Turn down the volume on your squee-meter, unless you want to lose a little more of your hearing! Check out the little prickle monsters you can snuggle up with at Tokyo’s new Hedgehog Cafe…
The reason it’s called the Harry Hedgehog Café is that these little animals are known as hari-nezumi in Japanese, which means (brace yourself for the most perfect name EVER) Needle Mouse.
You can choose three different needle mice to play with during your stay.
Roam around and look at them all before choosing the hedgehog of your dreams, then the staff will bring it to you in a bread pan (which comes in handy, since sometimes you need to take a rest from a wiggly little ball of pins & needles trying to climb your arm).
In the interest of transparency, I feel I ought to provide you a cat café metric before you decide to go: the ratio of time spent watching animals sleep to the time playing with said animals is about 3:1.
How to visit the Harry Hedgehog Cafe
• Open every day from 12:00 noon – 21:00
• It’s ¥2000 an hour per person on weekdays, ¥2600 an hour per person on weekends (and you get charged even if you don’t play with any hedgehogs, so be forewarned)
• Reservations are recommended, and one hour is the minimum reservation time. You can just show up and stand in line, but the wait can be over an hour, and some days they are fully booked and even standing in line won’t get you in.
• You can make a reservation online in English here.
• Unlimited serve-yourself cold water and tea are included in the price, but let’s be honest: the thing this “café” really serves up is hedgehogs.
• Some staff speak English, and there is an English rules card to tell you the dos and don’ts before you get your hedgehog
Thank you Dana Sachiye Mar for being a hedgehog whisperer extraordinaire and letting me post a few of your lovely photos (4, 6, & 10)
Read a novel set in Tokyo
Writing mystery books set in Tokyo is mostly what I do, but I also blog about the odd stuff I see every day in Japan. I'm a graduate of Stanford University and the Sendagaya Japanese Institute in Tokyo, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, the Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters In Crime. When I'm not in Tokyo, I live in San Francisco. I also host a travel site called The Tokyo Guide I Wish I'd Had, so if you're headed to Japan and want to check out the places I take my friends when they're in town, take a look!