Harajuku (原宿) is often referred to as the crazy fashion capital of Tokyo (東京), home to the famous Takeshita Street (竹下通り) and the inspiration for Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (きゃりーぱみゅぱみゅ)’s style, and various subcultures like lolita (ロリータ) and gothloli (ゴスロリ). If you’re interested in trying some unusual shops and cafes, Harajuku in the heart of Tokyo is a must-visit. Here are 30 things to do in Harajuku.
The Kawaii Monster Cafe (カワイイ モンスター カフェ) opened in 2015 by Sebastian Masuda (増田セバスチャン), who also directed videos for the famous J-Pop star Kyary Pamyu Pamyu. It represents the concept of “swallowing everything around the fashion mecca like a monster” and is an alternative way of dining. If you’re interested in visiting this unique cafe, reserve your seats to go!
Booking details: Reservation for Kawaii Monster Cafe Harajuku, Tokyo
Japanese calligraphy, or “shodo (書道)” is a traditional art form that you can learn to do in Harajuku! This workshop will teach you a bit about calligraphy, and you will even learn how to write your name in Japanese. At the end of the class, you can take home what you made as a souvenir.
Booking details: Japanese Calligraphy in Tokyo
If you’d like to have a real cultural experience in Harajuku, why not join this tour that teaches people about Japanese religion and “wa (和)”, or spirit? Learn to appreciate the meaning behind these ancient buildings and pray for good luck at the temple.
Booking details: Guided Tour of Shrines and Temples
In a shop in Harajuku, there’s the chance for you to get a complete makeover in the Japanese lolita style! Baby, The Stars Shine Bright (ベイビーザスターズシャインブライト) will make you up with clothes, hair, and makeup so you don’t need to take anything with you. Afterward, they will take your photo. If you’re crazy for Harajuku fashion, don’t miss this from your list!
Booking details: Become a Lolita in Harajuku
While you’re in Harajuku, definitely take up the chance to see adorable owls in a cafe! Tokyo has many cat and dog cafes, but an owl cafe is unusual and worth a visit if you like animals.
Booking details: Reservation for Lovely Owl Cafe Harajuku, Tokyo
The concept of “kawaii (かわいい)” is huge in Japan, and what better way to experience it than in Harajuku? This tour offers all the best “kawaii” places in Harajuku, including the Kawaii Monster Cafe, off the beaten track streets, and a chance to be interviewed by the Japanese media!
Booking details: Harajuku Kawaii Tour with a Colorful Guide!
Ever wanted to learn how to draw Japanese manga (漫画)? This 2-hour class in Harajuku includes a lecture on how to draw manga, drawing practice and time for coloring your masterpiece! Please keep in mind this class is only available at weekends.
Booking details: Learn to draw Manga like a pro in Harajuku!
Although this tour is similar to one mentioned earlier, what makes this unique is that a local will pick you up at your accommodation and show you all their favorite places around Harajuku, including a meal at the Kawaii Monster Cafe and some places that tourists don’t usually visit.
Booking details: Enjoy the amazing Kawaii Monster Cafe and a tour in Harajuku
If you’d like to get dressed up in a yukata (浴衣), the light summer version of a kimono, here’s your chance! Professionals will help you into this traditional Japanese dress and take your photo. With the two-hour plan, you can stroll around Harajuku in your yukata and feel transported back to the Edo (江戸) era at Meiji-Jingu (明治神宮) shrine.
Booking details: Wear a Yukata in Harajuku!
If you’d like an idea of what a typical young Japanese person does for fun in Harajuku, try this tour! you’ll take “Purikura (プリクラ)” photo booth pictures with cute special effects, check out cheap shops to buy cute fashions, and take a break in a sweet cafe.
Booking details: Get acquainted with the local youth culture in Harajuku!
Since you’re checking out the fashion district of Tokyo, why not blend in? A salon in Harajuku is offering to bring out your inner “cuteness” or “coolness”. The staff will meet you at Harajuku Station and have a special session with you to discuss what style would suit you best.
