Back in 2009 I saw this ITN news report about Usagito Cafe (also sometimes called Usagi no Wonderland), a bunny cafe in Nagoya and from then on eating bunny shaped curry rice and petting bunnies has been top of my Japan to-visit list. I could never come up with enough justifications for a Nagoya side trip on our next two trips but this time I finally made it!
It didn’t all go to plan initially though. I arrived in super hot Nagoya after lunch and felt too tired to seek out bunnies. Instead I went to the botanic gardens and left it for the next day. Turns out Usagito Cafe doesn’t open until 1pm and I had to be back in Tokyo the same day so I did that all wrong. I went to the Science Museum in the morning and then it was a short walk over. Usagito Cafe is pretty easy to find with a bunny cut out in the entrance but a bit trickier once you’re inside as it looks like an apartment building. It’s on the third floor (though we’d call it second floor in the UK) and then there’s an intimidating closed door without a window. I finally worked up my courage to enter and found a tiny little shop full of bunny things.
I was still a little shy about trying to pet the bunnies so I browsed the shop first, to get one of their trademark bunny ears mugs that I’ve long coveted. You should really shop after though as they have postcards and badges featuring the shop bunnies. They stock a lot of cute things as well as food, outfits etc. for your real bunny and a few things for chinchillas too. I got a cute anniversary badge and stickers for me and Nic.
When I paid, the staff member brought up the bunny petting and had all the information in English. You can choose from unlimited play time, meal + drink for ¥2360, unlimited play time + drink for ¥1660 or 30 minutes play for ¥1080. I didn’t think I would have time for food so I went for the middle option, around £13. I also paid for some bunny treats, which was an extra ¥200 I think (about £1.50). She gave me some rules to read and hand sanitiser and then I was led into the bunny zone! There were Crocs to change into and storage for my bags. I was also given a blanket to protect my clothes and then left with the bunnies. There were three out when I arrived. Kanna-chan (above) was quite old with a sore eye, but very friendly. You’re not allowed to pick up the bunnies but they were happy to jump up on to my lap for treats and didn’t mind being petted.
Also out were Berg & Pump who were more active and completely crazy for treats, even though it was just dried leaves and things. I was soon cleaned out and then had to follow them around so I could take some photos and videos. You can take as many photos as you like, with your phone or camera though it’s quite difficult with a treat-obsessed bunny on your lap! See all mine on Flickr. You can also interact with the caged bunnies and they all have signs up with their names and photos. I imagine if you were there for a while you could request a bunny to be let out. The staff member noticed me looking at a tan-coloured bunny and brought over a matching baby bunny!
This was definitely the highlight as it was so tiny and adorable! It’s just 3 months old and was super happy just sitting on my lap and being petted. After a while, some more people turned up so I handed back the baby bunny and went through to the cafe.
There was quite a lot to choose from in the menu, some with additional charges. The bunny curry rice actually looked quite small for the price so I just got a grapefruit juice, which came in a pink bunny mug with a straw! I’ve been managing to risk using mine since I got home and it’s so comfy to hold, as well as being super kawaii.
The cafe is a bit crazy with bunnies everywhere and lots of hot pink. The bunny ear throne is for birthday girls and boys – you can see the crown at the back! If you have a birthday party here, you can order a big bunny shaped ice cream cake for everyone. Life goals there.
When I left the cafe, they encouraged me to go back in for more bunny time but I needed to get back to to Tokyo. I would definitely return though – it was so much fun getting to play with bunnies and Nagoya has lots more interesting stuff I’d like to see too. If you’re thinking of going, I say do it. The staff are used to foreigners and speak a little English and the bunnies seem happy and well cared for. If you go early on a weekday, it should be pretty quiet and you can stay in the bunny area as long as you like. There’s plenty information on the Usagito Cafe website – just open in Chrome to translate the text.
If you can’t make it, they sell bunny mugs, t-shirts, cookies and more online now so you could use a shopping service to order. There are also quite a few bunny cafes in Tokyo including Usagi no Ehon where you can dress the bunnies up in kimono and Ms Bunny where you can take a bunny out for a walk in Roppongi (!). There’s more info on those and other cafes in my Planning For Japan guide.