Ohayo! Are you looking for Japanese gifts that will delight nerds, foodies, anime fans, music lovers, language learners and all-around otaku?
Here are just a few Japanese gifts for people who can’t get enough of the Land of the Rising Sun.
My 39 Best Japanese Gift Ideas
To Make Her Feel Like an Empress: Kimono Robe
Available in a dozen eye-popping colors, this kimono robe is instantly recognizable as a Japanese icon. It has long, flowing sleeves that stop at her forearm rather than her wrist, and it can be wrapped or cinched around her middle with a matching fabric belt.
It’s made with a lightweight blend of silk and satin that will glide across her skin. It’s perfect for sleepovers, spa days, bachelorette parties and any other event or occasion that deserves a little luxury.
For an Eternal Spring: 3D Cherry Blossom Pop Up Card
With their brief, beautiful lives, cherry blossom trees are one of the most popular symbols of Japanese culture. But what if you don’t want to say goodbye when spring is over? Consider this pop-up card.
It boasts an amazingly detailed 3D cherry blossom tree that will rise from the card stock when it’s opened, and it can serve as a decorative item long after the birthday or anniversary is over. There are even fallen petals dotting the bottom of the pages like a real sakura tree!
To Set Fire to Their Taste Buds: Japanese Kit Kat Wasabi Chocolate Box
You aren’t a true fan of Japanese culture until you’ve fried your sinuses with some wasabi, but instead of giving your buddy the usual peas, powders or pastes, why don’t you arrange for a more memorable present? Japan has lots of wasabi-flavored snacks, but these wasabi Kit-Kats really take the cake.
They combine a fun chocolate crunch with a kick in the pants from the spice. They’ll be a tasty treat as well as an exciting novelty item for Japanophiles.
Game, Set, Match: Reversible Bamboo Go Set
Go has been played in Japan for thousands of years, and its game sets can range from “colorfully plastic” to “heavy, hand-carved heirlooms that are passed down through the generations.” This gift is one of the latter.
Its board is made with natural, dark-washed bamboo, and two lidded bamboo cups hold the black and white playing stones. The board is even reversible with a regular side and a beginner’s side. If you know someone who likes strategy games, give them a beautiful version of one of the oldest strategy games in the world.
To Say Aishiteru: Geisha Scented Candle Gift Set
Perfect for weddings, anniversaries and romantic holidays, this geisha candle set will bring sweet blessings to a sweet relationship. There are four small candles in colorfully printed tins, and each one has a different cartoon geisha to advertise a unique fragrance.
For example, the “sakura” candle smells just like cherry blossoms, and the “goji and tarako orange” candle will make you nice and hungry. It’s a candle set that should delight anyone with a passing interest in Japanese culture.
Sweep the Leg: White Dragon Headband
When they’ve seen The Karate Kid a hundred times, this is the gift for them. It’s not an exact replica of the headband that Daniel-san wore in the movie, but it’s a close approximation, and it will serve its purpose just fine.
It’ll keep the sweat out of their eyes as they cook, clean, exercise, exfoliate or cosplay. It can be tossed into the washing machine when it gets dirty. Tie it behind their head and tell them to make Mr.
Embrace the Wanderlust: Japan Cherry Blossom Scratch Off Map
This is a gift for the globetrotters. Neatly detailing all of Japan’s major cities in both English and Japanese, it will allow your favorite traveler to mark their progress as they roam up and down the coast.
There’s a pick for scratching off large destinations and a fine-tipped pen for scratching off smaller ones. There’s also a perfumed carrying pouch with a fragrance that will match the cherry blossoms decorating the map.
Whether your friend is already a seasoned traveler or just making big plans for the future, this map will be there for them through every passport stamp.
For Cold Mornings: Matcha Green Tea Set
If you’ve ever witnessed a Japanese tea ceremony, you were probably watching the preparation of matcha. It’s a powdered green tea that requires patience and precision to formally brew. The good news is that this matcha set makes it easy for anyone to try their hand at ceremonial tea-making, even beginners.