Booking details: Experience hair salon with Harajuku Trends, Hayato Tokyo
リニューアルしたスナップサイト「THE STYLE SNIP」イベント開催中です！
— RAGTAG (@RAGTAGshop) September 12, 2017
Ragtag is a Japanese used clothes store which is famous for selling unique and well-known designer brands at competitive prices. The store in Harajuku is the flagship store and has been around since 1985.
Featuring brands including Vivienne Westwood and Diesel, you can find some real gems here. You can also sell clothes that you don’t want any more, and the store also offers a cleaning and fixing service for your clothes. This place is a paradise for fashion lovers and bargain hunters alike!
— KINJI原宿店 (@KINJI__harajuku) October 23, 2017
If what you’re looking for is a real bargain and plenty of choices, look no further than Kinji. Kinji is a massive used clothing store based in the heart of Harajuku. It has both men’s and women’s clothing in a range of sizes, brands, and styles. It also offers great prices, and you can find some quality clothes for 1000 yen or sometimes even less!
If you like the sound of this, take some time to browse the rails in this shop and find some hidden gems to take home and fill up your wardrobe!
HARAJUKU GYOZARO 👅👅😍😍 pic.twitter.com/AMuL97fufU
— Quynh Dang (@quynhvd) November 6, 2016
If you are walking around Harajuku and feel hungry, why not head to ‘Harajuku Gyoza-Ro’ dumpling restaurant, and pig out on some hand-made and delicious traditional gyoza?
This popular and established joint is known for its cheap, juicy, and tasty dumplings! There is likely to be a queue, but it is definitely worth the wait! You will notice that the venue is simply decorated, and the menu is limited, but this means the quality is amazing and the chef is an expert at making dumplings! See below for opening times and access!
— Takanori Miyata (@takanorimiyata) October 13, 2016
Bills Omotesando is a wonderful cafe which offers one of the most popular and well-loved breakfasts and brunches in Tokyo! It is run by an Australian chef called Bill Granger, and offers meals like pancakes, hotcakes, and the popular Full Aussie Breakfast with eggs, bacon, and other wonderful food!
The venue is spacious, friendly, and relaxing, and a great energizing meal in preparation for a busy day! It is located a four-minute walk from JR Harajuku Station.
One of the first things you notice when you walk along Takeshita Street in Harajuku is the vast number of crepe shops stuffed into the place! Crepes have really taken off in Harajuku and it is a popular street indulgence for many shoppers and trendsetters, as well as tourists.
You can get sweet or savory crepes which have great fillings such as cream, banana, chocolate, and cheese. A trip around Harajuku won’t be complete without trying one of these snacks!
— TimeOutTokyo (@TimeOutTokyo) June 29, 2017
Daiso is a Japan establishment. You will find Daiso stores everywhere around Japan, but perhaps the most famous and popular one is a big one in Harajuku. Situated right on Takeshita Street, Daiso specializes in selling a wide range of products many of which are just 100 yen!
You can find some amazing offers here on stationery, toiletries, snacks, gifts, toys, house items, and decorations! You could easily spend an afternoon here browsing the floors of this shop and buying some souvenirs to take home or snacks to enjoy!
If you want to relax for a while and get away from the bustling crowds, why not head up to the sixth floor of Tokyu Plaza which has a great rooftop area. You can grab a coffee or a beer here and sit down in a hammock, comfy chair, or on the wooden benches around the terrace.
There are also many other things to enjoy in Tokyu Plaza including cafes and restaurants to sample, and some great boutique clothes stores to browse!
Harajuku is a fantastic spot, but would you like to combine your day with other areas to get the most of your time in Japan? If that sounds like you, check out the things you can do that ensures you get to see Harajuku and more!
Aside from the shopping and “kawaii” culture, Harajuku is home to some impressive architecture. In this tour, a guide will show you some old buildings in Harajuku and Omotesando (表参道), a nearby shopping district. If you’re interested in architecture, definitely consider taking this tour.
