A Peek Inside Harajuku's Uber-Adorable Cat Cafe
Welcome to Harajuku’s MoCHA cat café. Inside you will find cats. Some are white, some are orange, some are striped. They are all adorable.
Cat cafés aren’t exactly new – they’ve been around since at least 2015 and have inspired more adventurous offshoots, like owl cafés – but the original genius concept continues to capture our attention.
In this particular outpost in Tokyo’s Harajuku neighborhood, you enter a narrow building overlooking the entrance to the Meiji Shrine, ascend a few floors, and enter a cramped hallway, where you must remove your shoes. There’s a minimum half an hour stay with a 600 yen ($6) entrance fee at the café – just enough time to enjoy a beverage and play with a borrowed pet.
Squeeze down another corridor, where you place your belongings in a locker, grab a paper cup of milk tea from the dispenser, and then enter the main event: A wide-open room full of sunlight, where the cats roam free. Some people sit quietly and read a magazine in the soothing presence of the serene felines, while others offer them treats.
The cats are a friendly bunch, eager to climb on your lap, especially if you’re wielding one of the cat lollipops you can buy for 500 yen.
The café is quiet and relaxed; you’ll come out feeling comforted, almost refreshed by the presence of the cats, which are reminder that there’s still some unconditional goodness left in the world.
Here are 10 must-see moments from inside the café:
The dispenser where you can grab a drink before entering the cafe. I recommend the strawberry milk tea.
The brightly lit room where you can hang out with the cats features a play structure in the shape of a tree and tall glass windows.
The lollipops available for purchase will make the cats flock to you.
Piccolo wants his moment in the spotlight.
Rice Cake waits in line for a treat.
Gumi relaxes on a railing.
Musashino and Komugi find a perch on which they can watch the humans.
Pom decides he needs to lay down.
Maple the acrobat spies on us from the ceiling.
It was hard to say goodbye to Pom.