Andrea Urbinati

Top 10 Things to Do in Tokyo at Night in 2023

Di Andrea Urbinati

blogger, andrea urbinati, marketing, copywriting, seo
Discover Tokyo's best things to do at night in 2023! Explore hidden gems, experience traditional culture, and create unforgettable memories in the city that never sleeps.
Tokyo at night, things to do


Hey there!

So, you want to know the coolest things to do in Tokyo at night, right?

Tokyo, let me tell you, this city is a dazzling universe that doesn’t know what sleep is. Day or night, it’s humming, sparkling, and absolutely brimming with life. 

It’s this magical blend of deep-rooted culture, thrilling history, and the energy of tomorrow all bundled into one.

Remember the first time I wandered through Tokyo at night? It felt like stepping into another dimension. 

Streets bathed in neon, skyscrapers touching the stars, and an atmosphere so electric, it tingled on my skin. 

Since then, I’ve been a regular night owl in Tokyo, seeking adventures from the quirky to the sublime while keeping it wallet-friendly. 

Trust me, my fellow budget backpackers, Tokyo’s got many awesome things in store for us.

Imagine standing by the bustling Shibuya Station, right? Neon city view spread out in front of you like some hyper-futuristic painting. 

And then there’s the Tokyo Tower, piercing the night sky, looking as dreamy as you’d think.

But that’s not all. Tokyo’s nightlife spots? They’re like Pandora’s boxes of fun just waiting to be opened. The city’s pulsating energy echoes through hip bars, enticing eateries, and all the way to the underground music scenes.

I did my best to write this blog post, and I hope you find the best thing to do in Tokyo at night! These aren’t just ‘best things’ as per some random list; these are experiences that I’ve lived, loved, and can’t wait for you to dive into. 

So, grab a comfy seat, my friend. We’re about to embark on a virtual moonlit journey to the best things to do in Tokyo at night!

Ah! If you are looking for more ideas on how to spend the best of your time in Japan, I wrote an article just for that! You can check it out here.


Tokyo at night, street dark alley

The Best Time to Visit

Alright, let’s talk about the best time to hit Tokyo for some unforgettable night activities. You know how there’s that perfect time for everything? Like, that exact moment when your toast is at its golden best, not a second too burned? That’s what summer and autumn are for Tokyo’s nightlife – simply golden!

Imagine this: You’re in Tokyo in the summer. The sun’s shining, and the city’s buzzing with an energy that’s contagious. 

When the sun dips, the city lights up, and there’s this fantastic shift in the atmosphere. 

I mean, the night activities in Tokyo during summer are an absolute riot. From live music at open-air venues to bar-hopping tours in Tokyo’s trendiest districts, there’s just so much to enjoy.

Then there’s autumn. Picture the leaves changing, a cool breeze wafting through, and the city adorned with a mix of orange and red.

Autumn paints Tokyo with a different color palette altogether. Think night strolls through parks with trees ablaze in autumn hues or visiting Kabukicho, the renowned district in Tokyo that’s even more mesmerizing with its neon lights shimmering against the autumn skies.

Seriously, Summer and Autumn are like Tokyo’s nightlife doing a wardrobe change. 

Both are spectacular, but each has its unique appeal. 

Whether you’re here for the balmy summer nights or the crisp autumn evenings, you’re in for some of Tokyo’s best night adventures.

Make sure to check out my post about the weather in Japan during the Summer and during Autumn!

So, pack your bags, and let’s enjoy Tokyo like never before!


Tokyo at night with lots of people

Shinjuku: A Foodie’s Paradise

Alright, let me tell you about this little gem that’s a surefire addition to any visitor’s Tokyo bucket list – Shinjuku. If you’re someone who lives to eat, then boy, Shinjuku is your paradise. This place, my friend, is where food dreams come true.

So, let’s rewind to 2023 when I first discovered the “Night Foodie Tour in Shinjuku.” It was love at first bite; no kidding! I think one of the best things to do in Tokyo at night for sure. This tour took us on this whirlwind culinary adventure, exploring the best nightlife spots while tasting our way through the district’s food scene. 

