Akihabara

Immerse yourself in Akihabara's virtual reality, Tokyo's audaciously animated electronics center.

Stay endlessly entertained by Akihabara’s arcades, maid cafes, and anime fanatics. A mere five minutes from Tokyo Station transports you to the epicenter of otaku, a virtual playground for anime and manga fanatics. Stores that once sold vacuum tubes on the black market have since morphed into gargantuan gaming palaces plastered over with images of boomerang-wielding cartoon characters. In dizzying Akihabara, it’s your choice to adventure between 2D and 3D realities.

See 1 place to stay Save this neighborhood

On the Map

Akihabara is within Chiyoda District and bordered by Asakusa/Ueno, Taito District, and Bunkyo District

  • Public transit is Easy
  • Having a car is Possible

Haneda Airport: 25 minutes by car or 55 minutes by public transit
Narita Airport: 1 hour by car or 1 hour & 15 minutes by public transit
Shinjuku Station: 30 minutes by public transit
Ueno Station: 10 minutes by public transit
Tokyo Tower: 40 minutes by public transit

An Electronics Mecca Five Minutes from Tokyo Station

Akihabara Goto

Five minutes by rail from Tokyo Station, Akihabara glitters, shimmers, and shines with arcade lights and cosplay (cos[tume] play) characters.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Often shortened to "Akiba" by its fans, Akihabara morphed from a center for keyboards, cell phones, and computer mice to a mecca of gaming, role playing, and action figure collecting.

Akihabara Goto

Its main street, Chūōdōri, closes to cars on Sundays.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Instead of automobiles zipping through its lanes, pedestrians zip from place to place.

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Akihabara hasn't abandoned its occupation as an electronics destination.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Used camera shops and pop-up DVD stalls still line its corridors and side streets.

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Its adventurous video game spirit surrounds those, too.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Let the games begin.

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Akihabara: A Gaming Collector's Fantasy World

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Akihabara is the world's center when it comes to anime, manga, and comic relief.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Fanboys, fangirls, and fanpilgrims journey to Akihabara from every corner of the globe to play in this gamer's paradise.

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If you've trekked to Akihabara to collect, consider passing Chūōdōri.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

The further you get from the neighborhood's main focus, the lower the prices become for certain collectors' items.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Arcades and gaming systems spread throughout the neighborhood.

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Many visitors come to test their skills against professional gamers.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Game on.

Bringing Characters to Life: Akihabara's Maid Cafes

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Maid cafes sweep up in Akihabara.

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A new take on cosplay, waitresses dressed in maid uniforms spoon-feed patrons in this on-the-cutting-edge-of-entertainment neighborhood.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Despite the concept's overt playfulness, maid cafes keep it clean.

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Street Snacks and Walk-Up Windows

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Food trucks and sidewalk stalls feed gamers and arcade connoisseurs in Akihabara.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Some of the neighborhood's street vendors command cult followings.

Akihabara Goto

Beard Papa's cream puffs now rise in multiple countries worldwide.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Others draw crowds for their theatrical talent.

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AKB48, a name derived from Akihabara's nickname "Akiba" and its 48 member count, is a famous all-female J-Pop group that entertains on stage at its own cafe.

Behind the Scenes: The Electronics Behind Electric Town

Akihabara Goto

Although most visitors now travel to Akihabara for its anime attractions, some still venture to the neighborhood for its original appeal: cheap consumer electronics.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Under Akihabara's rail lines and lining its side streets, small electronics kiosks and storefronts sell transformers for European vacuums and resistors for robot builders.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

New electronics department stores attract international tourists seeking Japan's unrivaled quality.

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Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

Behind the Scenes: Akihabara's Residential Landscapes

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Before anime, cosplay, and manga catapulted Akihabara to new heights of popularity, the neighborhood nestled quietly into its north-of-Tokyo-station nook.

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The quieter side of Akihabara still exists.

Akihabara Goto

Its residential landscape comprises picturesque apartment buildings free of manga star murals and simple shrines out of reach of Akihabara's seemingly ever-present neon lights.

Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto
Akihabara Goto

It's Akihabara, unplugged.

Photography

Airbnb works with local photographers to capture the spirit of neighborhoods all around the world. The photography on this page includes work by:

Masaru studied Photography at Parsons The New School for Design in NYC. He has 25 years experience photographing social and human rights issues in Asia and South America. After spending many years abroad, he has begun to focus on his own country of Japan. He established Reminders Photography Stronghold in Tokyo in 2013, a curated membership gallery making multi-photographic activities possible. His photographs have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Newsweek Japan, and many others.

Masaru Goto

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