GTR34s at Japan Daikoku PA at Friday night

My JDM Pilgrimage in the Land of the Rising Sun (Part 2)

━━━ An Unforgettable Visit to Daikoku PA

 Japan has long been hailed as the birthplace of the JDM car culture. Among the many iconic locations that capture the essence of this automotive phenomenon, Daikoku Parking Area stands out as a mecca for car enthusiasts.

Following part 1 of the ‘My JDM Pilgrimage’ series articles, I’m going to share my unforgettable visit to the legendary spot in this article, along with additional tips for those who are planning to visit the place.
A Feast for the Eyes: Uniqueness in Variety
Unlike most car shows with a specific theme, Daikoku offered a kaleidoscope of styles. From classic Japanese cars to euro supercars, there is something for every type of enthusiast.

Japan Daikoku JDM car scene including NSX and fairlady

But what truly struck me was the level of customisation and personalisation. One moment I'd be marveling at a Lancer Evo sporting a mind-blowing custom widebody, the next I'd be drawn to a meticulously modified SUV with scissor doors. No two builds were alike, each one was telling their own story of dedication.
Beyond the Metal: Vibrant Community Shares The Same Passion
Many of you might think that people who own a cool car act cool as well. But this is not the case in Daikoku PA. The atmosphere was electric, and owners were friendly. They were happy to talk, share their own experience, and answer questions. Despite of language barriers, I could still feel a genuine welcoming vibe.
If you have read our previous blog, you know that we rented a GT-R34 and visited Daikoku PA with it. The fellow GTR enthusiasts shared with us that due to the popularity of the old versions, many of them are being exported to overseas countries such as the USA and Australia, which directly led to a price spike even in the Japan domestic market!

Japan Daikoku JDM car scene including Lance Evo and FD


  • If you are going to rent a car and visit Daikoku PA, remember to plan well ahead. We suggest have the car booked at least 2 months in advance (especially if you want to rent a GTR34!). Also be mentally prepared for surprises because you will never know whether the previous renter can safely return the car. 
  • If you just want to visit the iconic spot, guided drive tours (a little more expensive than renting a car on your own for 24 hours) could be a great option. They follow preplanned routes, and you follow the lead car in a beeline, but Daikoku PA is definately included in the itinerary. Operators offer a wide range of cars from the classic Miata to the supercar R35. However, do find a licensed and reputable tour operator for your own safety reason.
  • No matter how you get there, make sure that you have a ride to get out of the place. And never ever go there on foot or even climb over fences to get access to the expressway! This is not only dangerous but also illegal (you may have heard that there are a lot of rules in Japan already, and yes, this is one of them)
  • Timing - past events dictate that Friday and Saturday nights are great times to discover Japanese sports cars, and Sunday mornings European luxury cars. On weekend nights, the areas can get packed after 8pm. If you can’t make it to the Daikoku PA, nearby smaller PAs such as Tatsumi PA is an alternative to spot cool cars.


Japan Daikoku JDM car scene including AE86 and FC

A Journey Far Away from Over

We visited Daikoku PA twice within 3 days, holding a thought that the number of unique rides in one visit would surpass what we see in our local area in one month (probably longer). And it proved that the car scene there would never let you down. And I couldn't help but feel a sense of optimism for the future of JDM culture. As long as there are petrolheads with a love for speed and style, the journey of JDM culture will continue, fueling our passion for years to come.

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