You would be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t know about Pokemon, a hugely popular franchise and worldwide phenomenon that is still going strong more than two decades since its debut.
So it’s no surprise that its country of origin, Japan, is the best place to be if you’re a fan. Almost everywhere you go, you’re bound to see Pikachu, the adorable face of Pokemon, or other characters in some shape or form. Pokemon has even become a part of Universal Studios Japan! (I feel like it’s only a matter of time before there’s a Pokemon theme park.)
Japan is also home to the wildly popular Pokemon Cafe, which might be on your list of places to visit.
In this article, I’ll share Pokemon Cafe locations in Japan, how to get a reservation and what to consider when making one, what the Pokemon Cafe was like, and whether it’s worth visiting.
Pokemon Cafe Locations in Japan
As of 2024, there are two Pokemon Cafe locations in Japan — one in Tokyo and one in Osaka.
Pokemon Cafe Osaka
The Pokemon Cafe in Osaka is located in Shinsaibashi on the 9th floor of Daimaru, which is connected to Shinsaibashi Station (Exit 4).
10:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Daimaru Shinsaibashi Store, 9F
1-7-1, Shinsaibashisuji, Chuo-ku, Osaka
Pokemon Cafe Tokyo
The Pokemon Cafe in Tokyo is located on the 5th floor of Nihonbashi’s Takashimaya Shopping Center. This location is only a mere 5-minute walk from Tokyo Station’s Yaesu North Exit or 4 minutes from Nihombashi Station.
10:30 AM to 10:00 PM
Nihombashi Takashimaya Shopping Center
2-4-1 Nihombashi, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
Did you know that there are Pokemon hotel rooms in Japan? If you’re a fan, you might be interested in staying in one! All of these hotels have their own kitchenette where you can make cute Pokemon food, too!
Here’s where these hotels with Pokemon rooms are located across Japan:
MIMARU Tokyo Hachibori *Within walking distance to the Tokyo Pokemon Cafe
MIMARU Osaka Namba North *Walking distance to the Osaka Pokemon Cafe
How to Make a Pokemon Cafe Reservation
There are two ways to get a seat at the Pokemon Cafe:
- Make a reservation online in advance
- Show up at the cafe and see if there’s any availability on that day
Method 1: Making a Reservation Online in Advance
Reservations are accepted online on the official Pokemon Cafe website a month in advance. This means that if it’s January 22nd, you can only make a reservation for February 22nd. However, there is a chance that availability for earlier days will open up as well, which is what happened to me. I’ll share my experience with that shortly.
Reservations open at 6:00 PM JST and slots fill up fast. Sometimes you can’t even access the website, and in less than a minute, you might find out that the day you were hoping to get a reservation is full!
But don’t worry, there’s still a chance!
Reservations don’t go through automatically. People need to input various information and sometimes it just doesn’t work out, allowing spaces to open up later on. People also sometimes cancel their reservations on different days for various reasons.
So keeping this in mind, continue to refresh the page for 10 to 15 minutes. Then you might see some spots open up, and not just for a month later. Spots can open up anytime within the month!
This is what I did and I lucked out in getting a reservation for a week later. I was thrilled!
Pokemon Cafe Online Reservation Steps
To help understand the process, here’s a step-by-step guide on what to expect when making a reservation online for the Pokemon Cafe.
After selecting which Pokemon Cafe you would like to visit (Tokyo or Osaka), you will be directed to the following page which gives an overview of the rules of the cafe, hours, and reservations.
If you scroll down, you’ll find the English translation. Agree to the terms and then click or tap the blue button.
The next page is about authenticating your email. This is important to read as it goes into detail about a code you’ll receive via email, which you need to make a reservation.
Read and then click or tap the blue button to proceed to the reservation page.
Select the number of guests. After doing this, a calendar will pop up showing availability.
Note that the cafe accepts up to 8 reservations at a time, although the fewer the people, the easier it is to make a reservation.