It comes with a bowl, whisk, scoop, holder and tea cloth. Everything is made of either bamboo or ceramic. There’s even a bamboo mat to rest everything on for maximum authenticity!
For Paints, Pencils, Markers and Watercolors: Floating World Japanese Prints Coloring Book
Floating World isn’t like other coloring books. Every page is a recreation of a famous Japanese woodblock print or ukiyo-e. From “The Great Wave off Kanagawa” to “Geisha and Her Servant Carrying Her Koto,” fans of Japanese culture will recognize a lot of these famous images on sight, especially since they’re printed in full color next to their blank coloring pages.
Artists can take inspiration from the real thing even as they put their own creative spin on it.
If They Love Studio Ghibli: The Collected Works of Hayao Miyazaki
You don’t have to be a fan of animated movies to appreciate titles like Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle, but it certainly helps, and this box set will take you through all of Miyazaki’s greatest hits.
It even includes his lesser-known movies that came out in the ’70s and ’80s. If they love him, they’ll love the chance to go through his back catalogue; if they’re new to his whimsical, wonderful worlds, they’ll get to strap in and finally see what all of the fuss is about.
And Now For Something Completely Different: BABYMETAL Metal Galaxy Vinyl Record
Have you ever seen Japanese schoolgirls in poofy skirts headbanging with the force of a thousand metalheads? Welcome to the world of BABYMETAL, a J-pop group that specializes in “kawaii” rock music. They’re made headlines for breaking down the traditional barriers of screamo, but like any good rock stars, they’ve made sure that their collection is available on vinyl.
Whether it’s for playing or just displaying on the wall, a metal fan is going to love this record.
If They’re Feeling Hungry: Sushi Socks
Are they mad for maki? Do they go nutty for nigiri? This clever little gift is sure to make them laugh if they’re fans of sushi and all of its adornments. There are three pairs of socks in a clear, plastic-lidded box, and they’re folded in a way that makes them look exactly like a lunch platter.
There are even fake seaweed leaves and soy sauce bottles to complete the look! Keep their toes warm even as they have an LOL over a fun and unique present.
For Arts and Crafts: 10-Roll Washi Tape Pack
Washi tape has become one of the trendiest items in the creative world. Made with natural fibers like hemp and bamboo, it’s pretty, high-quality tape that can be used for everything from studying to scrapbooking.
You’ll have your pick of colors and patterns, but this set goes back to its native Japanese roots with trees, daisies, daffodils and cherry blossoms. Each roll in the 10-pack is 33 feet long, so your gift recipient won’t run out anytime soon.
They’ll be able to enjoy their washi tape for dozens of crafting adventures.
To Enable an Anime Addiction: Baka Rabbit Slap T-Shirt
If they’re an anime fan, they’ve heard the word “baka” being tossed around, and this quirky t-shirt will let them cherish it. It depicts a cartoon bunny slapping the s**t out of another, so it’s a gentle, thoughtful gift that will celebrate the height of Japanese creativity through animation.
Did we mention that “baka” means “idiot”? There’s a Japanese lesson for you!
For an Amazing Shelf or Mantle Display: Japanese Bushido Samurai Warrior Statue
This isn’t a cheap action figure from Walmart. It’s a hefty figurine made from resin and cold-cast bronze, and it’s been molded, sculpted and detailed to an absolutely exquisite degree. You can see the blood stains on his armor and the mustache hairs on his face.
You can even see the way that his fingers are clenching hard around his sword. If you’re looking for a high-quality collector’s item for someone who admires the way of the samurai, this is it.
Green Thumbs and Brown Smudges: Bonsai Starter Kit
Did you know that bonsai isn’t a specific kind of tree? It just means “tray planting,” and it’s a reference to the way that the trees are cultivated in mini-trays. This is important to know when gifting someone the Bonsai Starter Kit because there are actually four species for them to pot, plant, feed, mark and grow.
Everything that they’ll require is right in the box, including seeds and soil samples, so it’s just a matter of picking their favorite species and getting to work!
