1-Day Itinerary in Shinjuku

Updated November 9, 2019 | by Chad A. Thiele, 23 year veteran of Tokyo.

This itinerary picks up when you arrive at Shinjuku Station.

Oh, and if you just want to throw this itinerary out the window and roam free, here are some tips to help you make the most of the Shinjuku Station area (and well, any train station for that matter).


Morning

Start off on the Westside and check out Shinjuku’s Central Park. Walk around for a bit taking in the garden scenery making sure to get your Insta shots in front of Shinjuku Niagara Falls, while also getting some great shots of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building.

After an hour or so, we’ll head back towards Shinjuku station for some shopping and lunch.


Afternoon

Start your shopping spree at Takashimaya Times Square, then hit up Lumine EST, move on over to Bicqlo, and later on to Isetan. Bic Camera is inside Bicqlo for your electronic needs.

There are plenty of great places to eat in any of these shopping plazas, but I highly recommend getting lunch at Barbacoa, especially if you plan on staying for evening time fun.

After lunch, you will need to walk off some of that food, so head on over to see Godzilla before going into the Samurai Museum.


Evening

Now that the sun has gone down and all the gleaming lights are illuminating the energetic hideaways, it’s time for some real fun. Start the night off right with dinner at Robot Restaurant. This dinner show will get you fired up and ready for a good time.

After the show, walk on over to Golden Gai. You can grab a drink or just walkthrough for a nostalgic Japanese experience.

There are so many choices for a nightcap. Heck, you can even go from one to the next, but if you had to pick one the one I would recommend is Hair of the Dogs (HOD). The vibe is really laid back and casual, and the owner is super friendly.

On your way back to the train station, walk through Omoide Yokocho, otherwise known as Memory Lane. You can grab some yakitori while enjoying this piece of Japan untouched by modernization.

Of course, you don’t have to end the night here. If you decide to keep going, head over to Kabukicho for the best night scene, but remember to keep your wits about you.