Tokyo is home to some of the most glamorous shopping, raging clubs, and finest food in the world. That's why making a stop to the outdoor Tsukiji Fish Market is something that is on everyone's list when visiting Japan. Nestled in the Chuo prefecture of Tokyo, the Tsukiji Fish Market is home to restaurants, shops, and stands of fresh fish ranging from clustered crab brains to pre-made sushi. In this post we will go show you how to get to Tsukiji from Shinjuku, talk about the fish market area, and show some of the food available for you to try. The only thing that you need to bring in an appetite!
Quick Facts about Tsukiji Nippon Outdoor Fish Market
-Hours of Operation: 5:00am to 12pm (or early afternoon), closed on Sunday's and some shops are closed on Wednesday's
-Is the Indoor Auction at the Outdoor Market?: As of October 2018, the Indoor Auction has been moved to a different location in Toyosu and renamed the Toyosu Market. You can still go to the Indoor Market and see the auction
-Size of Market: Consists of several narrow streets that have street side carts and ramshackle shops
-Is the fish fresh?: Yes, everyday the fish auctioned off at the Toyosu Market is delivered straight to the Tsukiji Nippon Outdoor market
-Is there only fish at the market?: For the most part, fish is served there on a variety of scales. Other than a few Wagyu beef stand, you can go to one of the few restaurants that offer a wider variety of food
-Are credit cards accepted?: No, make sure to bring cash in order to pay for any stall or restaurant food. To be safe, you should have around 5000 Yen to cover any taste testing, drinks, or restaurant visits
-Food Suggestions: Blowtorched Crab (600 Yen), Corn Fishcake Skewer (300 Yen), Squids on a Stick (500 Yen), Blowtorched Scallop (500-1000 Yen, depending on toppings), Crab Brain (500 Yen, considered a delicacy similar to Cod Sperm, in Japan), and Sea Urchin (500 Yen)
Getting to Tsukiji Nippon Fish Market
From Shinjuku station, Tsukiji Nippon is a 30 minute train ride on the Odeo Line. It is only one stop so you wont have to make any connections on any other train line. If you have your JR Pass, you can ride this line free of charge, otherwise it will cost you around 600 Yen round trip. Once you arrive at Tsukijishijo station, the fish market is a short 5 minute walk across the street .
Once you arrive, you'll see the entrance of the market on your right as you walk down the main street. In this building you can see where the original indoor auction market used to take place. You can still walk through the building and check out the vendors that set up their shops there. Below are some pictures of the inside:
After taking a stroll through the inside of the market, you will begin to wander up and down the narrow alley ways walking past food stalls where you will find octopus, crab brain, tuna, fish cakes, and many more fish options.
What makes this market unique is the fact that shop owners will cook the food right in front of you. With all the food options at your front door step, coming with an empty stomach is a must. If you'd like to learn more about the history of the market, check it out here.
The Tsukiji Outdoor Fish Market is both for seafood and Japanese history enthusiasts alike. There is no better way to get a tase of some fresh fish then going to a market that gets it everyday. We recommend that you go through and try as many different seafood options as possible because who know's when you'll get the chance again! Furthermore, we recommend going earlier in the morning, around 8-9AM, to beat the crowded streets and really enjoy your time there. You can do a tour if you'd like through several companies, but getting lost in the narrow streets and trying different foods here and there is what makes it fun.
We hope you enjoyed this short article and look forward to reading more about our content on Japan! Feel free to reach out to us about any questions you have as well.