101 things to do in Roppongi

Where to eat, shop and play in ‘High Touch Town’

101 things to do in Roppongi

101 things to do in Roppongi
1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75 | 76-101

As far as some Tokyo residents are concerned, the only good thing to do in Roppongi to is get the first train out of the place. The capital's most famous entertainment district is also perhaps its most notorious: popular with American GIs during the post-war occupation, it went from sleazy to classy to sleazy again over the ensuing decades. Even the opening of ambitious, upmarket developments like Tokyo Midtown and Roppongi Hills – and the neighbourhood's bizarre re-christening as 'High Touch Town' in 1989 – haven't entirely removed its negative image. But don't let that put you off: you'd be missing out on a 'hood that's diverse, fun and also surprisingly classy. Read on for Time Out's selection of the best that Roppongi (and nearby Azabu-Juban) has to offer. It'll have you seeing the place in a whole new light – and it won't be a red one this time...

1. Feel like the king of the castle

Start your Roppongi adventure with a bird’s-eye view of the city at this recently renovated observation deck that’s 250m high and offers a 360-degree vista.
Tokyo City View. Roppongi Hills Mori Tower 52F, 6-10-1 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

2. Trip on tapioca

Slurp on some authentic and additive-free milk tea, prepared by a certified 'tea master', at this Taiwanese import that also boasts a variety of noodle dishes.
Chun Shui Tang Roppongi. 1F South Tower, Ark Hills, 1-4-5 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

3. Seek out backstreet art

This backstreet gallery specialises in contemporary art from promising young Tokyo artists such as Yuko Murata, Fumito Urabe and Takeo Hanazawa, and stocks works by foreign artists such as the internationally renowned Rirkrit Tiravanija whose installations often involve tantalising food.
Gallery Side 2. 3-3-5 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

4. Peruse a swish select shop

The Restir brand's flagship boutique offers various edgy designer goods. A chic black wall gives the three-storey shop that exclusive touch, while each floor is designed with a specific world city in mind.
Restir. 5-9-20 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

5. Let a DJ save your life

Walk through a hexagon-shaped entrance into this three-storey club with space for 1,000 revellers. Check their Facebook page for the event schedule.
Brand Tokyo. 1-7-2 Nishi-Azabu. Map and opening hours

6. Sip cocktails till sunrise

Night owls with a penchant for quality cocktails and good music will fit right in at this all-night bar that holds regular weekend events with free entrance.
BarBlue. 1F 1-12-5 Nishi-Azabu. Map and opening hours

7. Savour some sirloin

At this first non-US branch of meat master Wolfgang Zwiener’s empire, you are guaranteed USDA Prime-certified beef for the steaks. Those looking for a non-meat dish should try the lobster or broiled salmon.
Wolfgang's Steakhouse. Roppongi Duplex M's 1F, 5-16-50 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

8. Cool down with colourful ice

Shaved ice (kakigori) is the ultimate Tokyo summer dessert. This Roppongi newcomer takes the old favourite to another level with flavours like tiramisu and carrot-mascarpone while also touting a luxurious four-berry variety.
Kakigori Cafe & Bar Yelo. Patio Roppongi 1F, 5-2-11 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

9. Pay your respects to a samurai hero

General Nogi and his wife, who proved their loyalty to Emperor Meiji by committing suicide when he died, are enshrined here. Besides their house, the shrine boasts about 2.5 acres of greenery and tranquility in the middle of the city. Stop by for the antiques market every 4th Sunday (except November).
Nogi Jinja. 8-11-27 Akasaka. Map and opening hours

10. Stock up on sake

Nothing goes to waste at Kanazawa-based brewery Fukumitsuya: its Tokyo Midtown shop doesn’t just sell nihonshu, but also foods and skincare products derived from sake.
Sake Shop Fukumitsuya. B1F Tokyo Midtown Galleria, 9-7-4 Akasaka. Map and opening hours

11. Stay in a Zen hotel suite

Billing itself as a secret hideaway for grown-ups, this boutique hotel offers spacious, Zen-influenced suites and is well-positioned near the Nishi-Azabu crossing.
Hotel S. 1-11-6 Nishi-Azabu. Map and opening hours

