Hey guys! Today I’ll be sharing with you one of my favorite places in Harujuku, Japan- the Hedgehog Cafe. If you’re thinking ‘oh but hedgehogs aren’t in my diet’ or that it’ll be one of those sad ones where all the animals are locked up in cages, then you’re going to so surprised and happy after looking at all the photos of the cafe down below!
I personally advice making a reservation in advance because it is a very popular tourist destination and you wouldn’t want to waste your precious holiday time in the queue. The only downside to this is that reservations are for minimum an hour whereas walk-ins are 30 minutes. But hey once you’ve sat down you wouldn’t want to leave anyway. They are relatively more expensive than other animal cafes, costing about $30 per hour.
There are two hedgehog cafes in the area, one in Roppongi and the other one in Harujuku and we actually made a reservation at the wrong one but thankfully the staff there was nice enough to give us a priority, understanding that we were on a really tight schedule.
I squealed internally when I stepped foot into the room, never seeing a hedgehog in real life and so up close. I’ve shaken hands with monkeys, played with dogs and cats and carried guinea pigs (all at Kyushu Safari) but it was nothing compared to my experience at the hedgehog cafe.
I can’t remember the price but there is an option for feeding the hedgehogs but… with mealworms (yuck). Of course mini tongs are provided so you don’t have to touch the worms with your bare hands.
Gloves are also provided and highly recommended because angsty hedgehogs will bite and scratch. If you know me then you’ll know that I don’t really care about stuff like that so obviously I carried on without a glove and I ended up being bitten by one of them. What a prick. (pun intended)
It took a bit of time for me to get used to carrying them because they’re really small and fragile and I was constantly worrying that I would squish them. Over time they’ll become more familiar with your hands (i guess) and it gets easier to carry them up. If they start squealing it means that they’re afraid so like don’t force-carry them.
i am a hedgehog whisperer
Please be really considerate when you carry them because I mean you wouldn’t want some giant man lifting you up and dropping you constantly right. Sharing the area with me and my sister was this Japanese kid who kept on dropping the hedgehogs ‘because they were prickly’. And the dad didn’t really do anything about it until at some point, noticed that we were staring daggers and exchanging conversations about lifting the kid up and dropping him too (a bit mean la but to be fair he could’ve killed the hedgehog). I also had to keep giving him my hedgehog so he’d be preoccupied and halt his hedgehog serial killing streak.
After your time is up you’ll definitely feel the urge to slip one of them into your pocket but don’t worry, you can take a fake one home because the cafe sells plushies too! Honestly would’ve bought one la but I’m a broke-ass student but if you’re there, you can get them for your friends (and me) as really cute souvenirs!
1-13-21 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku
Tokyo Champagne Harajuku Building 2 Building 4F
(1-minute walk from Harajuku Station (JR))
IWAHORI Building 2 – 6 – 7 – 2
Roppongi , Minato – ku, Tokyo
(1 minute walk from Roppongi Station (3 Hibiya Line exit))