Thursday, November 4, 2010

Tokyo Toy Shops: Map to the stars

View Tokyo Toy Shops in a larger map

Last Updated: April 24, 2013

This is a new toy hunting resource I'm putting together for folks heading to Japan in search of sofubi. One of the hardest things about hunting for that elusive camo release is the way it blends in with the urban foliage...which you may wind up passing 6 or 7 times before looking up and releasing that d'oh! there it was on the second floor above the Family Mart all along.

It's sometimes easy, sometimes not, to find maps to shops...but they're usually in Japanese or too tiny or not detailed enough to help you go straight from the station to the shop. Not only that, but shops open, close, and move *constantly* these days. Couple of cases in point - both the Harajuku Kiddy Land and Monstock have moved within the last few months. A living map that lets you zoom, weave, line up, and print is the best solution.

The best tool out there is Google Maps, but the site often has issues taking an English or Japanese address and pinpointing the location. More often than not, it gives you a map of the contiguous 48...WTF? If you're nodding, you know what I'm talking about. So, you usually have to fiddle with the address order, remove components, etc. to get the right location to pop up.

OK, so this post is meant to end all that. What I'm aiming to do is provide a link list to Google Maps that you can print out and take with you, or download to your smart phone, or trace if you don't have a printer or a smart phone - whatever works. The only small drawback is the maps are in Japanese - but that shouldn't be a big problem since they also tend to list landmarks like KFCs, convenience stores, etc.

Tip: Whenever I go to a new station, I look for one of the huge area maps hanging on a wall or pillar inside the station. (Be warned, though, they're not always oriented so that North points up!) Then you can hold your Google Map up to the station map to get your bearings.

About store opening hours, this is very tricky, as shops don't always keep regular hours or stick to their posted opening schedule. I'm going to try to add more information to this post, including store websites and opening hours, with two caveats: 1) It's very possible that a store may not be open according to its posted hours. (Remember, many of these shops are run by just one person.) 2) For some stores, opening hours are in flux, not set in stone.

OK, let's get started. In addition to a single, comprehensive map of Tokyo Toy Shops, I'll post individual maps with the actual store address and the nearest train station. It's going to take a while (it's a lot harder than it looks) to build the database, so keep checking back. I've added a permanent link on the right side of the blog for easy reference.

Comprehensive Map
Click here for one map with all the stores on it.

Shop by Shop (Grouped by area)

Shinto Gangu (Real Head toys) (NOTE: This shop may be closed. I'm not sure.)
Closest station: Aoto
Address: 東京都葛飾区青戸6-4-15
Website:    (Click the black box to the right of the door to enter the page with info.)
Hours: Check the Real Head Twitter feed, as opening hours change regularly. These days (as of mid-2012), the store is infrequently open.
Click here for the map

Real Headz (Real Head + others' clothes + toys)
Closest station: Aoto
Address: 東京都葛飾区青戸3-32-9 1F
Website:  (Click the black box to the right of the door to enter the page with info.)
Mon, Tues,Fri  1 PM - 8 PM
Sat,Sun: 12 PM - 7 PM 
Closed on: Wednesday + Thursday  (NOTE: On the day of your planned visit, check the Real Head and Real Headz Twitter feeds to check for changes to the opening and closing times.)
Tel: 03-5680-9371
Click here for the map

Closest station: Jujo
Address:  東京都北区上十条4-13-5
Click here for the map

Secret Base (NOTE: This shop has moved. I don't know the new location.)
Closest station: Harajuku
Address: 東京都渋谷区神宮前3-15-8 #205
Click here for the map

Erostika (NOTE: This shop may have moved. I'm not sure.)
Closest station: Harajuku
Address: 東京都渋谷区神宮前3-15-8 #208
Click here for the map
*Note: Erostika is in the same building as Secret Base and literally right across the hallway.

Bounty Hunter
Closest station: Harajuku
Address: 東京都渋谷区神宮前3-15-8-103
Click here for the map
*Note: This is part of the Secret Base/Erostika/Bounty Hunter three for one. BH is in the same building as the others, but on the first floor.

Harajuku Kiddy Land
Closest station: Harajuku or Meijijingumae
Address: 東京都渋谷区 神宮前6-14-2
Click here for the map

Billiken Gallery
Closest station: Omotesando
Address: 東京都港区南青山5-17-6-101
Click here for the map

Nakano Broadway
Closest station: Nakano
Address: 〒164-0001 東京都中野区中野5丁目52−15
Click here for the map
*Note: There are dozens of toy shops in this four-story complex, including Mandarake, OneUp, Bow Wow, Robot Robot, showcase shops, etc.

