Tokyo in detail

LGBTIQ+ Travelers

LGBTIQ+ travelers are unlikely to encounter problems in Tokyo. There are no legal restraints on same-sex relationships in Japan, apart from the usual age restrictions.

Outright discrimination is unusual; however, travelers have reported being turned away or grossly overcharged when checking into love hotels with a partner of the same sex. Such discrimination is illegal, but is rarely litigated.

One thing to keep in mind: Japanese people, regardless of their sexual orientation, do not typically engage in public displays of affection.

Tokyo has made great strides in the past couple of years towards openness and acceptance; still, many LGBTIQ+ people remain fearful of the potential social and economic ramifications of living publicly out – outside of safe spaces like Shinjuku-nichōme ('Nichōme' for short), the city's largest and liveliest gay quarter.

To keep up to date with issues concerning Tokyo's LGBTIQ+ community, and to learn about events and meet-ups, follow the Nichōme Community Project (@NichomeComProj) and Nijiro News (@nijinews) on Twitter.

Akta Community Centre advocates for the health and safety of Tokyo's LGBTIQ+ community. From the heart of Shinjuku-nichōme, Akta offers free AIDS tests, counselling and any other information you might need.

Utopia Asia (www.utopia-asia.com) Lots of resources and recommendations for LGBTIQ+ travellers.