From right off the back, Nakano is weird (but in a good way). Well, that's the reason why Nakano became the mecca of Japanese subcultures. Similar to Akihabara, Nakano is perceived as otaku’s heaven (thanks to the infamous Nakano Broadway), but at the same time there are tons of delicious and inexpensive restaurants, low-key bars and local attractions. Forget about overrated Golden Gai, go to Nakano for true local experience in the heart of Japanese subcultures.
Nakano Broadway aka Otaku heaven is a super fun mall full of cool manga/toy/antique shops and cafes. Planning to geek out in Nakano? Mandarake is a must visit spot for you. You will find very rare products for sure.
Even though this is called cafe, it's more like bar. Not a big place, but there is chill art space on the 2nd floor. What I really like this spot are there is no cover charge and drinks are good and cheap. Good vibes for sure.
YAMI YAMI CURRY
When you think about curry, a lot of folks think about India, but funny ennough curry is considered as one of our soul foods.
YAMI YAMI nicely blends the essence of Asian style curry and Japanese curry. Their lunch set is such a steal for the quality.
Nakano beer kobo
Best beer spot in Nakano. They brew their own beers inside the small shop. If you wanna try truly local beers in Nakano, you have to visit this spot. No cover charge everything including drinks and foods only cost ¥500, which is great!
juke 80's music bar
This is a perfect spot for those who love all the great music from the 80's. Frankly speaking, this bar can be a little tacky, but you can request favorite songs from the music list while shipping your favorite booze, couldn't be better, ey?
Standing style sushi spot with fresh seafood with charming locals. Far from fancy, but the chef knows what he is doing. Recommenced to come early like 4pm~6pm and ask what's good for a day, don't forget to say "Osusume Wa?"
Produced by Takashi Murakami, it's on the 2nd floor of Nakano Broadway. This is the place where you can enjoy coffee drinks and art. Really nicely done, you can buy some Japanese ceramics. Drinks aren't that cheap but staffs are super nice.