Things to do in Tokyo this week

This week’s hottest events, gigs, films, festivals and more

Prismatic Cloud
Ginza Six
By Time Out Tokyo Editors
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UPDATE: Many events have been cancelled or postponed due to coronavirus. If you're unsure if yours has been affected, please call ahead to confirm.

When you're spending time in a city as big as Tokyo, it's never too early to start planning for the week ahead. Although the novel Covid-19 coronavirus has had many venues closing temporarily and events put on hold, you can still pack a lot into seven days in the capital.

We've sorted through the many events and venues in Tokyo that are still open and running during this time, plus we're keeping an eye on the updated opening hours of the city's large department stores – all of which are still open for business. 

If you're out and about in Tokyo, read our tips on how to protect yourself from coronavirus and travel safer in Tokyo.

RECOMMENDED: Get your tickets to events and gigs here

Best things to do this week

RK Neorient
Photo: © RK
Art

RK:NEOrient

Diesel Art Gallery, Shibuya

Japanese photographer RK has risen to Instagram fame over the past few years, gaining over 400,000 followers with colourful, detail-packed images that convey the sense of daily life in Asia’s ultra-high-density cities. He also excels at revealing the unintentional symmetries and other patterns that appear in the cluttered architecture of cities such as Tokyo and Hong Kong. Here RK departs from the claustrophobia of his best-known work to present a ‘vision of crimson fantasy’...

Prismatic Cloud
Ginza Six
Art

Prismatic Cloud at Ginza Six

Ginza Six, Ginza

The ritzy Ginza Six department store will be decked out with a mesmerizing cloud-like art installation created by Japanese designer and artist, Yoshioka Tokujin, from February 27 until the end of October. His works have been displayed all around the world including at the Musée d'Orsay and the Art Institute of Chicago. Recently, Tokujin turned heads with his designs for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic torches. As the name Prismatic Cloud suggests, Tokujin’s gigantic sculpture is made from over 10,000 white prism rods dangling from the top in the centre of the building...

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Things to do

Form and Heart – Everyday is a Good Day

Muji Ginza, Higashi-Ginza

Japan’s way of wrapping gifts is an art in itself, and at this Ginza exhibition you'll learn more about this beautiful tradition, including a special gift-appropriate method of tying knots, plus the delicate way of folding paper in origami style. The tradition of handing over meticulously wrapped gifts that reflect the givers' sincerity dates back to the Muromachi period (around 1336-1573). On April 11, you can participate in a free gallery tour and talk about origami-folding techniques...

Things to do

Sakura Fes Nihonbashi / Off to Meet

Multiple venues

The area around Nihonbashi’s Coredo Muromachi Terrace is transforming into a pink space boasting sakura-themed installations and light-up events come spring. Between March 16 and 31, you can see a cherry tree covered with 8,000 shining leaves that light up whenever someone plays the on-site piano (avaialble from 4pm-10pm). Meanwhile, Nihonbashi Art Street sees an installation of weeping cherry blossoms moulded into the shape of Japanese phrases that sway to gentle music (5pm-8pm). Various buildings in Nihonbashi are also putting on a pastel pink light show that runs until April 5.

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Things to do

Seiseki Neko Fes

Keio Seiseki Sakuragaoka Shopping Center, Tama

Seiseki Sakuragaoka, famous as the setting for the Studio Ghibli movie ‘Whisper of the Heart’ featuring a talking cat, holds a massive cat-themed festival over two weeks inside the local Keio shopping centre. Along with an exhibition of 200 cat photos taken by popular photographer Mitsuaki Iwago, you'll find a large variety of cat-themed souvenirs, and on April 4, visitors have the chance to adopt abandoned and stray cats courtesy of an animal rescue group.

Things to do

Hibiya Blossom

Tokyo Midtown Hibiya, Hibiya

Tokyo Midtown Hibiya transforms into a floral paradise for this event. The Hibiya Step Square will be equipped with a garden that lets you enjoy blooms from different perspectives, and along the Hibiya Nakadori street you can shop for spring flowers and products that boast floral motifs at the on-site market (Apr 17-19). If you’re one of the first 500 visitors on April 29, you'll be given a seasonal flower to take home. 

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はるパラ!
はるパラ!
Things to do

Harupara!

Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, Yokohama

Experience a slightly different kind of hanami (cherry blossom viewing) at Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, a massive aquarium facility on an island in Yokohama. You can catch 50,000 sardines dancing to music while bathed in pastel pink and white lights, plus a group of African penguins parading through a miniature cherry tree alley. If you’re feeling peckish, the on-site restaurants offer sakura-themed menus, but you can also bring a blanket and enjoy a picnic under the 700 cherry trees.

Hokusai ― The Teacher-Student Showdown!
Art

Hokusai – The Teacher-Student Showdown

Sumida Hokusai Museum, Ryogoku

While Hokusai’s iconic ukiyo-e (woodblock prints) are widely recognised and celebrated around the world, less so is the work of his roughly 200 students and their satellite schools – until now. The Teacher-Student Showdown presents a selection of works by Hokusai and his students, grouped into four main themes (the human figure, landscapes, animals, and miscellaneous), which allows viewers to compare students to their teacher and reflect on the artists’ different styles and influences.

