You have to arrive around 5:00, maximum 5:30, if you are staying in Ginza you can easily walk to the market (just 15 min from Ginza Tobu, where I stayed). Once you get to the market, just cross the first rows of general sale, then the fish market itself and reach the auction halls. There you can enjoy both frozen and fresh tuna auction. Reach the bay shore and head back to the proper fish market, where you can walk and walk among the strangest fish you have ever seen.
If you dare, you can have a real Japanese breakfast in any of the various "bars" at the market.
Have fun and don't miss it if you are in Tokyo.
Be cautious when walking through the busy aisles of the fish market! Those fisherman are as aggressive in the fish market as the New York City cabbies!
Be especially cautious if you come across a wrecklessly happy Frenchman whizzing through the aisles on a mission for an early morning snack !!! ;-))
Every Tokyo local will tell you that the Tokyo Central Wholesale Market is NOT to be missed!
The Tsukiji Fish Market comes alive at 5:30am on Mondays through Saturdays. The Must See Activity is the big tuna auction that takes place in the inner market. HUGE....GIGANTIC fish carcasses are auctioned off by some of the most animated auctioneers on the planet!
Definitely a sight to see!
(NOTE: I must explain my attire in this pic. No, I do not normally wear platforms to the market! After all night Salsa-Dancing with the VT Tokyo crew, we found ourselves at the Fish Auction @ 5:30am!) Thank YOU ManuelEB and Co.!
It took all of my STRENGTH not to pass out on top of these tunas ........from sore feet and jetlag! ;-))
The Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo is huge - 11 times bigger than the NYC fish market, and crammed with some of the biggest fish you could ever imagine - row upon row of massive tunas, acres of octopus and squid and all sorts of weird and exotic things.
Apparently, every day they sell 2,500 tonnes of fish valued at $23M US!!!
The downside (apart from what is surely an unsustainable practice) is that you must get up very early to see it - things start around 4am and finish around 9am.
Watch out for all the guys on their little stand-up pallet trucks, whizzing about with trolleys of fish behind them.
If you can stomach it, you can have the freshest of sushi for breakfast at one of the numerous sushi bars that surround the area. I settled for the veggie option...
Tsukiji Market houses the largest seafood market in the world and is definitely one of the top attractions in Tokyo. The market handles over 2,000 tons of marine products per day. Inside the giant warehouse, you will find aisle after aisle of seafood vendors packed tightly together, leaving only narrow lanes for pedestrians and transport trolleys. Don't get to distracted staring at the seafood though, because the motorized trolleys may very well run you down!
If you're thinking of visiting Tsukiji Market, be prepared to wake early, because all the action takes place between 5 and 9 in the morning. After you leave the market, have a sushi breakfast one of the many sushi restaurants in the vicinity. Seafood doesn't get any fresher than this!
Tsukiji Fish Market is one of those things that a tourist MUST visit. It is well worth the early morning wake-up. It consists of the inner market & outer market. The inner market opens very early - i believe 2am to 3am.
However, the fun stuff starts shortly after 5am ---- the fish AUCTION. This is followed by fish cutting. You must follow one of the carts, after the auction has concluded, of HUGE tuna fishes, to the place where they cut up the fish. It takes 3 grown man to slice up a fish into 4 pieces.
Everything starts to wind down at 6am, and that is when you should wander out to the outer market place, and hop into one of the sushi bars for EXTRA FRESH sushi. So fresh, that it does not taste like fish at all!
After that, wonder around the outer market stalls, and buy anything and everything. We bought a set of green tea cups, a set of of sushi bottle & cups, as well as some bento boxes.
Getting up for the 5.30am auctions in the worlds largest fish market has to be one of the unique sites in Tokyo. This place is buzzing and although the auction rooms are for authorised personel only, foreigners are tolerated provided we stay out of harms way.
The auctions for different seafood are split into different rooms, but the giant tuna seem to get the most attention. These are either fresh or frozen and come from as far away as New Zealand and Tahiti. The biggest we saw was 238kgs !
Watching the pre auction inspections, the actual auctions and then grabbing an early morning sushi breakfast is one great way to start your day in Tokyo.
Amazing!!! I didn't believe going to visit a fish market would be exciting in the least, however I couldn't be more wrong...it is unmatched by any markets like in Seattle, Vancouver, Boston,etc. You are left completely stunned and wondering how on earth does the sea replenish itself daily once you see the sheer number and sizes of the catch!!!! Please dress warmly because even with the temperature being in the 70's (F) it could get quite chilly (because of the freezers)...
In order to experience the Tukiji Fish Market in Tokyo you'll need to get up very early since all of the action takes place from about 5a to 7a. My girlfriend and I got up at 4:30a the morning that we were going to leave Tokyo and headed out to experience the market and auctions. I made an audio recording of part of the experience which can be found here
Fish is the most important material in the Japanese cuisine. almost every Japanese will tell you that he can't live without fish
To see how true is this statement, go to visit the biggest fish market in Tokyo, Tsukiji Fish market.
Go in the early morning, walk carefully in the market, keep an eye of the small truck rushing around.
After you satisfy with seeing all sort of fishes, go to the canteen for fish market workers, you will get a real treat of the real local meal.
"Makuru Don" or Tuna Rice is my flavorite. It cost around 600 yen
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