10 Fun and FREE Things You can Enjoy in Tokyo

Many people say that Tokyo is one of the most expensive cities in the world. That is true, unless you know the many fun things you can do for free.

1. Feast on free food.  Hungry? Get your fill of free food samples at the basement food halls in almost all of the major department stores in Tokyo.

2. Play video games non-stop. Check out all the newly released video games and consoles at Yodobashi, Bic Camera, Ishibashi or Sakuraya. There are also other places that set the mood for all-day free gaming like X-Box Café in Omotesando and the Sony design center in Ginza.

3. Revel in the beauty of the city at Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building (TMGB).  The 45th floor  has two free observation decks that allows you majestic views of Tokyo and Mt. Fuji. TMG Office is open from 9:30am to 5:30pm (7:30pm on Sundays).

View from TMGB No. 1 | ksuyin

4. Be entertained at Yoyogi Park. Sundays at the park will give you free outdoor concert entertainment from live bands, street performers, and other performing artists. Aside from the live entertainment, you can take a relaxing stroll in beautifully manicured lawns of the park.

Yoyogi Park | Jun Takeuchi

5. Marvel at the Imperial Palace and East Garden. Situated in the center of Tokyo, the palace groundsares enclosed by stone walls and moats. The beautiful gardens are open to the public for free from Tuesday through Thursday. You can also book a free tour of the inner grounds.

6. Discover your spirituality at the shrines and temples. Many of the Shinto and Buddhist temples around Tokyo are free. Each weaves a story of its own, written in the age old artifacts that are displayed within their walls. Some of the more popular  are Meiji Shrine in Shibuya, Zozoji Temple located near Tokyo Tower, and Sensoji Temple in Asakusa.

7. Join in the fun at the Harajuku District. Experience Japanese pop culture and see cosplayers dress up as famous anime, manga, and other popular comic book characters. Sundays are the busiest and liveliest times to visit.

Cosplayers in Harajuku | ehnmark

8. Fiddle with the latest gadgets at Akihabara. This is the place to check out all the latest gadgets in Tokyo. See and play with all the high-tech gadgetry you can get your hands on, from the newly released game consoles to huge flat screen televisions and digital cameras.

9. See the catch of the day at the Tsukiji Fish Market. For early birds who are up at 4:30am, witness the fish auction at 5am-7am Mondays through Saturdays.  Here you’ll find the freshest seafood in all of Tokyo.

Sushi stalls at Tsujiki Fish Market | James Trosh

10. Visit a sumo training hall. Sumo wrestling is one of the most popular sports in Japan. There are more than 50 sumo training halls or stables all over Tokyo. If you come early you can watch sumo wrestlers practice and train.

Aside from enjoying all the free sights, there are still more things you can enjoy for  free, such as samples, magazines, and tissues. Tissue packets are given out for free almost everywhere. Tokyo classified magazines are free from Tower Records in Shibuya, and some of the branches of McDonalds in Ginza will give out free refills, useful for a long day ahead.