Typically you need to click on the next month for an open spot but sometimes there might be an opening in the same month, as shown below on the 24th (white box).
Click on the white box (if available) and go to the Next Step.
The Pokemon Cafe is split into four different seating areas: A, B, C, and D. The seats differ in terms of how many people they can accommodate and their locations. At the Pokemon Cafe Osaka, area C is recommended for those who want to be closest to the character greeting while for Pokemon Cafe Tokyo, areas C and D are recommended.
However, reservations go so fast that I wouldn’t worry too much about where you sit.
Once you’ve selected your time slot and moved to the next page, fill in all the information required and then go to the Next Step.
Check your email for the authentication code and then enter it. Go to the Next Step.
Confirm that all the information is correct and then click the Make Reservation button.
And then you’re done!
When you make a reservation online, you can also choose to buy reservation exclusive items such as coasters and Chef Pikachu or Waitress Pikachu chain plushies. I couldn’t help myself and got some coasters and a Waitress Pikachu plush.
If you decide to get these items, note that you will need to input your credit card information to pay for it in advance, so you may want to skip this.
Pokemon Cafe Cancellations
If you need to cancel your reservation, you can do so from a URL in the confirmation email you received up until 10:00 PM on the day before your reservation. This might be in Japanese, so in case it is, this is the link you should look for in your email:
For those who need to cancel the day of, contact the Pokemon Cafe directly. Note that if you cancel your reservation, the exclusive goods you purchased will also be canceled and you won’t be charged anything.
You cannot change the reservation date. Instead, you have to cancel and then try to rebook for your desired date all over again.
Method 2: Show Up for Cancellations
If you didn’t get a reservation, sometimes you might be lucky and snag a spot that someone canceled.
So how do you do this? Just go to the cafe and check out the board they have in front. The board indicates whether or not there are any available seats during a specific time slot.
You might have to wait in line for a bit but depending on the day and time, it might not take very long before you’re seated.
When is the Best Time to Visit the Pokemon Cafe?
As you can imagine, weekends and holidays are very busy in Japan. So if you want a better chance of snagging a ticket or just showing up and seeing if there are any seats available, the best time to visit is on a weekday.
From my experience, it seems that weekday afternoons (from around 2 PM to 4 PM) are your best bet.
When I visited the Osaka Pokemon Cafe, I had a reservation for 3:55 PM and there was some availability for walk-ins. Two families were waiting, and I believe they only waited for about ten minutes or so before being seated.
I visit the Shinsaibashi Daimaru often on weekends and I have never seen any availability at the Pokemon Cafe whenever I pass by (but hey, I’m not there every weekend nor the entire day so who knows)!
In-Depth Pokemon Cafe Review
So what is it like visiting the Pokemon Cafe?
I visited the Osaka Pokemon Cafe with my daughter (four years old at the time) on a weekday at 3:55 PM.
According to the Pokemon Cafe website, you’re required to show up 10 minutes before your reservation time. If you show up more than 10 minutes after your reservation time, the reservation will be automatically canceled. Since my reservation was at 3:55 PM, I needed to be there at 3:45 PM. If I arrived anytime past 4:05 PM, my reservation would be canceled and seats given to someone else.
I made sure to leave ample time because with kids comes unexpected delays. Thankfully, we got there with time to spare so I let my daughter browse through the Pokemon Center, located on the same floor, before we headed to the Pokemon Cafe next door at 3:45 PM.
There was a small line but we were seated pretty quickly.
Inside the Pokemon Cafe
The inside of the cafe is super cute with big figures of the currently popular Pokemon such as Sprigatito (my daughter’s favorite), Fuecoco, and Quaxly. There are also adorable illustrations of Chef Pikachu and Waitress Pikachu on the walls. I think the Pokemon Cafe has done a great job in creating a bright, cheerful, and fun atmosphere.
At the back right-hand side of the cafe, there’s a little photo spot where you can take pictures at a table with plastic Pokemon Cafe food as well as Pikachu. I made sure to take a few pictures of my daughter and she loved it.