For Aspiring Artists: The Master Guide to Drawing Anime
If you’ve caught them scribbling outlines of Erza Scarlet on their napkins and notebooks, take them by the hand and lead them to a better way of learning. The Master Guide to Drawing Anime: How to Draw Original Characters from Simple Templates offers detailed, step-by-step instructions on everything from proportioning figures to shading gigantic anime eyes.
It’ll teach them what they need to know about designing their own manga or even just drawing really good fanart.
Noh Problem: Hannya Demon Japanese Theater Mask Enamel Pin
Hannya are the demonic spirits of Japanese theater productions. They cause chaos and strife for the other characters to overcome. You might not want to give this pin to someone who is superstitious, but if they aren’t bothered by the mythical implications of putting a demon on their bag, jacket, hat, lapel or cuff, it’ll make an awesome decorative item.
It’s the kind of accessory that will definitely get a double-take from people on the street!
A Gift for Dog Lovers: Cute Shiba Inu Hooded Sweatshirt
It’s hard to beat a Shiba Inu in terms of cuteness, but this hooded sweatshirt gives the puppies a run for their money. It’s made with soft, huggable materials, and it includes ears on the hood and a curled tail on the butt.
There are even paw prints on the wrists! If they’re a sucker for dogs, they won’t be able to resist the charms of a Shiba Inu hoodie.
For a Different Kind of Bedtime Story: Tales of Japan: Traditional Stories of Monsters and Magic
Folk tales play an important role in traditional Japanese culture, so if you know someone who would appreciate an in-depth look into the art and lore of the country, give them a copy of Tales of Japan: Traditional Stories of Monsters and Magic.
It’s filled with ghosts, goblins, dragons, warriors and spirits, and every story is accompanied by colorful illustrations done in classic styles. The reader will learn a lot about Japan, and they’ll be hooked on every page.
Wish Upon a Paper Feather: 100-Piece Origami Paper Cranes
There’s a legend in Japan that you’ll be granted a wish if you fold 10,000 paper cranes. This set only comes with 100, but it still gets into the spirit of things with bright, beautiful origami work. Your gift recipient can hand them out as party favors, string them together in a window, use them to decorate a wedding or display them individually around the home.
The possibilities are endless!
For Weary Heads: Kitsune U-Shaped Neck Pillow With Eye Mask
There are many legends surrounding the kitsune, or nine-tailed fox, but you’ll probably forget all about their frightening and mysterious powers when you glimpse this adorable travel set. There’s a U-shaped neck pillow that looks exactly like a fox curling up for a nap, and a matching sleep mask can be pulled over the eyes.
It’s soft, cute and comfortable, and it’ll make a wonderful gift for folks who travel a lot. Let them get some rest with a cozy kistune set.
Do they eat so much ramen that they’re about to turn into a noodle? Have they binged so many episodes of Naruto that they’ve created a permanent body groove in the futon? Combine their favorite pastimes with a dish that will support their midnight snacking and marathoning.
It’s a ceramic noodle bowl that comes with a pair of chopsticks and a built-in chopsticks holder across the lip, so it’s everything that they’ll need to veg out as they curse Neji for insulting Hinata.
Creature Comforts: My Neighbor Totoro Slippers
There’s a staggering amount of merchandise for Totoro, including bags, blankets, hoodies, plushies, key chains and figurines. But there’s something special about these slippers. Maybe it’s their soft, fuzzy lining that makes them almost sinfully comfortable; maybe it’s just the cute expression on Totoro’s face as he wanders the house with the wearer.
Either way, if you know someone who is a devoted Ghibli fan, they’ll squeal at these slippers and never take them off.
To Get Drunk and Say That It’s Cultural Appreciation: 9-Piece Sake Cup Set
Sake is best when it’s shared, and this nine-piece set will allow for drinking parties with an entire group of friends. It comes with small, traditional sipping cups as well as a full-sized pouring pot and pot warmer.
A round tray will hold it all. Everything is made with stylish black ceramic, and it’s been pre-treated with a high firing temperature to cast off toxins. If they love Japanese alcohol, this set will let them prepare it and enjoy it with pleasurable company to boot.
