Destination Guide | Tokyo Japan

Recreational Activities for Children

Many fun activities await families with children in Tokyo. Children have a special place in Japanese society and services provided for them are among the finest. Obviously, places for children are busy on Saturday afternoons, Sundays and school holidays. There are museums, aquariums and planetariums. Swimming, baseball and basketball are available too.

Brownies, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts are active. Lessons for tennis, dance, martial arts, swimming and so on are also available. Teachers can be located through your child's school, international clubs or on the notice boards at international supermarkets.

Santa Fe team has done a little research for you, and below you will find some holiday activity ideas that you may be interested in doing with your children. There is plenty to check out on the internet if you want to find any more detail on these than what we have below.

We’ve put our Santa Fe stars ranking next to each to help you make decisions if you’re not sure which is going to be best for you.
= ok
★★ = better
★★★ = don’t leave without your kids

All Travel Times are in minutes by train and foot, from Central Tokyo Area (Tokyo Station), unless it is specified.

Seasonal Activities

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Marunouchi Kids Festa
August 11th & 12th, from 10:00 to 18:00
Tokyo Station
Variety of activities can be experienced at Tokyo International Forum, such as: soccer, track & field, Jazz, Medical, Japanese Chess, Art, Cultural, and more! This is free admissions. (Website link in Japanese only) 10 ★★
Azabu-Juban Nouryo Matsuri
August 22nd to 24th, from 15:00 to 21:00
Azabujuban Station
Located in Azabu-Juban, Not only International Bazaar with over 30 countries’ specialties and foods is served, but there are; Bon Festival Dance, street performance and other activities to be performed. Nouryo = Cool Evening, Matsuri = Festival (Website link in Japanese only) 25 ★★★

Theme Parks

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Tokyo Disney Resort
Maihama Station
First Disney Park built by Walt Disney Company internationally, a "Magic Kingdom" park just like all the others, is Tokyo Disneyland. Its sister park called Tokyo DisneySea is a Japan-only park with an oceanic theme, opened in 2001 along with the first two Disney hotels at the resort. The resort is celebrating its 25th Anniversary and opened its 3rd hotel in 2008 25 ★★
Kidzania
Toyosu Station
Kidzania is a small country for kids! They can be fire-fighter, cabin attendant, model, and other 80-over occupations, to gain hands-on experience and learn about community. (Website link in Japanese only) 30 ★★
Tokyo Dome City
Suido-bashi Station / Korakuen Station / Kasuga Station
Located in the middle of Tokyo, the park is equipped with many attractions providing for fun and entertainment including; amusement park, bowling center, LaQua, and Baseball Museum. 15 ★★
Asakusa Hanayashiki
Asakusa Station
Hanayashiki is the oldest amusement park in Japan. It was opened as a flower park in 1853. It is now operating as an amusement park with 20 attractions and lunchrooms. 20

Parks and Water Parks

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Kokyo Gaien National Park
Tokyo Station
This garden was first opened to public as the National Gardens in 1949. Prior to this date, it was a part of the Imperial Palace ground. This National Gardens together with the Imperial Palace grounds are the single largest green area in the center of Tokyo and, combined with the moats, they represent a very important nature reserve and recreation area in Tokyo. 10 ★★
Shinjuku Gyoen National Park
Shinjuku Gyoen Station
Shinjuku Gyoen was constructed on the site of a private mansion belonging to Lord Naito, a daimyo (feudal lord) of the Edo era. Completed in 1906 as an imperial garden, it was re-designated as a national garden after the Second World War and opened to the public. 25 ★★★
Hibiya Park
Hibiya Station
Used to be the palace area of the feudal load, up until the end of the Edo period. Two outdoor music halls and the Hibiya public hall show enthusiasm of the park designer as a forerunner of culture. Now we can enjoy beautiful flowers all the year around in the center of Marunouchi, one of the hottest business town in Japan. 20 ★★
Shiba Park
Shiba-Koen Station
This park is one of the oldest parks in Japan, opened to the public in 1873. In the park, they have an artificial gorge called Momijidani, where you can enjoy nice view of the water fall of 10m high together with various types of rocks and tall trees. 20 ★★★
Kasai Rinkai Park
Kasai Rinkai Koen Station
Largest park in Tokyo 23 wards, located in Kasai waterfront area along the Tokyo Bay looking across the broad, blue ocean. Ride on the water-bus from Odaiba to this park may also be a fun for ocean-breeze lovers. 20 ★★
Ueno Onshi Park
Ueno Station
Ueno Park is famous for its more than 1,000 cherry trees. During the cherry blossom season, Ueno Park becomes one of the country's most popular and crowded spots for hanami (cherry blossom viewing) parties. 15 ★★
Yoyogi Park
Harajuku Station / Yoyogi-Hachiman Station
Yoyogi Koen (Yoyogi Park) is one of Tokyo’s largest city parks, featuring wide lawns, ponds and forested areas. It is a great place for jogging, picnicking and other outdoor activities. It is known for its ginko tree forest, which turns intensely golden in autumn. Before becoming a city park in 1967, the area where Yoyogi Park is located served as the site of the Olympic Village for the Tokyo Olympics. 3 ★★

