Although Akihabara had initially become famous for electronics, this shopping district is now more famous for being the capital of anime, manga and gaming. The nearest train station is Akihabara station, and you can really spend several days exploring this massive shopping mecca.
*please note this was written before the pandemic
Please note that most of these shops have multiple locations within Akihabara, but only one will be linked for your consideration.
Gamers is an anime goods store that carries the latest magazines, CDs and character goods. This shop always keeps up to the latest trends, but that means you won’t really get older stuff here. There is an entire section for manga, and another for voice actor goods. There are a grand total of 8 floors! Location
Mandarake are second hand stores that specialize in used anime and gaming related goods. Items are always of pristine quality and are considerably cheaper. This is where to go if you want merchandise for older games or series and you may even find rare old items. Location
A department store that has a separate branch for each of the goods they specialise in. They have a computer store, a music store, an amusement store, a second hand store, a games and anime store and more. Location
Laox is the duty free retail store selling watches, skin care products, electronics, jewelry and more! The multilingual customer service and cheaper prices make it extremely popular. Location
Similar to Bic Camera, this is a massive department store with everything electronic, sporting related, office and home items, and more. Again, entire floors are dedicated to categories of items such as games or cameras. Location
Animate is Japan’s largest retail chain for anime goods. Akihabara has three branches, with one catered specifically to women called Animate Akiba girls’ station. Animate sells official anime goods that are made directly by the main manufacturers. Location
This is a second hand anime goods store where you can find high quality goods at cheaper prices. The Akihabara branch of Lashinbang is actually the largest outlet in Japan. Their figurines tend to be on the cheaper side, and since items are second hand, you can sometimes find really rare or old items. You can buy cosplay costumes here! Location
A popular Manga and merchandise shop where entire sections are dedicated to specific anime series’ and games’ merchandise. They are especially kown for their figurines and plastic models, which range from anime to Marvel and DC comic book heroes. Location
Pronounced Don-ki-ho-te, this popular discount store sells everything from electronics to pharmaceutical products. This is where you can buy maid and cosplay items, or just go around shopping for souvenirs. While you’re in the store, you can also enjoy its famous store theme song. Location
An international music store that holds all the latest Jpop, Jrock, Kpop albums and anime soundtracks. You can also find American and English artists here, and you may be even pleasantly surprised by the selection of older rock and pop albums. Location
This Sega is the oldest Sega arcade, filled with 100 to 300 yen claw machines, arcade video games, gachapon and more. It’s iconic red building is one of the landmarks in the main street. You will also find other Sega arcades around. Location
HEY Taito is another one of Akihabara’s famous arcades with plenty if claw machines, but is best known for its large selection of competitive video games. Location
Sega Gigo is an absolutely massive 6 story arcade building will all your favourite arcade games, purikura and claw machines. All the music games are on the 3rd floor. The building is pretty difficult to miss. Location
A special arcade where entire floors are dedicated to retro games that you can play! You can also browse their collection of retro hand held games and purchase cartridges of absurdly high quality for its age. Location
An arcade with a more relaxed and fun atmosphere. There are less crowds here as it is off the main street. With 5 floors of entertainment, this place is ideal for the casual gamer. Location
Gundam Wing cafe
If you’re a fan of mechs, this is the place to go! All the food and decor is inspired by the hugely successful Gundam franchise. Both set meals and a la carte options are available. For more information click here. Location.
Gamers, take note! This cafe is based on Final Fantasy XIV. There is a monster menu, primal menu, job class menu and character menu. You also receive a stamp card which when filled can be exchanged for merchandise. Getting tickets (yes, you need a ticket in advance) is a bit tricky because you need to navigate through Japanese webpages/ Lawson in Japan. Here’s a guide to help you, and information from their website. Location
AKB48 is well known for being both Japan’s most popular all girl group and its largest. Their cafe is specialised to cater to fans who may not have the opportinity to attend concerts or meet and greets, with screens featuring the latest concerts and a gift shop filled with merchandise. For more information click here. Location.
Maid cafes are a type of cosplay restaurants found and created in Japan. Akihabara is the birth place of maid cafes, with the original being Cure Maid Café, but most other maid cafes today have evolved to heavily play up the cuteness factor. @home cafe and Maidreamin are the most well known maid cafes in Akihabara.
Good smile x animate cafe
An anime cafe that features different anime on a rotational basis, generally featuring the most recent and popular anime. past collaborations include My Hero academia and Love Live. Location
Technically, Kanda shrine is not in Akihabara, but is beside it. Nevertheless, I included it in this guide because of the rather interesting sights found within the temple, with tablets and fortunes being decorated with anime girls.
This Shrine enshrines three deities- Daikokuten, Ebisu and Taira Masakado- a feudal lord who was deified. Many people visit the shrine to pray for prosperity, especially during the Kanda Festival, known as one of the three great festivals of Japan. Location
Images are used for commentary purpose. This was last updated in 2019. [Adapted from my now missing odigo page]