From food and clothes to manga and electronics, Japan has a ton of shops that offer varied selections of products that can satisfy shopping enthusiasts of all ages from different parts of the world. If you are visiting Japan soon, and want to purchase souvenirs, memorabilia, and other knick knacks, check out the following shops:
Known for their cheap and affordable items, Daiso is a popular franchise shop founded in Japan, with 3,500 locations around the globe. There are more than 100,000 of products sold at its stores worldwide, including personal care products, household items, toys, clothes, snacks and drinks, and office supplies. It also offers quirky and weird stuff for cosplay, home interior decoration, and others.
In Japan, you can find 2,800 Daiso stores, and the biggest one is the Daiso Giga Funabashi branch, which is situated right next to Funabashi Station in Tokyo. It occupies a seven-level building, and has an abundance of 100-yen priced items.
To find a Daiso near you, go to Daiso’s official website.
Another famous Japanese discount store, Don Quijote has more than 160 locations in the country, with a wide collection of cheap and affordable products that include foods and snacks, clothing, and electronics.
In Shibuya in Tokyo, you can find the Mega Don Quijote, which is only about five minutes on foot from Shibuya Station. It boasts of seven floors of discount goods that you can buy and bring home with you to give out to your friends and family back home. You can purchase hard-to-find flavors of Kit Kat, cartoon or anime apparel, Japanese knives and handicraft, top quality sake, fresh produce and frozen foods, and daily necessities like soap, shampoo, and cosmetics.
For product and store information, visit the Don Quijote official website.
For affordable books, electronics, musical instruments, and other junk, you should go check out Hard-Off. It is a Japanese chain store popular to shoppers with a limited budget.
In Tokyo, there are multiple locations that offer a good selection of CDs, DVDs, games, game consoles, and even VHS tapes that can be difficult to find at the large department stores and establishments nowadays. They usually sell these items at surprisingly low prices, from around 100 yen to 600 yen.
Furthermore, they sell used drum sets, guitars, flutes, and other instruments that are priced around 1,500 yen to 5,000 yen. If you do not mind buying secondhand, you should definitely visit one of its stores to get a chance to find something nice at a very low price.
Go to the official Hard-Off website to learn more.
A popular Japanese department store, Tokyu Hands is known for selling hobby-related, lifestyle, and home improvement products. Its first location was opened in 1976 in Shibuya, which serves as the flagship store, and it currently has 49 stores throughout the country, and three in Singapore.
At the Tokyu Hands in Shibuya branch, which is a 10-minute walk from Shibuya Station, you can buy novelty toys, cosplay items, camping and travel products, hobby and office supplies, pet care and household materials, and even home appliances and furniture.
Check out the Tokyu Hands website to learn more.
Nakamise Shopping Street
The Asakusa district in Tokyo is home to the iconic Sensoji Temple, which is a 7th century Buddhist temple. Not only that, it is also where you can find the Nakamise Shopping Street, which is a several-centuries’-old shopping street that is lined on both sides with stalls that sell local snacks, traditional arts and handicrafts, and souvenirs.
From around noon, the area starts to get densely crowded, as tourists from all over the Japan and across the globe not only look for authentic Japanese items to bring home, but also to try some traditional snacks and sweets, such as dumplings, doll cakes, rice crackers, dorayaki, and sweet potato jelly.
The Asakusa-Nakamise website provides more information for tourists.
Kyoto Handicraft Center
Japanese arts and crafts are regarded as one of the best in the world. In Kyoto, there is a place that specializes in goods that are unique to Kyoto and Japan, where you can purchase something that embodies Japanese culture and skill.
Housed in a seven-story building in the downtown area, the Kyoto Handicraft Center offers many different items that range from postcards and key chains to swords and painted fans. It also has Kiyomizu Pottery, Nambu Ironware, Kanazawa Gold Leaf, Lacquer-Ware, KokeshI Dolls, Woodblock Prints, and Japanese Dolls.
For more information, visit the official website of the Kyoto Handicraft Center.
A busy and lively market street in Tokyo, Ameya Yokocho is home to numerous stores and shops that sell fresh fish, spices, clothes, electronics, cosmetics, and many more. Also known as Ameyoko, it extends between Ueno Station and Okachimachi Station along the JR Yamanote line, and starts to get crowded from around 10 in the morning until 8 at night.
To learn more about Ameyoko, check out the Ameya Yokocho official website.
For a wide selection of electronics and gadgets, you have to set aside time to visit Bic Camera. Across Japan, there are 41 locations, mostly scattered around the Kanto and Kansai Regions.
In Tokyo, you can find their largest store, which consists of seven stories, situated right next to Yurakucho Station. It offers different brands of cameras, laptops, desktops, audio equipment, and others, and also has some in-house restaurants.
For a complete list of locations and other information, go to the Bic Camera official website.
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If you are a manga and anime fan, make sure to include Animate in your must-visit places in Japan list. The biggest retailer of manga, anime, and games in the country, its first and flagship location opened in Ikebukuro in Tokyo in 1983, and it currently has 117 branches nationwide, four in China, two in Taiwan, and one in South Korea.
It offers manga, character figures, anime DVDs and Blu-ray, stationery and stickers, bags, character costumes, replica swords, posters, key chains and charms, and various limited edition items.
For more information, visit Animate’s official online store.
A major landmark in Shibuya in Tokyo, Tower Records is a nine-story building that houses a large collection of CDs, books, and magazines. It also has a café where you can enjoy a cup of coffee while you explore the store, or eat a meal as you browse through your purchases.
It offers different genres of music, from classical and J-pop to soul and jazz, and local and international literature. It also has a basement that holds live music shows and events.
For queries and other information, you can check out Tower Records Online.