1. Tokyo city skyline with Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Tower
    Photo: Torsakarin/Dreamstime
  2. teamLab Planets, Vegan Ramen Uzu Tokyo
    Photo: 'Reversible Rotation - Non-Objective Space' teamLab, 2021, Digital Installation, Sound: Hideaki TakahashiVegan Ramen Uzu Tokyo at teamLab Planets
  3. Icho Namiki Street
    Photo: Cowardlion/DreamstimeMeiji Jingu Gaien's Icho Namiki-dori
  4. GUNDAM FACTORY YOKOHAMA
    © 創通・サンライズ

15 amazing reasons you should visit Tokyo now

Now that Japan is fully reopening to independent tourists, what more are you waiting for?

Kaila Imada
Written by
Kaila Imada
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At long last, Japan has reopened to the world, and we couldn’t be more excited. With travel resuming just in time for the autumn and winter seasons, there’s a lot to look forward to in the coming months. Besides Tokyo's many seasonal events, the city has welcomed a host of exciting new attractions that the world has yet to see or experience – you know, because of Covid border closures. 

So if you need more reasons to come visit Tokyo besides Japan’s grand reopening (no PCR tests, no quarantine and no travel agency) after being closed off for the past two-plus years, here are 15 irrefutable reasons you should travel to Tokyo right now. Even if you’re no stranger to our beloved city, there’s still plenty of new things waiting for you right here.

RECOMMENDED: The best free things to do in Tokyo 

Autumn is coming

1. Autumn is coming

Aside from the spring cherry blossom season, autumn is another good time to visit Tokyo for the gorgeous seasonal foliage. This year’s forecast predicts that the leaves will reach peak colour around November 27, so plan accordingly.

Tokyo shines the brightest in winter
画像提供:森ビル株式会社

2. Tokyo shines the brightest in winter

Even before the trees have all shed their autumn leaves, Tokyo is already lighting up with a host of winter illuminations. From tree-lined city streets to parks filled with glowing displays, there’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit.

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With travel finally resuming, so are music festivals and concerts. This year, we’ve already seen some big names perform in Tokyo, including Lady Gaga and Billie Eilish. And there’s still more to come. Mark your calendars for Bruno Mars (October 26-27), Justin Bieber (November 16-17), and even indie rock ‘n rollers Franz Ferdinand (November 28). To know who’s playing in Tokyo until March 2023, check our list here.

Tokyo has new Michelin-starred and world-renowned restaurants
Photo: Four Seasons Marunouchi

4. Tokyo has new Michelin-starred and world-renowned restaurants

Making a trip to Tokyo just for the food makes total sense. Our city has welcomed several new destination restaurants just within the last year or so, including the dynamic French restaurant Sézanne helmed by distinguished British chef Daniel Calvert as well as Massimo Bottura’s Gucci Osteria inside the Gucci flagship store in Ginza.

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  • Art
  • Mixed media
  • Toyosu

We bid farewell to teamLab Borderless at the end of August, but not all is lost. Thankfully teamLab Planets has extended its stay and will now be around until the end of 2023. At Planets, teamLab's immersive digital art installations are bigger, set in spacious rooms for a more immersive experience. Plus, it’s got a brand new garden area as well as a jaw-dropping vegan ramen restaurant that’s just out of this world.

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The city has a new music festival called Tonal Tokyo
Photo: Tonal Tokyo

7. The city has a new music festival called Tonal Tokyo

Tokyo is gearing up to host its inaugural Tonal Tokyo music festival at Ariake Arena on October 29. So far, the festival has confirmed some stellar artists including Charli XCX, Jamie xx, Lany, Rhye, Years & Years and Tempalay. Tickets are now on sale. More details here.

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  • Things to do
  • City Life

While the Tokyo 2020 Olympics were a bit of a let down for those hoping to come watch the Games in person, you can now relive the experience at where it all happened. The Japan National Stadium designed by starchitect Kengo Kuma is now open to the public for an unguided tour, where you get to explore the space at your leisure. Go stand at the bleachers and take it all in.

  • Restaurants
  • Drinking

Shibuya Sky rooftop observation deck was one of the hottest new openings in 2019, but enjoyment was short-lived as the pandemic hit shortly after. Since 2020, the skyscraper’s jaw-dropping rooftop – Shibuya’s highest – has opened a limited-time outdoor bar known as The Roof. There’s still time to enjoy the views with a drink in hand as the rooftop bar is open until January 9 2023.

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Tokyo goes 3D
Photo: Hit Co., Ltd.

11. Tokyo goes 3D

In the last couple of years, Tokyo’s busiest hubs have introduced some fancy new 3D digital billboards. In Shibuya, you’ll find a giant 3D Akita inu appearing across several digital screens at the top of every hour. In Shinjuku, there’s a super realistic (and also giant) 3D cat staring at the crowds below.

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New openings to check out since you’ve been gone
Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa

14. New openings to check out since you’ve been gone

Since Tokyo’s self-insolation from the rest of the world in the last two years, there have been quite a few new additions to the city. One of the major new openings is Miyashita Park in Shibuya, which features a spacious rooftop park with a Doraemon installation – it even has a yokocho restaurant alley serving food from different regions in Japan. The indie ’hood Shimokitazawa also welcomed a handful of new shopping and dining complexes including Reload, Bonus Track and Mikan Shimokita.

Disney fans might want to make a beeline for Tokyo Disneyland. Since 2020, a couple of new attractions have opened up including the new Beauty and the Beast village and Baymax ride. Unfortunately, prices have also increased and ticketing isn’t as simple as it used to be. Read all about it here.

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Because Tokyo is ranked in some of the world’s best-of lists
Photo: Jaison Lin/Unsplash

15. Because Tokyo is ranked in some of the world’s best-of lists

If you’ve been keeping up with our news, you’d recall that Tokyo was ranked as one of the best cities in the world this year. There’s more: we’re also home to one of the world’s coolest streets and trendiest neighbourhoods (we’re looking at you Shimokita).

Get ready for your trip to Tokyo

  • Things to do

Our ultimate checklist of the best things to do and see in Tokyo, from museums and art galleries to restaurants and bars

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