Today we’re talking about Dagashi snacks and the best places to buy them in Tokyo. There’s such an array of places in Tokyo in which to buy confectionary and sweets, snacks and toys and etcetera for the children and whilst most now shop in convenience stores such as seven eleven there are still some hidden gems amongst the metropolis wonder city that is Tokyo. So, here today we’re going to tell you about Dagashi and share with you our top three picks for the best places to go in Tokyo to buy these magnificent little snack foods and sweets. Get your inner child out because you’re going to love this one.
What is Dagashi?
Dagashi in English literally translated means futile snacks, which, let’s be honest, doesn’t sound that appetising but it is merely small cheap snack foods and sweets primarily for children that dates back to the period of Japans economic boom just after the second world war. These snacks can range from small chocolates, pickled sweet vegetables, savour corn snacks, tiny ramen and the list goes on and on and on. There are thousands to chose from that vary from 5 yen to a few hundred yen so that children could buy them with their pocket money.
The relevance of Dagashi in Japan is huge. Dagashi was primarily famous in the eco boom from the 50’s until the 80’s when convenience stores started popping up and taking the original stores, the Dagashi Ya, primarily out of business. The Dagashi Ya stores hold many memories and nostalgia for the older people of Japan and would be a huge part of a child’s week going to these places after school. Here they could interact with people and friends and learn valuable things about spending their limited money very wisely.
Dagashi snacks are now so famous amongst Japanophiles (people who are not native to Japan but who love the country with all their hearts [some even a little obsessed]) that world wide sales have sky rocketed with the streamlining of online ordering. Now people in the United States of America can order boxes and bags of their favourite Dagashi snacks and have them delivered direct to their homes. This is what many people do all over the world. There are even special monthly subscriptions that post a box to your house every month of the year with different sweets and snacks in direct from Japan. It’s no wonder that the world has fallen in love with Japan.
1.Daiba Itchome Shotengai (Tokyo Decks Beach Mall)
In the fantastic Decks Tokyo Beach mall there is a whole floor dedicated to food shopping and focussing on sweets and snacks. This mall is huge so head right to the fourth floor if you want some Dagashi. There is a little recreated Japanese town called Daiba Itchome Shotengai on this fourth floor. And it’s here that you will find lots of little shops dedicated to Dagashi and even a full recreated Dagashi Ya store. This place is guaranteed to bring out some nostalgia for all you grownups and your children will love it too.
Name: Tokyo Decks Beach Mall
Address: 1-6-1 Daiba, Minato-ku Tokyo, 135-0091, Japan
Business Hours: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Phone Number: 03-3599-6500
This is by far the most amazing one on the list. It’s the oldest Dagashiya in the whole of Tokyo and dates back all the way to the late 17 hundred’s. This is very old but is only said to have had 13 owners in it’s magnificent history. This is located in the grounds of the Kishibojin Shrine in the area of Tokyo known as Higashi Ikebukuro not too far from the station. Sadly, due to it’s location and age there is virtually no online presence and no official address or telephone number for this place, but you can visit it from 10 AM to 5 PM most days if the weather is holding out and you’re near the area. For a great look into the past you should definitely visit this place and maybe take a look at the shrine too whilst you’re there.
Address: 3-15-20 Zoshigaya,Toshima-ku,Tokyo, 171-0032,Japan
Business Hours: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Well, this one definitely is not for the children and will please the adults to no end. This is Dagashi bar in Tokyo. This place is exactly what it says on the tin. A bar that serves your favourite alcoholic beverages whilst giving you some nostalgic Dagashi whilst you are at it. It’s a magnificent place that everyone who’s old enough should visit.
Name: Dagashi Bar
Address: 1-13-7 Ebisuzan western Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Business Hours: 4:00 PM – 11:30 PM
Phone Number: 03-5458-5150
So, there you have it. A little history about the candy snacks that is Dagashi and the places to buy them the Dagashiya. And most importantly the best three places in the whole of Tokyo to enjoy these lovely treats. There’s something for everyone in these three beautiful places so don’t hesitate to try them all and see which one of them you love the best. If you don’t love them all that is.
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