This is just a precautionary measure. When buying electronics in Japan, make sure to ask the store keeper or seller to give you a receipt for immigration purposes. You will probably needed this when you pass immigration going home!
When you buy an imitation samurai, make sure to get a declaration that what you bought is not a real samurai! There is a government policy in Japan that protects real samurai to get out of their country!
What to buy: Electronics, computers and also samurai or imitation samurai
What to pay: Depending on what you bought
If exclusive designer street fashion is your thing then look no further than Japans own "A Bathing Ape", also known as Bape.
The Bape fashion label was started in 1993 by Tokyo student and DJ Nigo, his first shop opening in the Harajuku district of Tokyo in 1993. All the Bape clothes take inspiration from their creators obsession with the "Planet Of The Apes" movies, and all bare the distinctive Apes head logo. Ranging from Ape camo to exclusive sneakers, to smart club wear, you will be sure to find the latest in exclusive designer Japanese fashion at Bape.
The Kyoto branch of Bape is on Sanjo Dori, about 400 yard past it's intersection with Terramachi covered shopping arcade. Basically if you keep walking until you think that your never going to find it, it will appear on your left.
For other top Japanese designer names (such as Neighborhood, Visvim, W Taps and Number Nine) you might want to check out Factory. Do a search for their website (Factory Kyoto) as it contains a really handy english map to help you find both factory and Bape.
If you go to Osaka during your stay you will find another Bape store, a Neighborhood store and an Apee (womens Bape) store. Visit the Bape website for addresses and prinatble maps of all Bape stores.
What to buy: Whatever the latest fashion is, you can be sure than no-one back home will be wearing it.
What to pay: Hoodies - £100 ($200)
T Shirts - £35 ($70)
Sneakers - £60 ($120)
Sweaters - £80 ($160)
Shijo-dori is the main shopping street in Kyoto where you will find international brand names like Gucci, Prada, Bulgari and Tiffany in addition to major Japanese departmental stores like Takashimaya, Hankyu, Daimaru, Sogo and Isetan. However, if you look sideways, you will find covered shopping malls. Do explore these malls as they offer a lot.
What to buy: Typical Kyoto dolls, fans, lacquerware. You can also buy samurai swords of various shapes and sizes!
What to pay: Prices vary but small souvenirs range from Y250 - Y1000
The Shijo shopping area is home to the longest pedestrain mall in Japan. The shopping goes on forever and the street houses shops that cater to everyone from expencive galleries to cheap tshirt shops.
What to buy: Whatever you want
What to buy: You'll find these all around. Those brightly coloured patterned cloth bags, puches, tissue holder etc. What I discovered was the same thing can be bought for much cheaper on Shijo street, compared to places near the tourist spots and other bigger cities. Like the bag I bought. Cost SGD 40 in Singapore and only the equivalent of SGD15 in Kyoto Shijo street, and about SGD20 in places like Ginkakuji.
There are alot of uniglo branches around. They are the equivalent of your normal Giordano stores which sells affordable everyday wear.
What to buy: Well, I went close to winter time, so all they were selling were winter stuff. Your average quality wool turtleneck goes for 1500yen. I bought a few of those.
I spent many days searching for a fender telecaster guitar for my brother who asked me specifically to bring him back one... The Japanese made ones are pretty good it seems.
This store one was close to where i was staying.
Located at the corner of Sanjo and Karasuma Streets, Shinpuhkan was built in 1926 (Taisho 15). Shinpuhkan was designed by the Ministry of Posts and Communications architect Yoshida Tetsuro (1894-1956) to be used as the Central Telephone Company Building.
The tile on the building's exterior are arranged in a subtly irregular design that is one of the building's distinguishing features. The bricks are laid in an unusual pattern, which might be considered an influence of North German Expressionist Movement.
It was re-opened in 2001 as the Shinpuhkan shopping center. The three-storied building features clothing stores, restaurants, cafes etc., and the inner courtyard is used to hold events, as well as housing business facilities.
What to buy:
Clothes, shoes, cheap souvenirs for people at home or every day items for yourself (chopsticks, japanese crockery etc .. at the 100yen shops).
There's plenty of restaurants and cafés and a supermarket.
Nishiki Market is a narrow, shopping street, lined by more than one hundred shops. Some of these shops has been run by the same faimlies for centuries. Various kinds of fresh and processed foods are sold here, including many Kyoto specialties, such as pickles, Japanese sweets, dried food, sushi, and fresh seafood and vegetables
Kyoto subway station offers a wide variety of modern shops and cafes. thebiggest department store in the station is "the Cube"where you can do your one stop souveneir shopping if you are pressed for time.
Tenjin-san Markets is held at Kitano Tenmangu-shrine on the 25th of Every Month. So, if you're in Kyoto over the 25th of any month, you should come to the markets and check out all the cool things to buy!
I just love Market Athmosphere. There are so many people, so many stalls with interesting foods and nick-nacks!
Michael and I especially enjoy trying out strange food-on-a-stick at the markets. Here, Michael tried bbq Octopus on a stick, and mochi (pounded rice) on a stick, and I tried frozen banana dipped in chocolate on a stick! It was so yummy. There were so many other types of food to try too.
What to buy: Second-Hand Kimonos and Obis. Some are in good condition, you will have to dig through the piles of 2nd hand kimonos to find them.
Antiques- old Japanese money, war memorabilia, furniture, wood-block printings.
Pottery-antique and new pottery is sold here.
What to pay: You could spend nothing, and just have a day of walking around and absorbing in all the new sights. Or, you could spend heaps of money on buying antiques. I usually just spend about $5-10 on trying out lots of new foods!
Retro is in... and its appeal stretches all the way to postcards of gods and goddesses from India. Sold at quite exhorbitant prices at that, relatively.
What to pay: 100Yen each- hmm- that was approximately 5 times more expensive than back home in India.
Nishiri Market is like a bazaar that sells mainly clothing items. Set in a covered pedestrian mall, Nishiri Market clothing is young and trendy.
It's also a good place to eat as there are many cafes and restaurants here.
What to buy: Clothes
On the way to the temple, there are many interesting shops to attract your attention on both sides of the street.
What to buy: There are too many things to list here, so take a look at the picture to have a glimpse on what is up for sale. It's mainly souvenir galore
What to pay: Quite touristy so expect to pay a little more