From the teeny-weeny yakitori stalls tucked away in Memory Lane to the street food vendors in the labyrinthine alleys of Omoide Yokocho, it was a feast for the senses.

First, you’ve got to try the Yakitori. These skewers of grilled meat, expertly seasoned and cooked over charcoal, are as delicious as they sound. 

Then there’s the Takoyaki, these balls of pure delight stuffed with bits of octopus and drizzled with a tangy sauce. And let’s not forget the Ramen. Warm, comforting, and so flavorful that you’ll be slurping till the last noodle!

But Shinjuku isn’t just about the food; it’s also about the experience. 

Think bustling izakayas where locals and tourists alike share stories over sake, vibrant food stalls that stay abuzz until the early hours, and even the occasional street performance in Asakusa, adding to the overall charm of the district.

In short, Shinjuku is a food lover’s wonderland, an attraction that’s as tantalizing for your palate as it is for your Instagram feed. 

Trust me, after this tour, you’ll be counting the days to your next visit to this foodie’s paradise!

Click here if you want to book this awesome experience! 

And don’t forget to check the post where I review the best Travel Books for Japan!


Tokyo at night and a restaurant

Akihabara: A Haven for Anime Lovers

First of all: I LOVE manga.

And if you’re anything like me, you’re gonna love this next spot in Tokyo City. Now, brace yourself because we’re heading into the heart of Otaku culture, the one and only—Akihabara.

Look, I was that kid who spent half my childhood trying to master Naruto’s hand signs, and to this day, my desk isn’t complete without my trusty Naruto mouse pad. 

So you need to believe me when I say that if you love this kind of thing… you are going to lose your mind in this place.

The tour also includes a visit to the famous Gundam Cafe and AKB48 Cafe, giving you a glimpse of how deep and diverse Otaku culture truly is. But my personal favorite has to be standing in front of the iconic SEGA building, its neon lights illuminating the streets, offering a spectacular view of the city.

Trust me, spending a night in Tokyo without soaking up the Anime vibe in Akihabara would be like going to Rome and not seeing the Colosseum.

 It’s just one of the best things you simply can’t miss!

Click here if you want to know more about this.


Tokyo at night anime town

Shibuya: Heartbeat of Tokyo’s Nightlife

You know how every city has that one place where everything seems to be happening? 

For Tokyo, it’s Shibuya, the pulsating heartbeat of the city’s nightlife. 

So, there I was on my first “Bar Hopping Tour in Shibuya,” a bit nervous, a lot excited. After all, it was my first Tokyo night, and Shibuya is one of the top nightlife districts! Oh boy, if I had fun that night…

Here’s a fun little story: the first bar we hit was this super cool Japanese joint. I don’t quite recall the name, but I remember walking in and feeling this instant vibe. And guess what? I ended up making friends with just about everyone there! Everyone is just way too lovely!

The “Tokyo Pub Crawl” is another walking tour that you just can’t miss. It’s a vibrant exploration of the nightlife district, filled with locals and tourists, bustling bars, and a chance to savor Tokyo’s finest brews.

It’s a brilliant way to immerse yourself in the city’s night culture and meet fellow travelers and locals alike.

So, are you ready to explore this buzzing heartbeat of Tokyo’s nightlife? Click here if you want to book this activity!

And if you need some help with your Japanese, I got you covered with 25+ Essential Phrases For Tourists!


Tokyo at night little bar

Dinner with a View: Tokyo’s Dinner Cruises

Okay, so had your fill of sake, you’ve eaten everything you could in Shinjuku, and you finally get to live like an Otaku in Akihabara. 

Another awesome thing to do in Tokyo at night?

How about a dinner with a view that’s so stunning it’ll make your Instagram followers green with envy? That’s right, we’re talking dinner cruises, my friend.

