Daikanyama, Tokyo: 10 Best Things to Do, Buy & See

Daikanyama, Tokyo: 10 Best Things to Do, Buy & See

Located next to Shibuya, Daikanyama exudes its own unique charm.

Daikanyama, Tokyo is a stylish and vibrant district located within walking distance from Japan’s famous Shibuya ward in Tokyo. While Daikanyama is a smaller district than Shibuya, it’s not to be overlooked. In fact, locals affectionately dub it the “Brooklyn of Tokyo” because of its elegant arts scene and its relaxed, internationalised environment. Not to mention, it’s common to see locals and foreigners enjoying a chill day out in this charming little neighbourhood.

There are plenty of cool things to do in Daikanyama. Hipster cafes, green spaces, trendy fashion boutiques, and vintage stores are just some of the intriguing attractions you’ll find here!

A good thing about Daikanyama being a very compact neighbourhood is that you can also easily explore most of its offerings within a day. If you have an appreciation for the arts and cafe hopping, or if you just want to have a relaxing getaway in the city, then Daikanyama is a great place to add to your Tokyo itinerary. Planning your trip already? Read on for some of the best things to do, buy, and see in Daikanyama!

Also read: Off the Beaten Path in Tokyo: 16 Best Things to Do That Are Under the Tourist Radar

Chic shopping spots & complexes in Daikanyama

Some key features of Daikanyama, Tokyo are its unique complexes and its wide variety of trendy and elegant shopping spots. Explore these places in style, and bring home some cool souvenirs!

1. Daikanyama T-Site

t site daikanyama

Image credit: Real Estate Japan | Flickr

The Daikanyama T-Site is one of the major landmarks in Daikanyama that any first-time visitor should definitely check out. Among its many features, the T-Site is famous for its unique white lattice architectural design — you’ll notice that the exterior walls are formed using the letter “T.” The T-Site comprises three huge interconnected building wings.

Moreover, locals and foreigners alike love the T-Site for its wide range of cool product offerings. Here, you’ll find both contemporary and vintage music, literature, and other media! If you’re on the hunt for souvenirs that are one-of-a-kind, then the T-site is easily one of Daikanyama’s best shopping spots.

The T-Site is home to the gorgeous Anjin Lounge, a lovely spot with spaces for you to read, enjoy a coffee, or simply chill. Warm, dimmed lighting makes the area perfect for you to relax. 

Other than shopping spots, the T-Site also houses numerous cafes and restaurants that have received glowing reviews. Animal lovers should consider checking out Ivy Place, a beautiful cafe bar that serves international cuisine — and it’s also dog-friendly!

Also read: 12 Gorgeous Buildings in Tokyo to Bless Your IG Feed

2. Daikanyama Tsutaya Books

tsutaya books daikanyama

Image credit: choo chin nian | Flickr

T-Site is also home to Daikanyama Tsutaya Books, a beautiful bookstore under Japan’s largest retail bookstore chain. Did you know that in 2012, Daikanyama Tsutaya Books was named one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world? Even as part of the T-Site complex, this impressive bookstore deserves a mention as a must-visit attraction itself within Daikanyama, Tokyo

Image credit: Dick Thomas Johnson | Flickr

Daikanyama Tsutaya Books was designed as “A Library in the Woods” where people can read and browse around in a relaxed environment. Here, you will find an endless selection of media, literature, stationery, and more. And if you like collecting vintage merchandise, keep a lookout for the vintage books here!

Also read: 6 Instagrammable Tokyo Bookstores and Where to Visit Them

3. Log Road

log road daikanyama japan

Image credit: Wpcpey | Wikimedia Commons

The Log Road is a beautiful, quaint walking path located in a backstreet of Daikanyama, Tokyo. While the path is only about 220 metres long, it’s a lovely spot to catch a breather from the business of city life. Take an unhurried stroll along the Log Road, and check out the unique cottage-style shops and hipster cafes — all while surrounded by greenery! If you get tired, there are even wooden benches for you to rest.

spring valley brewery tokyo

Image credit: Spring Valley Brewery | Official Website

If you’re a beer enthusiast, one of the best places to visit at Log Road is the Spring Valley Brewery. This brewery is owned by Japan’s famous Kirin beer brand and stands out for offering fresh beer that’s brewed at Spring Valley itself! You can also order some food to go along with your beer as there’s a good food menu available. Trying out freshly brewed beer at Spring Valley Brewery is one of the most popular things to do in Daikanyama among locals and foreign travellers.

Fun fact: The Log Road was built on what used to be the Tokyu railway line. 

4. Okura

okura tokyo

Image credit (L–R): Okura | Official Instagram Page, Okura | Official Instagram Page

When it comes to fashion in Daikanyama, Tokyo, most people usually associate this district with contemporary and trendy styles. What’s cool about this shopping hub is that it’s home to modern fashion houses and traditional Japanese fashion boutiques! One of the most unique things to do in Daikanyama is to go shopping for traditional Japanese-style clothing that you’d be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. 

Located in a quaint backstreet of Daikanyama, Tokyo, Okura is famous for using traditional Japanese craft techniques to produce clothing. Fashionistas also hail the shop for using natural indigo dye in the same way that ancient Japanese dyed their clothing!

Okura sells a wide variety of clothing from many brands, including jeans, jackets, dresses, t-shirts, kimono-inspired pieces, and more. This is one of Daikanyama’s best shopping spots to take home a unique souvenir!

