One of my favorite things to do when I arrive in a brand new city is to research is there are any themed restaurants.
This was an addiction that first grew while I was traveling through Taipei -- a city that is absolutely full of themed restaurants. I spent my entire week in Taipei seeking out fantastic, quirky, unusual restaurants -- and this kick started my habit for life.
Here are some of the top themed restaurants around the world.
The Toilet Themed Restaurant of Taiwan
This was the restaurant that started my obsession with themed restaurants around the world. Modern Toilet in Taipei is a fun and quirky restaurant where you can eat beef noodle soup out of a bowl shaped like a Western-style toilet. It feels a little odd at first, and probably won't be enjoyable if you're squeamish, but I couldn't get enough. The food was delicious, the staff was friendly and I got to say I'd eaten soup out of a toilet bowl!
The Dog and Cat Cafes of South Korea
Travel can be tough, especially if you're missing pets you've left behind back home. The dog and cat cafes in South Korea aim to help with this by giving you a place to relax and pet some animals. Each cafe has around a dozen animals that you can hang out with, cuddle, play with and just enjoy their company. I found the cat cafe to be much more relaxing than the dog cafe, which got extremely chaotic whenever a new customer wandered inside.
The Condom Themed Restaurant of Thailand
Cabbages and Condoms in Bangkok is one of the most unusual restaurants I've been to -- it's a condom themed restaurant! Visiting Cabbages and Condoms is an incredibly fun experience -- the restaurant has dozens of huge statues made out of condoms. When I visited, they had a condom Santa Claus, a condom David Beckham and a condom wedding dress.
It's not all about taking funny photos, though -- Cabbages and Condoms promote safe sex, birth control and education about sexual health.
The Hospital Themed Restaurant of Singapore
So, we all know that hospital food can be pretty dire -- but what about eating in a hospital-themed restaurant? As a self-confessed hypochondriac, I knew that when I visited Singapore I would have to check out the hospital themed restaurant they have there! It definitely didn't disappoint. I was provided with a fork and scalpel to cut my food with, I was served beer out of an IV drip, I ate my meal on an operating table, and my meal came with vinegar in a syringe.
The Hello Kitty Themed Restaurant of Taiwan
If you like Hello Kitty, then you'll love the Hello Kitty themed restaurant in Taipei. Here, you can find milk shakes, burgers, and cakes -- all in the shape of this world-famous cat. The entire restaurant is pink and filled with excited children, which was enough to put me off eating there. I ordered a cake to take away and was surprised at just how delicious it was.
The Ninja Themed Restaurant of New York
Ninja, in New York City, is an enjoyable experience where you get to be served in a ninja themed restaurant.
The waiters dress up as ninjas and greet you at the door by asking if you'd like to enter "the normal way or the ninja way?" and lead you through a maze to your table. For the rest of your meal, you'll witness sword tricks, fire, and smoke.
The Jail Themed Restaurant of Japan
Aptly named The Lock-Up, this prison-themed restaurant in Tokyo is a particularly unique experience. Upon arriving at the restaurant, your waiter for the night handcuffs your wrist to his and leads you to a single table in a jail cell. Your hands are then handcuffed to the table as you’re served drinks from beakers and prison-themed food.
The Airplane Themed Restaurant of Taiwan
You already know that traveling by plane can be one of the least enjoyable parts of traveling, so why would anyone pay to have a meal in one? The A380 Sky Restaurant in Taipei is an A380 mock-up located in a mall, where you can eat in airplane-like surroundings.
Unlike real planes, however, you actually get a bit of leg-room and a proper table to eat at. The food is much tastier than airplane food, and the waitresses even dress up as air hostesses.
The Earthquake Cafe of Spain
Disaster Café, in Lloret de Mar, Spain, is an earthquake themed restaurant, which is a bit of an unusual choice for a restaurant! Every so often, as you eat, the lights will suddenly go out as the restaurant simulates a 7.8 earthquake. You'll then have to do your very best to not spill any of your food or drink. Let’s just say this isn't a restaurant to go to in your very best outfit.
The Military Themed Restaurant of Lebanon
The hilariously named Buns and Guns in Beirut, Lebanon is a military themed restaurant. The walls decorated with guns, ammunition, camouflage netting, and you eat to gunfire and helicopter sounds. Even the dishes all have military names, such as the Kalashnikov, Dragunov, Viper, and B52.