For the Friend Who Owns a Business: Maneki Neko Piggy Bank
You might know the maneki neko (“beckoning cat”) as a good luck symbol in Japanese culture. This is true, but it also has a special meaning for home and business owners. The beckoning paw is meant to attract visitors, and the colors are carefully chosen to draw positive energy for money, health, romance or happiness.
This piggy bank is for financial fortune, and it’s best placed on a mantle or at a cash register. The cat will sit on its silk pillow and ring its tiny golden bells to bring positive chi to its place of residence.
When Fashion Meets Pop Art: Japanese Kimono Cardigan Coat
This kimono-style jacket wraps around the body like the real thing, but it has a more casual cut meant for everyday wear. It’s also printed with a bold and colorful design that includes smoke, sake, animals, warriors and jazzy Japanese text.
It’ll definitely make a statement, so if you’re looking for a trendy, fashion-based gift for someone with eclectic taste, they don’t even need to be a fan of Japanese culture to appreciate what this jacket is doing.
A Fur-midable Present: Cute Cartoon Cat Notebook
Another great gift for people who like cherry blossoms, this cute, colorful notebook is a visual delight. It depicts a lazy cat relaxing in the branches of a cherry blossom tree as he overlooks a quiet and traditional Japanese street.
There’s also a matching notebook with another lazy kitty on the rooftop of a historic minka house. Both notebooks have thick leather covers with a magnetic clasp shaped like a paw, and they come with lined and unlined pages that are decorated with scattered cherry blossoms trailing in the wind.
Take That, Gordon Ramsay: The Gaijin Cookbook
Gaijin is a Japanese word that means “foreigner” or “outsider,” and in this funny, self-aware cookbook, the American-born author tries to help other clueless newbies navigate the intricacies of Japanese cuisine.
He’ll teach you how to make the staples, including the perfect half-boiled egg to top your ramen, but he does it in a warm and humorous way that allows you to make mistakes and learn new things along the way.
If you know someone who is equal parts fascinated and intimidated by Japanese food, this cookbook can finally get them into the kitchen.
Pretend Like You’re in Tokyo: Kotatsu Futon Square
The kotatsu is one of the greatest inventions of mankind, but it’s largely unknown outside of Japan, and it can be expensive to import. The good news is that you can cheat a little with this quilted futon square.
It doesn’t come with an electric warmer like a proper kotatsu, but it’s thickly padded for warmth and comfort, and it can be spread underneath a heavy tabletop square of any type. It’ll be a decent knockoff for Japanese culture enthusiasts who have always yearned for the real thing.
To Make Them Melt: Sterling Silver Japanese Kanji Pendant Necklace
Designed with the symbol for ai, or love, this beautiful necklace will say it all even if you don’t speak the Japanese language. It’s made with sterling silver that will catch every light in the room, and a sturdy chain will keep it safe and sound.
It’ll be a great gift for friends, lovers, romantics and even parents who want to show their child that they’ll support their passions. Ai doesn’t discriminate. Love is love.
A Rose By Any Other Material: Origami Ikebana
Origami Ikebana combines two of Japan’s greatest arts: paper-folding and flower-arranging. With this instructional guide, you’ll learn how to create lifelike floral arrangements that are actually made of paper.
They won’t require any water or soil, and you’ll never have to worry about them withering. They’ll stay just as dyanmic as the day that they were folded. The bouquets will be immortal, making them a perfect gift for artists and crafters with a long-term eye.
For Someone Who Always Has Their Nose in a Book: Japanese Style Paper Bookmarks
Printed with fans, cranes, geishas, temples and cherry blossoms, this bookmark collection is a treasure vault of Japanese symbolism. There are 30 bookmarks in total, and each one has different patterns and pictures to represent the Land of the Rising Sun.
They’re made with high-quality card stock that won’t rip even with heavy use. They’re a little over a foot long, too, so they won’t get lost in thick tomes or textbooks. They’ll be ideal for college students or language learners who like trendy study aids.
To Ask the Soul-Searching Questions: Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life
There’s a little village in Japan where people live longer than anyone else in the world. How do they do it? Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life examines their homes, habits and belief systems, and it’s the last category that really drives this gentle philosophical book.
