Character Street: Find Your Favorite Character

ByMichael Stigall
May 23, 2022

Character Street: Find Your Favorite Character

One of the things people notice about Japan is that cartoon characters here are very popular. From Hello Kitty to Pikachu to the local mascots that are just about everywhere, it is hard to find a place where characters are absent. I’ve been to mountains where they still have mascots and mascot souvenirs at the top! Anyway, almost everyone has some character or show that they like. While you can buy various trinkets, dolls, and stationery at most shops, have you ever considered what it would be like to go to a place with all of the shops for all of the characters in one convenient location? Allow me to introduce you to Character Street.

Located in the basement under the Yaesu North Exit at Tokyo Station, Character Street has dozens of shops dedicated to every popular character and/or tv show you can think of? A Pokemon store? Of course. A Ghibli Shop dedicated to all things Studio Ghibli? Just down the street. A shop just for Shonen Jump? Obviously. You are probably starting to get the picture, but there is a shop here for pretty much any popular cartoon character you can think of. There are shops for all the big television channels as well. So you can buy things from your favorite anime on TV Tokyo or swing by the NHK Store if you are looking for a Domo-Kun doll. There are toy shops as well. When I went, the Tomica and Plarail shops were absolutely packed. So was the Lego Store just around the corner. 

Being located in Tokyo Station and having so many good shops in one place can make it pretty crowded, so be prepared for that when you go. When I went, the lines for the Ultraman Store were daunting, but the winner for the longest line went to the Sumikkogurashi store, which stretched about 50 feet. People, it turns out, will wait a long time for their chance to get some limited edition plush animals (or plush Tonkatsu, but I’m not writing an article about Sumikkogurashi today). All that said be prepared for crowds. Besides that, have fun perusing the many shops and checking out pretty much every character you can name and a few more you can’t!

Tokyo Character Street

1-9-1 Marunouchi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo (map link)

Just inside Tokyo Station, in the basement of Yaesu Exit

Open from 10:00am to 8:00pm daily. 

東京キャラクターストリートオンラインプラザ (

WhisperToMe, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

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