Five fun things to do in Kichijoji


When it comes to fun neighborhoods in the Tokyo area, Kichijoji is right up there with the best. It's one of those places that has a great atmosphere, loads of quirky stores, cute cafes, and plenty of charm to boot.
Here's 5 places I have really enjoyed when exploring the Kichijoji area!

Inokashira Park


This is probably the most well known place in Kichijoji - it's highly regarded as one of the best spots to enjoy cherry blossom season when they're in bloom, and you only need to look at the picture below to understand why! What could be cuter than riding around the lake on a swan boat whilst taking in all that beauty?
The park itself was opened back on May 1st 1917, so has just reached its 100 year anniversary this past week. Not only is it a pleasant area to walk around, but the park also has a zoo you can check out (details are here).
If you're needing a break from exploring the city and want to connect with nature not too far away, this is a brilliant spot to do that.

Cafe Zenon


Cafe Zenon is a really fun spot to grab a bite to eat if you're in the Kichijoji Area. It offers amazing coffee (check out the latte art below - super cool!) and tasty menu options -- and the best part is that it's a manga haven! A lot of manga artists themselves go there to hang out and draw, and there is plenty of artwork adorning the walls. Artists often donate drawings to the cafe, too, so you might see some work by an up-and-coming artist hanging up.
They have a website that you can check out here if you want some more details!
Pic credit: Cafe Zenon Facebook Page
Pic credit: Cafe Zenon Facebook Page

Harmonica Alley


I love exploring the small alleyways in Japan - there always seems to be something fun or interesting down them. Harmonica Alley is definitely one of the more well known alleyways in Tokyo, but is still full of charm. The area has bars, eateries, shops and more. If you're looking for a unique spot to grab a beer, or starting to get hungry when you're out exploring, this is a good place to head to.
Pic credit: Flickr user CentipedeCarpet

Ghibli Museum


Alright, so the Ghibli Museum is technically in the suburb of Mitaka, not Kichijoji - but it's walking distance away, and I felt like I had to mention it for all the people traveling to Japan who are big Studio Ghibli fans. The museum is one that you'll need tickets in advance for - it's always busy, since it's such a popular attraction. Tickets can be purchased in Japan at Lawson Convenience Stores, which you'll see across your travels - or outside Japan at JTB locations (check the details on the Ghibli Museum site here).
There are a lot of hidden references to Ghibli movies scattered throughout the museum - some of those references are small, so keep your eyes peeled if you go! There's also a gift shop, café, and movie theater that shows short films exclusive to the Ghibli Museum, many of which are directed by Hayao Miyazaki himself.
We loved our time at the Ghibli Museum - it does get busy though!

Mahika Mano Hammock Cafe 


Feel like having a bite to eat while you swing around in a hammock? This place is a blast if that's the case. I visited here with my sister in law, and we both thought it was awesome - there's something rather relaxing about waiting for your food to come out when you feel like you're on a tropical vacation!
When we went, their menu was only listed in Japanese, and they didn't have pictures of their food items on their menu either - thankfully my sister in law could read the options to me (my Japanese isn't the best!) but just bear that in mind if you don't read it. I don't know if this has changed since my visit, though.
Their website can be found here - the menu can also be found on there but again it's in Japanese (Google Translate can assist!)
This place does get busy, and we had to wait to get in for about 30 minutes - so do just keep that in mind.
Pic credit: mahikamano.com

I hope that if you're in Tokyo and you have a chance to check out this neighborhood that some of the places I've enjoyed there are interesting to you!

Happy Travels!


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