Also read: 10 Tips for Shopping in Tokyo, According to Locals and Frequent Travellers

5. Forestgate Daikanyama

forestgate daikanyama japan

Image credit: Forestgate Daikanyama | Official Website

Forestgate Daikanyama is one of the newest additions to Daikanyama, having just opened in the second half of 2023. It’s a sprawling, eco-friendly commercial complex located at the main entrance of Daikanyama Station. At first glance, you’ll be intrigued by its striking woody, geometric architectural design. Forestgate Daikanyama comprises two buildings — the MAIN Building which is full of shops, offices and residential units, and the two-storey TENOHA Building which functions as a cafe and event space. The complex is also home to a beautiful vertical garden.

It’s worth dropping by Forestgate Daikanyama to admire its unique offerings. This is especially so for environment enthusiasts who are interested in observing eco-friendly business practices because the TENOHA Building is committed to providing a sustainable experience through environmentally sound practices!

Best cafes in Daikanyama for cafe-hopping

Stylish cafes serving mouth-watering food are an unmissable feature of Daikanyama, Tokyo. As such, one of the best things to do in Daikanyama is cafe-hopping. Here are some cafes in which you can enjoy a meal in a gorgeous cafe environment. 

6. Caffè Michelangelo

caffe michelangelo tokyo

Image credit: Caffè Michelangelo | Official Website 

For many years, Caffè Michelangelo has maintained its reputation as one of the most visually aesthetic cafes in Daikanyama. The cafe boasts a breathtaking Renaissance-style interior and exterior and even has a beautiful dining patio. During the day, the cafe is beautifully illuminated with natural light, making it a gorgeous photography spot and a popular wedding venue. The cafe also offers delicious and affordable items on its seasonal menu. 

Caffè Michelangelo recently reopened in September 2023 with a stunning upgraded look after undergoing renovations. Head there for the perfect tea break in Daikanyama! (And don’t forget to take some gorgeous photos while you’re there, too!)

Fun fact: It’s common to spot celebrities and media crew doing shoots at Caffè Michelangelo!

Also read: 12 Crazy Concept Cafes, Restaurants, and Bars in Tokyo

7. Daikanyama Pancake Cafe Clover’s

pancake cafe clovers daikanyama

Image credit: Daikanyama Pancake Cafe Clover’s | Official Website

Savouring some delicious desserts in Daikanyama’s outstanding dessert cafes is a must-do in Daikanyama. One popular dessert cafe that receives glowing reviews from patrons and influencers is Daikanyama Pancake Cafe Clover’s. As its name suggests, this cafe specialises in whipping up moist, fluffy pancakes that come in different flavours. 

One of the top-rated pancake variations is the Caramel Banana, which has even been featured on television! The Strawberry Decoration is another amazing pancake variation and is also the house recommendation. For any dessert or pancake lover, Daikanyama Pancake Cafe Clover’s is definitely worth a stop.

8. Flux Cafe Daikanyama

flux cafe tokyo

Image credit (L–R): Flux Cafe Daikanyama Official Instagram Page, Flux Cafe Daikanyama Official Instagram Page

Looking to savour some yummy food that’s good for your body? Check out the popular Flux Cafe, which specialises in serving nutritious, delicious dishes that are made mostly using Japanese local produce. It also comes highly rated as one of Daikanyama’s top places where you can enjoy an authentic Japanese-style breakfast set!

Fitspos will be delighted to know that you can order special protein-rich meal options at Flux Cafe. There are also low-gluten options available. Moreover, the spacious woody cafe interior provides a homely and classically Japanese feel to the environment!

Also read: 12 Best Day Trips From Tokyo & How to Get There

Other unique attractions to visit in Daikanyama

Daikanyama, Tokyo is one of those modern districts where nature, man-made architecture, history, and culture coexist beautifully. Consider dropping by these unique attractions in Daikanyama to see how they contribute to the urban centre’s charm!

9. Kyu Asakura House

kyu asakura house

Image credit: Cabeza2000 | Wikimedia Commons

While Daikanyama is well-known as a modern district, you will also find lovely places in which Japanese culture and history are well-preserved — and Kyu Asakura House is one such place. Once a private residence of the Japanese assembly chairman Torajiro Asakura, it survived the bombings that occurred during World War Two.  Now, the vintage structure is one of the few remaining traditional Japanese wooden houses in Tokyo. 

You can pay just ¥100 (S$0.89) to explore the entire area of Kyu Asakura House, including its traditional tatami rooms and its Japanese garden. The Japanese garden is also exceptionally beautiful during spring and autumn!

Also read: 12 Traditional Airbnbs in Japan for a Unique Travel Experience

10. Saigoyama Park

saigoyama park

Image credit: Ippukucho | Wikimedia Commons

If you’re a nature lover or are looking to unwind in a beautiful environment, taking a relaxed stroll or having a chill picnic at Saigoyama Park is one of the best things to do in Daikanyama.

Located within walking distance from Daikanyama Station, Saigoyama Park is a quiet, beautiful park that boasts lush nature and scenic views. Here, you can enjoy a bird’s eye view of Nakameguro and even Mount Fuji if weather conditions are favourable! Saigoyama Park is also a family-friendly and pet-friendly green space. And during the cherry blossom season, Saigoyama Park is a good spot to admire the sakura blooming in Nakameguro! 

Also read: Japan Cherry Blossom 2024 Forecast: When & Where to See Sakura

With these 10 best things to do, buy and see in Daikanyama, Tokyo, you’ll undoubtedly have a blast exploring a vibey new area in the heart of town!

Featured image credit: Suzuki Yuya | Flickr

About Author

Esther Yue
Esther Yue

Esther is an inquisitive girl who enjoys uncovering the depths of life. She loves exploring new places and cultures. While travelling, she never skips the roller coaster rides in the amusement parks. In her natural habitat, you’ll probably catch her with a book and an iced drink, listening to some good music.