The first time I stepped on the “Sumida River: Japanese Traditional Yakatabune Dinner Cruise,” it felt like I was stepping into another world. Imagine this – the cool Tokyo night breeze gently tousling your hair, the city’s skyline sparkling with a million lights reflected on the water, and the soft murmur of the river playing the perfect background score to your evening. And while you’re soaking it all in, you’re served a feast that’s as delicious as the view is stunning. From fresh sashimi to tempura, it’s a celebration of Japanese cuisine on a floating traditional wooden boat. Simply magical!

Now, if you thought that was the end of it, brace yourself for the “Tokyo Bay: Traditional Japanese Yakatabune Dinner Cruise.” Picture dining under the starlit sky as Tokyo Bay unravels around you. All this while you’re savoring a traditional multi-course Kaiseki dinner. Talk about a feast for all senses!

So, whether it’s along the Sumida River or around Tokyo Bay, these dinner cruises offer you a Tokyo night that’s a bit different from the hustle and bustle of the nightlife district. 

They are less of a walking tour and more of a floating serenade, an unforgettable experience that tops the list of exciting things to do in Tokyo. 

So, ready to set sail?

Click here to learn more and get your sit!

Also, if you are looking for some specific things to do with kids in Tokyo, you should read this article! 


Tokyo at night, skyview

Golden Gai: A Slice of Tokyo’s Old-School Charm

Alright, now let me tell you about this one place that’s kind of a hidden treasure in Tokyo’s vibrant nightlife – it’s called Golden Gai. 

And the “Golden Gai Food Tour” is your golden ticket to experience this old-school charm.

Picture this: a maze of narrow alleyways, each lined with tiny bars and restaurants that can barely fit six people. 

 From bars that have been serving patrons for generations to eateries famous for their authentic local cuisine, Golden Gai is a testament to the city’s resilience in preserving its culture.

I got into this bar, there were just four seats, and the bartender was also the chef and the server. And let me tell you, that place had more character than any swanky cocktail bar you’d find in Roppongi. It’s those moments, those connections, that make Golden Gai so special.

Golden Gai is definitely one of those unique spots to go in Tokyo at night. It may not have an observation deck with a panoramic view, nor does it buzz with the bustle of Tokyo Station. 

So, ready to dive into the heart of nightlife in Tokyo?


Tokyo at night, market japan

Traditional Performing Arts Show

Tokyo, in all its neon-lit glory, is a city of contrasts. The towering skyscrapers, bustling metropolitan life, and high-tech gadgets exist side by side with quiet temples, serene parks, and age-old traditions. And, if you ask me, one of the best things to do at night is to dive into that traditional side of Tokyo

A fantastic way to do that? The “Tokyo: Traditional Performing Arts Show with Lunch/Dinner.

Imagine this: You’re sitting in a beautifully decorated hall not far from the Tokyo Dome, waiting in anticipation. The lights dim, the curtain lifts, and you’re immediately transported into the heart of Japanese culture

The stage comes alive with vibrant Kabuki performances, enchanting Noh theatre, and mesmerizing Taiko drumming. Each act is an authentic glimpse into the country’s rich heritage, and trust me, it’s as mesmerizing as it sounds.

But the cherry on top? The show is accompanied by either a traditional Japanese lunch or dinner. Yes, you read that right! So, you’re not just feeding your senses but also your appetite. Delicious local cuisine paired with an unforgettable cultural performance? Now that’s what I call a perfect Tokyo night!

Tokyo… what an experience.

And the “Traditional Performing Arts Show with Lunch/Dinner” embodies that spirit. Culture, art, and food – perfect combo! 

 And if you are looking for some tips to survive in Japan, I have a guide just for that! Read my last article: 10 Insider Tips For An Epic Travel Through Japan In 2023!


Tokyo at night, lanterns japan

Personalized Local Experience

Let me paint a scene for you. 

You’re walking down a narrow lane, far from the red-light district’s neon signs and the swanky hotels in Tokyo. You’re strolling past tiny mom-and-pop shops, rustic izakayas, and food stalls that have been there for generations. 

