Visiting the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo – Japan

The world’s most amazing fish market:
Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo

When you think of Japan, one of the first things that comes in mind is sushi, sushi, sushi! When we visited Japan in 2015 for the first time, our number one activity on our to-do list was trying some delicious maki’s and nigiris! And so we did… Lots of them. And some new sushis we never tried before, of course. Since we are such big sushi fans, we couldn’t resist visiting the world’s most amazing fish markets. Yes, I’m talking about the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo. This is the market which starred at the art house movie Hiro dreams of sushi, one of my favorite food documentaries. It is highly recommended to watch this film if you’re a true sushi fan and you want to know everything about how the fish is selected and prepared. ‘ Cause Hiro knows it all…

Sushi in Tokyo

Best place to buy fish

Back to the fish market. Tsukiji Shijō is a large wholesale market for fish, fruits and vegetables in central Tokyo. It is the most famous of over ten wholesale markets that handle the distribution of fish, meat, produce and flowers in Tokyo. The market is best known as one of the world’s largest fish markets, handling over 2,000 tons of marine products per day. Quite a lot if you’d ask me!

Be prepared to see fresh tuna and many other fish varieties that come straight from the auction floor. You can also appreciate delicious fruits and exotic vegetables. And other Japanese specialities.

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An dazzling amount of nori varieties to prepare top quality sushi!

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Morning auction

We’ve been to many (fish) markets in Europe and Asia, yet this is by far the largest (commercial) fish market we’ve ever been to. Early birds can try to book a visit to the early morning auction (5:00 a.m.) to experience the sale of tuna, crab and other exotic fish species are sold to many Japanese restaurants and hotels. You can book your visit through The Tsukijitour website in advance.

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Recommendations

For those who just want to have a quick look, I recommend you to visit the market as from 9:30 in the morning (before that time there’s no admission to the public unless you have a guided tour to the auction). Get out at Tsukiji Shijo Station on the Oedo Subway Line. The market is situated above the station at a 5-minute walking distance. Follow the crowds or ask around where to enter the market. There’s not a clear sign where to enter, so don’t be shy to ask.
You can also book a complete tour through the market with a guide and sushi and fruit tasting after.  Make sure you book far in advance through this website: www.tsukijitour.com.

Tip: More than thousand food establishments lime the streets of the market and its surroundings. Walk around the side streets of the market. Here you’ll find local shops where vendors sell fish products, sushi and other delicacies. We made a quick pit stop a a nice Japanese coffee bar specialized in Colombian coffee.

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People line up at one of the many sushi pop-up restaurants. They can’t wait to try upper fresh sushi prepared with fish coming straight from the market.

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Location:

Tsukiji Market is just above Tsukiji Shijo Station on the Oedo Subway Line.
*The fish market will probably move to another location as from the end of 2016. Check the right directions before you visit the market.

Alternatively, it can be reached in a five minute walk from Tsukiji Station on the Hibiya Subway Line. The closest JR station is Shimbashi, from where you can walk to the market in about 15 minutes.

View the photos we took at the market as an appetizer. Visit the Orange Spots Flickr page >

Our Tokyo video contains some nice shots of the market, see it yourself!

 

 

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