Cat cafes originated in Taiwan in the late 1990s as a way for cat lovers living in apartments to spend time with cats. However, it was in Japan where the concept really took off. The first cat cafe in Japan, "Cat's Store," opened in Osaka in 2004. The owner, Norimasa Hanada, was inspired by his own love for cats and his desire to create a relaxing and enjoyable environment where people could spend time with them.
The idea quickly caught on, and by 2007, there were over 100 cat cafes in Japan. Cat cafes were particularly popular in Tokyo, where many people lived in small apartments where pets were not allowed. The cafes provided a way for people to enjoy the company of cats without the responsibility of owning one.
Today, cat cafes can be found in many countries, but Japan remains the epicenter of the trend. With their relaxing atmospheres, playful feline friends, and delicious food and drink offerings, cat cafes continue to be a beloved feature of Japanese culture.
Here are some of the most famous cat cafes in Japan.
Neko no Mise, located in the trendy district of Shibuya in Tokyo, is one of the most popular cat cafes in the city. With over 20 resident cats of various breeds and personalities, visitors are sure to find a furry friend to bond with. The cafe is spacious and clean, and the cats are well-cared for by the attentive staff.
Temari no Ouchi, which translates to "Ball House," is a whimsical and cozy cat cafe in the Kichijoji neighborhood of Tokyo. The cafe is designed to look like a fairy tale house, with plush cushions, soft lighting, and plenty of hiding spots for the resident cats. In addition to playing with the cats, visitors can enjoy the cafe's delicious food and drink offerings.
Calico, located in the Shinjuku neighborhood of Tokyo, is a large and lively cat cafe with over 50 cats. The cats are allowed to roam freely throughout the space, which includes multiple levels, bridges, and hiding spots. Visitors can purchase food and drink items, as well as toys and treats for the cats.
Cat Cafe Nekorobi is home to around 15 cats of various breeds and temperaments. Visitors can relax in the cozy and quiet atmosphere, and even take a nap with one of the friendly felines.
Cat Cafe MoCHA - Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and other locations
Cat Cafe MoCHA has several locations throughout Japan and is known for its luxurious atmosphere and well-cared-for cats. The cafe offers a wide selection of food and drink options and has a variety of cat breeds for visitors to play with.
Nekobiyaka - Osaka
Nekobiyaka is a charming all black cat cafe in the Tennoji neighborhood of Osaka. The cafe has a warm and inviting atmosphere, with plenty of comfortable seating and play areas for the cats. Visitors can enjoy a variety of snacks and drinks while spending time with the friendly felines.
Cat Cafe Monta - Hiroshima
Cat Cafe Monta is a cozy cat cafe located in the city of Hiroshima. The cafe has a rustic and homey feel, with wooden furniture and plenty of greenery. Visitors can relax with a cup of coffee or tea and spend time with the cafe's resident cats.
Cat Cafe Nyankoto
Cat Cafe Nyankoto is a bright and cheerful cat cafe with plenty of toys and climbing structures for the resident cats. Visitors can enjoy a variety of drinks and snacks while playing with the energetic felines.
In conclusion, cat cafes are a beloved and unique feature of Japanese culture, and these famous establishments offer a chance to relax and bond with some adorable feline friends. If you're ever in Japan, be sure to check out one of these popular cat cafes.