One of the finest ways to notify your friends and family that you are thinking about them while traveling is to give them souvenirs. It’s also a wonderful souvenir to buy for yourself as a memento of your vacation. So, what should you purchase as a memento in Japan? Even the most reserved visitor will struggle to leave without an extra bag of goodies since Japanese souvenirs are so diverse and high-quality.
The greatest gifts from Japan are far more than tourist trinkets; they have hundreds of years of history and legacy behind them and maybe anything from ornamental to stylish to practical. Don’t miss out on this Janbox’s selection guide of the best Japanese souvenirs that you can only buy in Japan, which includes some of the best crafts, cosmetics, and gastronomy on the globe.
1. Top 30 Best Japanese Souvenirs To Take Home
Do you want to buy Japanese souvenirs? There are many interesting and unique items to purchase for yourself or as gifts for friends and family. Then keep reading because we’ve compiled a list of the top 30 recommended Japanese souvenirs:
1.1. Yukata or Kimono
Yukata, or light summer kimonos, are a popular gift from Japan that many foreign visitors enjoy purchasing. Yukata are generally made of cotton and are considerably simpler to wash and iron than kimono, making them a more practical and cheap memento in many respects. They are, nevertheless, no less attractive, with vivid colors and designs that stand out. They’re popular during hanami celebrations and summer festivals, so having one of your own to wear at these events or as a distinctive piece for your house is a must.
Yukatas may be bought in kimono specialist stores. They’re even available at big supermarkets like Aeon and Ito Yokado throughout the summer. The price of a yukata varies between 3000 and 10,000 yen. UNIQLO’s yukatas with traditional Japanese patterns, which cost around 3,000 yen, are all quite popular.
Kimono, in addition to Yukata, is a traditional Japanese keepsake. Kimonos are historically worn as a two-collar item and are usually made of a beautiful fabric such as silk. The kimono is traditionally worn for more formal occasions such as graduations or weddings, but it is normal to see Japanese people wearing it to work as well. We can find a beautiful antique kimono in Kyoto’s Kitano Tenmangu market.
1.2. Traditional Japanese Dolls
Ningyo, or traditional dolls, are among the most attractive gifts to purchase in Japan. Dolls have been an important element of Japanese society since ancient times, serving as a childhood toy or a source of joy. The most well-known and iconic is a Kokeshi doll, a simple wooden doll from Northern Japan that is generally painted red.
You may also buy Daruma dolls for good luck, as well as Hina and Kimekomi dolls for decorating, in addition to Kokeshi dolls. Toy stores, small-item shops, and souvenir shops all sell these unique Japanese souvenirs. Take a day excursion from Tokyo to Takasaki for the ultimate daruma shopping experience.
1.3. Inkan Stamps
Inkan stamps will be interesting Japanese souvenirs ideas for you. Name stamps, also known as Inkan or Hanko stamps, are used in Japan instead of signatures. You may buy pre-made Inkan at 100-yen stores or make your own at Don Quijote. For around 3,000 yen, you may manufacture your own original Inkan name stamp at select Inkan specialist stores.
1.4. Bonsai Vessels
Vases and containers for bonsai are inexpensive and of high quality in Japan. For example, small containers the size of your hand may be purchased for approximately 1500 yen. Elegant ceramic jars may be useful for people who want to adorn their homes with bonsai. Bonsai containers may be found in gardening stores. You may get them as a gift for your friends in 100-yen shops as well, but with a restricted choice of styles.
1.5. Kanzashi Hair Accessories
Kanzashi is a hair ornament popular in Japan. Kanzashi is very prevalent in contemporary haircuts. Kanzashi specialist businesses exist, such as Kanzashiya Wargo, a kimono rental shop that sells casual kanzashi for approximately 2,000 yen.
If you’re looking for a more traditional kanzashi, such as those worn by geishas, you may buy them in kimono shops. Depending on the style, authentic kanzashi might cost anywhere from 5,000 to 10,000 yen.
1.6. Anime, manga merchandise
Going to any store in Japan will provide a plethora of anime-printed sweets, snacks, and foods. Soft beverages, quick noodles, and even bread are all examples. Even commonplace goods like shoes, umbrellas, clothing and other items that may be printed on can be customized with your favorite anime character.
Akihabara, also known as the Electric Town and otaku’s paradise; Nakano, which is less busy but nonetheless full of otaku (fans of anime and manga); and the cool alleys of Ikebukuro are all places in Tokyo where you may see anime models.
