We all know how cute Japan can be. From its sports teams’ mascots to large corporations’ logos, from team parks to clothing, Japan is the land of the kawaii. This is one of the things that make Japan what it is.
Of course, pets are no exception and Tokyo has become the world capital of entertaining, fun, and adorable pet cafes.
In the bustling metropolis of Tokyo it’s pretty hard to own a pet. Most apartments won’t allow tenants to have furry companions on the premises, but that doesn’t mean that Tokyodites don’t crave some cuddly time with their favorite animals. This is one reason why pet cafes have grown so quickly in number and variety. Join as we introduce you to 9 of Tokyo's most adorable animal cafes!
What is an animal Café?
But first things first. What exactly is an animal/pet café? Simply put, pet cafes are places where customers can enjoy drinks and food, and spend time with beautiful animals.
It’s a perfect environment to get the best out of having a pet, without having to deal with the (albeit few) downsides, like cleaning after them, creating a budget to keep them happy and healthy, and making sure they get enough playtime and nice walks. In a city as busy as Tokyo these can be real oases of relaxation and cuteness.
What to know when going to an animal café before you go
Animal cafes in Tokyo have a few rules that ensure the safety of patrons, but also that of the animals. After all we all want to be safe, and we don’t want to bother the furry friends.
Rules may change from café to café. For example, some may allow you to hold animals in your arms, while others won’t (that greatly depends on the temperament of the animals). Some business even have a brief orientation for new patrons to introduce them to the café and to the rules.
By and large, though, rules are pretty straightforward and quite common sense.
?Keep it clean: Most places will ask you to sanitize your hands before and after your visit.
?Change your shoes: You will probably be required to change into the shoes the café provides.
?Let them choose: don’t pick up animals that don’t seem to be comfortable with it.
?Sleep is sacred: don’t wake the animals up. They hate it as much as you do.
?No tail pulling: now this is pretty obvious, but it can be hard to think about for children. Don’t pull tails! It’s painful for them, and potentially dangerous for you.
?Oh that flash!: pictures are always allowed, and encouraged, but don’t use the camera flash. It can be extremely disorienting and painful for the animals.
?Protect your things: upon entering, leave your belongings in the lockers, to avoid damage.
?Let me eat: even in a café designed for people to pet them, animals need some “me” time. Eating is possibly their most important time of the day. Let them enjoy it.
?Don’t feed animals: Some places don’t allow patrons to feed animals, while others will give you treats that they allow. In any case do not ever feed animals human food or drinks. In extreme cases you may end up killing them.
?Play but don't tease: play with the pets and enjoy your time, but make sure they do too. Teasing them excessively might turn them against you.
?Most cat specific cafes will recommend you don’t pet the weary felines on their bottom. Especially when happening unexpectedly, it can annoy them to no end.
Finally, note that many animal cafes will have age restrictions and that younger children may not be admitted.
Where can you find some animal cafes in Tokyo? A petting list!
There are a plethora of animal cafes in Tokyo, so we compiled a list of popular areas for you to choose from (or just get started if you just can’t get enough)!
1. Owl no mori - Owl Cafe
In the famous Asakusa lies a place nicknamed Jungle Café, and for good reason. This can surely be a memorable experience.
Its namesake literally means “forest of owls” and the décor and number of birds you’ll see reflect it and create a nice break from the chaos of the city.
Among an enormous amount of plants (some real and some fake), a couple dozens owls move semi freely. You’ll see several different species of owl (all grown in captivity and in contact with humans since hatching – the café doesn’t have any captured animals).
You’ll also find several other animals: lizards, parrots, meerkats, and even an iguana.
The staff is helpful and knowledgeable, ready to satisfy any curiosity you may have about owls.
There are a few rules to keep in mind:
?Sanitize your hands before and after handling any animal in the café.
?Do not try to pet owls next to a sign that reads “don’t touch”
?When petting owls, use the back of your hand (they enjoy being pet on the head and the back).
