10 Guilty Pleasures To Kill Time During Mid-Night Out In Tokyo
here are many ways to spend time in the never-sleeping city, too much fun out in Tokyo is sometimes what makes me miss the last train to go home. So what am I going to do? I think, I’m now allowed what I always like to do, my “guilty pleasures” being in Tokyo. Enjoying the guilty pleasures that you can only do in that specific location could be one of the reasons that why it makes that city very attractive. Tokyo, is always a best place to hang around 24 hours because there are many open-places that any kind of people can enjoy or be satisfied according to their needs, even being single, in a relationship, or being together with your homies. Obviously, going to bars, pubs, or clubs maybe the first options to think about, but there are other ways to enjoy the neon-light walk around Tokyo as well sometimes cheaper, or maybe more fun.
1. Good Night-Ramen
Not enough with the drinks? How about a Night-Ramen (like a night-cap) to get finally full? Most of the Ramen places close around 11 at night, but some of them will be open overnight as well and many of the mid-night wanderers in Tokyo will visit for a bowl. For some reason, many of us would crave for the greasy type, tonkotsu type ramen (soup stock brewed from pork bones) is somehow the best to eat after couple of drinks.
2. Challenge the Kara-age tower at Izakaya
If you are not in the mood for ramen, Izakaya or the Japanese Pubs are mostly open until early morning, so many people would just stay to drink until the first train. Eating Kara-age (deep-fried chickens) at Izakaya is the main tasty dish for many people to enjoy. Some of the izakaya, make the famous “karaage tower,” the dish where karaage is piled high up in the air. To share or not to share, it’s your choice!
3. Chill with All-you-can-drink in 24 hour family restaurants
If you had enough food and drinks and just want to chill by yourself or with your friends, family restaurants like “Johnathan,” “Gusto,” “Syzeria,” are the places to go to for all-you-can-drink until the first train in the morning. Most of these “drink bars” provide about 10 types of drinks including different types of sodas, teas, coffees. Compared to Izakaya or clubs where there are commotions, family restaurants are much more quiet and relaxed. So if you just want to have a nice cup of coffee and a good read to finish up, or just want to talk peacefully with your friend until the first train, maybe family restaurants will be the best place.
4. Conbini Drinking, the life savior of all of the broke drinkers
If you want more drinks but don’t have enough money to go to drink at fancy place, buying canned beer or chu-hai (shortened for “shochu highball”), bottles of whiskey and Sake, at 24 hour Convenience Stores (Conbini) will be cheaper. From there, you can just drink on the street or at parks with your buddies, but don’t forget that it will be your responsibility to handle the empty cans and bottles, so don’t be too wasted!
5. Window-shopping scavenger hunt at “Don Quijote”
Not just conbini, but the biggest discount retail, “Don Quijote,” is also open during mid-night as well. Some of the big stores in central Tokyo are open 24 hours, so people can go in for emergency needs. Don Quijote pretty much sells anything (I mean, ANYTHING), as if the store itself is like a scavenger hunt. Maybe you can find the weirdest thing there, let’s find out! (Just remember, don’t go wild in the store!)
6. Bat out your stress at the Batting Center (Batting cage)
It’s interesting how much baseball culture is embedded in Japan. For Japan, baseball is somewhat like a nationally shared culture, and batting center (or the batting cages), is one of the places to enjoy that culture. Batting Center is originally created for practicing batting for young players, but it has made in to a recreational space for ordinary people as well. This is because, many of the people enjoy to take the full swing to bat is stress relieving. There are separate batting cages according to the speed of the balls from 60 km/h to 140 km/h and it is also about 300 yen for about 30 balls. In some places, there are home-run prize when you hit a target up on the net! Why not give it a bat for it?
7. “Special” sleepover with your (girl)friends at Love Hotel
Had enough drinks, dances, and lousy men trying to hit on you at the club? There’s a nice escape route for you, girls. Most of the clubs are located near the love hotel areas, where people can sneak out for good night sleep on a nice, big bed, and place to get a shower. It’s the place really not suited for many friends to go to (from what it supposed to be), but why not just to crash anyway? But better watch out that some places are shady and old, but others are clean and nice for group of women can also stay. If you want a comfy bed to sleep off the exhaustion, then sleepover-party with your friends after clubbing will be fun too!
8. Catch up on the series that you missed reading at Manga Kissa (Manga Cafés)
When you miss the last train and don’t have enough money to take the cab home, or can’t able to afford for a hotel room, then Manga Kissa, or Internet/Manga Cafés will be the best to stay overnight as well. There are so many Manga Kissa or Internet Cafés in Tokyo, open 24 hours. The costs depends on how many hours staying, from 1,000 yen to 1,500 yen will be about the average for three hours. If you have that many hours, then it’s time to catch up on the missed parts of your favorite manga series!
9. All-night karaoke, with friends or even by yourself
Like Manga Kissa, there will be plenty of Karaoke Boxes in Tokyo, especially near the station or bar/pub area of the city. After going to two or three bars, many people start to kill time to enjoy the party not only by drinking, but singing. Depending on your party, the front desk will arrange to each of the room, and there will be tambourines and maracas to stir up the party, and some of the room will be big enough for people to dance as well. And most recently, there are karaoke boxes that allow single-party as well, so if you have spare time and want to rock the house, there are plenty of places for you to shout it out!
10. Take a nice nap old-school style, Capsule Hotel
With the main image of Tokyo, “capsule hotel” is the ultimate savior to kill time, no matter what kind of situation you are in. This culture did start out from the needs of working men in Tokyo missing the last train to go home in the suburbs and staying casually just for a nap until the first train. Usually, capsule hotel has only enough space to take a nap and has a sauna or a shower, massage chair, for basic relaxation. But there have been many types of capsule hotels now, suited for female users as well. The capsule is bigger, more clean, more female staff, and provide enough amenities for females to stay safely. So, if you need your own space to relax, then capsule hotel will always the place to be.
After spending this much fun in Tokyo, there’s always the painful consequence to deal with the next morning. Bad head-ache, sick to your stomach, painful back, sore throat, dry or oily skin…but the fun out in the city over-night overrules these, and that’s we couldn’t stop having these “guilty pleasures,” even looking (or feeling) miserable the next morning.