Let’s face it—layovers can be boring. Not every airport is built with passenger comfort or entertainment in mind, and depending on where you stop, you may not even be able to get a decent bite to eat.

However, leave it to Japan to provide airports that are not just built for arrivals and departures, but have an eye for keeping waiting passengers engaged until they are ready to get in the air. Tokyo’s Narita Airport certainly fits the bill; partly because of its size and traffic (it is the busiest airport in the country for international travelers), but also because of its fun shops, tasty restaurants, and unique things to see and do while you’re waiting for your connecting flight.

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Note: Below are just some examples of shops, restaurants, and things to do at Narita. While the attractions listed below are currently open, many others in the airport still remain closed due to constantly changing COVID-19 safety protocols.

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Shop ‘Till You Drop

Terminal 1

Airports have shops, whether they’re convenience stores or duty-free locations to stock up on supplies. However, Narita airport takes it to the next level with a plethora of shops in all three of its terminals that offer everything from sweets to souvenirs.

Matsumoto Kiyoshi is a drugstore that offers fliers everything from health and beauty items to cosmetics.

  • Hours: 8:00 AM-5:00 PM daily
  • Location: Central Building, 3rd Floor

Satsumaya Okutani is a souvenir store with everything under the sun for when you are looking for a last-minute memory of Japan.

  • Hours: 9:00 AM-5:00 PM daily, closed from 12:30-1:30 PM
  • Location: Central Building, 4th Floor

Tokyo Shokuhin Kan is a great stop for those with a sweet tooth; offering both Western and Japanese confectionary.

  • Hours: 8:30 AM-4:30 PM daily
  • Location: Central Building, 4th Floor

Terminal 2

Fa-So-La Akihabara has everything from appliances and watches, to stationery and souvenirs. Other locations (carrying different items)Jet can also be found scattered throughout the airport. This is also a tax-free shop.

  • Hours: 8:00 AM-6:00 PM Tues.-Thurs., 8:00 AM-4:00 PM Sat., 9:00 AM-5:00 PM Sun.
  • Location: Main Building, 2nd Floor

Hot Heart is a smaller store, yet still has an amazing variety of goods for sale including boxed lunches, confectionery, and beverages.

  • Hours: 6:00 AM-7:00 PM M-F, 6:00 AM-6:00 PM Sat. and Sun.
  • Location: Main Building, 2nd Floor between Arrival Lobby and Departure Lobby

Narita Anime Deck is so much more than a shop--it's a full entertainment experience. There’s also a ramen restaurant for visitors who want a snack.

  • Hours: Shop 10:00 AM-8:00 PM, Restaurant 10:00 AM-3:30 PM daily
  • Location: Main Building, 2nd Floor

Terminal 3

Jetstar Shop is a trendy stop where travelers can purchase an array of items including gifts, alcoholic beverages, and Jetstar’s original goods.

  • Hours: 6:10 AM-Last Flight daily
  • Location: 2nd Floor, Satellite

Lawson is a 24-hour store with a variety of essential products for all travelers. A tax-free shop.

  • Location: 2nd Floor

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Get A Bite To Eat

Whether you are leaving Japan or heading to it, you will want to stop for a bite at any one of these tasty restaurants and cafes to try some of Japan's signature dishes.

Homemade Udon Noodles Kineyamugimaru

A self-service restaurant offering homemade udon noodle dishes, tempura, onigiri rice balls, and more.

  • Hours: 10:00 AM-3:30 PM daily
  • Location: Terminal 1, Central Building, 5th Floor

Keisei Yuzen

A family-style restaurant with a range of menus featuring popular Japanese dishes like tempura and sashimi.

  • Hours: 10:00 AM-7:30 PM daily
  • Location: Terminal 1, Central Building, 4th Floor

Cafe & Bar Avion

Looking for something light? This cafe has appetizers and snacks and is also a bar for those who want to grab a drink before taking off.

  • Hours: 10:30 AM-6:00 PM daily
  • Location: Terminal 2, Main Building, 3rd Floor

Benitora Xiao Chi

Casual dining, snacks, and street food. Try the Szechuan Noodles and with a Shimidare Pork Bun for a real treat.

  • Hours: 11:00 AM-5:00 PM daily, closed Tues.
  • Location: Terminal 3, Food Court, 2nd Floor

Hakata Ittenmon

Fans of ramen will love this noodle shop where the noodles are delivered fresh daily and many of the items are homemade.

  • Hours: 10:00AM-8:00PM daily
  • Location: Terminal 3, Food Court, 2nd Floor

Off The Beaten Track

Stores and restaurants are pretty standard fare for airports around the world. However, these attractions really set Narita apart from the rest.

Everyone has to use the bathroom at the airport—so why not make the experience a little more interesting by trying out Gallery TOTO in Terminal 2. Consisting of ten private cubicles complete with projected images of landscapes and people on LED-screen walls, this surreal bathroom is a fully functional fantasyland.

  • Tip: Toilets in Japan usually have features that their Western counterparts don’t, like bidets, heated seats, and blow dryers.

Kabuki Time

Learn all about this popular form of Japanese drama at Kabuki Gate, a combination gallery and shop in Terminal 1 where you can check out displays of the costumes and wigs that are a large part of this colorful art form. There’s even a booth where visitors can see what they would look like in full Kabuki make-up.

  • Tip: Kabuki Gate isn’t the only place at Narita to experience Japanese culture. Throughout the airport, there are many such experiences that are both hands-on and entertaining.

Gacha Machines

Travelers stopping at Narita on their way out of Japan will find a use for all that leftover pocket change at the Gacha machines in Terminal 2. Kind of like those cheap toy dispensers and candy machines here in the U.S., Gatcha machines are a fun novelty for those who want a cute little souvenir.

  • Tip: The machines contain lots of popular Japanese cartoon characters, and while you can’t always choose, travelers can sometimes pay a bit more for a chance to get something they really want.

Take A Break

Need a nap or a refresh? Then check out the Nine Hours Hotel, where you can book a 110 cm wide by 220 cm tall capsule to catch some zzz’s. Also available are communal washing facilities.

Whether Narita Airport is your arrival point in Japan or is simply a layover location, you will find plenty of shops, restaurants, and attractions in all three terminals to keep you entertained.

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