Little Tokyo isn’t a small version of Japan’s capital – it’s a district in Los Angeles which serves as the cultural center of Japanese Americans who live in the city. Little Tokyo was once used as the living quarters for the Japanese Americans after the Second World War ended. The district is also referred to as Lil’ Tokyo and J-Town, and it is one of three “Japantowns” in the United States. The other two are located in California as well, and are both named Japantown.
Little Tokyo was once a square mile of Japanese culture in the midst of Los Angeles. Nowadays, the district has been whittled down to 5 city blocks. Nevertheless, visitors can still enjoy the different sights in the area, sample Japanese cuisine, and shop. The entire area serves as a business and shopping district and has churches, Buddhist temples, cultural attractions, and restaurants.
Tired travelers can book into the Kyoto Grand Hotel, which is the tallest hotel in Little Tokyo. Once one is settled in, he/she can now begin exploring the different tourist spots in the district. First up is the Japanese American National Museum, which outlines the entire history and culture of the Japanese Americans. A total of three exhibits can be found in the museum.
The Japanese Village Plaza is located in the very core of Los Angeles. Here one can find a handful of restaurants and more shops. Nearby is the Weller Court Shopping Mall, which houses a myriad of retail shops, and a Japanese bookstore which sells “manga” (the Japanese version of print comics and cartoons) and other reading materials in Japanese.
Most shops in the area sell only one type of product, such as video games. One popular video game company, Capcom, is the creator of a widely known gaming franchise, the Resident Evil series. Japanese cuisine such as Japanese noodles and sushi is offered by restaurants, and there are two sweet shops in the area as well.
Visitors can easily reach the district from subway lines; one of these is the Little Tokyo/Arts District station of the Metro Gold Line.