Toy Shopping Guide: Part 3
Akihabara isn’t the only place in Japan to get your hands on toys and anime related merchandise but it is arguably the best place in Tokyo. There are other shops out there of course, some of which you may not even expect to have a toy section, but being Japan, nothing but everything is out of the ordinary.
BIC CAMERA is a huge electronics chain store in Japan, they sell everything from TVs, toaster ovens, iPhones, Air Con units to of course, cameras. And what I didn’t expect to find there when I first visited was toys, and plenty of it. Almost every BIC CAMERA store has a toy section, with the exception of specialist Camera / second hand outlets. The toy section also differ in size and range with each store, but overall they are all pretty well stocked with the latest stuff. I visited several BIC CAMERA stores, including the Lazona plaza store at Kawasaki (川崎), store in Ikebukuro (池袋) and the store in Yurakuchou (有楽町), all of which I managed to loose track of time in XD. Check out their website for a full list of stuff they sell ビックカメラ.
Yamashiroya is a specialist toy store, located just opposite the Ueno (上野) train station in Toyko. It is a huge building with six floors of action figures, model kits, character toys, puzzles and games. Almost everything you can imagine to do with anime and toys is in this store, and you can quite literally spend half the day in here. There are heaps of glass cabinets full of models and toys to slowly admire and drool at, prices are okay but not quite the cheapest around. For more information and floor by floor photos check out their website ヤマシロヤ. Below are a “few” photos I took, in random order.
I’m sure you’re all familiar with this store:P The only difference being they actually have decent toys in the Japanese chains. This one was at Sunshine City in Ikebukuro (池袋), I didn’t take many photos there because compared to all the other toy stores in Japan, this seemed small, but if they happen to have this exact store in Sydney, I’d be there every weekend haha! Website here トイザらス.
This is another one of those stores which I didn’t expect to find a toy section, but lo and behold. Tokyu Hands is a store that basically sells everything, from daily consumer products like shampoo, toothpaste, to electronic good like fans and footbaths, to designer items and DIY materials and tools. Don’t get me wrong, this store is brilliant, everything is so well laid out and organised it makes for super easy shopping. The toy section is not big compared to other chains, but the store in Ikebukuro (池袋) was of a decent size and had heaps of cool and funny toys! Check out their website 東急ハンズ.
As you can see, you can find toys just about everywhere in Japan, every district you visit is bound to have a store that sells toys in one form or another, its in their culture, its in their DNA, and I’m sure glad thats the way things are there, if only we can get a bit of that “culture” here:P
This finally concludes the last part of the 3 part toy shopping guide in Japan, I hope this has given you guys a good insight into the toy and anime stores there, and hopefully some inspiration to get yourselves over there if you haven’t already been!
Thanks again for reading and I hope to bring you more shopping guides if I ever get a chance to visit other places in Japan or otherwise!