You know when you finally go somewhere you’ve only seen in books, magazines, or movies and it feels surreal? Perhaps somewhere like the Eiffel Tower, Machu Picchu, or the Pyramids for example. Well for me, finally going to Daikoku PA was one of those surreal experiences.
Okay, this motorway rest area doesn’t have the same level of gravitas as one of the great wonders of the world, but for anyone who’s flicked through countless car magazines and seen photos of it, it’s a place of great wonder. Daikoku is known for its many car meets, usually with no actual theme. It’s usually just a case of whoever shows up in whatever car. But rest assured (sorry) the cars that usually go to Daikoku are pretty spectacular.
Getting to Daikoku from Tokyo is a bit of a mission. Like Tatsumi, it’s only accessible by car as it’s a motorway rest stop. It’s roughly 40 minutes from Tokyo on the way to Yokohama. As you might be able to see in some of the photos, it’s bang in the middle of a spaghetti of motorway roads. Which is great as you can hear everything going in and out of the parking area.
There’s usually something happening everyday, most nights you’ll find some JDM goodies. However, go there on a Sunday morning and you’ll find some of the rarest, fastest, and most expensive supercars in the Greater Tokyo area.
The photos you see here are from the two times I’ve gone to Daikoku on a Sunday morning. Some of the highlights include a Koenigsegg CCX that came along with a convoy of Lamborghinis. This was the first time I saw a Koenigsegg out in the wild, and only the second in my life.
It was a real delight and the owner, as well as the owners of the Lambos, were very welcoming. They came in, parked up, and kept the engine running. The opened the doors and let people go up and take photos. After everyone had snapped a couple hundred shots, they drove off with great fanfare. Probably to get more leopard print pants.
Other highlights include a De Tomaso Pantera that looked like a prop from Mad Max, a limited-run Nissan GT-R NISMO, a stunning electric blue 993 RWB, a Countach with a Testarossa, a Diablo SV, and an immaculate 240Z.
Generally, the owners are more than happy for people to take a closer look at their cars and photos are encouraged. Some will even offer you to sit in it or open up the bonnet. As they come here in groups to share their love of cars with others, you’ll often see them chatting about the mods they’ve done.
Interestingly, and I’m not sure if it’s intentional, everyone parks with cars similar to theirs. So you’ll see a bunch of Caterhams together at one spot, a group of supercar owners somewhere else, and a corner full of JDM cars. It must be that famous Japanese organisation skills.
The only problem is unlike Daikanyama where there some trees that offer shade, Daikoku is very exposed. So on a nice day when the sun is shining as bright as a Japanese-tuned Lambo, it can get very hot. Luckily, after a morning/afternoon spent admiring all the cars, you can retreat into the comfort of the air conditioned rest area at the site. As a way of spending a Sunday morning, it sure beats playing golf.
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