The seats are assigned in advance so the bag of special goodies I had ordered when I made my reservation was already on the table. My daughter was eying a table behind her that had Sprigatito on it but unfortunately, our table was fixed. (We got a photo with Sprigatito afterward, though!)
When the waitress arrived, she explained that we could order through the tablet on the table, which had the menu as well as different language options that included English.
Pokemon Cafe Menu
There was so much to choose from that I had a hard time deciding! Their menu is expansive and includes savory plates of food, desserts, drinks, and lattes where you can choose latte art featuring your choice of one of 504 Pokemon! They also have limited edition menu items as well.
For my daughter, it was much easier to figure out what food to get her since there was only one option on the kid’s menu, the Pokemon Cafe Kids Plate -The Pikachu Hamburger.
I ended up going with Gengar’s Tricky Beef Stew Set since it was a limited-edition special menu item and I liked that it came with dessert as well.
Pokemon Cafe Food
The presentation for both dishes was excellent and I loved that the cutlery matched each dish. For instance, I got a fork and spoon with Gengar on it!
My daughter devoured her plate and finished everything, which surprised me because she sometimes leaves food. She also got a free set of Pikachu coasters with her kids set to color at home. (And color she did.)
I didn’t mind my stew, although it was lacking flavor. For the price, I expected a little better and thought back to how good the (limited) Pokemon menu items were at Universal Studios Japan.
I also got a latte featuring Mew Two latte art since that’s another one of my daughter’s favorite Pokemon. It was expensive but the latte art was very impressive. You can also order the latte with an Eevee or Pikachu mug to take home but it was a little too pricey for me.
Since I ordered a drink, we were able to participate in a game where we had to choose a card on a tablet. If we chose the right one, we could get a free coaster featuring a Pokemon.
I let my daughter choose and she won! (I have a feeling that everyone wins because everyone at the table next to us got a coaster, too!)
Pokemon Cafe Character Greeting
The character greeting changes depending on when you go and for us, it was (unsurprisingly), Gengar!
To be honest, I found the “show” to be a little boring. It was entirely in Japanese, which I understood but I felt bad for the patrons who couldn’t understand. Although I guess maybe they had more fun since the show consisted of a waitress asking Gengar if he was being shy and asking who ordered his stew set.
My daughter seemed to like it but it was hard for her to see over all the adults.
This greeting was near the 1-hour mark after our reservation started and after it ended, many people decided to leave. The line to pay was huge.
I tried to wait it out with my daughter but she wanted to go as well so I got in line and ended up waiting 10 minutes to pay!
Pokemon Cafe Goods
If you didn’t buy any of the exclusive items when you made your reservation, do not fret! There is still plenty to buy at the cafe.
Although the items aren’t the same as those offered online, they still have a great selection, such as Eevee plates, Pokeball mugs, and other items.
Is the Pokemon Cafe Worth It?
Overall, I felt that like most character cafes in Japan, the food wasn’t the best. It wasn’t terrible but a little overpriced for what you get.
However, the decor, food, and drinks were undeniably cute and my daughter had a great time. So if you have small kids, I think they would enjoy visiting the Pokemon Cafe.
(Just maybe try not to visit if your kid is tired like the one next to me — he did not want to be there and clearly wanted to sleep!)
I also didn’t like how long it takes to pay. If you don’t mind sitting and waiting until the line is gone, then it’s not so bad but if you have plans, it’s not the best situation to be in.
Pokemon Cafe Remix
If you can’t make it to the Pokemon Cafe, consider playing Pokemon Cafe Remix! It’s completely free and my daughter is obsessed with it.
In the game, you can play different Pokemon and “make” drinks and desserts for your Pokemon customers by doing simple puzzle games. The design and animations are really cute and even if your child is too small
(Nope, not sponsored nor an affiliate, I just think this is a fun game! And it’s free!)