However, before heading out, a little research will help to get you pointed in the right direction. While this usually includes a ticket for 1 or 2 free drinks, don't be surprised if you get nothing in return aside from live music, a bowl of nuts, or even just a wristband.
Try to find the details ahead of time. Mega-clubs like Womb or AgeHa are easily accessable to non-Japanese crowds, although the action usually doesn't start until late.
For a more comprehensive nightlife experience, try to find a local organized party such as the Tokyo Pub Crawl to kick things off. Flyers advertising such events, are easily picked up in music stores around Shibuya or in any of the bars in Shinjuku-ni-chome for gays and lesbians.
Another shock may be when many clubs state that they close at midnight — while bars are often open till 5am. A law exists that prevents dancing in residential neighborhoods, but is largely ignored.
Roppongi is where the foreigners expats, military, tourists and eager Japanese socialites flock on weekends for crazy and wild action. It is one of the most upscale districts of Tokyo.
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It's packed with dance clubs, upscale bars, strip ts and dive bars. This is the place where both Japanese and non-Japanese, desperate to let loosecome to mingle and perhaps find a date.
Be slightly wary of shady strip club touts, Chinese prostitutes, and drunk people after midnight. This area can get really crazy so excercise caution. Only those blessed with golden voices should reach for the microphone in an open bar, as karaoke is taken startlingly seriously.
Shibuya attracts mainly Japanese teens and somethings. There very many different establishments ranging from megaclubs to small Japanese bars.
Kabuki-Cho in Shinjuku is the Japanese red-light district. You'll find regular clubs and bars here, as well as plenty of strip clubs.
The Yakuza has a heavy presence in the area. Be warned that most establishments cater to well-off Japanese men only and sometimes refuse entry to foreigners. Gay nightlife is crammed into the narrow streets of Shinjuku-ni-chome — bars, the size of a spare bedroom, cater to an active community.
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Tokyo Traveler Article: Tokyo: Nightlife. This article contains a discussion by Tripadvisor members concerning the above topic.
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