A bulk of the anime we know and love are set in real-life locations in Japan. Often, the stories are based on a specific location mentioned in the anime, such as Ikebukuro where popular anime Durarara! and its sequel are set. In other cases, the setting is not mentioned but fans are quick to identify the location using scenes found in each episode. One such example would be the hit franchise The Melancholy of Suzumiya Haruhi, which featured scenery from Nishinomiya in Hyogo Prefecture. Avid anime fans have had a long tradition of making pilgrimages to key spots in their favorite series through an activity known as Seichi Junrei. There’s now even a website dedicated to documenting these spots and they have recently released a ranking of the wards in Tokyo that contain the most number of pilgrimage spots.

If you only have a couple of days in Japan to go on a pilgrimage, this ranking should probably come in handy!


As expected, Chiyoda Ward topped the list with a whopping 234 pilgrimage spots, with many of them concentrated in Akihabara, the world-renowned home to everything otaku, as well as Kanda, where many major manga publishers are located. On top of  that, Chiyoda also hosts a university town where many higher education institutes are located. Some key anime known to be set in Chiyoda are Love Live!, Steins;Gate and the IDOLM@STER franchise.

Coming in second is the Shinjuku Ward, best known for its train station Shinjuku Station, which is also the busiest train station in the world. Because of its fame, the Shinjuku Station and surrounding architecture have also become popular features in anime. Some of the best known works that contain scenes from Shinjuku are the movies Garden of Words and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time as well as anime series Nisemonogatari.

Ranking in at a very close third is none other than Shibuya, home to Japan’s unique and colorful fashion culture centered in Harajuku and Omotesando. Furthermore, Shibuya’s Animate store is also an extremely popular hangout place for anime and manga fans. Some key titles that are set in Shibuya are Bakemonogatari, Nisekoi and the movie 5 Centimeters Per Second.

Will you be going on a pilgrimage on your next trip to Tokyo? If so, let us know where you’re headed!

Source: Niconico News
Featured Image: gfernandez