Roppongi Area

Despite its ultra-urban neon image, Roppongi’s quiet residential back streets put on lovely displays of cherry blossoms in the spring

Roppongi is known for its skeezy nightlife and drunken tourists, but it also has a couple of provocative museums, an interesting art night, and the best holiday illuminations in Tokyo. 

The Mori Museum curates exhibitions that often blur the line between art, design and fashion.

Check out the Mori’s current exhibition here.

Hours: 10:00 – 22:00 (Last entry 21:30), Tuesdays: 10:00 – 17:00 (Last entry 16:30)

Open: Seven days a week, (closes early on Tuesdays), on the day after national holidays, during exhibition installation, and from December 29 – January 3. Open on other holidays.

Admission: Adults: ¥1500, High school & college students: ¥1000, Children (4 – Middle school): ¥500

Their exhibition schedule is here.


And once a year, the Mori sponsors an all-night event in and around Roppongi Hills, featuring emerging artists.

Once a year, in April, the Mori Museum hosts an all-night artfest called Roppongi Art Night.
Roppongi Art Night spans from traditional dance…
…to audience participation performance pieces…
…to animated light sculptures in the Mori Garden

For upcoming Roppongi Art Night schedules, check the Tokyo Cheapo or TimeOut Tokyo websites.

The National Art Center has no permanent collection, but hosts an eclectic mix of painting, sculpture, photography and performance art exhibits.

For the legendary artist Yayoi Kusama’s retrospective, they wrapped all the trees outside in her signature polka dots.

Hours: 10:00 – 18:00 (Last entry 17:30)

Open: Closed Tuesdays, and on the day after national holidays, during exhibition installation, and from December 29 – January 3. Open on other holidays.

Admission: Price varies by exhibition. Check here for exhibition schedule


And later in the year – from mid-November to mid-December – Roppongi Hills and Tokyo Midtown put on truly jaw-dropping holiday light shows.

The street bordering Roppongi Hills sparkles with blue and white lights that turn gold every half hour
Tokyo Midtown’s free outdoor performance space hosts a spectacular light show choreographed to music in November and December…
…and puts on seasonal delights like this cherry blossom-themed Mt. Fuji performance at other times of year.
And this quiet street near Ark Hills turns into a tunnel of cherry blossoms in the spring


The Last Tea Bowl Thief was chosen as an Editor’s Pick for Best Mystery, Thriller & Suspense on Amazon

 For three hundred years, a missing tea bowl passes from one fortune-seeker to the next, changing the lives of all who possess it…read more

“A fascinating mix of history and mystery.” —Booklist

Jonelle Patrick writes novels set in Japan, produces the monthly e-magazine Japanagram, and blogs at Only In Japan and The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had

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