When you think of gay bars in Tokyo, Shinjuku 2-chome probably comes to mind, however, there is a ton of indie bars to discover outside of Shinjuku. Below is an introduction to bars in Shinjuku, as well as Shibuya, Ueno, Ota and Yokohama (although it isn't technically Tokyo).
This is the most famous lesbian bar in the area and is super crowded on weekends. It used to be only open to women but now it is open to all the community, apart from Saturdays, which is still a women-only night. They also have a lesbian event on every 3rd Saturday of the month.
There is no entrance fee and drinks are about 800 yen.
Adezakura is also a very popular lesbian bar and can get very crowded on weekends! It is open only to women until 2:00 AM, and until 5 or 6 AM men can also enter the bar. It is quite busy and lively. There is no cover charge and drinks are about 850 yen and up.
This open-air bar is on the main street of nichome. There are often DJ's playing and radio hosts in the DJ booth, and there are also a lot of people sitting outside on a nice day.
Apart from great cocktails, you can also get some yummy dishes, such as Thai green curry, french fries and fried chicken. Be sure to try the mojito!
You definitely cannot miss this bar, rain or shine, you will see tons of people outside having a drink and a good time. Cocktails and beer are about 700 yen, which is quite standard for the neighbourhood. You're bound to have a fun time and make new friends! Also, from 6-9 PM there's what they call the "beer blast"! It's all-you-can-drink beer for 1,000 yen! Sweet deal.
Dragon MEN is a relatively big nightclub compared to the tiny bars in the area. People go there to dance, but there are also seats in the back and outside. The drinks are about 700-800 yen. This place also gets quite crowded on weekends and is a great place to meet new people. There's a happy hour from 7-9 PM where you can have unlimited cocktails or been for 1,000 yen.
HOME mostly has a male clientele, however, the owner chose the name so that it feels like a welcoming place for everyone, regardless of gender, age and nationality. So come on over, everyone's welcome! There is a 2,000 yen cover charge which includes a drink, and all additional drinks are 1,000 yen.
Touhen Boku is a gay bar in Ueno with a 1,200 yen cover charge which comes with a drink, the following drinks are 700 yen. You can also sing your heart out in Karaoke for 100 yen a tune.
Smile is also a gay bar in Ueno which caters to a male clientele, it is welcoming to international customers. Most customers are between 20 and 40 years old and unlike many other gay bars, they don't have a karaoke system, so you can enjoy talking with the people around you. It is 1,200 yen for the first drink and the following drinks are 1,200 yen.
Kabuto is a gay bar located very close to Haneda airport and consequently is very welcoming to international gay men. The entrance fee is 1,500 yen with a drink and the following drinks are about 800 yen. There's also a karaoke machine and for 300 yen you can sing your hear out to unlimited tunes! Yeah!
Although Yokohama is technically not Tokyo, it's still in the vicinity. It is a fairly big bar for Tokyo standards, but it is not as big as some of the bars you would find in Shinjuku. The patrons are rather young and it's a great place to go by yourself or with a group. It's a mixed bar except for Saturdays, where it becomes a men-only bar. Also, there's free karaoke.