Finding fun things to do in the big city
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New and featured
Banknotes from Japan and around the world are the main theme of this free museum run by the National Printing Bureau. Watermarks, holograms, color-shifting inks, microprinting and textural effects - these are some of the many anti-counterfeiting measures used when printing banknotes, and they're all explored here in detail,... [Continue reading]
Located around the corner from the art galleries of complex665 and just a few minutes away from the Mori Art Museum, this three-story shopping complex is home to several major galleries, helping turn Roppongi into one of Tokyo's main contemporary-art destinations. Housed here are Wako Works of Art (3F), Ota Fine Arts (3F),... [Continue reading]
Although it's called a stationery museum, you won't find any envelopes, notebooks or other paper products at this quirky little museum. Instead they've assembled impressive collections of rare inkstones and calligraphy brushes, vintage fountain pens and other writing implements through the ages. There are also old abacuses,... [Continue reading]
This excellent three-story museum covers the history of Tokyo's neighboring Kanagawa region from prehistoric times to the present day. Themed exhibition areas are devoted to ancient archeological finds, medieval life under the Kamakura shogunate, commerce along the Koshu-Kaido and Tokaido highways, and the development of the... [Continue reading]
Tokyu Railway's transportation museum offers plenty of hands-on activities for children and train enthusiasts, with numerous driving simulators and three different room-size model-train layouts. There are lots of features geared towards younger children in the Kids World annex, which was newly added in 2016. The Panorama... [Continue reading]
Aimed primarily at school-aged children, this science and technology museum covers a broad range of topics, including image-recognition technology, paper recycling, geothermal generation, smart buildings, and nanotechnology. Many of the exhibits are hands-on and interactive - these include a driving simulator that takes you... [Continue reading]
Located in the heart of the cat-obsessed Yanaka district, Yanakado specializes in manekineko - beckoning cat figurines - along with other tasteful cat-themed goods. Manekineko figurines come in all sizes, with both raised right paws (for good fortune) and raised left paws (to welcome visitors). Many of the figurines are... [Continue reading]
Built in Yokohama as a state-of-the-art luxury liner, the Hikaru Maru was launched in 1930 as a passenger ship traveling the route between Kobe and Seattle-Vancouver. Nowadays it's docked permanently in Yokohama Bay, where you can explore the ship and admire the beautifully preserved Art Deco-style cabins. Originally... [Continue reading]
At first glance this looks like an art-gallery display window, but where is entrance to the actual gallery? Well, it turns out that Taimatz is a nanogallery consisting of just this tiny, 13-square-meter display space. There's no visible entrance, but if you walk up to the window during gallery hours it will automatically... [Continue reading]
Open since September 2017, this tasteful and expensively produced museum is devoted to the work of esteemed novelist Natsume Soseki (1867-1916), whose portrait appeared on the face of the Japanese 1000-yen note from 1984-2004. The museum will mainly be of interest to fans of Soseki's work who wish to learn more about the... [Continue reading]
The seventh-floor gallery of the Film Archive has a permanent gallery devoted to the history of the Japanese film industry, with a lot of old posters, photographs and film paraphernalia. The focus is mainly on notable directors and actors, but they also cover the advancement of film-making technology, with old movie cameras and... [Continue reading]
Special Interests
Notable buildings by contemporary architects like Kenzo Tange, Kengo Kuma and Shigeru Ban
Galleries, museums and artsy bookstores
Graphic-art and product-design galleries and design shops
Anime and manga, toys and more popular culture
Artisanal crafts, Japanese gardens, and history-themed museums
Aquariums and zoos, bird-watching parks and horseback-riding stables
Food markets, ramen museums, brewery tours, professional knife stores and regional food shops
Science and tech museums, planetariums, botanical gardens,
Parks, gardens and other places to enjoy the fresh air
Batting cages, bowling alleys and other sporty spots
Observation decks, skyscraper bars and more viewing spots
Explore Tokyo's rivers and Tokyo Bay
The best jazz kissa (coffee shops) for vinyl fans, and clubs for live jazz
Amusement parks, train museums, Legoland, and other diversions for younger Tokyoites
Our popular guide to cat, bird and rabbit cafes - now expanded to a site of its own at Animal Cafes.com
Venue categories
Explorer Kit
Animal sightings
New and featured listings from our sister site Animal Cafes.com.
The aptly named Animal Meeting Room is a rescue shelter that's set up so that potential pet adopters can interact in a relaxed setting with dogs and cats looking for a home. The main area is a big, noisy dog playroom with...
Located at the entrance to Nagasaki Bio Park, this multi-species animal cafe makes a nice final stop after spending a few hours in the main park. The facility consists of a dog playroom with an outdoor run, a cat playroom,...
Advertised as Japan's first Italian cat cafe, Yadorigi serves Italian food and coffee as well as wine, craft beer and cat-themed cocktails. They're a rescue-cat cafe, so most of the dozen or so resident cats (numbers may...
Fairly spacious by cat-cafe standards, Keurig provides ample table and counter space for visitors and a stimulating environment for the resident cats, with lots of climbing and perching opportunities. There's a good supply...
Eating and drinking
The latest food and drink listings from sister sites Bento.com and Craft Beer Bars Japan.
Rojo Amigo Kitchen turns out very credible Mexican and Tex-Mex fare, ranging from more than a dozen burrito variations to less-often-found regional dishes like Cochinita Pibil (Yucatan-style barbecued pork) and Albondigas de...
Advertised as a "prosciutteria e bar," this casual drinking spot offers a tempting assortment of prosciutto and salami platters along with Italian-style appetizers and pastas. House wines are a very reasonable Y480 per...
A spacious craft-beer bar at the southern end of Shimo-Kitazawa, Coaster offers a nice mix of Japanese, American and European craft beers from their fifteen taps. Beer comes in two sizes, priced Y600-850 for a small glass...
Gin no Mori is a sake-focused izakaya offering an impressive selection of bottles from smaller craft breweries around Japan, all quite reasonably priced. Small 90ml glasses are a convenient size if you want to try a few...
Curry udon is served in several variations here - Vietnamese-inspired coconut-based curries, cheese curries, and udon noodles with tsukemen-style curry dipping sauce. Crunchy tempura-fried shrimp kakiage and extra-crunchy...
Fantastic wagyu brisket is one of the highlights at this spacious new American-barbecue joint around the corner from Yokohama Stadium. They offer a full range of expertly barbecued meats including pulled pork, ribs, smoked...
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