Japan is widely known for its world-class toilet culture. Not only has it invented and popularized high-tech toilets, but there are also several public bathrooms across the country worth noting. Some of them are art installations, others are simply quirky or unique.
The women’s restroom at Itabu Station, Chiba Prefecture, is a good example of that and stylizes itself as “the world’s largest bathroom stall.” Officially titled “Toilet in Nature,” the restroom was created by famed Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto in 2012 and soon pushed this small, unattended station to nationwide notoriety.
Because it is surrounded by an enclosure of 675 cedar logs that goes on for about 58 yards, unsuspecting visitors may not realize this is a public bathroom, but once inside, visitors will find a single glass-walled cubicle standing in the middle of a garden. Flowers and clovers grow in abundance, and there is even a cherry blossom tree beside the stall that blooms during the spring.
The stall itself is nothing out of the ordinary but equipped with adequate amenities, including supplies of toilet paper, a clean washbasin, and a small mirror. There’s also a curtain for those who want to try this unique toilet but don’t feel comfortable enough to use it in such an open space.
Know Before You Go
Itabu Station is approximately 100 minutes away by train from Chiba Station. The "Toilet in Nature" can be viewed by anyone when it's not occupied, but used only by women. There is a much smaller unisex restroom beside it.