15 Bizarre but Awesome Places to Visit in Japan
Japan is one of the top vacation destinations in the world. But, if you're looking to take your tour of the country to the next level, you have to visit some of the bizarre places the area has to offer. Whether you travel to Snow Monkey Park or the Kawaii Monster restaurant, there's no doubt your stay will be memorable. Prepare yourself for 15 weird yet wonderful Japanese destinations.
Kawaii Monster Cafe
Located in Harajuku, the Kawaii Monster Cafe is a colorful, cartoon-like restaurant. Upon entering, you will walk through the tongue of Mr. Ten Thousand Chopsticks and then come across the cake-shaped merry-go-round. All of the art is created by Sebastian Masuda and even all of the food is incredibly colorful.
Meguro Parasitological Museum
The Meguro Parasitological Museum in Tokyo is the only parasite museum in the entire world. You can see things like huge tapeworms and parasitic brains.
Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park
Yes, this is a park filled with monkeys and it has become a major tourist attraction. Once you enter, you can get incredibly close to the monkeys and watch them relax in hot springs as if they are hot tubs.
Alcatraz ER is a restaurant where you sit in a dungeon cell and eat food that is made to look utterly grotesque. Nuts are made to look like pills and, yes, that is a cocktail with a fresh tampon in it. Other cocktails are served inside giant heads.
Alice on Wednesday
You must walk through the tiny front door to get inside Alice on Wednesday. Once you enter, the space opens up to into three floors of the alternate universe you are now in. The place has little goodies for sale like cookies and tiny glass bottles that say "drink me."
The Lock Up
Yes, the Lock Up is a haunted, prison-themed restaurant. This place has a very mad scientist's laboratory mood to it — you can get drinks from beakers and popcorn that looks like brains in a bowl. Throughout your meal they will turn off all the lights and monsters will run around terrorizing customers. Make sure to try out the edible eyeballs too.
Aoshima Island, also known as Cat Island, is a place where you can spend time with the more than 120 feral cats roaming free on the island. The felines get visitors who come on a ferry that runs to the island twice a day, and we know they are coming solely for the cats, because the island has no stores or cars.
Nonbei Yokocho, also known as Drunkard's Alley, is an alley in Shibuya filled with microbars. Microbars are bars that are so miniscule that they can't fit more than five people inside.
You won't believe your eyes when you step into the Robot Restaurant in Shinjuku. Women wearing bikinis stage battles with giant robots while you enjoy drinks and bento boxes.
Rick Owens Store
The Rick Owens store in Minami Aoyama is a must see. If you know anything about Rick Owens, you'll know that his store is equal parts modern and bizarre. There is a life-size replica of the designer himself with a garment tapestry covering his genitals. The bottom half of his body has been replaced by a large hoof with a giant claw.
Mr. Kanso Bar
The Mr. Kanso bar is a canned-food-themed bar. Instead of getting a menu, you select what you want from the shelves on the walls and eat with plastic forks and knives.
Another popular island in Japan is Okunoshima, also known as Bunny Island. The area is occupied by hundreds of wild rabbits that visitors can observe and play with. Before Okunoshima was Bunny Island, it was a production site for Japan's chemical weapons during World War II.
Yoro Park: The Site of Reversible Destiny
Yoro Park: The Site of Reversible Destiny is an "experience park" that is supposed to make you question your sight, senses, and perception of the world. The park, opened in 1995, was created by artists Shusaku Arakawa and Madeline Gins.
Stay at a Capsule Inn for $25 to $30 a night. If you have claustrophobia, this is not for you — you stay in tiny space that is entirely made of your bed. It's definitely a money saver!
At Zauo, you fish for the fish you are going to eat! Then you choose how you want it to be prepared and enjoy your dinner. Each time a fish is caught, the restuarant celebrates by hitting Japanese drums.