2024-01-12 | Recommendations

Top 10 Cafes in Otaru

Nestled along the scenic coasts of Hokkaido, Otaru is a charming port city with a rich history and a burgeoning coffee culture. Otaru’s cafe scene offers a delightful fusion of tradition and modernity. In this article, you will discover the top cafes in Otaru recommended by our staff at UNWIND HOTEL&BAR OTARU, each with its unique ambiance, artisanal brews and delicious desserts. Whether you seek the perfect pour-over, crave a slice of heavenly cake or simply wish to immerse yourself in the tranquil ambiance with a good book, you will find out the best Otaru cafes in this post that offer an array of comfortable and cozy experiences.

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  2. Press Café
  3. Café Ironai Shokudo
  4. Kitaichi Hall
  5. NORTHLY / Cafe + Bar TonoBacca
  7. Shirokuma Coffee
  8. View Café
  9. Uguisu Bird Cage
  10. 1cafe


B3 COFFEE OTARU is known for its specialty coffee and chill atmosphere. The cafe is run by an Australian man and his Japanese wife and daughter. They are friendly and always ready to have a conversation. They are known for their espresso coffee, made from a high quality espresso machine. This is a popular stop for foreigners living in Otaru.

Press Café

Press Café is a charming retro-style eatery located in a reused stone warehouse. Located at the northern side of the canal, it is a perfect place to take a break after a walk along the canal away from the tourist buzz. The owner’s favorite retro cars are on display, and the European-style interior is beautiful. The English and Japanese menus feature delicious Japanese pastas, curry rice plates, cakes, and coffee beverages. The menu also includes set options with smaller portions combined with salads. Open daily for lunch and dinner, excluding Thursdays, Press Cafe stands out for its welcoming staff, making it a perfect retreat from Otaru’s crowds and conventional attractions.

Café Ironai Shokudo

Café Ironai Shokudo is also characterized by a store full of retro Showa-era atmosphere. In addition to a wide variety of beverages on the menu, the unique point is that it offers a full lineup of Japanese sweets such as comb dumplings and warabimochi (rice cakes). The morning menu is until 11 a.m. but lunchtime bento sets are also available, so you can visit any time of day.

Kitaichi Hall

When you search Otaru’s iconic images, the well-renowned Kitaichi Glass company often appears. Established in 1901, Kitaichi Glass initially focused on the sale of oil lamps, a humble beginning that has evolved into a symbol of enduring craftsmanship. The Kitaichi Hall cafe, nestled within the Kitaichi Glass No.3 building, is illuminated solely by 167 petroleum lamps, creating a cinematic romance, echoing the company’s historical roots. Basking in the soft glow of lamp lights, a visit to Kitaichi Hall becomes a delightful escape where you can enjoy cakes, sweets and coffee in a serene setting. The subtle flicker of oil lamps adds an enchanting touch, making Kitaichi Hall a haven for those seeking a serene and nostalgic retreat in the heart of Otaru.


NORTHLY is a rare hybrid pottery-making experience (reservation required) and cafe in Otaru. They also sell ceramics. It is located in the direction of Mt. Tengu, so it is a good place to visit after a drive along the mountain road. Beyond an art studio the meticulously renovated traditional Japanese house has preserved historic materials, tables crafted from stripped-back plaster walls and walls adorned with hand-painted Japanese paper. The ceiling boasts unique cut-outs, fostering an airy and open ambiance.


TOKUMITSU COFFEE is located in the Zenibako area, where you can easily enjoy the ocean view and stop by on the way between Otaru and Sapporo. You can get there by either car or JR train, and you can see the ocean from the window. This is a great spot to visit at sunset.

Shirokuma Coffee

Shirokuma Coffee is a popular place in the Zenibako area. It is famous for its large soft serve ice cream, which has been shared on Japanese TV. It has a terrace, and on a nice day, you can go outside and enjoy a cup of coffee while looking at the ocean. It is right in front of the station so it has great accessibility.

View Cafe

View Cafe has a wonderful ocean view along the national road connecting Otaru and Sapporo. Many people come all the way from the suburbs of Sapporo. From a wide variety of sweets to special curry, it is the perfect place for lunch. The ambiance is serene and inviting, offering a comfortable setting. The coffee choices are extensive and delicious. The two-story building offers an excellent view of the ocean from the second floor. Due to its popularity, many customers arrive before the cafe opens, so it is recommended you visit as early as possible in the day.

Uguisu Bird Cage

Uguisu Bird Cage is a bakery located in the mountains, a short drive from the city. All of the bread, from hard breads to croissants, made with local wheat are exquisite. You can relax in the cafe space while dining on sweets and drinks. The cafe exudes style, boasting a pleasant atmosphere and tastefully designed furniture. The shop, meticulously crafted by the owner, reflects attention to detail in every corner. Free parking is available.


1cafe is tucked away in an alley with few pedestrians. You can enjoy both meals and sweets such as cakes. It is a recommended spot to visit when you are tired of walking all day. The overall aesthetic, from the charming chandelier to the stylish plates, creates an aesthetic and calm atmosphere.

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