Some had waited hours for a chance to see the American actor in the flesh. The star - dressed casually in jeans, a flat cap and sunglasses - spent some time signing autographs on his way through arrivals at Haneda International Airport.
Among the welcome messages carried by fans were several congratulating him on his Oscar nod for playing hard-living financier Jordan Belfort in Martin Scorsese's new film.
Leo has already won a Golden Globe and a Critic's Choice statuette for his role in the film, and he's no doubt hoping this will be his year at the Academy Awards.
Leonardo was mobbed by fans in Tokyo
This year he must take on Matthew McConaughey, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Christian Bale and Bruce Dern in the category of Best Actor to emerge triumphant.
He could also pick up an oscar for his producing, as the film is up for the Best Picture award too.
The 39-year-old has been nominated for an Oscar five times but so far never managed to take home the gold.