Psycho Monsterz
Closest station: Nakano
Address: 〒164-0002 東京都中野区上高田2-3-22
Tel: (03) 3389-6648
Hours: 1:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Contact e-mail:
Kaiju Korner Visit: Click here to read the KK store report.
Click here for the map

Third Uncle
Closest station: Koiwa
Tel: 03-3659-5545
Address: 東京都江戸川区西小岩3-34-8 シャトーハイツ1F
Click here for the map

Shikaruna Shop + Studio
Closest Station: Koiwa
Address: 〒133-0057 東京都江戸川区西小岩1-10-4-101 ハイメゾン菅野
Store hours: Around 1:30-7:00 Tues-Sun
Tel + Fax:  03-3659-1990
Click here for the map

Shibuya Mandarake
Closest Station: Shibuya
Address: 東京都渋谷区宇田川町31-2 渋谷BEAM B2
Store hours: 12:00-8:00 (open 7 days/weel)
Tel & Fax: 03ー3353ー2532
Click here for the map

Godzilla-ya (Gojira-ya)
*Note the toy shop is on the second floor. The Gojira-ya bar is on the first floor.
Closest station: Koenji
Address: 東京都杉並区高円寺南3-67-1
Tel: 03(3336)3178
Hours: 2PM - 9 PM (Closed Tues + Wed)
Click here for the map

Closest station: Koenji
Address: 東京都杉並区 高円寺北3-25-25 天名家ビル203号
Click here for the map
Hours: Not fixed
*Note: This is another 2-fer. Star Case (perhaps Japan's best Star Wars shop) is right next to Ichibanboshi

Star Case
Closest station: Koenji
Address: 東京都杉並区高円寺北3丁目25−25 天名家ビル 2F
Click here for the map
*Note: Right next door to Ichibanboshi

2000 Collectible Toys
Closest station: Koenji
Address: 東京都杉並区高円寺南2-43-9 スギタビル1F
Hours: 12 PM - 8 PM (Closed Wednesdays)
Tel: 03-3312-6615
Click here for the map.

Toy Cats Showcase
Closest station: Kichijoji
Address: 東京都武蔵野市吉祥寺本町1-26-4  堀内ビルB1
Click here for the map

Mandarake Complex (8 floor flagship Mandarake store in Akihabara)
Closest station: Akihabara
Address: 東京都千代田区外神田3丁目11-12
Tel: 03 3242 7007
Hours: 12:00 - 8:00 PM
Click here for the map

Liberty the 7th
Closest station: Akihabara
Address: 東京都千代田区外神田4丁目7−1
Click here for the map

Golden Age
Closest station: Akihabara
Address: 外神田4-7-2小林ビル1F
Click here for the map

Studio Uamou
Closest station: Akihabara (JR); Suehirocho (Tokyo Metro)
Address: 東京都台東区上野5-9
English Address: 5-9 Ueno Taito-ku, Tokyo  110-0005, Japan
Kaiju Korner visit:
Click here for the map.

Radio Hall (Rajio Kaikan)
Closest station: Akihabara (It's right around the corner from the train station)
This is one of Tokyo's legendary toy complexes. It houses 7 floors packed with hobby shops. The focus is on popular toys, model kits, anime based properties, dolls, DIY gear, etc. (But not so much on the sofubi side.) So you've got stores like Yellow Submarine, Kotobikuya, Uchusen Toys, etc. There are also some showcase shops, so once in a while you can find some cool grabs there. (Or in Engrish parlay: get the toy!)
Address:〒101-0021 東京都千代田区外神田1-15-16
Click here for the map.

Closest station: Akihabara
Website: Kotobukiya
Address: 東京都千代田区外神田1-8-8
Phone number: 03-5298-6300
Kaiju Korner visit: Click here to read the KK store report.
Click here for the map.

Akiba Zone
Closest station: Akihabara
This 6 floor building contains a ton of toy stores, including One up Akiba, Robot Robot Akiba, and a bunch of others. Also, in the basement, there's a huge space for exhibitions, model car racing, a store selling a bunch of Kaiyodo figures, and even a bar and some snack shops.
Website: Akiba Zone
Address: 東京都千代田区外神田1丁目7-6
Store hours (These are One up's hours. I would think most other shops probably keep similar hours.):
Hours: 11:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Kaiju Korner visit: Click here to read the KK One up Akiba store report.
Click here for the map.

