Known as the Electric Town in Japan, Akihabara is one of the most dynamic and enjoyable areas in Tokyo that one should not miss when visiting the Land of the Rising Sun. Considered the otaku’s paradise, this mystical little area is recognized as the cultural center for anime, manga, arcades, and video games. Whether you need to visit an electronic shop or just want to grab some kawaii stuff, you will never go wrong stopping in Akihabara Station for a day full of pop culture pastimes. Even the capsule hotels come with quirky features to entice travelers. With so many choices for hotels in Akihabara, any visitor is bound for a comfy stay. But before deciding where to while away the night, prepare to be bombarded with wave after wave of action figures, posters, gadgets, and mouth-watering delicacies as you discover these things to do in Akihabara, Japan.
1. Street Go Karting Experience in Akihabara (from USD 55.05)
If you’re looking for a unique and exciting way to explore Tokyo, the Street Go-Karting Experience in Akihabara is a must-try activity. You can zoom through the streets of Tokyo in a go-kart, dressed up as your favorite character, superhero, or even a Mario Kart character. You’ll feel like a kid again as you drive through some of Tokyo’s most iconic neighborhoods, including Akihabara and Shibuya while waving to surprised onlookers and taking in the sights and sounds of the city.
A fun thing to do in Akihabara, the Street Go-Karting Experience is perfect for groups of friends or families and is a great way to create unforgettable memories during your trip to Tokyo. Plus, with a guide to lead the way and ensure your safety, you can focus on having fun and enjoying the ride.
Street Go Karting Experience in Akihabara
2. Kanda Myojin Shrine
If you’re looking for a unique cultural experience while traveling to Tokyo, Japan, Kanda Myojin Shrine is a must-visit destination. This beautiful Shinto shrine is steeped in history and tradition, dating back over a thousand years. The shrine is dedicated to three deities and is known for its role in protecting the city of Tokyo from disaster and promoting business prosperity.
One of the best times to visit Kanda Myojin Shrine is during the annual Kanda Matsuri festival in May. This lively festival is one of Tokyo’s most famous, featuring a colorful procession of floats, dancers, musicians, food stalls, and games.
While at Kanda Myojin Shrine, pick up an omamori, a traditional Japanese amulet believed to bring good luck and protection. These amulets make great souvenirs and are available in various colors and designs.
Kanda Myojin Shrine
Address: 2 Chome-16-2 Sotokanda, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 101-0021, Japan
Website: Kanda Myojin Shrine
Opening hours: 24 hours
3. Shop till you drop at Electric Town
Enjoy a shopping spree day and discover how Akihabara live on its nickname as the ‘Electric Town’ of Tokyo, Japan. With a wide array of gadgets, electronic toys, home appliances, and even electronic junk, you might get overwhelmed and waste your hard-earned cash right after reaching the busy street of this town. Aside from things with an on-off switch, dozens of stores specializing in anime, manga, and other collectibles line the streets of this buzzing shopping hub attracting fanatics from all over the world. Don’t forget to flash your passport and enjoy tax-free shopping exclusively for foreign tourists to maximize your budget.
Akihabara Electric Town
Address: Sotokanda, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Website: Akihabara Electric Town
4. Buy what you like at Maach Ecute along Mansei Bridge
Be amazed by this historical arch bridge complemented with a red brick interior and a glass-walled space located in Chiyoda ward, Tokyo. Restored as a commercial facility, spend time visiting Manseibashi and take delight in the numbers of shops and restaurants that stretch from Ochanomizu Station to Kanda Station along the Kanda River. Enjoy the different feel to the usual Tokyo shopping experiences while hopping between cultural shops and sleek stores selling original products and craftworks. Grab some organic coffee or craft beer and choose from the various types of cuisine to treat yourself while giving your feet some rest after a day of shopping.
Address: 1-25-4 Kanda Suda-cho, Chiyoda-ku
Website: Maach Ecute
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 11am - 11pm; Sun: 11am - 9pm
Price: Free entry
5. Taste local delights at Chabara Aki-Oka Marche
Make your way to this stylish food market where you can shop artisanal and traditional Japanese foods located under the elevated tracks between JR Akihabara and Okachimachi stations. Take delight in its indoor market showcasing the best of Japan’s diverse food culture including seasonings and condiments that are carefully selected from across Japan. Experience the depth and tradition of Japanese food culture by visiting a few restaurants to try local flavors like the one serving tasty vegetarian cuisine similar to what is served in Buddhist temples in Japan. A great place under one roof to experience Japan through your taste buds.
Chabara Aki-Oka Marche
Address: 8-2 Kanda Neribeicho, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 101-0022, Japan
Opening hours: 11am - 8pm (daily)
6. Chat with cute maids at Cure Maid Cafe
Enjoy a new level of a dining experience in this maid cafe where servers dressed as maids treat you like a real master of the house. Dig in some yummy treats such as omurice, cheesecake and order drinks like sake or a cup of tea as the cute waitresses run the entire cafe smoothly. Complemented with lovely Japanese music, admire its interior that is surrounded by a bunch of anime pictures in frames. Just like any other maid cafes in Akihabara, don’t forget to ask their permission if you wish to take a photo with them to show respect for the privacy of the staff and other customers.