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Art

Banksy: Genius or Vandal?

Aso Building, Yokohama Station area

Banksy is the most notorious street artist of this generation, but his real identity remains a mystery to the world that admired his works as they spontaneously appeared on city streets overnight. Though images of Banksy's work have been widely circulated online, the artist has never organised conventional exhibitons, making it harder for international fans to see a collection of his works in person.  This unauthorised exhibition, which has already been held in five cities around the world, is made possible by private art collectors...

松山智一《Wheels of Fortune》2020 ステンレス ©Mariko ASAYAMA
松山智一《Wheels of Fortune》2020 ステンレス ©Mariko ASAYAMA
Art

Meiji Jingu Forest Festival of Art

Meiji Shrine & Inner Garden, Harajuku

A celebration of art and culture set in the forest surrounding Meiji Shrine, this festival – co-presented by Japan Cultural Expo – zooms in on the relationship between nature and Japanese arts and culture with a diverse programme that will be going on until 2021. Held at Meiji Shrine itself, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary, as well as at various venues in the vicinity, the festival kicks off in March 2020 with ‘Tenkukaikatsu’, an open-air sculpture exhibition that features work by leading artists such as Kohei Nawa and Atsuhiko Misawa...

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UNU Farmer's Market
Photo: fb.com/farmersmarket.at.unu
Shopping

United Nations University Farmers' Market

Aoyama

The UNU farmers’ market is one of Tokyo’s longest running and best-attended markets. Taking place every weekend in front of the university’s Aoyama headquarters, this one always attracts a knowledgeable crowd. Organic and local fare is readily available every Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 4pm, with the farmers themselves happy to provide details about their wares...

Attractions

Shibuya Sky

Shibuya

Catch the best views of Tokyo at this 360° open-air observation deck at the rooftop of Shibuya Scramble Square. Shibuya Sky is approximately 230 metres above ground and is the highest point in the district of Shibuya. The ‘Sky Edge’, a corner where you can look down at the cityscape below without any obstruction, is a particularly good photo spot that provides a panoramic view of the city...

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Things to do

Kotatsu Terrace

Ride, Tennozu

Warm up with a simple yose nabe (basic Japanese hot pot) while sitting at a cosy kotatsu, a low table covered with a futon blanket embedded with an electric heater. For a limited time, Ride is offering a kotatsu dining experience with a view of the Tennozu canals, featuring a special yose nabe dish which includes duck and chicken tsukune (meatball), pork slices, crab and a variety of veggies...

Minnie Mouse
Photo: ©Disney
Restaurants

Oh My! Minnie Mouse

Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku, Harajuku

Get your Disney fix at this pop-up café based on everyone’s favourite female mouse, Minnie Mouse. Minnie made her debut alongside Mickey Mouse in the animated short film ‘Steamboat Willie’ (1928) and has been Mickey's long-term girlfriend ever since. The café’s overall theme is ‘Minnie Mouse as a positive lifestyle icon in the modern age’, with all menu items designed around the cartoon rodent...

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DCオールスターズ
DCオールスターズ
Things to do

DC All Stars

Toy Sapiens, Harajuku

Comic fans rejoice! Step into the world of DC Comics and get your cameras ready for a display of original costumes used in the movies ‘Joker’, ‘Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)’ and ‘Wonder Woman 1984’. Plus, you can gaze at unique one-sixth scale figurines showing Batman in his various costumes from different adaptations...

Sakura and Strawberry Afternoon Tea at The French Kitchen
Photo: Grand Hyatt Tokyo
Restaurants

Sakura and Strawberry Afternoon Tea at The French Kitchen

The French Kitchen, Roppongi

Ring in this year's cherry blossom season with a sakura and strawberry-themed afternoon tea at Grand Hyatt Tokyo's The French Kitchen. This pink-tinged afternoon tea comes with all sorts of sweets and savoury items including sakura rare (no-bake) cheesecake, strawberry marshmallows, sakura tiramisu, asparagus and prosciutto quiche and sakura camembert cheese mini croissants. After all, nothing says spring in Tokyo more than sakura and strawberries. 

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Sakura picnic basket at The Oak Door
Photo: Grand Hyatt Tokyo
Restaurants

Sakura picnic basket at The Oak Door

The Oak Door, Roppongi

Take in the fresh spring air at The Oak Door where diners can enjoy a fun picnic basket filled with pink burgers inspired by the season's sakura blooms, along with taramasalata dip, a cherry blossom dessert and, of course, a glass of pink rosé champagne. There's no better spot for a picnic than The Oak Door's expansive terrace, so take a seat outside and enjoy the ultimate spring feast. Note that you can add an entire bottle champagne to your picnic for ¥8,000. 

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