What do do on a rainy day in Tokyo?
May 27, 2010 4:50 PM   Subscribe

Help me find something fun to do on a rainy day in Tokyo.

I've been living in the Tokyo area for the past several years. In my opinion, when the weather is good, there are an almost endless number of things to do here.... but most of these things involve being outside. This weekend is going to be rainy, and I'm looking for a good way to spend tomorrow, preferably not outside in the rain. Any suggestions?
posted by farce majeure to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (19 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Aquariums! Shinagawa aquarium is mostly inside.
posted by gomichild at 4:58 PM on May 27, 2010


A day at the National Art Center?

You can get around most of Shinjuku if you use the underground passageways, so you could go from store to store that way.

(Incidentally, it looks like the chance of rain is only about 40%, so if you have a folding umbrella you could chance being outside for a bit.)
posted by armage at 5:06 PM on May 27, 2010

Shopping? You could easily spend hours in 109 or another department store without going outside.
posted by you zombitch at 5:16 PM on May 27, 2010

Also indoor swimming pool?

Meetup for brunch?
posted by gomichild at 5:26 PM on May 27, 2010

Thanks for the suggestions! I went to the Shinagawa aquarium last Sunday, which was also rainy.

Do people really go to Karaoke in the daytime?

Also, shopping is fine, but I can only stand about two hours or so walking around in department stores before going a bit crazy. Might help if I had a bit more money to spend there.

Any ideas about activities that can be done inside? I suppose I should mention this is a date as well. I've got a nice restaurant picked out for the evening but I'm hoping to figure out a fun activity for the daytime.

Thanks again!
posted by farce majeure at 6:05 PM on May 27, 2010

Of course people go to karaoke in the afternoon! Also it's usually cheaper.
posted by gomichild at 6:09 PM on May 27, 2010

The National Film Center hosts daily screenings, and has a nice little gallery tour. I went on a rainy day not too long ago and saw two hours of Japanese experimental short films from the 1930's. Looks like this weekend marks the start of EU Film Days 2010, showcasing recent European cinema. A quick glance shows most will have English subtitles or dialogue. But seeing a movie in Czech with Japanese subtitles, or Finnish with English subtitles and spoken Japanese narration, would be pretty cool in itself.
posted by casaubon at 6:13 PM on May 27, 2010

If it's for a date, I'd avoid a movie. Maybe check out one of the places listed at Art Space Tokyo?
posted by casaubon at 6:22 PM on May 27, 2010

i like the photography museum in ebisu, and entry is free unless you want to get into the special exhibits. i also love sunshine city in ikebukuro because there's some wacky stuff in there. just fun to browse.
posted by raw sugar at 6:25 PM on May 27, 2010

People definitely go to karaoke in the afternoon! A lot of places have soft drink nomihodai, if day-drinking isn't your thing. :)
posted by you zombitch at 6:31 PM on May 27, 2010

The Mori Art Musuem at the top of Roppongi Hills. Nice views, nice gallery, plus cool city models of New York, Tokyo, Shanghai, etc
posted by dydecker at 6:36 PM on May 27, 2010

Tokyo Joypolis. Tokyo Leisureland. Megaweb. Ooedo Onsen Monogatari (though if it's a date, I guess this one's out). I used to frequent Odaiba, can you tell? Oh, and if you've never been, going to the top of Tokyo Tower can be a fun experience (did you know that about a third of the steel that makes up the tower was taken from US tanks damaged during the Korean War?). Besides the view from the top, which might not be so great on a rainy day, there's a really cheesy wax museum on the third floor if you're into that kind of thing.
posted by misozaki at 7:07 PM on May 27, 2010

Odaiba mall is fine, which is where Joypolis is. Across from Odaiba is Palette town. More Mall shops, but also large car exhibition hall, with ride-in car things. Next building to that is a large arcade hall.

There are endless bowling/dart/pool/arcade places around everywhere. Like Est in Shibuya. There are the even larger places like that out of town a little, which had air-cannon battles etc. I fail to remember what it was called though. Round1? (Kid's area was reserved for drunk adults at certain times).
posted by lundman at 8:05 PM on May 27, 2010

Ok, these are some good ideas, thanks. Had the weather been better I was planning on riding from Asakusa to Odaiba via the Sumida River on a tour boat of sorts... has anyone ever done that before? Would it still be worth doing even on a somewhat rainy day? The boat is covered, but I'm wondering if the view might not be so good in the rain.
posted by farce majeure at 8:36 PM on May 27, 2010

I've taken that boat ride --- you don't have to sit on the outside upper deck if you don't want to, although sitting below kind of defeats the purpose of the boat trip (not the most picturesque, truth be told --- it just looks like Tokyo, as seen from the river.)

Odaiba by itself could be a decent excursion. I forget the name of them, but the Hong Kong and Shouwa themed malls where the boat lands are pretty entertaining in and of themselves. Can't remember the name of the station off the top of my head, either, but I'm sure you can easily find it.
posted by Tiresias at 9:26 PM on May 27, 2010

Oh, also, the (free) view from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building in Shinjuku is incredible.
posted by Tiresias at 9:27 PM on May 27, 2010

Tiresias: Hong Kong and Shouwa themed

I do believe those are inside Palette Town/Venus Fort. The station I would take for that, and Odaiba is 'Tokyo Teleport' on the rinkai-line.
posted by lundman at 11:17 PM on May 27, 2010

Namja Town, in the aforementioned Sunshine City in Ikebukuro. It's a somewhat creepy indoor amusement park with (separate) ice cream and gyoza-themed eating areas.
posted by Gortuk at 6:36 AM on May 28, 2010

It ended up not raining in Tokyo (well, it was a tiny bit drizzly on Saturday). If you're willing to share, what did you end up doing?

(I for one took my own advice, going to both Shinjuku and karaoke!)
posted by armage at 11:10 PM on May 30, 2010

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