In Tokyo where space is always at a premium, it can be hard to find the right place to get outside and run around. This fact is especially prominent when it comes to finding somewhere to have a hit of tennis. The city has a few options though, each of which varies in price and accessibility. Here’s a Tokyo tennis court guide to the more budget-friendly and instantly accessible choices, but be warned those two points are generally mutually exclusive.
Public tennis courts
A number of the city’s parks have their own public tennis courts which are open to anyone, but they’re not the most convenient option for those who are only in town for a short period. Public tennis courts are easily the cheapest option, but they do involve a little extra legwork when it comes booking them.
You’ll find a list of parks with tennis facilities (in Japanese) here, but to save you dodgy kanji to English Google translations, our suggestions of central, spacious parks to visit are Hibiya Park, Kiba Park, and Inokashira Onshi Park. Once you’ve decided in which park you want to reserve a court, you must first register at the nearest park administration office.
Once registered, you then enter the online draw here to ‘win’ an opportunity to book. Chances depend on the time of year, but as a general rule, you have a one in four chance of getting a spot on a weekday and a one in 10 chance on the weekend. Group bookings are typically limited to five players per court.
Address: 1-6 Hibiyakoen, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 100-0012
Time: 9 am–9 pm
Address: 4 Chome-6 Hirano, Koto City, Tokyo 135-0023
Time: 9 am–9 pm
Inokashira Onshi Park
Address: 1 Chome-1-1 Shimorenjaku, Mitaka, Tokyo 181-0013
Time: 9 am–5 pm
Price: Court rental ¥1,300 per hour. If playing at night there’s also a ¥500 night lighting fee.
Meiji Jingu Gaien
Wedged between Shibuya and Shinjuku, the courts at Meiji Jingu Gaien are one of the city’s most central tennis courts. The area has a whole range of sporting facilities from baseball to ice skating, and on the tennis front there are two options; outdoor combined futsal and tennis court rental, and the indoor Meiji Jingu Gaien Tennis Club visitor pass.
The outdoor courts are a little cheaper and more relaxed, but if you want to use the indoor club courts, guests are required to wear regulation white tennis clothes and tennis shoes. For men, sleeveless tops are not permitted either.
Address: 1-1 Kasumigaokamachi, Shinjuku City, Tokyo 160-0013
Reserve: By phone 03-3403-0923.
Reservations start every 16th day of the month for the next month.
Tennis club courts
Time: 3 pm–11 pm
Price: ¥6,480 per hour per court or ¥1,080 per hour per visitor
Futsal-tennis combined courts
Time: 7 am–11 pm
Weekday hard court price
¥3,600 per hour until 6 pm
¥5,100 per hour between 6 pm and 11 pm
Weekday artificial grass court price
¥3,600 per hour until 6 pm
¥7,200 per hour between 6 pm–11 pm
Weekend and holiday hard court price
¥4,000 per hour until 10 am
¥6,200 per hour between 10 am–11 pm
Weekend and holiday artificial grass court price
¥4,000 per hour until 10 am
¥7,200 per hour between 10 am–11 pm
Yoyogi-Nishihara Park Tennis Courts
Less than a 10-minute walk from the western side of Yoyogi Park is where you’ll find Yoyogi-Nishihara Park Tennis Courts. It’s a central and accessible facility, and its location means you could easily combine a visit here with an afternoon day chilling in the park or exploring Shibuya’s more low-key, cafe-loving backstreets. If you’re in the area, we recommend paying a visit to coffee shops Little Nap coffee, cafe ROSTRO, and Camelback.
Back to the tennis courts though, there’s only two of them, and they’re some of the cheapest in town, so try and book as far in advance as possible. Similar to the other public courts, you can book via the Shibuya City facility reservation system.
Address: 1-47-8, Nishihara 151-0066
Time: 9 am–7 pm
Price: ¥1,300 for two hours
Reserve: Via Shibuya City facility reservation system
Prince Hotels Takanawa Tennis Court
It’s a little on the pricey side, but Prince Hotels in Shinagawa have their own private indoor tennis courts open to both guests and non-staying guests too. What points this place loses in the price department, it makes up for in the English-friendliness and convenience departments.
In total, there are nine artificial turf courts, including two private courts. They also offer tennis lesson options too, for an extra fee if you’re feeling a little rusty. If you want to join a lesson, gear rental (shoes and a racket) are included as part of the fee, however, if you’re just here to use the courts, you can rent equipment for an additional fee, or simply bring your own.
Time: Open 24 hours
Address: Takanawa Minato-ku 4-10-30 Tokyo Prefecture, 108-8611
Weekdays general court: ¥6,500–¥12,500 per hour depending on time of day.
Weekdays private court: ¥8,500–¥14,500 per hour depending on time of day.
Weekends general court: ¥7,000–¥12,500 per hour depending on time of day.
Weekends private court: ¥9,000–¥14,500 per hour depending on time of day.
Join a class: Jinji Tennis Center Tokyo
Arguably the most impressive of all the inner-city courts, the Jinji Tennis Center is located atop the Shinjuku Hilton Hotel offering incredible city skyline views that will, let’s be honest probably distract you from your game.
The main focus of this club is definitely more on training than it is merely smacking the ball around. It’s ideal, however, for those who want to get out there and have a swing, pick up some new skills, and see the city from a different perspective. The club offers lessons for all skill levels and age ranges so if you’re traveling with the family, everyone is accounted for. Also, post-lesson Jinji students can use the Hilton spa facilities for free, even if you’re not staying in the hotel.
Time: 7 am–9 pm
Address: Hilton Tokyo 6-chōme-6-2 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku City, 160-0023, Japan
Price: Depends on lesson
Book a lesson: http://www.jinjitennis.com/booking
A social swing: Tokyo Tennis Gaijins
If you’re on the hunt for some new tennis buddies, it’s worth signing up for one of Tokyo Gaijins’ casual tennis sessions which run roughly once a week depending on the date. Hosted at the Shibaura Chuokoen Sports Field, the event is split into two sessions: one for the serious players and one for beginners. Despite the name, the group isn’t totally gaijin (foreigner); the split is typically 70% foreign and 30% Japanese.
The games here are usually doubles, depending on the number of players that turn up. For disorganized folk, there is an opportunity to sign up on the date. However, if it’s busy you latecomers may not be guaranteed a spot, so it’s best to plan ahead. Also, players can bring their own gear or rent a racket for ¥500.
Time: 17:00 – 21:00
Address: Shibaura, 1 Chome−16−1 みなとパーク芝浦 3～8 階, Minato City, 105-0023
Price: ¥3,000–¥3,500 per person
Book a lesson: Email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.tokyogaijins.com/tennis.php