12. Join the craft beer scene

Housed in a stylish space close to Roppongi Station, Japan’s first BrewDog bar has a total of 20 varieties of beer on tap, while the food menu holds its own with offerings like home-made burgers and hotdogs.
BrewDog Roppongi. Saito Bldg. 1F, 5-3-2 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

13. Browse art books after sunset

Housing an impressive selection of art and design books, this is the ideal place to pick up a gift for a discerning friend – and the opening hours are perfect for late-night browsing.
Aoyama Book Center. 6-1-20 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

14. Tour the world of rum

It's easy to end up missing your last train home at this warmly inviting rum bar – and you'll need until dawn to sample even a fraction of the rare tipples on offer.
Tafia. 2-15-14 Nishi-Azabu. Map and opening hours

15. Explore photography, enjoy coffee

Consisting of Ima Gallery, Ima Books and Ima Cafe, this concept store focuses on photography, providing an exhibition space and stocking over 2,000 titles, while offering coffee by the masterful Obscura Coffee Roasters.
Ima Concept Store. Axis Building 3F, 5-17-1 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

16. Have fish for dessert

Famous for being the original maker of taiyaki (fish-shaped dessert filled with sweet bean paste), Naniwaya opened in 1909 and is still at the top of the taiyaki game. Buy the treats as gifts or enjoy fresh warm ones at the shop.
Naniwaya. 1-8-14 Azabu-Juban. Map and opening hours

17. Warm up with oden

Oden – vegetables, fish cakes, tofu and other ingredients simmered in broth – is one of Japan’s favourite winter warmers, and it doesn't get much tastier than at Fukushimaya. Also available in summer.
Oden Fukushimaya. 2-1-1 Azabu-Juban. Map and opening hours

18. Get addicted to karinto

A word of warning before you join the queue outside this popular confectioner: their crispy karinto – deep-fried snacks flavoured with brown sugar – are dangerously addictive.
Azabu Karinto. 1-7-9 Azabu-Juban. Map and opening hours

19. Hit the bull's-eye

A hip darts bar with an even hipper ‘i Tower’ drinks machine that serves a cocktail of Hennessy Cognac and iced black tea. Look out for seasonal events especially over Halloween and Christmas.
I Darts Tokyo. 5-3-1 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

20. Stroll around an inner-city park

Hard to believe now, but Roppongi was once full of hinoki cypress trees, which lent their name to the park that now sits next to Tokyo Midtown.
Hinokicho Park. 9-7-9 Akasaka. Map

21. Luxuriate in an open-air bath

This flashy boutique hotel sits on a calm side street close to the National Art Center and Roppongi Hills. The suites have garden terraces and open-air baths, while other rooms feature traditional Japanese elements like sliding doors and washi paper.
Design Hotel Iroha. 7-20-7 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

22. Turn a curry lunch into a chic experience

The bland uniformity of your average Indian eatery menu is swiftly forgotten at Nirvana New York, where the cuisine is as inspired as it is wallet-busting. The chic indoor dining room is appealing enough, but when the weather’s good it’s hard to resist the outdoor terrace.
Nirvana New York. 1F Garden Terrace, Tokyo Midtown, 9-7-4 Akasaka. Map and opening hours

23. Give yourself a Cinderella makeover

When you need to get glammed up – and fast – Dress Code has got you covered, with a wardrobe of luxury brand dresses and accessories that can be rented by the night.
Dress Code. 2-25-19 Nishi-Azabu. Map and opening hours

24. Samba with churrasco

Tokyo’s love of Brazilian barbecue seems to know no bounds. One of the latest churrascarias to open is this Roppongi branch of Barbacoa, which has seating for 200, bookable private rooms, and a great value churrasco lunch for ¥3,600 (plus tax).
Barbacoa Roppongi Hills, Roppongi Hills West Walk 5F, 6-10-1 Roppongi. Map and opening hours

25. Nestle into an off-kilter music spot

Don’t forget to take your shoes off when entering Tokyo’s cosiest music venue, complete with sofas, beds and lush red carpets. Enjoy the interesting lineup, which sometimes includes artist Atsuhiro Ito’s experimental performances with light bulbs.
Bullet's. B1F, 1-7-11 Nishi-Azabu. Map and opening hours

101 things to do in Roppongi
1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75 | 76-101

By Time Out writers
Please note: All information is correct at the time of writing but is subject to change without notice.


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