1. Hamarikyu Gardens
    Photo: Tokyo Metropolitan Park Association
  2. Tamagawa Fireworks
    Photo: makoto.h/PhotoAC
  3. Ikebukuro Halloween Cosplay Fes
    Photo: Dwango

October 2023 events and festivals in Tokyo

Plan your October in Tokyo with our events calendar of the best things to do, including concerts, food festivals and art exhibits


October is one of the nicest months in Tokyo – it's still warm enough to have fun outside, and there's a boatload of great events going on all around the city. A number of autumn matsuri take place in October, in addition to Tokyo classics from Tachikawa Yokai Bon Odori to the Kappabashi Kitchen Tools Festival. October is also the season for moon-viewing, a wide range of food events and, of course, Halloween

Looking for more things to do?

- The best art exhibitions in Tokyo right now
- The best day trips from Tokyo
- The best things to do in Ginza besides shopping

Our October highlights

  • Art
  • Nogizaka

This autumn, The National Art Center in Tokyo is hosting an exclusive retrospective dedicated to the life and work of acclaimed French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent. Saint Laurent became a pivotal figure in fashion at just 21, leading the House of Dior before establishing his eponymous brand in 1962.

Crowned the ‘King of Fashion’, Saint Laurent revolutionised 20th-century women’s fashion with iconic creations like the 1965 Mondrian dresses and the introduction of safari pantsuits. This retrospective is the first comprehensive showcase of the designer’s work in Japan, offering insight into his 40-year illustrious career and distinctive style through various artefacts and photographs.

A collaborative effort with the Musée Yves Saint Laurent Paris, the exhibition showcases around 110 pieces of the designer's seminal work, including garments, accessories and sketches.

  • Art
  • Ueno

French artist Claude Monet was initially ridiculed for his Impressionism, which consisted of painting thin, rapid strokes using vivid colours. Still, he is now recognised as one of the greatest artists of his time. 2024 will mark 150 years since the world’s first Impressionist exhibition was held in Paris in 1874. This year, Japan is hosting two significant retrospectives dedicated to Monet and his works in Tokyo and Osaka to celebrate the momentous anniversary. The exhibition in Tokyo will be held at the Ueno Royal Museum from October 20 to January 28 2024, and showcase everything from his early portraits to late landscapes, including pieces from his famous ‘haystacks’ series.

  • Art
  • Omotesando

Born in Llanelli, Wales, in 1958, Cerith Wyn Evans pursued his artistic education in London, notably at Saint Martin’s School of Art and the Royal College of Art. Initially known for his involvement in experimental filmmaking and assisting famed director Derek Jarman, Evans transitioned into visual art in the 1990s, yet his cinematic roots left an indelible mark. His oeuvre stands out for its exploration of form, be it through photography, neon-lit texts, sound, or video installations. Often invoking post-symbolist and avant-garde literature, his works serve as enigmatic interplays of light and shadow, fact and fiction. 

Evans is celebrated for his nuanced use of light and has carved a niche with his sculptural creations that challenge perceptions, blending the tangible and intangible. His mastery in manipulating neon, sound, photography and glass to shape immersive environments renders a unique sensory experience. With several accolades under his belt, including notable exhibitions at prestigious institutions worldwide, Evans' artworks grace the permanent collections of iconic institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art, Tate Modern, and of course, the Fondation Louis Vuitton. This Tokyo exhibition, encapsulating works curated before the foundation's opening in 2007, promises an enriching experience of Evans’ unparalleled artistic journey.

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