And the best part? You’re not just another tourist here. With your local guide by your side, you’re getting a firsthand taste of everyday life in Tokyo.

The “Private Eat & Drink Like a Local Tour” is one of those hidden gems that don’t make it to every tourist’s itinerary but absolutely should. It’s not just a food tour; it’s a journey into Tokyo’s soul. Definitely one of the unmissable things to do in Tokyo at night.

A taste of Tokyo’s life? More than just food. It’s a symphony of stories, shared laughter, and a momentary immersion in local lore. This ain’t your shiny art museum; it’s a raw, pulsating gallery of culture.

Tokyo’s nightlife is not just shiny bars and fancy food. It’s about intimacy, local vibes that jazz up the city’s rhythm. Fancy going off-grid? Then this “Private Eat & Drink Like a Local Tour” should be inked on your schedule. Dive into Japan’s authentic night hues. Ready, set, Tokyo!

And if you are wondering how to get to Osaka from Tokyo you can check my guide here! You never know where the night is going to take you 😀


Tokyo at night, local experience

Navigating Tokyo at Night

Tokyo, a sensory canvas of sights and savors, also stands firm in tradition’s roots.

Exploring all the things to do in Tokyo at night? 

Respect the customs. Be polite, be considerate. That’s your golden ticket to truly soak in Tokyo.

You see, in Japan, there’s this concept of ‘wa’ or harmony. It’s the foundation of Japanese culture and means respecting the balance of the group over the individual. So, whether you’re at a bustling night market, a serene temple, or a digital art exhibit, remember to be mindful of others. 

A simple act of politeness, like waiting for your turn or lowering your voice, goes a long way in respecting that harmony.

Tokyo is one of the safest cities on Earth.

 But remember, no matter where you are, it’s smart to pay attention, especially when there are lots of people around. Follow general safety practices, like keeping an eye on your belongings and knowing your route back to your hotel.

As for regulations, the legal drinking age in Japan is 20 years, and public transport usually stops running by midnight. But don’t worry, there are plenty of taxis to get you back home.

Also, remember that smoking is banned on many Tokyo streets so look for designated smoking areas.

Ease into it, honor traditions, and soak in the vibe. Travel’s magic isn’t just sights but the respect and insight into cultures you gain. Pumped to start your respectful journey into Tokyo’s night pulse?

Ready to start your respectful exploration of Tokyo’s nightlife?

Be sure to check out the best things to do in Tokyo if you need some more ideas!


Tokyo at night, navingating the town


I really hope you liked this list of the best things to do in Tokyo at night!

We’ve danced our way through Tokyo’s buzzing nightlife, savored some truly memorable meals, discovered hidden gems in local neighborhoods, and witnessed the city’s timeless traditions. 

From the modern skyscrapers lit up at night to the rustic charm of old-school districts, Tokyo’s evening scene is a perfect blend of the old and the new.

Whether you’re a foodie exploring the vibrant night markets, an anime fan geeking out in Akihabara, or a culture enthusiast appreciating traditional performing arts, there’s something in Tokyo that will make your heart skip a beat. 

The tours in Tokyo I’ve shared with you offer an intimate look into the city’s many faces, from the high-energy Shibuya district to the serene Sumida River and all that’s in between.

As someone who’s experienced this city’s magic firsthand, I can’t recommend these activities enough.

And hey, if you’re planning to check out these tours, do consider booking through my affiliate links it helps me keep writing about what I love, Japan! 

Remember, Tokyo is a city that’s open 24 hours – all it asks is that you dive in and embrace the adventure.


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About the author
blogger, andrea urbinati, marketing, copywriting, seo

Hi! I’m Andrea, a passionate freelance writer with a knack for captivating storytelling.

With a decade of marketing expertise and a genuine love for crafting compelling content, I bring your ideas to life!

Let me know if you need a writer for your blog!

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