Have a snack with a ninja or a robot

large robot at the Robot Restaurant in Tokyo

(Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

The Japanese are well-known for their awesome themed restaurants and cafés.

Before the pandemic, you could have a snack while petting a cat or have a vampire entertain you. Many of these restaurants closed during the lockdown for safety reasons, and may not reopen.

Let's have a look at some of these fun restaurants you probably won't find anywhere else:

Ninja restaurant

three people dressed up as ninjas at the Ninja Restaurant


Are you amazed by the mysterious ninja?

Not only will your food be served by ninja, but they’ll also perform tricks for you, too!

This amazing place looks like a real hidden ninja village. There are waterfalls, ponds and the sound of crickets chirping.

Robot restaurant

people in costume play the drums while surrounded by giant robots

(Photo by Alexander Waltner licensed CC BY)

Imagine food + neon lights + robot theatre.

There's music, dancing and costumes. And of course there are giant robots of all shapes and sizes and colours.

There are lasers beams, light shows, disco balls, dragons, unicorns and… Well, let’s just say you have to see it to believe it.

Kawaii monster café

a girl in a colourful costume stands in front of a gigantic plastic cake

(Photo by Roxanne Ready licensed CC BY-SA)

It's too bad, but this place is now closed for good. It had a super-cute “Mel-Tea” room where you could enjoy a plate of super wild food. They had a rainbow spaghetti or colourful monster cookies and cupcakes.

There was also a room called the “Mushroom Disco.” If you didn't like either of these, there were two other cute theme rooms to choose from.

You could also get a picture with one of the servers. They were dressed in wacky colourful costumes. Wild!

Pokémon café

Two giant Pokémon chefs greet you at the Pokémon restaurant

(Photo by Daria Focht licensed CC BY)

Have you ever wondered what it might be like to eat a Pikachu burger or a Jigglypuff cheesecake? Then this café is definitely your jam.

There’s not a lot of decoration. But there’s lots of awesome Pokémon-themed dishware and dolls for sale as well as food.

Fishing restaurant

a man and his son go fishing for their dinner at the fishing restaurant

(Photo by jencu licensed CC BY)

Do you love fresh fish? At this restaurant your fish is guaranteed to be super fresh. You have to catch it yourself!

Don’t worry, you don’t have to bring your own fishing rod. But you do need to bring your patience, because these guys are slippery!

But if you manage to catch one, the staff will reward you with a special chant.

Goat café

a goat hangs out in a wooden box

(Photo by <a data-cke-saved-href="" href="" https:="""" photos="" 31029865@n06="" "="">Dick Thomas Johnson licensed CC BY)

There are animal cafés all over Japan! You can grab some food and play with a cat, dog, hedgehog, lizard, bunny or owl.

But if you are looking to hang out with a slightly larger beast while you eat lunch, the goat café might be your kind of place!

Is it the Greatest Of All Time? Well, it’s not baaaad.

School café

a family eats at a restaurant that looks like a schoolroom

(Photo courtesy of Lily Crossley-Baxter)

Can’t wait to get to school each day? No worries — there’s a café that will make you feel like you’re already there!

Sit at a desk and order your lunch from a menu that looks like a school book. Get your drink served in a science beaker. Hope you don’t get detention for not eating your vegetables!