Welcome to Part II of Animate: The Paradise of Anime and Manhwa Lovers! In this article, we’re going to delve even deeper into this wonderful store — because I couldn’t fit it all in one post! Let’s take a look at what else is on offer beyond the collection of comics, notably, merchandise!
If you haven’t read Part I yet, just click below!
Many manga fans actually prefer drawing characters and scenes to watching/reading them. Illustration books are widely popular nowadays as it is a healing activity, as well as a chance for amateurs to improve their drawing skills. To that end, I highly recommend the illustration books at Animate for learning how to draw! There are even some books with guides included.
However, if comics and manhwa drawings really aren’t your thing, you may feel more at home in the Novels section.
Here, you can find a great variety of novels. Ideal for bookworms who haven’t yet been introduced to anime and manghwa.
Anime is not only famous for its creative drawings and storylines, but also its music! You may have even heard anime opening theme music in clubs in Hongdae. Once again, if you’re not a fan of anime, why not enter this world via the epic soundtracks and scores? If you’re interested, Animate has you covered. Have a look — and a listen — through the OST CDs available from popular series and video games.
Okay, this is where you really should hold onto to your wallet. From keychains and pins to stationery, figurines and video games, this store really does have everything.
Remember when I said it is near impossible to visit Animate without buying something?
Many people in Korea and abroad like to collect figurines. Some are avid collectors and want to complete sets, while others just like something cute to display on their desk or shelves at home. You may be shocked by the price of some of these figures, but it is worth noting that they are not toys, and collectables sell for a large amount!
If you’re after something cheaper — and more cuddly — why not opt for an adorable plushie to display in your bedroom?
This section is sure to make you feel nostalgic if you ever collected cards or played card games as a kid. I was quite surprised by the huge amount of cards available here as there were several shelves full of them!
Video Game Merch
Don’t forget anime video games! Check out this entire shelf dedicated to Identity V.
If all that isn’t enough for you, head on over to the pre-order counter and take a look at the list of exclusive items only available via pre-order.
There is a form on the blue table you can fill out to order your item.
Like most gift shops, there is stationery available to buy. However, what is unique about Animate, is their selection of Japanese stationery that is rare in Korea.
After a bit of fun and excitement? Why not try your hand — or claw — at winning your souvenir on the claw machines?
If you’re unlucky on the claw machine but love the element of surprise, you can pick up a toy/gift on the gacha vending machines.
No coins available? No worries, there is a coin exchange machine here too.
Leave a Message
Before leaving Animate, you can write a message on a post-it note and stick it on the wall!
Take a look at the ones up there for inspiration. When I went, I saw loads of cute drawings, indicative of fans’ artistic talent!
There’s also a poster gallery and projector that shows different clips from animes.
Why not round off your trip with a snack and beverage at the anime-themed cafe next to the store! The cafe theme changes regularly, when I went, there was a Jujutsu Kaisen theme.
Location and Getting There
Address: 5th Floor Aekyung Tower (AK& Mall), 188 Yanghwa-ro, Mapo-gu, Seoul Operating Hours: 11:00am - 10:00pm everyday Website: animate-onlineshop.co.kr
The entrance to AK& (AKAND) Shopping Mall is located just outside Hongdae Station Exit 4. The Animate store is on the 5th floor.
Animate is located inside the AK& Mall in Hongdae, Seoul. You can read about it below.
The Animate store is absolute paradise for anime and manghwa lovers. From endless rows of comics of multiple genres, novels, art, posters, signed autographs, official merchandise and even a themed cafe, it is no doubt a must-see for anime fans and those who want to discover.
Have you been to Animate? What did you think? Let us know in the comments below.
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