[2018 Edition] Top 10 Nightlife Attractions in Tokyo for Night Owls
Do you want to enjoy a quiet evening or party with your friends? How about going to a hot spring? If you are someone who’d rather enjoy the nightlife of Tokyo, then here are the top 10 tourist attractions that you should check out!
Karaoke is a staple activity that you can enjoy all day (until late at night or the wee hours of the morning). It may come as a surprise for you, but Tokyo is home to more than 740 karaoke joints! Karaoke in Japan is basically singing inside a private room together with your companions. You can even sing the latest songs in English and Chinese! Karaoke joints generally charge by the hour per person, but the prices vary depending on the day of the week and time of day you come. There are shops that have specially priced plans for free time (pay a flat fee for a certain number of hours, usually during a specified time of day) or unlimited drinks (depending on the plan, you may not be able to get some types of drinks). Make sure to bring your passport with you, because there are karaoke bars that require membership to enter.
2. Tokyo Harbor Illumination Cruise
The Tokyo Harbor Illumination Cruise will take you to see the illuminated nightscape of Tokyo. Departing from Tennozu Isle and sailing through Keihin Canal, this cruise will treat you to gorgeous night views that you don’t get to see during the day. For example, you will see the Tokyo Gate Bridge as seen from the coast of Haneda Airport, the futuristic Odaiba area and its Ferris Wheel, and the Rainbow Bridge. The spectacular night views that you get to admire from the water will definitely make great memories!
Schedule: 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Fare: 3,000 JPY (runs at night, so passengers have to be at least 13 years old)
※Photo is for illustration purposes
Round1 is an entertainment facility where you can go bowling, do karaoke, and enjoy the game arcade until late at night. At this establishment that is annexed to a Spo-Cha (a place offering a variety of sports and activities), there are about 40 activities you can engage in, including basketball, futsal, karaoke, and darts, as well as around 120 famous arcade games and consoles that you can play with. You can play with anything in the facility for as much as you want within a given period of time, all just by paying an entrance fee. They have all the tools and gear that you’d need, so you can come empty-handed.
Rates at the Spo-Cha in DiverCity Tokyo Plaza: 2,250 JPY for free time starting from 11:00 pm (there are daytime free time plans, national holiday rates, etc.)
4. Daikanyama Tsutaya Books
This is a bookstore that you can enjoy until late in the night. Stay in the annexed Starbucks Coffee or Anjin Lounge and have coffee, eat something, or even drink alcohol while reading a book from the bookstore or looking at stunning artworks. This place is not limited to books - you will also find a stationery corner, as well as a floor dedicated to movies that even has a selection of works that have not yet been adapted into movies. You can also listen to a massive collection of CDs - in fact, they have the largest selection of classic and jazz CDs in the world! Apart from the products that it offers, the overwhelming sense of sophistication inside this bookstore makes it the perfect space for a night out.
5. Shop at Don Quijote While Enjoying Kabukicho
Kabukicho, the best-known entertainment district in the East, is a bustling area where the neon lights shine bright until late at night. It used to be an area that was considered unsafe, but it has become a prominent sightseeing spot today, leading to throngs of foreign visitors. However, you still need to be careful when you’re there, as you might be targeted by unlawful solicitation. Standing right at the entrance to Kabukicho is a Don Quijote branch that is open for business 24 hours a day. Here, you can buy snacks, cosmetics, and other miscellaneous goods at bargain prices. It has full-fledged sections for tourists and offers tax exemption on purchases.
AgeHa is the biggest club event in Japan. It takes place at STUDIO COAST, late at night on weekends. Once you enter the main floor, your adrenaline is bound to shoot up when you hear the unique sounds, played by some of the best DJs in the world, and see the lights that illuminate the vast space! You have to be at least 20 years old to be able to enter, so make sure to bring your passport with you. To get to this club, you can walk from Shin-Kiba Station on the subway and other train lines, or take the free shuttle bus from Shibuya.
Opening time: 11:00 pm
LIQUIDROOM is an iconic live music house in Tokyo that is loved by a wide array of music fans. Here, you will get to watch local and foreign artists perform in a space equipped with superb sound systems. Not only is it easy to see the performers, but the performances are not limited to a specific genre and there are live shows nearly every day. You can purchase the live house’s original goods inside the complex that it resides in, which also has a cafe and gallery. It is conveniently located just a 3-minute walk from Ebisu Station.
8. Robot Restaurant
A permanent theater that took 10 billion JPY to build, Robot Restaurant is a place where you can enjoy watching a robot show while seated in an extraordinary space. Even Hollywood stars visit this place! Don’t expect robots to do things like serve your food, as they will be performing in front of you while you dine. There are four shows every day and you can only stay for the show that you paid for. If you come to the 4:00 pm show, you get a special bonus - a souvenir photo with the robots! So, enjoy the spectacular show put on by humans and robots!
Admission fee: 8,000 JPY (bento box charged separately)
9. Bar Hop at Shinjuku’s Golden-gai
This area in Shinjuku’s Kabukicho 1-chome is packed with dining and drinking establishments. Within its narrow, retro-looking alleys lined by countless signboards, you will find 280 small shops that can barely fit 10 customers. This area is fast becoming popular among tourists as a place where they can easily enjoy bar hopping. There are many spots where they collect a set table charge on top of what you pay for food and drinks, but at BAR ARAKU - a place where tourists get to mingle and exchange information - tourists can enter free of charge. If you visit, consider passing around any information you get there!
9. Bar Hop at Shinjuku’s Golden-gai
10. Tokyo Odaiba Oedo-Onsen Monogatari
Exuding a retro atmosphere reminiscent of the Edo era (former name for Tokyo, roughly 400 years ago), Oedo-Onsen Monogatari is the first onsen (hot spring) theme park in Japan. Inside this facility, you can enjoy unique Japanese attractions while wearing a rental yukata (light cotton robe), such as shuriken (throwing star) throwing and ninja blowpipe shooting. They also sell a variety of foods. You can soak in the natural hot spring as much as you want, however many times you want, until you leave the facility. There are even separate nap rooms for men and women, as well as free Wi-Fi!
Business hours: 11:00 am - 9:00 am (open for 22 hours)
Admission fee (weekdays): 2,720 JPY (incl. tax) *Additional fees required for weekends, national holidays, and late-night entry
Now that you've got a full list of nightlife attractions to explore, head out and enjoy Tokyo to the fullest!
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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