Out & About // Little Tokyo

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It had been way too long since Mr. Lovely and I went out for a mini adventure, so we decided to explore a part of LA that we hadn’t gotten to know too well. We’ve stopped in Little Tokyo here and there in the past for a quick errand, but this time we found a nice long meter parking spot and wandered around.

A good place to start is the Japanese Village Plaza; there are shops and restaurants, and you can wander around for a whole afternoon. Go for lunch and put your name in at Kula Sushi Bar (if it’s crowded, waste a little time in the shops nearby). I had never been to a conveyor belt sushi restaurant before, and it was so fun! There’s just something about an endless parade of food marching by that gets me excited. All of the plates are $2, so you can also get a pretty decently priced lunch. Try the dragon roll. I could have eaten three plates of it.

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Head around the corner to Pop (not to be confused with Popkiller). One of my favorite shops in the village! They have about a zillion fun t-shirts, and also some pretty fab accessories at reasonable prices. I love how white and breezy the shop is, and they styled everything with air plants — a current particular obsession. I might have tried on a few hats.

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If you’re shopping for a little one, be sure to find the Monkey Pants shop. The cutest baby britches I’ve seen recently. And if you’re in the mood for some little Japanese bits and pieces, stop by the Tokyo Outlet Store. It totally reminded me of some of my favorite shops in Japan — all kinds of cute little containers, pencils, bowls, and so much more good stuff.

Wrap up your visit with a couple of sweet treats. We stood outside of Mitsuru Cafe for about 10 minutes, just fascinated watching the bakers make the red bean cakes. Be sure to take a peek, and then hop in line to get one (they’re worth the $1.50). And it might seem out of place, but Lette macaron shop is right there in the mix and too good to pass up. We brought a few home for later.

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We definitely missed a few spots (have to go back for mochi!) but it’s a fun afternoon if you’re wandering around in LA. Next time we’ll hit some of the gardens in the area, too; I’ve read that there are a few Japanese gardens tucked away from the craziness of the city. Have you been? Would love to know if you’ve ever wandered around Little Tokyo! xoxo

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12 comments

  1. That place sounds lovely.
    I don’t think here in Spain we have something like that, there some Japanese shops here and there but not all in the same place.

    Maria x

  2. those macaroons! oh how i would love to visit!

  3. Geneviève on said:

    I am curious, in that post you wrote that the Tokyo Outlet Store reminded you of your favorite shops in Japan… Does it imply that you visited Japan?

    • chelsea on said:

      Yes! My husband and I actually lived and worked together in Shanghai for a few months and during that time we were able to sneak away for a bit and see Tokyo. It was incredible, such a cool city.

      • Geneviève on said:

        Wow! It must have been an awesome experience! I tried to find posts about that on Lovely indeed, but I can’t find any :( (but maybe I’m just bad at searching haha). If you ever feel like posting about it, I would like soooo much to read about your experience there!

  4. Alyssa on said:

    Love me some Little Tokyo! For food, you must go to Daikokuya on 1st if you haven’t been already! Delicious!

    • chelsea on said:

      I know! We saw the line of people down the block waiting to eat there! Next time for sure.

  5. Natascha on said:

    For me who lives in Switzerland, is a place like little tokyo something really special because we don’t have this here. Looks amazing!

    I would love to read about your months in Shanghai too!

  6. Anna on said:

    Great adventure!! My friends and I are planning to explore Chicago neighborhoods for a day at a time, and naturally we are making passports to document our fun times!!

  7. Love LA’s Little Tokyo. And yes, Monkey Pants is the best place to get kids clothes! Got my niece a rainbow tutu there and she put it on as soon as it was purchased.

    • chelsea on said:

      Aww, aren’t nieces the best? I would love to deck out my niece in their leggings.

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