Sunday, June 27, 2010

Nipponbashi 日本橋

While wasps in Japan are large, hopefully they're not quite this gigantic. Nipponbashi, a shopping district in Ōsaka, offers a metallic wasp overlooking the shops - seemingly poised for flight. Known colloquially as "Den-Den Town," Nipponbashi is known for its many shops which specialize in furniture, tools, and "otaku" interests such as electronics, animation, comic books, and collectibles. Here you can find six foot tall Gundam models for sale alongside shops that only sell screws or transistors and there are electronic warehouses full of every type of device known to humankind. The neighborhood is patrolled by socially-awkward-looking fellows thumbing through retro video games or erotic comic books who are totally in their element. Nipponbashi, is often compared to Akihabara in Tōkyō, but unlike Akihabara it hasn't sold itself out to tourists and maid cafes.

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