaii” themed maid cafe in Akihabara and like all the best places, they have adorable rice dishes with, of course, omelet rice with ketchup drawings!
The video I sourced above actually gives you a peek inside @ Home Cafe and literally what to expect when you visit a maid cafe in Akihabara.
5. Hit Up Vintage Arcades | Weird Things to Do In Akihabara
Another cool thing to do in Akihabara is to hit up some arcades and Akiba is home to some of the best arcades in Tokyo. Try Amusement Tower is one of the oldest arcades in Akiba and Tokyo with over five floors of games. Also, the Natsuge Museum is a retro arcade frozen in time. Both are great options.
Traveling Outside of Tokyo? Get a Rail Pass Here – Pronto.
Are you heading to Tokyo? If you want loads of in-depth coverage, get my book Hidden Tokyo on Amazon. You won’t regret it. It’s an original neighborhood guide that takes you into over 20 of Tokyo’s most explore worthy neighborhoods. You will find over 400-pages full of targeted insider recommendations, designed to leave you knowing Tokyo. This guide promises to help you take your trip to the next level and unlock Tokyo’s magic. Get it now.