When you’re in the mood for something other than the usual cat cafe.
So everyone knows about Japan’s cat cafes. You get a drink, hang out with some cats, and enjoy some quality animal-human bonding time. But what about when you’ve already finished making the rounds to all the cat cafes? Or when your animal-loving heart is craving a shared drink with a different species?
To answer that question, today on Weird Top Five we’re counting down the top five offbeat animal cafes in Japan. No cats or dogs here, we’re focusing on cafes that specialize in animals you don’t typically see every day.
So let’s get to it! Starting off with…
Honorable Mention: Goat Cafe – Sakuragaoka Cafe (Shibuya, Tokyo)
What could possibly be better than hanging out with some goats in the middle of Tokyo? At Sakuragaoka Cafe, the two “Shibuyagi” (a combination of “Shibuya” and “yagi” – “goat” in Japanese) named Sakura and Chocolat will add a bit of goat ambiance to your beverage-sipping experience. Just be careful with any leftover coffee cans.
Why is this only an honorable mention? The owners don’t encourage petting Sakura and Chocolat — only observing them and enjoying their presence. Personally for me it’d be heartbreaking not to touch the goats, but others may find it more behhh-rable.
#5: Hedgehog Cafe – Harry (Roppongi, Tokyo)
If you’re not quite ready to graduate from cats and puppies, then hedgehogs are a good stepping stone. At Harry, the recently-opened hedgehog cafe in Roppongi, you can pick up and play with hedgehogs to your heart’s content. We even paid a visit recently, so check that out if you’re thinking of going yourself.
The reason this is only #5 on the list is because it’s more “animal” than “cafe.” Harry does sell drinks, but the hedgehogs are the main course here. There’s definitely nothing wrong with that if you’re just looking to squeeze a bunch of round fluffy animals, but those hoping for the cafe aspect may want to hedge their bets elsewhere.
#4. Penguin Cafe – Sumida Aquarium (Sumida, Tokyo)
たかちん。 (@TAKACHIN32) July 22, 2014
Looking for something cold to drink? Then check out the Penguin Cafe located inside Tokyo’s Sumida aquarium. You can watch them swim, waddle, and chow down on some fish as you giggle wildly and enjoy a penguin parfait.
Unfortunately you can’t just go to the Penguin Cafe without buying an aquarium ticket, which costs around 2,000 yen (US$19), but that’s not so bad if you make a whole day of it. Also, like the goat cafe, touching the penguins here is not allowed either.
But thankfully the Penguin Cafe more than makes up for it by going all-out on penguin-themed snacks. Here’s just a small sample of the goods they have lined up:
▼ Penguin cookies and-
OH MY GOD look at those penguin olives!
しのぶんちょ (@shinobuncho) October 12, 2014
▼ Is that a penguin pancake and penguin chocolate?
Well, I know where I’m migrating to!
まいら (@otohi_white) March 23, 2015
#3. Rabbit Cafe – Usagi Cafe Ohisama (Setagaya, Tokyo)
Sometimes you’re not in a cat mood, but you still need a fluffy animal to cuddle with, and that’s where Usagi Cafe Ohisama comes in. There are a lot of rabbit cafes out there, but Usagi Cafe is one of the few that finds the balance between letting you play with adorable fluffy bunnies, and serving up delicious beverages and food.
But if you’re in the mood to just hang out with as many bunnies as possible, then check out Ra.a.g.f Cafe (like we did!) or With Bunny. With Bunny is an indoor “bunny theme park” where you can take pictures, play games, and hop around with as many rabbits as you want in your own private area. You can finally go on a bunny date of your own, and not have to carrot all what other people think.
#2. Bird/Owl Cafe – Tori no Iru Cafe (Kiba/Asakusa, Tokyo)
There are a lot of bird cafes, but surprisingly not all of them allow customers to interact with the bird staff. At Tori no Iru Cafe though (which we’ve visited before!), you’re welcome to pet the birds and have them perch on you.
What sets Tori no Iru Cafe apart as well is the sheer variety of birds. There’s falcons, owls, parrots, cockatoos, and more, making for a very colorful dining experience. Plus their bird-themed sweets are totally on point:
And if you feel like just hanging out with nothing but owls, then you may want to check out Ikefukuro located in Ikebukuro. Aside from their amazing pun prowess (“fukuro” meaning “owl” in Japanese, and they’re in Ikebukuro, hence Ikefukuro), they have some of the most impressive staff we’ve ever seen:
▼ “Oh hello why are you upside-down?”
いけふくろうカフェ (@ikefukuroucafe) June 19, 2016
▼ Dressin’ up fo’ da ladies.
猛暑日ですがふくろうたちも暑さに負けません😉🌟 #シロフクロウ #しろふくろう #梟 #梟谷好きな人RT https://t.co/JuYBAYZJaG—
いけふくろうカフェ (@ikefukuroucafe) July 02, 2016
▼ So… many… owls!
この中でカメラ目線は何羽いるでしょうか？😉🌟 #ふくろう #トラフズク #アビシニアンワシミミズク #アビシニアン #モリフクロウ #森 #東京 #池袋 #池袋東口 https://t.co/R8v6s0GxCn—
いけふくろうカフェ (@ikefukuroucafe) June 24, 2016
All of Ikefukuro’s owls were bred as pets, so they’re used to being handled by humans. No wild owl pellets or screeching here, just lots of feathery owl love.
And the #1 offbeat Japanese animal cafe is…
#1. Reptile Cafe – Reptiles Cafe (Yokohama, Kanagawa)
When you need something scaly to soothe your hardened heart, Reptiles Cafe in Yokohama has you covered. Whether it’s snakes, iguanas, turtles, geckos, frogs, or anything else with slimy skin, they have it all.
This place easily takes number one for its uniqueness. Sure, cat and dog cafes are everywhere, but if you want to dine with a cold-blooded cutie, there’s not many places available. Thankfully Reptiles Cafe fills that niche with some very friendly faces:
▼ “Hey what are you going for Halloween?”
“I think I’d look good as a pumpkin.”
徐々に天候悪化予報の横浜ですが 本日も通常営業（ふれあい17時まで、L.O.18時頃）です さて、７月４日でなんと開店５周年 今年も感謝ガラポンくじを準備中！ ご期待ください 写真は ヒョウモントカゲモドキさん♂です https://t.co/kR9LFSzqO1—
横浜亜熱帯茶館 〜爬虫類 Cafe〜 (@reptilescafe) June 24, 2016
▼ “You have disturbed a meeting of the high lizards. Present your
hand for petting or there will be much tongue flickering!”
夏日予報の横浜、湿度高めで店内は暑いので 調節できる服装でご来店くださいね お店は今日も通常営業（ふれあい17時まで、L.O.18時頃）です 写真は ヒーターに集まってる フトアゴヒゲトカゲたちとギアナカイマントカゲたちです https://t.co/Iobbvt8iXW—
横浜亜熱帯茶館 〜爬虫類 Cafe〜 (@reptilescafe) June 17, 2016
▼ “Oh, man! I freaking love cereal!”
もやし (@namakemonolife) May 03, 2016
Check out our visit to Reptiles Cafe or any of the links below to plan your own amphibian adventure.
So that’s our list for the top five offbeat animal cafes in Japan. What do you think? Did we miss any of your favorites? Let us know in the comments so that anyone looking to spend time with friends of a different feather will know where to go.
Featured/top image: ©RocketNews24
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