Stop at Tsukiji Fish Market for Brunch

Tsukiji Market is Japan’s “Food Town,” where one can encounter all kinds of Japanese traditional foods. A mixture of wholesale and retail shops, as well as restaurants crowded along narrow lanes and new culinary trends, are born here. You can find fresh and processed seafood and produce alongside food-related goods such as knives.

Originally, Tsukiji Market used to be the wholesale market for the professionals. That is why items sold there were generally too big for a small family to buy. However, some wholesale shops in the market have started retailing high-end merchandise for ordinary customers such as ready-to-eat omelets for sushi which are sold in smaller sizes. Even a bite-sized egg roll can be bought here for those who just want to try the dish. Tsukiji Market, primarily catering to the professionals, has recently opened its doors to ordinary customers and visitors. The succeeding paragraphs will show how the market has become well known and shaped into what it looks like now.

A visit to Tsukiji Outer Market is best combined with a fresh sushi breakfast or lunch at one of the local restaurants. The restaurants are typically open from 5:00 in the morning to around noon or early afternoon. Most of the fishes served and sold at Tsukiji Outer Market is delivered directly from Toyosu Market, thus making this as one of the best places in Tokyo to enjoy fresh seafood.

If you are up for auctions, please be informed that it will start around 5:20 a.m. Bids can only be made by licensed participants. These bidders include intermediate wholesalers (nakaoroshi gyōsha) who operated stalls in the marketplace and other licensed buyers who were agents for restaurants, food processing companies, and large retailers.

The auctions usually ended around 10:00 a.m. Afterward, the purchased fish was either loaded onto trucks to be shipped to their destination or loaded on small carts and moved to the various shops inside the market where the shop owners cut and prepare the products for retail. In the case of large fish, for example, tuna and swordfish, cutting and preparation were elaborate.

Tsukiji Fish Market was originally located in the Nihonbanshi area and was relocated in Tsukiji in central Tokyo between the Sumida River and the upmarket Ginza shopping district after the earlier market was destroyed in the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923.


Tsukiji Outer Market is located a short walk from either Tsukiji Shijo Station on the Oedo Subway Line or Tsukiji Stationon the Hibiya Subway Line. The closest JR station is Shimbashi, from where you can walk to the market in about 20 minutes.

From Tokyo Station

Take the Marunouchi Subway Line from Tokyo to Ginza (3 minutes) and transfer to the Hibiya Subway Line to get to Tsukiji Station (3 minutes). The fare is 170 yen.

From Shinjuku Station

Take the Oedo Subway Line directly from Shinjuku Station to Tsukiji Shijo Station. The one-way trip takes 20 minutes and costs 280 yen.

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