Tokyo has become one of the world’s coolest cities, yet as the largest city in the world, it is easy to argue that any trip to Tokyo is pretty cool, especially one that includes a visit to the hippest parts of town. Of course, ‘cool’ has a different meaning for everyone and what one person finds cool, may not suit someone else.
Taking all that into consideration, we have picked a wide variety of ‘cool’ spots in Tokyo to offer a little something for everyone. From the quirky shops of Harajuku to the chilled out waterside vibes of Odaiba, these coolest places in Tokyo will give you a little insight into how the locals like to spend their free time.
Home of Japan’s ‘cool kids’, Harajuku is a vibrant district in Tokyo renowned for its exciting range of cafes and shops. The famous term ‘Harajuku Girls’ derives from the outlandish fashion trends of this district and visitors can get a taste for this style in the numerous boutiques that line the streets.
Popular trends include pretty doll like dresses inspired by Edwardian clothing, 1950s rockability wear, cute and vibrant hairstyles and heavy gothic attire. This area also has many fun cafes to eat at and Yoyogi Park is close by.
Set beside the water, Odaiba is a man-made island which was built during the Edo period to protect the capital city from potential attacks. Today, Odaiba boasts a laid back charm with fantastic shopping outlet malls and entertainment options. Though Odaiba is a small district in Tokyo, it sure does boast a lot of things to see and do including the Fuji TV building with a family friendly exhibition of Japan’s best loved characters.
Visitors can also expect to find shopping malls and outlets including Venus Dort which is a stunning open air mall designed like an 18th Century European city. There is also a huge entertainment complex inspired by Gundam robots ,and, for those who prefer something a little more laid back the area also boasts plenty of green spaces by the water.
For something slightly more elegant, Ginza is the upmarket district of Tokyo. Ginza is the place to go for luxury shopping and designer brands. At night it is also the place to be for a glamourous evening out. This is the place where the city’s elite gather together to party beneath the bright city lights in the trendy cocktail bars and nightclubs.
Located just outside of the Harajuku district, Yoyogi Park sees an overflow of youthful twenty somethings styling out their favourite trends. It is a beautiful green space that is a great place to relax, have a picnic or enjoy some street entertainment. Often Yoyogi Park is adorned with Rockability Boys who sing and dance to hits of the 1950s whilst dressed in leather jackets and quiffs. Along with outdoor performances, visitors can also rent a bike to explore all that the park has to offer.
Although Shimbashi is primarily a business district, it also boasts a very lively nightlife. Here you can sing along to your favourite tunes at a karaoke bar or sit down and enjoy delicious dishes at a noodle bar. The district is also known for its brilliant gay scene with a number of popular bars and nightclubs. Along with the more traditional eateries, Shimbashi also has many Western style restaurants and bars including an English pub for those who are feeling a little homesick.