dawn fades as ice melts
nose, eyes and ears filled with fish
sushi for breakfast?
Tsukiji Fish Market (築地市場), better known outside of Japan as Tokyo's Central Wholesale Fish Market has been on my Japan must see list for years. So much to hubby's dismay (he doesn't eat or like seafood) I dragged him out of bed at the crack of dawn while we were in Tokyo to finally see Tsukiji with my very own eyes...
... and what I found was seafood as far as the eye could see of the never-ending variety, and a industrious, brisk atmosphere filled with scooters, trucks and people going about their daily business...
walking though the narrow lanes of the inner market
Tsukiji Market is one of the world's largest fish markets, handling over 2,000 tons of marine products per day. It is made up of a inner market where most of the wholesale business and the famous tuna auctions take place, and a outer market whose retail shops carter to the general public. You can also buy the freshest sushi in the world here.
a fish blood bath
squid in its own black ink
Sadly, we didn't go to the Tuna Auction - numbers are limited to just 120 tourists a day, and if you want to get a spot this involves arriving at at 4:30am just to register. Needless to say hubby wasn't keen...
tuna for sale
... we did however wander all around the wholesale area, which was full of hundreds of fish stands, buyers and sellers hurrying along the narrow lanes with their carts and trucks, yelling at any tourists who dared to cross their paths.
The smell was incredible - super fresh. And despite the blood I worked up an appetite so we left the inner market in search of food...
the busy ring road that circles the inner market - watch out!
The outer area of Tsukiji Fish Market consists of several blocks of small retail shops and restaurants along bustling, narrow streets where tourists and locals alike go about their food shopping business.
the outer market area
And what is the best breakfast of them all? Why sushi of course...
While wandering around I also spotted edamame still on the plant, something I've never seen before.
All in all, a great morning out and some of the best people watching and sushi I've had in years.
If you're in Tokyo and want to visit Tsukiji Market it's fairly easy to get to on the Oedo Subway Line. If you want to see the Tuna auction make sure you get there early! Or if you only want to explore the inner market like we did aim to arrive at 9am when it opens to tourists so you get some time to really experience the atmosphere before it quietens down.
Early morning sushi = happiness.