Japan’s Vending Machine Park Paradise: Used Tire Mart Sagamihara Store

Japan’s vintage vending machine park is located in a used tire shop. Over 100 vending machines serve all sorts of strange foods and items that you don’t normally find in vending machines.

Japan vending machine park

In Japan, vending machines are literally everywhere: From the train stations in major cities, to out in front of an abandoned building on the side of the road.

So for Japan, an entire building dedicated to over 100 vending machines isn’t too out of the ordinary.

However, what is strange about Japan’s vending machine park is that all of its vending machines are decades old. And they don’t just serve drinks, they serve all sorts of strange things that you would never find in any other vending machine.

And it gets even weirder – the vending machine park is part of a used tire shop.

These vending machines serve all kinds of food – from hot sandwiches to soba noodles, to freshly popped popcorn.

In this article, we’ll explain how to get to Japan’s vending machine park, what kind of foods you can find there, and detail our own experience visiting the Japan’s vending machine paradise.

Japan’s Retro Vending Machine Park

We were expecting the vending machines to be old and dusty but that’s not the case.

We stayed at the vending machine park long enough to realize that these machines are constantly being refilled and serviced!

We watched the maintenance clerk carefully replace the soups in the soba machine. He also went to each machine to check their stock and ensure they were functioning.

So if you’re worried if the food in the vending machines is as old as the machines are… don’t! The vending machine park sees enough people that the machines are restocked every day.

lightbulb

Bring plenty of coins! Many of the vending machines only take 100 yen coins. The arcade in the tire shop has a change machine if you bring 500 yen coins or 1000 yen bills.

Sagamihara Vending Machine Park Details

The vending machine park has over 100 machines but some don’t always work. These are old vending machines, so they need constant maintenance to keep working.

Items from the vending machines also sometimes get sold out. For example, there is a shave ice vending machine that we wanted to try, but it was sold out when we visited. (If you visit and try the shave ice please let us know how it was!)

Japan’s Vending Machine Park: Our Experience

This vending machine park is pretty famous in Japan – so much so that there was an entire film crew there when we arrived! It looked like they were doing a news story on the vending machine park. Luckily, the film crew finished and left before we started eating.

I’ll be honest, we were a bit hesitant to try the food here. Proper meals from vending machines aren’t the norm where we’re from. We love junk food but a hot hamburger from a vending machine sounds weird.

We spent about 2 hours there and surprisingly the vending machine park got a little busy. We visited on a weekday so we can only imagine that it must get crowded on the weekends.

We saw lots of people come to grab a snack quickly without taking any photos so we assume that this is a place where the locals like to eat.

What We Ate at the Vending Machine Park

Hamburger

The first thing that we tried was the vending machine hamburger. After putting in coins, we pressed the button, and the machine started to heat our burger.

A little over a minute passed and the hamburger came out of the machine piping hot in a little cardboard box!

We ate the burger and it tasted just like a school lunch hamburger! The taste also reminded me of a gas station hamburger from AMPM. Do those even exist anymore?

The burger was pretty simple and had bread and sauce. It tasted a bit plain and the meat wasn’t the best quality. But what can you expect from a vending machine?

You can also buy the burger with cheese, which I think would have made it taste better. But we had a long drive ahead of us and I’m lactose intolerant. 🫠 It was still good though.

Soba

I was super suspicious to try the vending machine soba. Noodle soups coming from a machine sound a little off, right?

Well if there’s anything we’ve learned, is that the weirder it is… the more we have to try it.

The soba came out from the vending machine as a hot noodle soup (thankfully – I don’t think I could handle cold soba from a machine). The vegetables seemed somewhat fresh and the noodles weren’t too soggy!

japan vending machine park soba

The soba was so delicious and it was Trey’s favorite thing that we ate at the vending machine park! Coming from a vending machine, we’d give this an A+.

Something to note about the soba machine: do not throw away the bowls in the trash. They wash and reuse the bowls since the machine only uses a specific type of bowl.

Sandwich

This was my favorite item we ate at the vending machine park. At first, it didn’t look like anything special. But when I saw the locals line up for this one, I knew I had to have it.

When we walked up to the sandwich machine, it had a few different choices. I wanted to try the ham and cheese sandwich, but it was all sold out, so we got the corned beef sandwich instead.

After putting in our money and pressing the button, we waited a little over a minute for the sandwich to heat up. When it dropped out of the machine, I picked it up with my hands. It was scorching hot!

Then we opened the foil wrapper and took our first look… The bread looked like cinnamon toast crunch!

The sandwich had unique burn marks from the heater inside the machine… and that might be the secret because it was so delicious. Inside was a medley of corned beef, butter, and Dijon mustard – PERFECTLY toasted. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.

Popcorn

At first, I was wondering how this machine would work. It’s a HOT popcorn machine, so it somehow pops the popcorn in the machine. We never figured out the actual mechanics but it’s probably a microwave inside the vending machine.

While waiting for our popcorn to arrive, we got excited because we heard popping noises come from the inside of the machine. The machine also has a timer that counts down the remaining time. The machine took about 3 minutes to pop our popcorn, then it came out!

When I took my first bite I thought: Wow, this tastes just like microwaved popcorn in the United States. The machine is labeled “American popcorn” so I would say that the popcorn tastes exactly as advertised.

Popcorn is something I’ve missed while in Asia so the popcorn machine gets an A+ from me 🙂

Coke

At first, we thought that a retro soda machine was nothing special since you can drink Coke out of a glass bottle in most places.

At first, it seems like you can take one of the sodas without paying. But what makes this machine so special is that you can just open its door, but the sodas are locked in place.

Once you put a coin in, the machine unlocks and you can pull a coke out.

retro coke machine in japan

The trick to this machine is that it only accepts certain glass bottles, so there is a glass bottle return area in the vending machine park. These special glass bottles are shorter and stubbier than ones in other places.

Oh, and the Coke tasted the same as any other Coke.

How to Get to Sagamihara Vending Machine Park

The vending machine park isn’t exactly conveniently located. Located about 2 hours from Tokyo, the best way to get there is by car.

If you arrive by car, the vending machine park has ample parking on site. Ideally, you would go there on your way to Hakone or Mt. Fuji, since it’s somewhat on the way.

To get there by public transportation, you need to ride the train and then the bus.

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