There is precedence in Japan for creature-themed cafes: cats, dogs, rabbits and now owls. Waiting in line at Osaka's Owl Cafe I felt like I stood out. To make matters worse, everybody else was either on dates or with best friends — I came alone. Visits are timed and start every hour on the hour. They last for about an hour, during which you can handle or pet a variety of owls that collectively look bored or sleepy. All the owls are tethered, and except for Shi-chan, a large Siberian owl, it's possible to hold them, pet them and even have them perch on your head.
In line with COVID-19 guidelines, the government is strongly requesting that residents and visitors exercise caution if they choose to visit bars, restaurants, music venues and other public spaces.