Yanaka (谷中) is a very famous place knowing as cats area. I went there last week since the weather is perfect for a random walk project around the city.
You can easily access there by taking Yamanote Line and get off at Nippori Station. Then just follow the map, you will find the main Japanese style shopping street soon. It about 10 minutes walk. The whole station including the closest train station looks very old. But I like how this kind of areas that you know it build with history.
Then the another cat related shop is called Manakiya (招き屋). It sells cat shape desert, which usually in a fish shape know as Taiyaki. I got a matcha mix with cream flavour, not very sweet as original red beans I think. Then I found a takeaway cafe at the end of the shopping street - Yanaka coffee. The sell coffee and beans, the coffee is the best one among those I drank so far.
We found so many resident areas that have a touch of history. At the main time, some of those housing changed to shops that with a very special interior design. You also can see Tokyo Skytree from some angle. The view mix with modern and traditional, this is exactly what I like.
I did some research before this trip there. You can find symbols of cat almost everywhere. There are couple famous shops that you need to visit if you are a huge cat fan. The first one is called Yanakashippoya (やなかしっぽや). It is a bakery selling cat tail shaped desert. It tastes like the sponge cake with cream inside. There is another shop beside it selling Yakitori and other Japanese favourite dishes with a super good price. All food there is around 100 yen if you like fried chicken pieces or another kind of Yakitori, this can be your heaven.
We didn't set an aim like where exactly I want to go or need to go. We just randomly walking around in the neighbourhood to see what we gonna find this time. We found some unique individual shops that selling handmade stuff, as well as some traditional shops. The another thing that surprised me is Yanaka area has so many temples that you can't even count.
We walking from Nippori Station towards the central area of Yanaka, then walking towards the east side. At the end, we end up closer to Ueno park. We found a super cool public bath that been renewed into a special gallery.