Are you spending New Year Eve in Tokyo? What do locals do on New Year’s Eve? Typical and traditional way to spend New Year Eve to Japanese is to stay at home, watch the TV Show called “Kohaku Uta Gassen”, which is like a music show popular artists sing songs, and quietly listen to the sound of “Joya no Kane” (bells ringing out the old year) from temples in the neighborhood.
Some people choose to go out and participate in countdown events. If you are in Tokyo at this time of the year, below are things you might consider to participate!
New Years Eve countdown events in Tokyo
WOMB PRESENTS NEW YEAR COUNTDOWN 2018
WOMB is a famous and popular club in Shibuya, to both locals and tourists. If you decide to spend New Year’s Eve in WOMB, great music and fun atmosphere is promised! Popular DJs, both domestic and international will participate in this event. How about welcoming the new year with great music?
Address: 2-16 Maruyamacho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Access: 10 minutes walk from Shibuya Station
Ticket: ¥5,000 at the door
COUNTDOWN JAPAN 17/18
COUNTDOWN JAPAN is the annual music festival held at Makuhari Messe in Chiba Prefecture. About 50 some Japanese bands and DJs are performing at this event for four days from 28 Dec. On New Year’s Eve, the event will be held until 4:00 AM on five different stages. If you like Japanese band music, it is a great idea to spend New Year Eve here.
The countdown bands of 2016 are RADWIMPS, SCANDAL, Wasureranneyo, and KNOCK OUT MONKEY.
Website: http://countdownjapan.jp/ (Japanese Only)
Address: 2 Chome-1 Nakase Mihama-ku, Chiba-shi, Chiba
Access: 10 minutes walk from Kaihin Makuhari Station.
Hanayashiki de Toshimatagi Illumination Countdown 2018
Hanayashiki is the oldest amusement park in Japan founded in 1853, located in Asakusa. The place is always popular to children and adults, but on New Year Eve, they will have a countdown event and will be operated until 2:00 AM. Hanayashiki is very close to the famous Sensoji Temple, so you can also experience “Hatsumode”, the first visit to temples, also.
Website: https://www.hanayashiki-event.com/countdown2018/ (Japanese Only) http://www.hanayashiki.net/en
Address: 2 Chome-28-1 Asakusa Taito-ku, Tokyo
Access: 3 minutes walk from Tsukuba Express Asakusa Station and 5 minutes walk from Metro Asakusa Station
Ticket: ¥2,000 for entry and unlimited ride for ten kinds of attractions.
Tokyo Kasai Rinkai Park
Tokyo Kasai Rinkai Park has a big Ferris wheel, and countdown event will be operated by this Ferris wheel. The Ferris wheel will be dark for a second at midnight and then will lighten up again. Because the park is close to Tokyo Disney Resort, you will get to see the fireworks of Disney Land. The Ferris wheel is operated until 8:00 AM in the morning!
Website: http://www.senyo.co.jp/kasai/ (Japanese Only)
Address: 6 Chome-2 Rinkaicho Edogawa-ku, Tokyo
Access: 1-minute walk from Kasai Rinkai Koen Station
Ticket: 700 yen
NAMJA☆COUNT DOWN PARTY 2017
* Unsure for 2017-2018.
This event is held at the amusement park NANJA TOWN located inside the shopping complex Sunshine City in Ikebukuro. At this event, character show with new year costume will be performed. Also, 20 flavors of ice cream for 1,000 people are distributed for free!
Website: http://event.namco.co.jp/namja/namja20th/newyear2017/ (Japanese Only) http://event.namco.co.jp/namja/en/
Address: 3-1-3 Higashiikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo
Access: 10 minutes walk from Ikebukuro Station
Ticket: 500 yen ~
Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise
Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise is an amusement park with aquarium and attractions such as roller coaster. There will be beautiful fireworks at midnight. Because the park is located along the seaside, you will get to see the beautiful “Hatsuhinode”, the first sunrise, at here.
Address: Hakkeijima, Kanazawa Ward, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
Access: 10 minutes walk from Hakkeijima Station
Ticket: 5,050 yen/adults
Visit Temples allow visitors to ring “Joya No Kane”
Joya No Kane is a tradition in Japan where the large bells inside Buddhist temples are struck 108 times on the New Year. 108 times represents the number of “Bonnou”, evil passions or desires of man to bring suffering to lives. By ringing the bell, we make wishes to get rid of these evil desires and welcome the new year with a clean mind.
Since this is part of a religious ceremony, not all temples allow visitors to ring the bell. Below are few of the temples that accept visitors. Participate in ringing the bell and get rid of evil desires before welcoming the new year!
Ikegami Honmonji Temple
Ikegami Honmonji Temple is one of the largest temples in Tokyo. They distribute tickets from 11:00 PM and allows 600 visitors to ring the bell. This place is popular so recommended to be here early!
Website: http://honmonji.jp/news/schedule.html (Japanese Only)
Address: 1 Chome-1-1 Ikegami Ota-ku, Tokyo
Access: 10 minutes walk from Tokyu Ikegami Line Ikegami Station
Ticket: Free, distributed from 11:00 PM
Araiyakishi Baishoin Temple
Araiyakushi Baishoin Temple is known for luck relating to the eye. The bell will be struck from 11:45 PM. The cost is 500 yen with lucky charms until 108 times after that is allowed by donation. The line will be cut at 1:30 AM.
Address: 5 Chome-3-5 Arai Nakano-ku, Tokyo
Access: 5 minutes walk from Seibu Shinjuku Line Araiyakushimae Station
Ticket: 500 yen with lucky charms until 108 times, after that, donation
The temple bell at Homyoji Temple is designated as Important Cultural Property by Tokyo Government. Visitors are accepted until 0:30 AM and for the first 800 arrivals. The cost is free.
Website: http://www.homyoji.or.jp/ (Japanese Only)
Address: 3 Chome-18-18 Minamiikebukuro Toshima-ku, Tokyo
Access: 15 minutes walk from Ikebukuro Station
Zojoji Temple is the famous temple near Tokyo Tower. The tickets are limited and have already started selling from 1 Dec, so need to ask the temple directly if tickets are still left.
Website: http://www.zojoji.or.jp/event/ev_hatsumoude.html (Japanese Only) http://www.zojoji.or.jp/en/
Address: 4-7-35 Shibakoen Minato-ku, Tokyo
Access: 8 minutes walk from Toei Mita Line Shiba-Koen Station
Please refer to the official announcements for the latest information.