Scholar-Led Architectural Walking Tour: Harajuku, Omotesando And Roppongi - Tokyo

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Turn a critical lens on Japan's modernist architecture during this 3-hour walking tour of Tokyo, including Harajuku, Omotesando and Roppongi. A local scholar will introduce traditional and contemporary principles of Japanese design through architecture, fashion and art. During fascinating discussions with your expert guide, youll learn where Japanese designers draw their inspiration and appreciate how Japanese ideals of beauty inform their aesthetics. Enjoy personal attention on this small-group tour, limited to 6 people.


  • Fully narrated tour
  • Great overview and orientation of the city
  • Informative, friendly and professional guide
  • Multiple times offered throughout the day
  • Pickup from a centrally located meeting point
  • Small group ensures personal service

Know More about this tour

Meet your guidea local scholar of art history and architectureat a central Tokyo location. Your expertly trained guide uses a multidisciplinary approach to help you understand Tokyos contemporary visual culture, starting with traditional concepts of Japanese architecture at the Meiji Shrine.

Here, you can start to appreciate how the visual landscape of Tokyo has changed in the last 200 years. Dedicated to the Emperor Meiji in the 19th century, the modest aesthetics of this Shinto shrine provide a foundation for discussing the contemporary design techniques that followed.

Spot examples of these newer techniques as you venture to Harajuku and Omotesando, two closely situated areas with quite different representations of Tokyos modern design. As you walk through the district of Harajuku, delve into some of the colorful subcultures that Tokyo is known for. Your guide will point out how modern Japanese values and roles are reflected in consumerism and clothing to form social identities.

As you move through the neighborhood of Omotesando, notice how luxury brandsPrada and Dior, among othersuse architecture as an extension of their aesthetic principles. As a hub for design, fashion and architecture, the famous avenue is dotted with design studios and boutiques, each showcasing their own idea of Japanese beauty. View buildings by great modern architects, such as the Cartier building, the Nezu Museum, the TODs building, Tokyu Plaza and Gyrea mixed-use building for retail and dining.

Your discussion in the Roppongi District may include subjects such as superflat, a postmodern art movement exemplified by Takashi Murakami, and modern forms of Japonisme. You might also wend your way toward the 21_21 Design Site, Tokyos first design museum and a stunning piece of architecture by Tadao Ando.

Complete your walking tour in Roppongi Hills, an urban development that integrates commercial, cultural and residential Tokyo. Real-estate tycoon Minoru Moriwho also created Omotesando Hills and the neighboring Tokyo Midtown Centerhas made Roppongi a central hub for contemporary art in Tokyo, punctuated by the Mori Museum at the top of Mori Tower.

Inclusions for Scholar-Led Architectural Walking Tour: Harajuku, Omotesando And Roppongi

  • Professionally guided tour by a field specialist

Exclusions for Scholar-Led Architectural Walking Tour: Harajuku, Omotesando And Roppongi

  • Food and drinks
  • Gratuities (optional)
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off

Additional Info

Confirmation will be received at time of booking

Minimum age is 13 years

A moderate amount of walking is involved

A minimum of 2 people per booking is required

A maximum of 6 people per booking

Cancellation Policy
  • If you cancel within 3 calendar days (72 hours) of the scheduled departure time, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel between 4 to 7 Calendar days before scheduled tour departure,the cancellation charge will be 50% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel at least 8 calendar days in advance of the scheduled departure time, there is no cancellation fee. You will receive Full Refund for the paid amount.
  • Please note that in case of No show, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the listed tour fare.
  • Please note tours booked using discount coupon codes will be non refundable.

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See All 22 Traveler reviews

  • We had an amazing tour, lead by a charming, well-informed and energetic architect, who provided a wide range of insights and information. Some of the buildings and sites are easily found but many others were on back streets and one would never know about them without a skilled and knowledgable guide to show the way and provide an architectural framework for their existence. It was the highlight of our visit to Tokyo. Wear comfortable shoes - there's a lot to see.

  • Our guide Hugo Maia should be rated with 6. He is so passionate discussing the origins how the modern Japanese archi became. He went past the allotted time and we all love him.

  • Good day very educational!

  • The architectural walk is a way to get to know a different side of Tokyo. Mike, the guide, is very knowledgeable and people oriented. He let us ask him many questions and take our time in the areas we wanted to. It was very interesting to see the contrasts within the neighborhoods.

  • This tour was excellent in every way. The company that provided the scholar was excellent to work with, and the scholar was knowledgeable, personable and made it informative and interesting.

    I would recommend this tour.

    Miranda Nadel

  • Our tour guide was amazing! Definitely wear comfy shoes because he took as long, pergolas longer, than 3 hours. A different lens with which to see Tokyo. A must do!

  • This walk was better than I expected Tour leader Alessandro was delightful and knowledgeable only 3 in the group and we went to some amazing buildings by cutting edge Japanese architects Loved every moment

  • Very interesting and varied itinerary. Alex the guide has a broad appreciation of things Japanese and Architectural.

  • Great tour.
    Our guide was intelligent, articulate and gave us a great insight into Japan's recent history, through the subject of architecture. We walked nearly 20km with him, and found it stimulating, informative and really, really helpful. We would wholeheartedly recommend this. Good value, very stimulating.

  • Mike was a cool tour guide and had a great casual manner, and was a good conversationalist. His use on anime to make his points was interesting, and we definitely learned something about the development of Japanese architecture, which put buildings we had seen many times before into a different context.

  • See All 22 Reviews

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