Vending machines are ubiquitous throughout Tokyo (there are more than 5.6 million units spread across the country), but you’ll find much more than soda and snacks stuffed into tiny spaces. Step off the train at Shibuya Station and head for Exit 3, where you’ll find Tokyo’s first banana vending machine, installed by Dole in order to encourage people on the run to make time for a healthy snack. If your tooth trends to the sweeter side, ride along to JR Shimbashi Station, where Tenka no Taiyaki operates a vending machine that houses spongy red bean paste-filled confectioneries shaped like cute little fish. Wander the city long enough and you’ll come across machines housing raw eggs, Smart Cars, inflated balloons, noodle bowls, fresh (and not-so-fresh) underpants, fried chicken, and French crepes. If all this variety makes it tough for you to choose, chill out with a cold Coke-a-Cola, snatched from the metallic clutches of the Coke Robot that wanders Shibuya Station.
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