1.7. Furin – Wind Chimes
Furin is a glass bell wind chime that is often hung underneath roofs to enjoy the music as it is softly blown by the wind. The unique sound reminds us of fresh breezes on hot summer days. Furin wind chimes may be purchased in home design stores or at Tokyu Hands.
1.8. Japanese Traditional Toys
Japan, like many countries with millennia of history, offers a diverse range of toys and games. The former is now readily available as inexpensive Japanese souvenirs. Consider the Kendama, which is a happy catch-the-ball skill game.
Adults would be enthralled by the country’s card and strategy games. These games are incomparable brain exercises for any age and may be completely addicting. Complex and entirely oriental in presentation, these games are exceptional mental workouts for any age and could be absolutely addictive.
1.9. Omamori Charms
Omamori, or good luck charms, may be found all across Japan at temples. They resemble tiny fabric packages, but they must never be opened. The charms are for good luck, and the fabric comes in a variety of colors and tints. Each one may protect the owner in some way, such as by warding off evil, ensuring safe travel, or bringing good fortune in business, love, or academia. Collectors’ items, they’re frequently kept safe in the owner’s purse or pocket. People purchase charms that correspond to their personal desires.
When recommending souvenirs in Japan, buying a good set of chopsticks may be the first thing that comes to mind. Chopsticks are widely used in Japan that you can buy from Japan at a variety of stores or online shops.
Stores like Tokyo Hands and Loft provide high-quality lacquered chopsticks in classic, charming, and modern styles. 100-yen stores, such as Daiso, also sell a range of brightly colored chopsticks made of both wood and plastic. You may also customize it with your preferred colors or designs, as well as have your name engraved on it.
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1.11. Bento Boxes
Bento boxes might be plain lacquered boxes, boxes with adorable patterns and figures, or even boxes made of wood. They’re so appealing that you’ll want to cook a nutritious meal just so you can use one, making them an ideal souvenir. This is simply a food container with different sections for small dishes, and it is maybe the most useful Japanese memento you could buy.
These bento boxes may be found in shops that sell traditional crafts. Shibata Yoshinobu Shoten, a handmade store in Asakusa, is a must-visit in Tokyo. When used with care, the bento boxes and products here are meant to last for decades.
1.12. Ninja Goods
Ninja-ya, an EKIMISE shop in Asakusa, sells ninja-themed goods. Ninja stars (shuriken), fake swords, and ninja outfits will be available. This is a fantastic store for ninja lovers to visit. Nikko Edo Wonderland in Tochigi Prefecture and in Ureshino, Saga Prefecture are two more venues to buy shuriken.
1.13. Sensu folding fans
Sensu, or Japanese folding hand fans, are ancient Japanese accessories, weapons, and art pieces. What a versatile tool! According to locals, you can get handcrafted Sensus nearly anywhere in Japan.
1.14. Geta and Zori Sandals
Geta or Zori, traditional sandals, are required to complete an appearance with a yukata or kimono. As you stroll down the street with this footwear, you’ll hear the distinctive clip-clop sound.
Geta and Zori sandals make a lovely present for a friend or family member. They are offered in souvenir stores in Asakusa, Kyoto, and other classic townscape areas in Japan. Tsujiya in Asakusa, Tokyo, has high-quality, handmade sandals.
Colorful patterns and great quality are hallmarks of Japanese origami paper. If you’re searching for a unique and interesting keepsake, this is a fantastic option. Origami paper may be found in most stationery stores, although specialized businesses like Ochanomizu Origami Kaikan have a large selection.
1.16. Japanese Cosmetics
Japan, like South Korea, is recognized around the world for its cosmetics. In recent years, Japanese cosmetics have employed technology to develop new products ranging from serums to facemasks to makeup. Every big city has pharmacy stores and cosmetic boutiques so we can buy good Japanese souvenirs like makeup products.
1.17. Tenugui – Japanese Towels
Tenugui towels are inexpensive Japanese souvenirs. Traditional towels may be purchased in 100-yen stores such as Tokyu Hands, as well as souvenirs and specialty shops such as Koiki in Shinjuku.
1.18. Furoshiki – Wrapping Cloth
A furoshiki is a big fabric that is used to cover and transport baggage. A furoshiki, which is just a bag, may contain and transport objects such as boxes, kimonos, wine, and a variety of other items. Traditional Japanese motifs or contemporary, stylish patterns, such as polka dots or even charming figures and animals, may be seen in their designs. It’s one of the handiest Japanese souvenirs since it can be converted into so many various things with only a few knots.
