聖地巡礼 (Seichijunrei) is a term in Japanese that refers to the locations in the real world that featured in animes also known as an ‘anime pilgrimmage’. The act of visiting these locations and taking pictures there has grown in recent years and has heard to the creation of a term known as ‘anime tourism’. Nowadays many visit Tokyo not only to see the amazing tourist spots but also to visit real life locations of their favorite ANIMES! There are so many of these locations in Tokyo that have gained fame and lead to many people going to them every day! If you’re interested in visiting these locations, then you’ve come to the right place as we have created this handy list of the top 9 places in Tokyo that featured in anime. If you’re an anime and manga lover, you HAVE to visit these locations in Tokyo!
1. Suga Shrine Steps, ‘Your Name’
If you’ve seen the very popular anime film ‘Your Name’, also known as Kimi No Na Wa, then you know how touching the ending is when Taki and Mitsuha finally meet each other on a set of stairs. Well, these stairs are actually a REAL LIFE location! They are steps that are owned by a shrine located at the top of them which is called ‘Suga Shrine’. You can see from the two pictures above that the view is almost the same in the anime and real life. I loved the atmosphere of these steps, it’s very peaceful and offers a lovely view. If you go to visit these steps, I would recommend going on a sunny day in the late afternoon when the sun is low if you want to get a good picture!
5-番地 Sugacho, Shinjuku City, Tokyo 160-0018
Take the JR Chuo Line to Yotsuya Station and walk 13 mins.
Moving on to another popular anime film by the same makers of ‘Your Name’ is ‘Weathering With You’ or ‘Tenki No Ko’. This is film is fairly recent but gained a lot of popularity due to it’s gripping story. At the start of the film Hina climbs up an old building and goes to a small rooftop shrine, this shrine has been said to be based off of the Ginza shrine “Asahi Inari Shrine”. This shrine is located on the rooftop of a modern office building, which shows how Japanese traditional culture and modern culture are working together in this modern day. This is one of my personal favorite anime locations in Tokyo due the unexpected location of the shrine! The shrine is super unique and is somewhere you should definitely visit in Tokyo!
Moving on to an older anime that is still a classic to this day, Death Note. This is still one of the most popular animes of all times! Due to the anime being set in Tokyo, it’s no wonder that there are many anime real life locations from the anime. This locations is from the scene when Light meets Raye Pember in Shinjuku Station. As you can see from the pictures above, the places look extremely similar (particularly with the brick wall). But what makes it obvious that these are the same places is that in the anime scene the shops sign behind them has Lotteria written in Japanese on it. Lotteria is a popular fast food chain in Japan and they are located all over Tokyo. This Lotteria is located in Shinjuku station and is where Light talks to Raye Penber behind him.
Shinjuku Station is a popular station that you will probably need to go to at some point, so whilst you are there…why not visit this anime real life location!
If you’re a Sailor Moon fan and you’re going to Tokyo, then you’re in luck as Tokyo is FULL of Sailor Moon shops, restaurants and real life locations!! Click HERE to check them all out! One of the Sailor Moon real life locations is ‘Azabu Hikawa Shrine’ which is just called ‘Hikawa Shrine’ in the anime. The girls often hung out at this shrine due to it being where Sailor Mars worked and lived. Although the pictures look a little different, the Sailor Moon creator has even stated that she drew inspiration from this shrine when she created the shrine in the anime…which explains why their names are so similar! It’s not just this shrine either, the area in which the girls usually hung out in the anime is based off of the area in Tokyo known as ‘Azabu-Juban’. So if you’re a Sailor Moon fan and you’re in Tokyo…make sure you check out this shrine as well as the area as a whole!
1 Chome-4-23 Motoazabu, Minato City, Tokyo 106-0046
Radio Kaikan appeared in Steins:Gate many times throughout the anime and is actually the building that the time machine crashed into in the first season. In real life, the building is a shopping center located in Akihabara that focuses on selling otaku goods and Japanese souvenirs! As you can see from the two pictures above, the anime did a great job of making it look almost identical to the real life building…even the signs in the windows are the same! If you go to this location, why not try recreating the scene where ‘Okarin’ and Kurisu are stood infant of the building talking!
1 Chome-15-16 Sotokanda, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 101-0021
Our next anime real life location in Tokyo comes from the popular anime ‘Love Live!’. Kanda Shrine, a famous shrine located in the outskirts of Akihabara, features in the anime many times throughout the series. It is a very popular place for all the characters to hang out or meet up, due to one of the characters working and living there herself. Due to this location being featured in the anime, it has recently become a very popular place for anime and manga lovers to go to take photos and recreate scenes from the anime together. The shrine noticed the popularity it gained from the anime and so it has started selling Love Live! themed goods. These include Love Live! Omamori and Ema. I haven’t heard of any other shrine in Tokyo doing something like this so it really is a unique place to visit to get some super unique merchandise!
2 Chome-16-2 Sotokanda, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 101-0021
Shibuya, also known as the ’13th ward’ in Tokyo Ghoul, features in the anime and shows Kaneki Ken standing on the crossing. Shibuya crossing is probably the most famous crossing in the world, which is probably why it is also a very popular anime real life location in Tokyo. Tokyo Ghoul also decided to feature the crossing in the anime, showing it in very dull and cold colors to give it a kind of scary and dark feel to it! As you can see from the photos above, going at night and when it’s raining really gives the crossing this atmosphere, so if you’re looking to take a picture similar to the anime I’d recommend going on a rainy night!
Another anime real life location in Tokyo is from Kimetsu No Yaiba. Known as Demon Slayer in English, the anime is set in historical Japan meaning that you can’t unfortunately visit places that look exactly like the anime. Having said that, you can visit the same areas and see how much Tokyo has truly developed over the years. One of these places is Asakusa. In the anime Tanjiro goes to Asakusa towards the beginning of the anime and it’s where he first encounters Muzan. Asakusa is still a popular place to visit today for both tourists and locals and you can see the similarities in the pictures above. Asakusa is famous for it’s huge temple called ‘senso-ji’, so you can see an amazing temple whilst also visiting somewhere that featured in Kimetsu No Yaiba (Demon Slayer).
Although technically Yokohama is not in Tokyo, it is located very close to Tokyo and you can easily get a train to Yokohama from Shinjuku…So that’s why I’ve decided to include it on this list. This real life anime location is featured in the popular anime Bungou Stray Dogs, which is no surprise as most of the anime is set in Yokohama. There are many Bungou Stray Dog real life locations throughout Yokohama, one of them being China Town. The entrance to China Town is amazing and the anime has done an amazing job at making it look almost identical to the real life version! If you love Bungou Stray Dogs, you have to visit this location!
Otaku in Tokyo is a travel website dedicated to helping your trip to Japan with tips and information on where to visit. With particular focus on real life anime locations, pop culture and Tokyo’s hidden gems!
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