Museums and Historical Sites

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Miraikan (National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation)
Telecomcenter Station
A new type of science museum that links people directly with the new wisdom of the 21st century. 35 ★★
The Railway Museum
Tetsudo Hakubutsukan Station, Next to Omiya Station
The museum is in Saitama, bit far from Tokyo, but you will find many interesting displays here. Varieties of historical models are in the exhibition hall. Kids can enjoy driving Mini-railway and laboratory room. English explanation cards are available. (Website link in Japanese only) 55 ★★
Fire Museum (Shobo Hakubutsukan)
Yotsuya 3chome Station
Big fire trucks and all the firefighting gadgets you could ever imagine. The first museum of its kind. Ten floors of display material. Some English explanations are available. Free admission! (Website link in Japanese only) 15
Konica Minolta Planetarium
Ikebukuro Station
This planetarium located in Sunshine City, offers 3 different program /day. You can enjoy the latest Konica’s technologies here 30 ★★
Fujisawa Shonandai Bunka Center
Shonandai Station Odakyu line
This center houses a small children’s museum, a planetarium, and an omnimax theater. They offer some workshops during summer holiday. (Website link in Japanese only) 60 ★★

Zoos & Aquariums

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Ueno Zoo
Ueno Station
Ueno Zoo is the oldest zoo in Japan. Located amid the downtown Tokyo, Ueno Zoo not only provides recreation, but also plays an essential role in wildlife conservation and public education. 15 ★★
Shinagawa Aqua Stadium
Shinagawa Station
A large variety of fish and Dolphins and seal shows. You can walk through 20m sea tunnel. 10 ★★
Sunshine International Aquarium
Ikebukuro Station
This is a large aquarium with twenty thousand fish of over four hundred species on display. The aquarium is located in Sunshine City. (Website link in Japanese only) 30 ★★
Tama Zoo
Tama Doubutsuen Station
Located in Hino City, animals are displayed under naturalistic and spectacular habitats set up in its vast land of 52 ha (129 acres). It exhibits Japanese animals such as sika deer, Yezo brown bears, and Japanese macaques, as well as animals from all over the world, such as African elephants, koalas, Indian rhinoceroses and orang-utans. The Lion Bus offers you a ride out among the lions. 70 ★★
Tokyo Sea Life Park
Kasai Kaihin-Koen Station
Enjoy viewing realistic and dramatic displays of freshwater and marine life from around the world. In the huge 2,200-ton tank, you can enjoy watching bluefin tuna darting swiftly around. The aquarium also exhibits sea birds including penguins, and giant. 30 ★★
Yokohama Zoorasia
Nakayama Station + bus
This well designed park boasts 315 animals (59 species). The animals are kept in their natural habitats, from tropical to sub-Arctic. 55 ★★★
Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise
Hakkeijima Station
This artificial island has leisure facilities; sea paradise boasts an aquarium, jet coaster, high observation tower, under water tunnel, shopping mall, lodge and marina. Whole family can enjoy a day. 75 ★★★

Sports Activities

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Toshimaen
Toshimaen Station
This is the oldest amusement park in Tokyo with variety of attractions, such as rides, haunted houses and special children’s section. Toshimaen pool open during the summer season. 35 ★★
Tokyo Summer Land
Akigawa Station
This is a medium size amusement park, but it more famous for a unique wave pool within a domed structure. There is outdoor pool as well, which is open in the summer. 90 ★★★
Shiba Pool
Hamamatsu-cho Station or Shiba Koen Station
This pool is great for families, as it has a kiddy pool with an elephant slide plus an Olympic –size pool where parents can swim laps. 10

Cinemas

Activity Detail / Comments Travel Time Santa Fe Stars
Toho Cinemas Roppongi Hills
Roppongi Station
Most of the U.S movies are subtitled in Japanese, so you can enjoy the original English dialogue. All reserved seat. Internet booking, Premier screen, seat , and lounge are available. (Website link in Japanese only) 25 ★★
Yurakucho Mullion
Yurakucho Station
The biggest Cinemas in Tokyo. You can enjoy good sound system and shopping after movie! Yurakucho and Ginza area is very famous for shopping. 90 ★★

Other Sites of Interest To Explore

Takao Mt. Listed as 3-stars in Michelin Guide Tokyo
Fuji Mt. Japan’s most well-known and highest mountain.
Fujikyu Highland Amusement Park.
Mother Farm Entertainment Farm near Tokyo.