The entry fee is 890 yen for adults 540 yen for kids (a soft drink is included).
2. Cat Cafe MoCHA
This café, located in Shibuya, sports a host of beautiful and well kempt cats, and an amazing view of Tokyo. Possibly the most elegant cat café you’ll encounter, café MOCHA is extremely clean and pleasant.
A must-visit for cat lovers, you’ll surely also appreciate the freedom cats have here. They roam at leisure in large rooms, among toys and cat-climbs, chairs, tunnels, and all sorts of cat-entertainment.
In this location (café MOCHA has several in Tokyo and Japan), you must be 13+ to enter and the staff will give you a brief introduction to the place.
Just be mindful that you are not allowed to feed the cats (except for the treats that the staff provides, if you so choose, for 500 yen).
The entry fee is 200yen/10 minutes or 1,200yen/hour. There are also unlimited stay options and discounts for students (must have ID).
Cat Cafe MoCHA猫カフェMoCHA
- Address 32-12 Udagawacho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 150-0042
3. Torinoiru Café - Parrots, Parakeets and other birds
Another cool animal café in Asakusa, this specializes in parrots and parakeets, hosting more than thirty of them. These birds fly freely within the café (no worries, the staff will give you a poncho to cover yourself).
The bar has a nice fun vibe. Ideal for those who are expecting to see and get involved in some funny bird-antics. Parrots though, are not all there is in Torinoiru café.
You will find over 100 different birds, including birds of prey, like falcons and owls (and you get to pet them too, if you want to). There’s also a store that sells birds (but don’t be tempted if you’re only visiting Tokyo and you’re planning to go back to your country).
The entry fee is 1500 yen (including poncho) for the whole day (but during particularly busy days you may be asked to keep your visit no longer than 1 hour).
Given the uniqueness of the bar, it serves to observe a few rules and general codes of conduct:
?Parrots often hang out at the patrons’ feet, so be careful.
?Be aware that, despite precautions, your clothes might get dirty.
?Try not to wear earrings and necklaces, to avoid minor injuries.
?Do not use your flash when taking pictures.
There are also some warnings for those who want to approach birds of prey:
?Approach a bird of prey slowly and pet only the back, at first.
?Never scratch the birds.
?Do not poke, or thrust your finger into the birds, and don’t swing your hand in front of them.
?Never touch the front of a bird of prey.
?If you want to pet a bird of prey, or handle one, ask the staff first.
- Address 1-12-8 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0032
4. Ra.a.g.f. (Rabbit and Grow Fat) - Bunny Cafe
Ra.a.g.f. (Rabbit and Grow Fat) is a fun experience for any bunny lover. Bunnies are a quite popular pets in Japan and this café rivals many cat cafes. Located in Shibuya, it’s very close to many of the attractions tourists like to visit in Tokyo.
Once you enter and choose your package (800 yen for 30 minutes or 1100 yen for 1 hour), you can choose which rabbit you’d like to spend time with. Keep in mind, though, that oftentimes the staff won’t allow you to take more than one bunny at the time out of their enclosure since, as cute as they may be, they also tend to fight with one another.
You can purchase some food for these furry companions for 150 yen.
The café itself is reasonably clean and you might find a rabbit roaming around in the seating area (they get their own free time on “shifts” of one hour each).
Don’t bring your best clothes here. It is a rabbit café, after all!
- Address 6-14-15 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 150-0001
5. Kingyozaka - Goldfish Cafe
This restaurant is a great way to spend an afternoon with its carp and goldfish theme. Kingyozaka has been in business for over 350 years. The food is great, and it’s also an interactive experience.
Amidst the elegant and warm décor in wood, there are many tanks with goldfish and carp that you can even try and catch.
Trying your hand at carp-catching will cost 700 yen for 30 minutes (500 yen for children). Trying to catch and release a goldfish goes for 200 yen per net. (Important: you won’t get to keep the fish.)
