Tokyo offbeat Goth bars! Neo-Shinjuku Atsushi Cyberpunk, Trick or Treat Halloween, Tarot Museum Cafe, Muscle Girls.

Neo Shinjuku Atsushi cyber punk bar tokyo

The Collapse has reached Tokyo… in the form of an apocalyptic cyberpunk bar! Theme restaurants and bars continue to thrive in Japan. On my last trip, my friends and I investigated the Goth-est and strangest ones for you, including the dystopian Neo-Shinjuku Atsushi, a Tim Burton Halloween themed izakaya, a Muscle Girls bar with buff women…

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… and even an occult Tarot Cafe and Museum! Keep reading for a peek inside these quirky, immersive and Gothic Japanese bars.

apocalypse tokyo themed resturant sci fi collapse

John and I were excited to visit a new Tokyo bar — Neo Shinjuku Atsushi. Located near Shinjuku Sanchoome station, it’s a science fiction cyberpunk world come to life (think Blade Runner and Akira).

tokyo weirdest theme bar restaurant cyberpunk dystopia

The bar is designed to look like the crumbling ruins of post-apocalyptic Tokyo. As the Akira quote goes, “You’re just the king of a big pile of garbage!”

 Neo Shinjuku Atsushi New cyberpunk restaurant bar japan tokyo

The neon-lit entrance to Neo Shinjuku Atsushi makes you feel as if you’re in a 1980s sci fi survival flick. In this Collapse future, people survive on food sealed in vacuum packed bags!

akira kaneda red bomber jacket leather moto

To help you get in the mood, you can try on the red pill moto jacket and helmet worn by Akira’s Kaneda (from the film by  Katsuhiro Otomo).

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Neo Shinjuku’s menu is purposefully bleak — this is a vacuum-packed cheeseburger, which was heated up with a bagged side of mashed potatoes! (It tasted better than its smooshy appearance).

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We also had drinks conceived by ChatGPT, such as sake made from seahorses and cocktails injected with carbon dioxide and served in medical bags.

akira red pill jacket anime clothing Katsuhiro Otomo

As the slogan on my Akira anime motorcycle jacket says, “Good for health, bad for education.”

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The cyberpunk bar is fully immersive, and adds a Japanese touch to the dystopia.

cyberpunk sci fi science fiction bar tokyo

Would you enter the cyber punk universe of Neo Shinjuku Atsushi? Check out our video on @lacarmina Insta about our dystopian visit, in which we fought the war on microplastics!

trick or treat roppongi halloween themed bar

On another evening, John and I went to a themed eatery that was frightening in a different way… Trick or Treat bar in Roppongi. 

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It’s easy to see why Trick or Treat is a long-time Goth horror hangout. (With Japanese Satanist Yoshiki Takahashi and Yukiro Dravarious.)

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The phrase “every day is Halloween” is accurate at Tokyo Trick or Treat. You can order izakaya food and drinks, and take in the impressive collection of spooky objects (I spy Jack Skellington).

 tokyo scary horror bars, trick or treat

Typical Tokyo… there’s a demonic winged creature next to Chucky wearing a Hello Kitty mask!

 tim burton drawings art gallery tokyo japan trick treat bars

Tim Burton has been to Trick or Treat Horror Dining in Roppongi, and as you can see, he contributed some of his dark drawings to the walls (with a cross cut out). Quentin Tarantino was also fond of this place.

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Wore my meh-faced pumpkins sweater to match the eerie candlelight mood. I peep Annabelle and Billy from Saw in the back.

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Cute aliens and Grogu also make their home here, and the TV in the back plays old horror movies. Check out my reel about our Trick or Treat visit on @LaCarmina Instagram to see a full tour of the bar / izakaya.

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If you’re looking for a Gothic hangout in Tokyo, this is the place to lounge with creepy, haunted dolls.

 death match in hell bar golden gai shinjuku

We also stopped by a few places in Shinjuku. Death Match in Hell is a B-movie themed dive in Golden Gai (it’s often packed these days). Caribbean Absinthe & Rock in Kabukicho is one of our favs for a glass of the green fairy.

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And there’s good old Guinea Pig, the fetish gory horror bar. It’s still off the radar of tourists, so we head here to drink grapefruit gin cocktails without the crowds.

Tír na nÓg craft cocktails ginza bar tokyo

I also checked out Tír na nÓg in Ginza — a craft cocktail bar with eccentric decor and drinks that come with tentacles and cotton candy.

japanese muscular women hostess bar muscle girl tokyo

Here’s another new themed bar that’s been making waves… Ikebukuro Muscle Girls Bar. Guests can drink and play games with the fun-loving, bodybuilding staff — hail strong women!