Closest station: Ueno
Address: 〒110-0005 東京都台東区上野 6-14-6
Tel: 03-3831-2320
Hours: 10:00 AM - 9:30 PM
Kaiju Korner Visit: Click here to read the KK store report.
Click here for the map

Rubber Duck (NOTE: The website is down. I'm not sure if the shop is still there.)
Closest station: Hongo-Sanchome (on the Marunouchi Line)
Address: 〒113-0033 東京都文京区本郷2-40-14-201
Tel: (03) 6427 6457
Hours: Tues-Sat 11:00-20:00, Sun + holidays: 11:00-18:00 (NOTE: You might want to call before heading over to make sure someone's there.)
Special Note: Has dedicated cabinet of Frenzy toys
Kaiju Korner Visit: Click here to read the KK store report.
Click here for the map

Kita Senju
Hugest (Clothing store with Gargamel toys + gacha machine)
Closest station: Kita Senju
Address: 東京都足立区千住1丁目23−14
Click here for the map


hellopike said...

Nicely done sir! I'm trying for a trip to Japan next year, and if I make it this will most certainly come in handy!

andy b said...

Thank ye much! I've got some more shops to add, but it's getting there!

scott vanden bosch said...

great resource - In tokyo using it this week...I know about the bigger stores but you got some great smaller shops in here - THANKS!

andy b said...

My pleasure! Glad it's a useful resource. :O)

ah zhong said...

Wow! This is really great info! Can I check whether you are aware of where in Tokyo can I get reasonably priced Medicom Kubricks or Bearbricks? Am going down to Tokyo end Mar this year. Thanks! :)

andy b said...

The Project 1/6 Store (owned by Medicom)is a good one. I haven't had a chance to add the info to this page yet. Here's a link to the shop address, hours, etc:

Anonymous said...

Very kind of you to provide such a handy & essential guide.

Unknown said...

WOW This good Info

Anonymous said...

What a great resource. I'm out closer to Atsugi and I've heard of a store called Takaharaya but can't figure out how to map it. Any help?

andy b said...

Never heard of that shop. If you find out where it is, drop a link to a map here in the comments section.

andy b said...


Unknown said...

Wow that was a very intersting post!

online toy store

Unknown said...

It was very kind of you to provide this information.

online toy store

Unknown said...

Im gg Tokyo nx month and my hubby is such a big fan of Bearbrick. We tot to stay in Akihabara so he could get the most time seaching his toy but is it a good choice?
Do advice. Thanks :)

andy b said...

There are lots of toy shops in Akihabara, for sure. Have a great trip!

Unknown said...

Hi! We will be visiting at the end of April. My husband collects all kinds of things, including new (urban vinyl, 12" figures) and vintage (like popy, etc). Will the stores on this list have a good variety or are they all sofubi? Also, you say they change often, and it says the last update was April 2013. What are the chances the info will still be good?

andy b said...

You'll find a great variety of toys in Tokyo, though maybe not quite so much urban vinyl as in the past. Can't guarantee that all the stores I listed are still open, but the majority should be. Have a great trip!

Catcher said...

Hi, I am going to tokyo in June 17 - 24. Can I have your advise where can I go for Hello kitty or sanrio collectible? Guess flea market is a good place but I am quite confuse with so many flea markets. Which market is advisable for toys? Beside those malls, any good recommendations for those small shops that sell hello kitty vintage?

Thank you so much!

andy b said...

Yamashiroya and Kiddy Land might be good shop options for new Hello Kitty. For vintage HK, I don't know. There is a big flea market near Yoyogi Park. Maybe you can Google it for info.

Mike said...

Hi Andy,

Thanks for putting together this great resource, I knew about most of the larger toy stores (Mandarake Nakano etc) but it's great to see a lot of the smaller stores covered that most guides normally miss!

Are you going to be putting together a guide for Osaka anytime soon?

Also, just one more thing, do you have any info on toy cats showcase? I'm currently in Japan on holidays and went to check it out when it should have been open, but the place was closed up, with traffic cones blocking the steps down to the entrance :/

Please keep up the great posts on all things Sofubi!

andy b said...