The restaurant specializes in washoku (Japanese style food) and in ornamental fish, with a particular focus on goldfish. And it’s also reasonably priced! This restaurant in the Ueno area is probably the only one of its kind in the Tokyo greater metropolitan area.
6. Sakuragaoka Cafe - Goat cafe
Sakuragaoka is a little different from the other cafes in this list. First of all: there are goats! But this is not the only thing that distinguishes it.
Unlike the other animal cafes, here the focus is not the animals, but the food. The goats do hang out on the balcony for diners to enjoy their funny interaction, but you’re not allowed to pet or play with them.
The food is good and well prepared, and Sakuragaoka certainly provides one of those unique experiences that scream “Only in Tokyo!”.
- Address 23-3 Sakuragaoka-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 150-0031
7. Kotori Café - Bird cafe
A beautiful addition to the host of animal cafes in Tokyo is Kotori café (little birds café), in Omotesando. This cafe distinguishes itself for the calming and relaxing atmosphere it sets for the patrons. As you’d expect, you’ll be surrounded by beautiful chirping little birds (and some big ones as well).
Drinks are 800 yen and come with a cute bird-shaped cookie. While not a petting café per se, Kotori does offer the experience to be in close contact with the feathery cuties that inhabit it. The staff is also very helpful and knows the birds by name!
KOTORI CAFEことりカフェ 吉祥寺
- Address Tokyo Mitaka Shimorenjaku 1-14-7 181-0013
8. Temari no Ouchi - Cat Cafe
Temari no Uchi may be not as accessible as other options, since it’s located in Kichijoji, but it’s a beautiful, clean café designed for cats and for patrons to enjoy their company, down to the last detail.
There is a cover charge of 1,200yen on weekdays (1,600yen on weekends) but there is no time limit. You can enjoy these beautiful cats for as long as you want (and if you go there after 19:00, the cover charge is only 700yen).
While there you’ll certainly have a lot of fun, but there are a few things to keep in mind in Temari no Uchi café:
?Don’t pick up or hold cats.
?Don’t feed them from the menu food.
?Don’t use flash photography.
?Don’t bring in used toys.
The whole décor of the place is like an enchanted forest, with houses (and seats for customers) carved into tree-looking booths. Cats have a huge space and lots of entertainment everywhere in the café.
Cat Cafe Temari no OuchiCat Cafe てまりのおうち
- Address Musashino-shi, Kichijōji Honchō, 2 Chome-13-14, Tokyo 180-0004
9. Hedgehog Café Harry
Yep, hedgehogs! This is the only hedgehog café chain like it in the world. Tokyo has two locations: Roppongi and Harajuku.
This is going to be a refreshing experience even for those of you who are used to animal cafes. Hedgehogs are not very common to pet, but they are adorable (and extremely delicate animals).
Here you can enjoy spending time with these pretty animals (and no, they don’t sting as hardly as people think, as long as they are relaxed).
The staff will introduce you to the place and to some rules and tips on how to handle your hedgehog, how to feed them, and how to make the animal’s experience as pleasant as your own.
The prices go from 1,400yen (1,630yen with hedgehog snacks) for 30 minutes to 2,800yen for one hour.
Hedgehog Café Harry (Roppongi)ハリネズミカフェHarry 六本木店
- Address 2F, 6-7-2 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo 1060032 Japan
If you are an animal lover, Tokyo has a lot more to offer. You may think that zoos and aquariums are the same, regardless of where you go, but in Tokyo you’ll be able to see attractions and species unique to Japan or to Tokyo itself. Get started from our list of zoos and aquariums in and around Tokyo!
When in Tokyo don’t miss on the many attractions, nightlife, culture, and food for which this city is world famous, but treat yourself to a nice and relaxing break in the company of your favorite pets, or admiring some exotic animals.
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
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