1.19. Chochin – Japanese Lanterns
The Chochin is a paper-based lantern. They are commonly seen generating red light at izakaya or yakitori (grilled chicken) restaurant doors. Normally, Japanese people do not hang them inside their homes, but they are used as a lovely room decoration by those outside of Japan. Chochin lanterns may be bought at Tokyu Hands and other home accessory retailers.
Why not carry some of the excellent stuff home with you if you like sake? This would be a wonderful way to bring a taste of Japan to your relatives and friends back home. It is available in supermarkets or wine shops around Japan.
1.21. Sweets, Kit Kats, and Snacks
The bizarre flavors and combinations of Japanese snacks have made them an international sensation, and they are frequently high on the list of presents visitors wish to bring back from Japan. Traditional Japanese sweets such as Manju and Daifuku are available at souvenir stores in malls and railway stations. Kit Kats are another popular item to bring home. Because the term Kit Kat is close to the Japanese word for “good luck,” the candy bar became a viral phenomenon a few years ago, spawning a slew of additional varieties.
1.22. Matcha (Green Tea)
Bringing home some matcha (green tea) as you can get when it comes to delicious gifts. Green tea powder includes a lot of antioxidants and is said to offer a lot of health advantages. It also folds up compactly and makes excellent presents for friends and family back home.
You can’t miss wagashi candies when it comes to delicacies to bring back from Japan. These vibrant rice flour sweets are fashioned like beautiful flowers and plants and are made with super-sweet bean paste and sticky rice. You may either share them with everyone at home or keep them all to yourself. It is easy to find these candies because they are sold in candy and grocery stores.
This wooden game is still widely available at toy stores in Japan. The object of the game is to throw a rope-swinging ball into the air and have it land in the proper spot. This may be a great present for any unique kids at home.
Koinobori, or carp-shaped windsocks, are historically flown in Japan to commemorate the Tango no Sekku festival (meaning, koi = carp, and nobori = banner). Even though they are typically used only once a year, they are offered as souvenirs all year.
1.26. Japanese Kitchen Knives
Knives from Japan are recognized for their exceptional quality. Sushi chefs require top-of-the-line blades, so you can be sure you’ll discover several high-quality Japanese knife brands. There are knife stores where everything is handcrafted, as well as entire streets with a wide range of options.
1.27. Ceramic Products
Ceramics are the ideal memento from Japan since they are both gorgeous works of art and useful everyday items. In Tokyo, we purchased a set of miniature porcelain bowls from a modest store. Choose from a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles to suit your preferences.
1.28 Japanese Pens and stationary
This is a nice and helpful thing to bring home whether you’re into brush writing or just want some fancy pens. Pens and paper from Japan are recognized for their exceptional quality. These items are also available at stationery stores and certain supermarkets.
1.29. Waving kitty (Maneki Neko)
You’ve probably seen those kitties at Asian restaurants with their waving arms. They’re ubiquitous in Japan, and they have a really fascinating connotation, so they’re a wonderful souvenir option. They are also supposed to bring good fortune to the person who owns them. We believe that we could all use a little luck, so go ahead and pick up a few Maneki-Neko on your trip to present as Japanese traditional souvenirs when you get back.
1.30. Japanese Electronics
Japan is a haven for electrical gadgets since it boasts the most up-to-date models and apps. Japanese electronics are known for their high quality and low costs. Cameras, phones, and other electronic devices are the most commonly purchased products. Yodobashi Camera, Bic Camera, and Yamada Denki are three well-known facilities. Akihabara is a great place to shop for electronics in Tokyo. If you want cool Japanese souvenirs, visit 3 places now.
2. How and where to buy Japanese souvenirs?
100 yen stores in Kyoto, Tokyo, and other cities are a prominent and enjoyable element of current Japanese culture. They’re also known as dollar stores or pound shops because they sell a wide variety of practical products for 100 yen (about $1 USD). Exploring these shops may seem like a treasure hunt, and you’ll almost always come away with considerably more than you expected. Everything from cookware to stationery, garden equipment, toys, and athletic products may be found here. Each shop will surprise you, and you can frequently get wonderful Japanese gifts for around 100 yen.
What are your thoughts on these top Japanese souvenirs ideas? What is your favorite item, and does this information assist you in deciding what to buy in Japan? May you find Janbox’s gift guide to be helpful! We hope you will suggest this article to your friends or others who are interested in learning more about Japan.
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