Harajuku – also known as the capital of cute (or kawaii!) in Tokyo. You may think that it’s just a place to get your kawaii and Lolita fashion fix but there’s so much more to Harajuku than what meets the eye! So equip yourself with our essential guide and start exploring the different sides of Harajuku!
P.S. Don’t forget to download the HHWT Travel Planner app, available on Google Play for Android and iTunes Store for iOS, to make your trip to Tokyo even easier! You can find attractions as well as halal food and prayer spaces near these attractions, so no worries on not being able to find halal food anymore!
1. Meiji Shrine
A peaceful oasis in the middle of bustling Tokyo, Meiji Shrine, (also known as Meiji Jingu) is sheltered by a forest of 100,000 trees, donated from all parts of Japan and planted by about 110,000 volunteers. The shrine was constructed in 1920 and is dedicated to the Emperor Meiji and Empress Shōken. Being Tokyo’s grandest Shintō shrine, this is definitely one of the tourist sights you mustn’t miss!
#HHWT Tip: Put on a pair of comfortable shoes as you’ll need to stroll on a gravel path to the shrine.
Address: 1-1 Yoyogi-Kamizono-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 151-8857.
Subway: Tokyo Metro Meiji-jingumae ‘Harajuku’ Station, Exit 2
Opening hours: Every day throughout the year. As the Meiji Jingu opens with sunrise and closes with sunset, the opening hours change every month. Do check the site for more details.
2. Yoyogi Park
Located just next to Meiji Shrine, Yoyogi Park is one of Tokyo’s largest city parks. With its wide lawns, ponds and forested areas, it’s the perfect place for a picnic or to rest in between your shopping adventures!
On Sundays, you’ll find musicians, artists, sports enthusiasts and cosplayers there, espcially when the weather’s good! If you’re up for some exercise, you can rent a bicycle to cycle around the park. Or just soak up the atmosphere and relax on the lawn!
#HHWT Tip: If you’re in Tokyo during the Cherry Blossoms season or during Autumn, drop by Yoyogi park for a picnic beneath the beautiful foliage.
Address: 2-1 Yoyogikamizonochō, Shibuya, Tokyo 151-0052, Japan.
Subway: JR Harajuku Station Omote-sando Exit: 1 min on foot to Harajuku gate / From Tokyo Metro Yoyogi-koen Station: 3 mins on foot to West gate
3. Takeshita Street
A trip to Harajuku isn’t complete without visiting the iconic Takeshita Dori, also known as Takeshita Street! This busy pedestrian-only street is lined with fashion boutiques, trendy stores, cafes, crepe stands and more. Brace yourself for the crowd if you’re visiting on a weekend because this is also a popular hangout for the local teenagers!
Address: Located directly across from the exit of JR East’s Harajuku Station
1. Daiso (Along Takeshita Street)
The Daiso outlet in Harajuku is every budget shopper’s paradise. At three stories high, this is also one of the largest Daiso stores in Tokyo! Get everything you need and everything you never thought you needed at just ¥100 (less than USD1) per item 🙂 If you’re on a budget, this is the place to stock up on souvenirs too!
Address: 6-1-9 Jingu-mae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001
Opening hours: 10am – 9pm
2. Calbee + (Along Takeshita Street)
Japanese are known for releasing all sorts of flavours for their snacks. Be sure to check out the limited edition chips as well as character goods at this Calbee Plus Store! But do check with the staff at the counter if the product contains alcohol or pork.
Address: 1 Chome-168 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan
Opening hours: 9.30am to 8.30pm daily
Muslim-Friendly Food in the Area
1. Marion Crepes (Along Takeshita Street)
You can’t visit Harajuku without trying French-style Japanese crepes! You’ll find a few creperies along Takeshita Street but our personal favourite is Marion Crepes!
#HHWT Tip: As some of the crepes contain gelatin or pork for the savoury ones, we highly recommend that you check out the website (http://www.marion.co.jp/whippedcreamcrepe/) which lists the ingredients used for each crepe. We used Google Translate for this 🙂
Address: 1-6-15 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan
Opening hours: 10.30am – 8.30pm, Mon to Fri. Closed on weekends.
2. Hanada Rosso
Located in the heart of Harajuku, Hanada Rosso is managed by celebrity restaurateur Minako Hanada. The cafe is well-known for its ‘Hanada-style brown rice and vegetables’ and mainly uses pesticide-free organic vegetables from Hanada farm and authorized farmers. Everything on the menu is handmade with no refined sugar or additives!
