After finishing up a wonderful day enjoying Senso-ji
in Asakusa I decided to go for some dinner. The only problem was that I was alone and would have to eat by myself. We’ve all been in this situation before as solo travelers. You’ve just arrived in a new city and you haven’t met anyone at the hostel yet so you have to go to dinner… alone! Luckily Tokyo is the ideal place to do so! You don’t even need to bring a book with you to feel comfortable. Tokyo has so many restaurants specifically designed for dining by yourself: from standup ramen restaurants for salarymen on the go to the ultimate eating alone experience: the Moomin House Cafe
Looking over the menu with Mr. Moomin -- Photo by Michelle Aldridge
You are never alone at the Moomin House Cafe
because you get to eat with a giant Moomin stuffed animal (and yes, you read that correctly, you get to eat dinner with a giant stuffed animal!).
Check Out the Colorful Characters -- Photo from Flickr by Nemo's great uncle
The Moomin characters are from Finland’s popular children’s book ‘The Moomins’ created by Tove Jansson. The Moomin Boom
really began in the 1990s, when Dennis Livson
and Lars Jansson
produced a 104-part animation series in Japan named Tales From Moominvalley
, followed by a full-length movie, Comet in Moominland
. The loveable characters are also the official mascots of Japan's Daiei
chain of shopping centers and supermarkets.
It’s easy to see why these characters are so loved and why they make great dining companions. They are big and fluffy and adorable.
So Elegant in a Top Hat -- Photo by Michelle Aldridge
The cafe has many Moomins on hand for you to dine with. The most coveted, in my opinion, is Top Hat Wearing Moomin. After all, if you are going to dine alone then you might as well dine alone with a Moomin wearing a Top Hat.
Savory Set with Meatballs -- Photo by Michelle Aldridge
Custom Latte Art-- Photo by Michelle Aldridge
Not only is this cafe fun but the food is amazing. I recommend the waffles or one of the savoury meals like the meatball set. You can also get lattes that are decorated with Moomin art. The cuteness never stops!
Once you’ve had your fill of food and have finished saying goodbye to your Moomin (Mr. Moomin and I had a very emotional breakup), you can buy your own stuffed toy on the way out.
Dinner Time Selfie -- Photos by Michelle Aldridge
I had a little bit too much fun during my solo dining experience (as you can tell by my photos) but the staff was really friendly and helped me take loads of pictures. An added bonus to dining at the Moomin House Cafe
is heading outside to see Tokyo Skytree
up close and personal. If you have extra time I recommend going to the top of the tower and getting some champagne. You never know who you might meet up there!
Would you like to check out some more solo traveler trips? Try this Kichijoji- Inokashira All to Yourself trip!