Translated by Briony Dunbar
6 Recommended Shinjuku Souvenir Shops
Not sure what to buy as souvenirs from Japan? This article will help you decide! We introduce a selection of six souvenir shops in Shinjuku with a large variety of gifts and Japanese items, like Don Quijote and Tokyu Hands.
Written by Inubushi Yoshiyuki
Where to Buy Souvenirs and Gifts in Shinjuku
Finding souvenirs is one of the things to look forward to during a trip to Tokyo. It can also be entertainment in itself to shop for your family, friends, or yourself.
This article suggests six great places in Shinjuku where you can find authentic Japanese souvenirs that will please all. These stores have different price ranges to suit all budgets and carry unique, high-quality gifts.
1. Don Quijote Kabukicho Main Store - Find Affordable Souvenirs
Don Quijote is a large store carrying gifts, accessories, food, and everyday items at a discount, with locations all over Japan. It is known in particular for its low prices and a huge range of merchandise. This location is in east Shinjuku's Kabukicho, a few minutes away by foot from Shinjuku Station.
In addition to the affordability, most merchandise is duty-free, and there is a delivery service that ships your purchases straight to the airport when you're heading home. You can pay in Japanese yen, but also in US dollars, Euros, Hong Kong dollars, Chinese yuan, Taiwanese dollars, Korean won, and Thai baht, Hong Kong dollars.
The Kabukicho branch boasts the widest array of products in Tokyo. It is open 24 hours, so you can shop at any time of the day. The multiple floors are filled with merchandise, making it fun to browse while you look for the perfect gifts. Be sure to check out the food floor, which has Japanese Kitkats in matcha, sake, and a variety of regional flavors.
2. Tokyo Hands Shinjuku Store - Great for High-Quality Japanese Items
Tokyu Hands is another great option for souvenir shopping, filled with high-quality, Japan-made merchandise. Selling everything from stationery to accessories and home goods, Tokyu Hands is filled with creative, unique Japanese goods that make excellent presents and memorabilia.
The Shinjuku location has eight floors nationwide chain and is one of the largest stores in the country. From bamboo chopsticks to geisha-print facemasks, you will find something great for everyone here. Plan to spend a couple of hours here browsing for gifts.
Opening hours are from 10:00 to 21:00, making after-dinner shopping possible; the Shinjuku branch is just 2 minutes on foot from the New South Exit of JR Shinjuku Station.
Readers of MATCHA can receive a discount at Tokyu Hands. View this page for more information.
3. Kinokuniya Bookstore Shinjuku Main Store - Peruse Manga, Magazines, and More
Kinokuniya Bookstore is a nationwide chain in Japan with locations in the United States, Australia, and Asian countries. The Shinjuku store is huge, with floors underground, running all the way to the 8th floor, with a large selection of reading.
In addition to Japanese selections, you can find foreign language books and magazines that most shops do not carry. There is also a large variety of Japanese manga, magazines, and high-quality stationery. Come here to shop for any book-lovers you know.
4. Matsumoto Kiyoshi, Shinjuku-Sanchome Store - Stock Up on Japanese Beauty Items
Matsumoto Kiyoshi is a famous drugstore known throughout Japan, with locations throughout the country. The stores are known for having a large selection of personal care items, medicine, and also snacks and drinks. Come here to find a variety of cosmetics and personal amenities at affordable prices.
Sales are often held at Matsumoto Kiyoshi as well. They also have duty-free services for international travelers and free Wi-Fi.
We highly recommend stopping by this branch of Matsumoto Kiyoshi to browse the huge inventory and pick up some hard-to-find items for yourself or anyone health-conscious.
5. Koiki Shinjuku Store - Discover Traditional Japanese Goods
Koiki is a store located on the corner of Mosaic Street. Mosaic Street is between the Keio and Odakyu department stores and serves as a passage from the south to west sides of Shinjuku Station.
Koiki sells Japanese-style goods designed with old and contemporary styles, ideal for gifts for a special someone.
The tenugui(*1) and kinchaku(*2) have gorgeous seasonal designs. They are both lightweight and small and are therefore especially easy to transport as souvenirs. If you are looking for someone who cooks or brings lunch to work, get them a furoshiki cloth so they can store their food in style.
*1 Tenugui - A light-weight cotton cloth ideal for wiping moisture and washing your body.
*2 Kinchaku - A cloth travel bag made to hold small items usually made of cloth. You can also find leather kinchaku.
Mosaic Street is also the location of several restaurants and is famous for its beautiful illumination during winter. After shopping, take time to stroll around this trendy shopping and dining area.
6. Kanzashiya Wargo, Shinjuku Store - Try New Fashions
Kanzashi is a traditional Japanese hair accessory used by women to tie their hair. Kanzashiya Wargo carries wide selection of original kazashi designs that allow traditional Kanzashi even to be used in everyday looks. They would make thoughtful gifts for anyone interested in fashion.
In addition to kanzashi, the bracelets, necklaces and other accessories, like parasols, all incorporate Japanese patterns and designs. You'll get quite a visual treat just by simply browsing.
Each item is designed and created by expert artisans, resulting in high-quality goods that will last a long time.
Souvenir Shopping in Shinjuku
Shinjuku is a great destination to explore and is also ideal for shopping for souvenirs and gifts with its large stores with endless-seeming selection. From inexpensive items at Don Quijote to Japan-made goods from Tokyu Hands, bustling Shinjuku is the perfect neighborhood to find thoughtful memorabilia and presents.