Cure Maid Cafe
Address: Japan, 〒101-0021 Tokyo, Chiyoda City, Sotokanda, 3 Chome−15−5 ジーストア・アキバ6F
Website: Cure Maid Cafe
Opening hours: Mon, Wed & Thu: 11am - 8pm; Fri - Sat: 11am - 10pm; Sun: 11am - 7pm (closed on Tue)
7. Snack on fresh parfaits at Fruits de Saison cafe
Indulge in fresh fruits, croissants, and yogurt in this calming and sweet cafe that serves fresh mango parfaits all year round together with plenty of seasonal fruits like banana, strawberry, and melon. Tickle your taste buds with a luscious serving of mini parfaits or enjoy a bigger size to satisfy your cravings. Made with fresh fruits from Ota Market and delicious sherbet with natural sweetness, it is a guarantee that every glass is meticulously prepared and made fresh all day. Aside from parfaits, they also have fresh fruit juices, coffee, tea, and yummy bread to keep you full after touring around Akihabara.
Fruits de Saison
Address: 4-11-2 Sotokanda, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Website: Fruits de Saison
Opening hours: Mon, Tue & Fri: 10am - 7pm; Sat - Sun: 11:30am - 7pm (closed on Wed & Thu)
8. Savor the famous beef cutlets at Gyukatsu Ichi Ni San
Get your chopsticks ready and enjoy grilling the Japanese way in this restaurant located in a basement level down a narrow staircase that specializes in steak katsu. Fulfill your Japanese cuisine cravings with their premium quality meat, side dishes, and other food that will delight your taste buds. Heat the stone plate and drool over the sizzle of the meat that is tender and fatty while still being crispy on the outside. Fret not even if it’s your first time visiting the restaurant and can’t understand Japanese for there is an English menu available as well as English instructions for first-timers on the best way to cook the meat and enjoy your meal.
Gyukatsu Ichi Ni San
Address: 3-8-17 Sotokanda | Watanabe Bldg. B1F, Chiyoda 101-0021, Tokyo Prefecture
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 11am - 9pm; Sat - Sun: 10am - 9pm
9. Spend a reflective hour at the Yanagimori Shrine
Find your inner peace while strolling around this secluded and little Shinto shrine located across the Kanda River and away from the bright lights of the Electric Town. Dwell in its rustic charm, amusing statues of foxes, and mysterious figures of the raccoon dog known as tanuki. Complemented with a lush garden, Yanagimori Shrine has a scarce Japanese harlequin cherry blossom tree that adds an aura of antique calm in the area. To get to it, walk towards Tokyo from the Akihabara JR Station, cross the river, and you will find it on your left accessible through a stone torii gate.
Address: 2 Chome-25-1 Kanda Sudacho, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 101-0041, Japan
10. Grab some souvenirs at Dragon Quest Lawson
Experience the concept of “convenience” to a whole new level as you visit this Lawson branch which is about a five minutes’ walk from the Electric Town Exit of JR Akihabara Station. Collaborating with the globally popular Dragon Quest game, enjoy collecting unique and adorable souvenirs of Dragon Quest goods in addition to typical convenience store fare. Fall in love with those cute blue slimes as soon as you step inside the store and be welcome by the sound you hear when you enter caves and towers in Dragon Quest games. From vending machines, t-shirts, stuffed toy magnets, and smartphone cases, this place is a Dragon Quest-themed store that you should not miss.
Dragon Quest Lawson
Address: 3 Chome-1-10 Sotokanda, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 101-0021, Japan
Website: Dragon Quest Lawson
Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)
11. Book an Akihabara anime and gaming adventure tour (67 USD)
Japan is probably best known for anime so a visit here wouldn’t be complete without a visit to popular anime stores. Joining this anime tour will allow you to taste some local delicacies while visiting anime stores! Try food and drinks in a maid café served by cute Japanese maids, look back to your childhood in an old-school video game store, and enjoy a variety of interactive entertainment as you stroll around different game stores!
Your friendly local guide is more than happy to recommend the best dining spots and the best delicacies to try in the area too! So spice up your planned activities in Akihabara by booking this three-hour best-selling excursion!
Akihabara Anime & Gaming Adventure Tour
Duration: 3 hours
Price: 67 USD
Feed your wanderlust and explore more of Japan
Wear your most comfortable shoe and discover these best things to do in Akihabara, Japan, where subcultures representing the Land of the Rising Sun are concentrated. From gastronomical escapades to shopping spree moments, this side of Tokyo prefecture is a place to be to satisfy the wanderlust in you. Otaku or not, make sure to spend time visiting this cyber town when in Japan.
Frequently asked questions about the top things to do in Akihabara, Japan
1. What are the best activities for kids in Akihabara?
The little ones will be most delighted if you have them: i) enjoy a Street Go-Karting experience, ii) snack on fresh parfaits at Fruits de Saison cafe, iii) explore the Yanagimori Shrine, and iv) join an anime and gaming adventure tour.
2. What are some of the best things to do in Akihabara at night?
If you’re wondering what to do in Akihabara after sundown, try to: i) check out the hottest merch in Electric Town, ii) savor the famous beef cutlets at Gyukatsu Ichi Ni San, ii) grab some souvenirs at Dragon Quest Lawson, and iv) taste local delights at Chabara Aki-Oka Marche.
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