Tokyo opens snake café where customers can hold a reptile while they get coffee

The unusual attraction has 35 snakes and 20 species in total

Helen Coffey
Monday 08 January 2018 17:57 GMT
Tokyo Snake Center has 35 'attendants' to choose from
Tokyo Snake Center has 35 'attendants' to choose from

After cat cafés and owl cafés hit the headlines in recent years, now it’s the turn of the humble snake to have its moment in the spotlight.

The first permanent snake café is in Tokyo, Japan – and, while it might not be everyone’s cup of tea, for reptile lovers it could prove the ultimate chance to get up close and personal with their scaly favourites.

Tokyo Snake Center in the trendy district of Harajuku has 35 snakes or “attendants” to choose from – all non-venomous – and customers can pick one to enjoy as a table companion. Waiters are on hand to outline the café rules and snake handling etiquette.

The cover charge is Y1,000 (£6.50), which includes one drink to sip as guests sit and admire their new no-legged friends. The menu includes non-alcoholic beverages, such as iced coffee, fruit tea and mango milk, and alcoholic drinks, including beer, sangria and rum apple squash. There are also cakes on offer, plus savoury dishes such as hotdogs, quiches and curries.

For an extra Y540 (£3.50), visitors can pet any of the 20 varieties of snake – from the Trans-Pecos rat snake to the jungle carpet python, the Brazil rainbow boa to the Honduran milk snake.

Visitors can pick up snake-themed souvenirs too, with postcards, snakeskin lucky charms and stuffed toy pythons all up for grabs.

“Adorable cafe, adorable snakes,” said one Tripadvisor reviewer, which says it all, really.

It comes after The Independent reported that a cat café in Tokyo closed down due to “unhygienic” conditions.

Cats meant for customers to pet at the Neko no Te café were found to be suffering from colds, according to inspectors, and were living in cramped conditions with more than two cats per square metre.

Neko no Te was shut down by authorities in April 2016.

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