What to Buy

Anyone who loves shopping will love visiting Japan. There are so many different products to choose from, and many that you won’t find back at home. You can spend a heap at some of the finest fashion stores in Ginza or only a few yen at some of the bargain stores at the Ameyoko Market, the choice is yours.

Japan is also a terrific place to window shop too, you can always find some weird and wonderful product you will never see anywhere else in the world, like the latest electronic gadget to the cutest stuffed toy that the Japanese love so much.


Ceramics have been part of Japanese culture and life for centuries and are probably Japan’s oldest art form. Ceramics have been found dating back to the Neolithic period of around 11000 BC.

Clothing & Textiles

Japanese textiles are amongst the worlds most beautiful. With magnificent hand dyed silks and lovely cottons, Japanese fabric is sought after all over the world. Kimonos are one of the most popular items and have become a symbol of the Japanese textile industry.

Paper & Calligraphy

Japanese paper and calligraphy are some of the most beautiful arts to come out of Japan. Shodo is the way of writing that has been cultivated over the centuries by nobles, priests and the samurai. Today it is still studied in many schools and is known as shuji.

100 Yen Shops

100 Yen Shops, or the hyaku-en shoppu are one of the best place to pick up a bargain. In these shops you can find some exceptionally terrific value and often extremely unusual products, and as the name suggest all for only 100 yen, which is an absolute bargain.

Tokyu Hands

It is hard to describe or categorise the Tokyu Hands department store, other than to say they sell a delightful and sometimes weird variety of fascinating products for the home. The store is part hardware store, part hobby store, part kitchen store, part gift and stationery store and part pet store. The stores are known as a “Creative Life Store” which sort of sums it up, selling the practical and often “Only in Japan” not so practical items.


Japan sells every conceivable electronic gadget and gizmo you could ever think of and plenty you couldn’t imagine. You need to look no further than the average Japanese toilet seat to see the country is enhancing the electronic age.


Toys in Japan is a huge business, and there is an astonishing range with many things you would never see outside Japan. The average toy shop itself is a wondrous place that is usually 4 to 7 stories high, jam packed with all sorts of marvellous fun for all ages.

Only in Japan

Lots of safety signs feature characters like this guy.