It looks at ikigai as a concept and how it can be utilized in anyone’s life to help them meet their self-improvement goals. If they want to fulfill some New Year’s resolutions, they’ll need ikigai.
For a Lazy Afternoon Inside: Seiganto-Ji Temple Puzzle
Also known as “Temple of Crossing the Blue Shore,” Seiganto-Ji is one of the most famous temples in Japan, and this puzzle will allow you to experience it without even stepping foot on a plane. It’s a three-story pagoda building surrounded by trees, and a waterfall can be spotted on the horizon.
It’ll be a treat for your eyes with every single one of its 1,000 pieces, so it’s ideal for nature lovers and puzzlemasters alike.
To Stun Visitors: Japanese Ukiyo-e Sea Wave Koi Tapestry
If you’re looking for a housewarming gift that will knock their socks off, consider this rich, colorful tapestry. It can measure as large as 70.9 x 92.5 inches, and it doesn’t waste a lick of space. A whale rides ferocious waves; cranes fly across a setting sun; fish jump through splashes and smoke clouds; cherry blossoms fall in the corner.
It’s a famous Japanese woodblock print, and it’s been transformed into a bold, busy tapestry for an awesome interior design.
A Motivational Reminder: “Broken Objects” Mental Healing Notebook
You might be familiar with kintsuji. It’s a Japanese art form that fills the cracks in an object with gold, making it even more beautiful and valuable than it was before. This inspirational notebook explains the process right on the cover: “In Japan, broken objects are often repaired with gold.
The flaw is seen as a unique piece of the object’s history, which adds to its beauty. Consider this when you feel broken.” Do you know anyone who could use a pick-me-up like that?
For Sneaking Coffee Out of the Break Room: Ninja Coffee Mug
Who wants to live by a samurai’s code of honor when you could be a stealthy ninja instead? This adorable but deadly mug will unleash your inner shinobi in 12 ounces or less. The front has a mischievous little figure in black, and the back has the text, “Trust me, I’m a ninja.
” It can serve as a coffee mug, pen holder, decorative item or anything else that you can imagine.
For an Onsen Experience Without the Onsen: Japanese Hot Spring Bath Powders
They don’t have to spend big bucks on a Japanese vacation to appreciate the country’s hot springs. With these bath powders, they can bring the hot springs to their very own bathtub. Each pack has a soothing but slightly acidic fragrance that speaks to its medicinal properties, and they can soothe everything from stiff muscles to poor circulation.
If your friend has been dreaming of steamy water and sulfur, give them some authentic bath powders to bliss them out.
How to Choose Amazing Japanese Gifts for Nerds, Otaku and Culture Lovers
Japanese gifts can range from delicately traditional silk prints to bizarre snacks made from honey, superglue and dirty socks. How are you supposed to pick the right thing for the Japanophile in your life? What do you need to know about Japanese gift-giving customs before you buy something? Here are just a few shopping tips.
Narrow Down Their Interests
They might like anime, but that doesn’t mean that they’ll like every anime series on the planet. They might enjoy noodle dishes, but they’ll have favorite ones and hated ones. Don’t assume that an interest in Japanese culture will translate to an all-consuming, all-encompassing love of anything with a Japanese sticker slapped on it.
Consider Their Language Ability
Japan is a language with more than 50,000 kanji, so unless you’re confident that they can read and write at an advanced level, you’ll want to err on the side of caution and buy them something that doesn’t require fluency. For example, make sure that the instruction manual is in English or that the gift inscription comes with a translation.
Keep It Practical
Are they really going to use that tea set? Do they really have the patience for bonsai or origami? You should always consider the practicality of a gift, especially when buying gifts from another culture.
It might be cool to look at, but unless it’s useful, it will become a novelty item that gets stuffed in a closet before long!
Thanks for reading, tomodachi. We hope that you’ve found some good Japanese gifts for a special person in your life. Feel free to like, share or comment on what you’ve seen here, especially if you have ideas for more presents that should be included on our list!