What is a Kotatsu? Heated table in Japan

While a kotatsu is a winter staple in Japan, it may be completely foreign to our friends from abroad. The kotatsu is a heater indispensable to Japanese households from days of old. But not only in Japanese homes: traditional inns and restaurants, as well as some modes of travel, also offer this comfort of home, so by all means, give it a try.

What’s a Kotatsu?

A kotatsu is a low blanketed table with a heater fixed to the underside. Sit on the floor with your legs tucked in and you’ll feel so snug, you won’t want to move.

Kotatsu Must-Haves

The winter thing to do is to snuggle up to a kotatsu with a mound of mandarin oranges at the height of their season. Mandarins are said to stave off colds and hydrate the body, the perfect cold-weather go-to.

Different prefectures, however, have their own customs. In Fukui Prefecture, for instance, the kotatsu snack of choice happens to be not mandarins but mizu yokan, a confection of red bean jelly.

Then there are people who associate cats with kotatsu. Our warm-blooded feline friends seem to love curling up within the radius of a kotatsu.

Types of Kotatsu

The traditional kotatsu is a low table with a large rectangular or square top. Today, we see modern variations that boast stylish and practical appeal. On the market are one-person kotatsu, bed-type kotatsu, and kotatsu tall enough to pull up a chair to.

The Sunken Kotatsu

A great innovation if you can’t sit for long, Japanese style! The kotatsu table rests above an opening in the floor where the tatami mat has been removed. Relax while dangling your feet as though sitting in a chair.

Kotatsu Cruises! Matsue Horikawa Pleasure Boat

Sightseeing boats navigate the moats of Matsue, a castle town in Shimane Prefecture. See the castle from diverse perspectives and sail past the former residence of famous foreign-born writer Lafcadio Hearn, all the while in the warm comfort of a kotatsu, from November 11 to April 10.

URL https://www.matsue-horikawameguri.jp/

Kotatsu Cruises! Mogami River Boat Ride

Cruise down the river while taking in the view of the majestic Mogami Valley. The kotatsu boats will be in service from December 2019 to March 2020. Sit around a warm kotatsu while gazing at the passing winter landscape, reminiscent of a Japanese ink brush painting.

Note: The kotatsu boat is in service 3 times daily at 10:50 am, 12:50 pm and 2:50 pm.

URL http://www.blf.co.jp/

Kotatsu Spots in Tokyo Cafe Stay Happy

A laid back, resort feel of a cafe where you will “Stay Happy” and warm from November to March in their colorful and inviting kotatsu. Organic vegetables and non-additive ingredients are standard in their menus and their beer and coffee hail from all over the world. Their desserts, too, are highly popular.

Nearest Station: Shimokitazawa

URL http://cafestayhappy.com/

Kotatsu Spots in Tokyo Ryogoku Terrace Cafe

Located on the banks of the Sumida River, next door to the Kyu Yasuda Garden, where “Food and Health,” or healthy eating, is its theme. Its outside terrace setting gives way to kotatsu tables from October 21 to March (tbd), providing a whole new meaning to terrace dining.

URL https://ryogokuterrace.jp/

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The information herein is as of November 2019
att.JAPAN consists of members in their 20s and 30s, and we are all travel lovers. In addition to information about sightseeing and great dishes all over Japan, we offer a wide range of information about various subjects/topics, such as onsen (hot spring) and ryokan hotels. We introduce lots of information only att.JAPAN can offer, including information about famous sightseeing spots, the latest news about new facilities all over Japan and rare less-known areas in Tokyo, one-day model walking courses, and anime pilgrimages. We also offer contents to introduce Japan from the view of writers from abroad.

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