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Kabukicho Guide: 9 Things to Do in Kabukicho, Tokyo

Wondering what to do in Kabukicho? This guide highlights our top picks for the best things to do in Kabukicho, Tokyo!


Kabukicho is a dynamic and energetic district in Shinjuku, Tokyo. It's known for its neon lights, lively atmosphere, and a mix of entertainment options.


Over the years, Kabukicho has become the go-to destination in Tokyo for both locals and tourists alike for theatrical performances, clubbing, dining, and shopping.



Whether Kabukicho is worth visiting depends on your interests and preferences. If you're looking for a lively and vibrant district with plenty of entertainment and nightlife options, then Kabukicho is definitely worth a visit.


Here are some ideas for how to spend your time in Kabukicho, depending on your interests:


1. Go club/bar hopping


Kabukicho is known for its lively nightlife scene. The area has a number of nightclubs and bars, ranging from small, intimate venues to large, bustling clubs. Whether you're looking for a place to sing karaoke, dance the night away, or have a quiet drink, you're sure to find something to your taste in Kabukicho.



2. Shop til you drop


Kabukicho has several shopping malls and boutiques, souvenir shops, and electronics stores. One of the most popular stores to visit is Don Quijote (or Donki, as locals fondly call it), where you can find bargains on everything from souvenirs to electronics.


3. Watch theatrical performances

Theaters are not hard to come by in Kabukicho. Some popular ones are the Shinjuku Koma Theater and the Shinjuku Golden Gai Theater. These theaters host a variety of performances, including traditional Japanese theater, musicals, and concerts.



4. Dine at local restaurants


Kabukicho has a wide range of dining options, from casual street food to high-end restaurants. Whether you’re looking for traditional Japanese cuisine or international fare, you will not be disappointed. There are also many small bars and izakayas (Japanese pubs) where you can grab a drink and some snacks. Omoide Yokocho, in particular, is lined with tiny restaurants and bars, many of which specialize in yakitori (grilled chicken skewers). It's a great place to try some delicious Japanese food and drink.


5. Explore Shinjuku Golden Gai


Kabukicho is home to the Shinjuku Golden Gai, a narrow alleyway with a cluster of small bars and restaurants offering a more traditional Japanese atmosphere. It's a great place to try a variety of Japanese drinks and rub elbows with the locals.



6. Watch street performances

Walking along the streets of Kabukicho is an activity in itself. From neon lights to street performances, you will find them all on the streets of Kabukicho!



7. Explore Japanese culture

Kabukicho may not be the first place to visit when it comes to exploring Japanese culture, but it does have bits and pieces to give if you want to dive deeper into our culture. Some interesting places to experience the local culture include the Samurai Museum, where you can learn about the history of the samurai and try on a suit of armor, and the Ninja Trick House, an interactive museum that teaches you about the art of ninjutsu, or the martial arts of the ninja.



8. Try out Panchiko parlors


Kabukicho is also a great place to visit during the day. There are several pachinko or Japanese gambling parlors in the area. You can also take a walk and people-watch or simply relax in one of the many cafes.



9. Go on karaoke with friends


If you are visiting with friends, colleagues, or family, a karaoke activity might be suitable for you. Singing your heart out at a karaoke bar is a must-do activity in Japan, and Kabukicho has plenty of karaoke bars to choose from.


No matter what your interests are, you're sure to find something to enjoy in Kabukicho. Just be aware that it is a red-light district, so there may be some adult-oriented establishments in the area.

 

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