#HHWT Tip: Lunch is cheaper than dinner at this cafe!
Address: 6-28-5 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001
Weekdays: 11: 30 – 16: 00 (Last Order at 15: 30), 17: 30 ~ 21: 00 (Last Order at 20: 00).
Weekends: 12: 00 ~ 21: 00 (Last Order at 20: 00)
3. Kebab J Box
While we try to have local food as much as possible, it is tough to find halal Japanese food in Harajuku. Kebab Box J is the perfect place to stop for a halal kebab after exploring Takeshita Street. They even have a shawarma bento!
Address: COXY 188 Bldg 1F, 1-8-8 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo
Opening hours: 10.30am – 9pm
When you’re ready to experience another side of Harajuku, head south of Takeshita Street and you’ll find Omotesando! Also known as the Champs-Élysées of Tokyo, this tree-lined avenue has a significantly different atmosphere from Takeshita-Dori and is littered with cafes and international boutiques!
1. Omotesando Hills
If you’re in the market for luxury goods, you absolutely have to visit Omotesando Hills – a sprawling shopping mall with a wealth of designer brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Bottega Veneta, Jimmy Choo and more!
Even if your budget isn’t big enough (like us), it’s still worth a visit. Designed by renowned Japanese architect Tadao Ando, you’ll be impressed by the architecture of this shopping complex!
Address: 4-12-10 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo 150-0001, Japan.
Subway: Omotesando Station (Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Chiyoda Line, Hanzomon Line) Exit A2, 2 min on foot / Meiji-Jingumae ‘Harajuku’ Station (Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line or Fukutoshin Line) Exit 5, 3 min on foot / JR Harajuku Station (Yamanote Line) Omotesando Exit, 7 min on foot.
OPEN 11:00 a.m.〜
Calling all fans of Sanrio, San-X, Disney and other Japanese characters! Be prepared to embrace this Kiddy Land’s flagship store with open arms and wallets. Standing at 5 stories, the store is virtually a theme park of character goods (Rilakumma, Hello Kitty, Gudetama, Snoopy, Star Wars, Disney, etc.)!
You’ll also find areas dedicated to different characters and most sections feature limited-edition products only available at this store! Get your wallets ready as you won’t be able to resist this.
Address: 6-1-9 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo 150-0001, Japan
Opening hours: Monday – Friday: 11:00-21:00, Saturday, Sunday, and holidays: 10:30-21:00
Muslim-Friendly Food in the Area
1. Aoyama Flower Market Tea House
An exquisite teahouse tucked in the back of a flower shop, this is the perfect place to relax especially if you love flowers!
Address: 5-1-2 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo. Subway: Omotesando Station (Ginza, Hanzomon, Chiyoda lines) Exit A4
Opening hours: 11am-7pm
2. Omotesando Koffee *Note: Omotesando Koffee is now closed 🙁 The other outlet is in Ginza – Toranomon Koffee)
If you’re looking for a caffeine fix, don’t miss this hole in the wall coffee shop, serving one of the best coffee in Tokyo! Everything is awesome, we promise. Take your pick from iced coffee to mochas but do avoid the Iced Baileys Cappuccino which contains alcohol. We personally love the Iced Latte! If you’re not exactly a huge fan of coffee, go with the Iced Café Mochaccino. It’s really light and tastes more like an iced chocolate drink!
Address: 4-15-3 Jingu-mae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001 Japan.
Subway: Omotesando Station (Ginza, Hanzomon, Chiyoda lines) Exit A2
Opening hours: 10am-7pm
#HHWT Tip: Most of the shops in the Harajuku district shut their doors pretty early in the evening at around 8.30pm. You may want to have a heavy lunch and then head elsewhere for dinner after 8.30pm. Psst. Amazing halal yakiniku awaits you at Gyumon, located in Shibuya, which is just a stop away 😉
To help you out with planning your itinerary, we’ve also created a custom map with all the sights, shopping and food places mentioned above!
Don’t forget to download the HHWT Travel Planner available on both Google Play for Android and iTunes store before planning your trip to Asakusa! Our guides for Tokyo are also available on the app so you can easily access it and add these attractions to your itinerary 😉
*Do note that the eateries/cafes mentioned in this article are not halal-certified unless stated otherwise. As usual, we advise our readers to visit these eateries/cafes at their own discretion 🙂