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Tokyo's Creative District: Koenji


6 reviews
3 hours | from $59.50 pp
If you really want to get off the beaten path and explore a local neighbourhood, there’s nowhere better than Koenji. Famed for its underground music scene and scores of hip eateries and bars this creative district is only a short train ride from Shinjuku but miles away in character. You’ll be in the company of artistic locals hanging out in trendy bars, concept stores, vintage clothes and second hand record shops, and there will hardly be a tourist in sight! The area was once the home of Tokyo’s punk scene, and with your local to navigate, you’ll see that the area has stayed true to its alternative roots. So immerse yourself in Tokyo’s most liberal and coolest neighbourhoods with a local, enjoy the cheap eats, soak up the street style and browse the unique stores - you’ll not want to leave!
3 hrs
Start when you want
Private & personalised

What you'll do

Join a like-minded local to explore one of Tokyo's coolest neighbourhoods that most visitors don’t see - this is the real Tokyo as locals know it!Read more +

Stroll through this alternative area and discover hidden gems as well as seeing the highlights - your local will show you unusual concept art galleries, incredible thrift stores as well as a shops few selling beautiful vintage kimono and second hand record shops.

Soak up the street style in Tokyo’s old punk neighbourhood and be surprised to discover beautiful Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples in the city’s most hipster neighbourhood.

Koenji is a paradise for cheap eats, retro "kissaten" cafes, and bars as well as home to some really good izakaya and yakitori joints so if you feel pekish you won't be far from some really yummy eats. The district has also avoided the major modernisation of the 1980s in Japan and oozes the retro character of pre-boom Japan, with most of the houses and shops in the area being small and quaint.  

Get to know your Local Host, who will give you recommendations for where to party in the area (its also famed for its ‘live houses’, or music venues, as well as other local neighbourhoods you would enjoy exploring.  


What's Included:

* Private & personalised experience

* 3 hours with a Local Host

* A coffee, beer or soft drink at one of the quirky "Kissaten" or bars

* Walking experience (other transport can be arranged at an additional cost) 

What's Not Included

* Additional food and drinks

* Tickets to any attractions

* Transportation costs 

* Gratuities (optional)


Important Information

This is an afternoon or early evening experience as most shops are not open in the morning


Meeting Point

Your meeting point is flexible, and to be agreed with your Local Host. Meet-up at your hotel or accommodation can be requested, or your Local Host will meet you at a convenient location close to the start of your experience. 


Cancellation Policy

Cancel up to 7 days before your experience and get a full refund. 


Experience Highlights

* Visit one of Tokyo’s coolest local neighbourhoods that used to be home of the city’s punk scene
* Get off the beaten path and discover an alternative side to Tokyo
* Immerse yourself in this artistic and creative community as you stroll through the streets
* Browse vintage clothing, kimono stores and other quirky shops
* See traditional shrines and temples tucked between trendy bars and shop
* Try some craft beer or some of Tokyo's best coffee at one of the many characterful cafes or bars
* Get tips and tricks from your local about other local neighbourhoods to explore or things to do in Tokyo for the rest of your visit

Total: USD
per adult
Start when you want

You can change your preferred start time after booking

Buy this experience as a gift
Experience type
Private and personalised to what you want to see and do.
Multiple languages available. Request at time of booking.
Kids go free
Kids up to 12 years old go free


Alex C

Tokyo's Creative District: Koenji | Tokyo

Review by: Alex C
November 2018

Exploring Koenji

I had an unforgettable experience with Daniela discovering Koenji which included a visit to a gorgeous temple along with some hidden vintage clothing and record shops in the area ending with delicious food in some very local Izakayas. Daniela was extremely knowledgable about the area. She introduced me to some amazing dishes that I would have never known to order, in hidden places that do not cater at all to non-Japanese speakers. A truly unique experience and truly great company. Will definitely seek out Daniela again on my next visit to Tokyo - highly recommended!

Ines L

Tokyo's Creative District: Koenji | Tokyo

Review by: Ines L
October 2018


We did four different tours in Tokyo. We also did "Tokyo's creative district: Koenji"; the host Adam knows very well the nature of the city; we were a little confused at the beginning for the name of the tour until he explained that Koenji is not a place, it is a word that means "different, unique, maybe cute with a twist", and it can be very twisted!. I will definitely recommend this company; we change few times the days and book last minuted and they were super accommodating, so if you don't know Japan you definitely need somebody like them!

Pol O

Tokyo's Creative District: Koenji | Tokyo

Review by: Pol O
May 2018

Koenji Neighbourhood Tour

I'm a travel writer, and this May I visited Tokyo looking for great neighbourhoods to explore, and great locals to explore them with. Daniela provided both in Koenji. Before our tour, she emailed for details on my interests, likes, and story angles I wanted to explore. When we met, she had mapped out a brilliant itinerary, taking in shops, restaurants and off-radar stops that allowed us get under Koenji's skin. I really appreciated the time and thought she put into our tour, her personal connections with the people we met, and the insights she gave as we made our way around. Daniela loves her 'hood, and it really shows. Highly recommend!

Rodrigo G

Tokyo's Creative District: Koenji | Tokyo

Review by: Rodrigo G
March 2018

Very cool

On my second visit to Tokyo I wanted to see something different so I happened to come across this tour and thought why not? Koenji is really very special and I would live there if I ever moved to Tokyo. As with the rest of Tokyo, it is not so easy to find stuff if you don't speak Japanese and just don't know. So it was great to have Daniela with me because I would have been so lost and not know what was what. She introduced me to my favourite coffee shop in the world which name I can't pronounce but I will go back there next time I go and I will also try the yakitori from under the railway which I didn't have time to try. Really cool place