One of three official Japantowns in the country—all of which are in California—Little Tokyo is blossoming again thanks to the next generation of Japanese-Americans setting up small businesses. Besides dozens of sushi bars, tempura restaurants, and karaoke bars, there's a lovely garden at the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center and a renovated 1925 Buddhist temple with an ornate entrance at the Japanese American National Museum.
On 1st Street you'll
find a strip of buildings from the early 1900s. Look down when you get near San Pedro Street to see the art installation called Omoide no Shotokyo ("Remembering Old Little Tokyo"). Embedded in the sidewalk are brass inscriptions naming the original businesses, quoted reminiscences from residents, and steel timelines of Japanese-American history up to World War II. Nisei Week (a nisei is a second-generation Japanese American) is celebrated every August with traditional drums, dancing, a carnival, and a huge parade.
Bounded by 1st, San Pedro, 3rd, and Central Sts., Los Angeles, California, 90012, United States