Booking details: Join a Harajuku and Omotesando Architecture Tour
If you’re taking the cruise ship to Yokohama Port and would like to see Harajuku on a day trip, there’s a fantastic excursion to go around Tokyo by car, visiting must-see places including various locations in Harajuku, Ginza (銀座), and Tokyo Tower (東京タワー).
Booking details: Shore excursion from Yokohama Port to Tokyo
If you’d like to see two of Tokyo’s coolest districts in one day, there is a tour that helps you do just that. See the best places in these two districts, including shopping, Cat Street (キャットストリート), and the famous Shibuya Scramble (渋谷スクランブル).
Booking details: Tour the local areas of Harajuku and Shibuya
If you’re into Japanese and Korean music, definitely don’t miss out on all the amazing music shops Harajuku has to offer! This tour offers a tour of all the best places across Harajuku and Shin-Okubo (新大久保), as well as any live events you’re interested in attending.
Booking details: Music Experience around Tokyo
If you’re passionate about fashion and would like a tour with someone who knows the best shops and suit your tastes, consider taking an old-clothes tour. You can get cheap deals on gorgeous clothes and even discover some new fashions!
Booking details: Tour many fashionable old-clothes stores in Tokyo
If you’d like the opportunity to see Harajuku as well as a number of “must-see” spots in Tokyo, consider taking a day tour. Tour spots include Tsukiji Fish Market (築地市場), Omotesando, and Asakusa (浅草). You can see the highlights of Tokyo all in one day.
Booking details: Visit many highlights of Tokyo in 1 day
If you’d like to shop beyond Harajuku, you might like to take a tour that shows you all the best shopping areas in Tokyo including Takeshita Street and Asakusa’s Nakamise Street (仲見世通り)! Shop until you drop and explore the city with locals who know the best places to get a bargain!
Booking details: Visit three of Tokyo’s most famous shopping streets!
You can mix up Shibuya (渋谷) with historical sites on a special walking tour that takes you to various popular locations on the west side of Tokyo. You can also adjust the schedule to fit your needs and interests, so it’s completely up to you what you decide to do and see!
Booking details: One Day Walking Tour of West Side of Tokyo!
If you’d like to be able to relax and let a guide take care of your entire trip, this package deal is for you. With this deal, you will be transferred from the airport to your hotel (as long as you’re staying in Tokyo), and take you on tours on each day of your trip. These include all the must-see spots in Tokyo such as Tsukiji, Asakusa, the Imperial Palace (皇居), Shinjuku (新宿), Shibuya, and Harajuku. On the 4th day, you will also get to visit Hakone (箱根) for a special day trip. Check out this 5-day tour!
Booking details: Tokyo Guided Tour – 5 day Affordable Package
This similar trip also offers airport transfer, Tokyo’s best sightseeing spots and a trip to Hakone, but also includes a trip to Mt. Fuji (富士山) and a ride on the Komagatake Ropeway (駒ケ岳ロープウェイ)! If you’d like to see Fuji up close and take a cruise on Lake Ashi (芦ノ湖), consider this tour!
Booking details: Avail a Tokyo 5-day Package Tour with a day trip to Hakone
This 5-day tour includes a trip to Fuji Q Highland (富士急ハイランド) Theme Park, and a trip to locations such as Harajuku, Odaiba (お台場), and Asakusa. An airport transfer is also included.
Booking details: Discover Tokyo in an affordable 5-day package tour!
This tour includes a transfer from Haneda (羽田) Airport or Narita (成田) Airport, a 3-night accommodation with breakfast, and a half-day walking tour with an English-speaking guide. The other two days are free, so there is some flexibility with this tour. With this package deal, you don’t have to worry about traveling to and from the airport, or about finding a good hotel!
Booking details: Enjoy Tokyo in a free & easy package
When visiting a new country, it’s sometimes better to opt for a guided tour from a local who really knows what they’re doing! Have a great time in Harajuku, and soak up as many experiences as you can!