No One Does Cat Cafes Quite Like Tokyo

You've probably heard of cat cafes ... they were all the rage a few years ago and can still be found around the world in hip or niche places that serve tasty tea and coffee. While some people might stick their noses up at the idea of paying to hang out with cats (around the food?!), others love the concept and will search far and wide to indulge. Whether you love felines or are just mildly curious about the buzz, there is one place in Japan that has captured the hearts of many.

Soft fur, gentle purring, and the occasional bop on the head are just another day in the life for the patrons of these popular spots in Tokyo. The draw may start out as the desire to hang out with domesticated cats all day, but the interior is truly something to behold and makes other feline cafes look like a crazy's aunt's house (the one who collects cats). If you've been searching for a new obsession, especially if you prefer tabbies to terriers, look no further than this magical destination, which just happens to be in one of the best cities in the world — or so Timeout noted in a 2022 survey.

Cat Cafe MoCHA

Tokyo is a bustling metropolis full of innovative technology, immersive experiences, and ... cat cafes? Ok, so the last option might seem out of place, but Tokyo is actually a city where many people struggle to find pet-friendly accommodations. According to Real Estate Japan, the rules regarding pets in apartments can be strict, which is why cat cafes have thrived there. Since many people can't have their own furry friends in their abodes, at least they can visit them regularly in these popular coffee and tea shops.

The Cat Cafe MoCHA in Tokyo can be found in Shibuya City and is an oasis for cats and humans alike. DigJapan notes that while the interior is awesome to look at, it also acts as a playground for the furry inhabitants who stay at the cafe. The bright and airy layout is filled with wooden structures that dot the floor and ceiling spaces, offering the ideal lounging areas for felines as they enjoy the coming and going of visitors. As you sip your drink, you can play, pet, and peruse, but management asks people not to pick them up. You can purchase treats to give out to your favorite (cat, of course ... though human treats are available too). The website notes that reservations are not required, and during meal times you can see most, if not all, of the cats who live there at once. Slippers are provided, as is a hand wash to keep both the cats and the space protected.

Capyneko Cafe

Capyneko Cafe is another "must do" when you're in Tokyo visiting cat coffee shops. This amazing spot not only plays host to a handful of cats, but their infamous selling point is the capybaras that share the space with the feline population. Capybaras are indigenous to South America, and while they are technically giant rodents, Capyneko Cafe notes that they love to be petted and given attention, just like cats. It could be that the capybaras are even more willing to tolerate human affection, as everyone knows cats can be picky or more "hands off" than other animals (aka dogs).

Located in Musashino, Tokyo, this immersive cafe lets patrons hang out and play with their furry friends for an hour. The cost is ¥2,200 ($17), but there are options to extend the time limit. Many of the cats that live there are also adoptable, so you can even bring a new pal home after your visit. The capybaras have to stay behind, and while the disappointment might feel overwhelming, you can visit as often as you'd like! TimeOut recommends wearing socks under your shoes and avoiding heavy perfume, or you won't be permitted into the cafe.