Glad you're enjoying the guide! The landscape changes so frequently that it's hard to keep up just with Tokyo. (On that note, I'm hoping to make a number of major adjustments to the Tokyo map sometime in the coming months, given time.)

So for now I'm limiting my shop guide activities for other cities to things like individual store reports and videos. (You can find a list of many reports, including shops in Osaka, on the right-hand side of this site.)

As for the shop you mentioned, as I recall it's in Kichijoji. Before visiting any shop not on your planned route, my advice is to call first to see if they're open.

Chris Jefferys said...

This list was very helpful on our toy shopping trips in Japan last week, thank you! Actually I think we briefly crossed paths in Godzilla-ya in Koenji last Friday, you were just leaving the store after helping out some Italian tourists, as my friend and I were coming into the store. Unfortunately we didn't realize this until after the fact, would have liked to have a chance to chat a bit. But thanks again for all this great info!


andy b said...

Hey Chris,

That's awesome - glad you were able to track down some shops! Yeah I was in Godzilla, and one of the Italian guys there said he had also used my map to find the store. Small world, eh?

It was funny - at one point there were 6 Western dudes crammed into the little store. I joked about it with the storekeeper later. ^_^

Sorry we didn't have a chance to chat. I hope the rest of the trip was fun and successful for you!

PS: Sorry I haven't updated the list in some time.

Unknown said...

Hello Andy!
I was searching everywhere for a figurine guide. I was about to loose hope but, i found your blog and viola!.
My girlfriend and i are staying in japan from november 26- dec 22. It is my first trip ever. what a way to start it lol. I do hope i can go to at least half of them. I would like to ask you a few questions.
1) is there anymore hidden gems that you recently came across?
2) I'm a HUGE fan of metal gear solid and naruto,fairy tale, akame ga kill, sketo dance (anime). Which stores should i visit?
3) what is the price range for figurines?
I've read online that it varies by store.

andy b said...

Thanks, glad you like it! I haven't updated the map in several years, so it is somewhat old information.

I haven't got specific knowledge or prices about any of those toys you mentioned, but I would recommend focusing on the Akihabara area, since there are more places with anime and video game goods, as well as newer toys. Just walk around there - you'll see many shops. Also keep in mind there are some shops on the back streets too, which you might miss if you focus on the main boulevard.

Have fun!

Unknown said...

Wow , thank you for replying super fast. I'm writing a list right now and i saved all of the places you pinned on my map.

Might be old but it's really extensive 😃.
Ahh! Alright . I will focus my adventure in akihabara.i really appreciate your tips.
I will definitely look top to bottom.

Thank you so much Andy, and i hope if we don't get lost 😂.

debbie said...

your list is just AWESSSSOOMMEE!!!! :)
I am visiting tokyo in december 2016 and I really appreciate your listing! :)
thanks a lot! please keep updating the list for future reference.. :)

andy b said...

Thanks! A number of shops have moved or closed. I'm no longer updating this post with new info, but I have added notes about the shops that may no longer be there.

Where there is a phone number, I strongly recommend calling before heading over, to make sure shops are open that day and/or still there.

Mad Martian said...

Thanks for this post and the one about Osaka. I will be in Tokyo and Osaka in February and am trying to remove any closed shops from my very extensive list (made from Tokyo Underground 2, Mike's Toy Blog, and Kaiju Korner). All lists are a few years old and I don't want to take trains to closed stores. Has anyone been toy hunting recently who can confirm which stores have moved or closed? Also, I am only interested in Kaiju, so I want to remove any stores that don't have Kaiju.

andy b said...

The Osaka and Tokyo scenes have changed dramatically in recent years. My best advice in Tokyo and Osaka is to stick to the main areas - Namba in Osaka and Akihabara and Nakano in Tokyo. I haven't got time to update or verify lists right now, but those are the areas I'd suggest focusing on. Anyway, have fun!

Mad Martian said...

The out-of-the-way places often have stuff I couldn't find at the main locations. I am going to bring a printout to Wonderfest - do you have suggestions for specific people exhibiting there who might be able to look at the list (which is in English) and tell me which ones have closed? I have 85 stores on my combined list and I'm guessing 20% have closed or moved and I don't have ANY new stores that have been added in the past 5 years. This is actually my third trip to Japan. Unfortunately I did not take notes during my first trip and I lost my notes from my second trip. This time I will be saving a spreadsheet on Google Drive and making regular backups. :)

andy b said...

Send me a message through the KK Facebook page.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...