While both Shinjuku and Harajuku are considered more urban and metropolitan wards of Tokyo, Shinjuku has a beautiful park where you forget the business of the city. I stopped at a red bean pancake stand on my way to Shinjuku Goen, where I snacked and journaled for a bit.
Away from the park is the Tokyo Municipal Government Building, where the top floor observatory is open to the public. Great views of Shinjuku, and also free to get in.
Later in the day, I hopped back onto the Yanamote line to head to Harajuku. I didn't see any eye popping gothic lolita or cosplay, but I did find a lot of stores selling accessories to fit any aesthetic. Overall, the vibe in Harajuku was more intimate with its higher frequency of small boutique shops/restaurants/bars. My uncle and I ended the night with a Moscow Mule at a small cafe/bar combo.