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As you can see in my Muscle Girls bar video, the buff ladies flex and do chin-ups, and demonstrate their strength by squeezing grapefruits with their bare hands. You can even have them do cheeky activities, like put you in a dog collar and “teach you a lesson”! Ikebukuro’s Muscle Girls Bar is very popular so reserve a slot in advance.

tokyo cafe tarot owner mr sato occult restaurant

And I discovered a very special new place in Tokyo… the Tarot Museum and Cafe. In 1974, Mr Sato’s family was the first to produce tarot decks in Japan. Now, he’s opened two welcoming spaces in Asakusabashi for anyone to come learn about tarot history, do a reading and find insight.

 tokyo japan tarot card collection museum gallery

At the Tokyo Tarot Museum, you can see thousands of rare tarot cards (including kawaii and devilish ones). Mr Sato’s impressive collection of tarot decks is the largest in Japan.

vegan cafe tokyo healthy food vegetarian tarot asakusabashi

Then, feast on vegan fare at the nearby Cafe Tarot Tokyo. The photos speak for themselves — the ginger juice, falafel, and avocado hummus toast were magnificent. The vegetables are so fresh and colorful because he personally sources them from organic producers.

tarot cards restaurant theme cafe art tokyo japan

See the video of our Tokyo Tarot Cafe and Museum visit here. Mr Sato lovingly chose the decor to pay homage to tarot history and art, and create a warm and accessible space (as some Japanese were initially hesitant about tarot cards and their occult associations).

tokyo tarot card cafe restaurant food menu vegan

Around Halloween, I visited with my long-time friend Kuroe Akiwake, psy-fi rock musician Alien Idol and spiritual healer. It happened to be the day we heard the terrible news about Atsushi Sakurai of Buck-Tick. And now, I’m saddened to hear that she too has moved on from this universe… I’m grateful we got to grow together in Tokyo over the years, and have an uplifting final hangout with tea and tarot cards.

tarot themed restaurant cafe sun moon coasters

As Kuroe wrote to me after: “I can’t help but feel that the tarot museum gave a big boost. No joke, looking at those Sun and Star cards I got helped me keep faith every day while I was dealing with the timeline stuff. We’ve been dealing with darkness for far too long, time for the dawn to break.”

japan largest tarot card decks collection museum

In whichever timeline you’ve jumped to, I hope you’re at peace, dear Kuroe.

halloween tarot cards, goth gothic spooky deck

I’m grateful that we had this magical final hangout. Here’s to all the good memories with her and our friends in Japan.

japan tarot museum, occult attractions activities tokyo

If you’re intrigued by magic, the occult and tarot decks, I encourage you to visit the Tokyo Tarot Card museum — Kuroe absolutely loved it. We could have spent hours here, perusing the various designs and books, as well as glass displays of ancient cards.

japanese tarot cards kawaii cute playing card design

I particularly loved seeing the Japanese oracle cards by Nichiyu, Mr Sato’s pioneering company. Of course, they have a kawaii element to them. (I even came across an Astro Boy tarot!)

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You’re welcome to select a deck — like Kuroe did — and do a reading. Thank you to Japan’s first-ever Tarot Card Museum for the warm memories.

eater food journalist clips osaka essential restaurants guide writer takoyaki japan

On a more smiley-faced note… I wrote all the new Eater Osaka food guides, out now! Eater commissioned me to report on takoyaki history and pop culture, why food lovers should travel to Osaka in 2024, and 38 essential restaurants in the city to try. Thanks for reading and supporting my food / travel writing.

I’ve also been getting tons of travel writing assignments about Japan. Here’s one that I wrote for Fodor’s Travel about how to use Tokyo’s public transit system, and one about the best restaurants in Tokyo. I was also interviewed by PopSugar about the art of planning birthday dinners.

halloween bakery cute food tokyo japan black cat cookies kawaii

I’ll wrap up with some cute Tokyo Halloween tidbits. In October, many Japanese bakeries offer spooky cute baked goods like these ghost and black cat donut cookies above. (I found them at Shibuya Tokyu Foodshow.)

tokyo halloween themed food ghost bread spooky foods

Delifrance, a bakery with various locations, had a “Halloween Party” special with ghoulishly-decorated sweet and savory items. I tried this ghostly cheese naan… and it was a nah…

 don quixote halloween costumes tokyo cosplay

You’ll find Halloween decor and costumes at all Japanese dollar stores (like Can*Do and Daiso), and the everything-shop Don Quixote.

kuromi clothing fashion tokyo japan donki don quixote

Donki also had an enticing selection of Kuromi themed goods.

I’m already compiling a list of new Tokyo spots to report on, for my next trip… aiming to be back in the fall, and I’ll capture tons of new Japan content for your pleasure! I still have so much to share from last time — find me @LaCarmina Instagram to keep updated. (I also have reels about the above spots on my Insta, if you’d like to see video footage.)

Of all the bars and restaurants featured in this post, which would you most want to visit?



  1. Nikki_boagreis
    Posted March 21, 2024 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    Yes, a new blog post! I love the apocalyptic cyberpunk themed bar, the goth look is sick and your anime style motorcycle jacket is fresh. I love all the Japan content and look forward to new blog post. Best of luck and stay safe.

    • lacarmina
      Posted March 21, 2024 at 11:50 pm | Permalink

      Yay thank you! I’m having the best time exploring these new Tokyo spots – a pleasure!

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