Tsukiji Market, Tokyo fish market (and visit Nikko)


Between the mountains of Tochigi, a UNESCO World Heritage temples set, proposes one of the great cultural attractions a few kilometers from Tokyo. His name is Nikko and its wealth increases by the surrounding nature, lush vegetation, its onsens and its waterfalls. Although before, the star visit that made me especially excited we made it first thing, the fish market from Tokyo or Tsukiji Market, A show in itself. REMASTERIZED 2017

Way of the second week through Japanese lands we will not deny that the tiredness starts to make a dent About us. Whatever the trip, there is always a time when the body asks for a ... potato omelette! (hehe). No, just kidding, in this case it must be one of the few trips that food is enchanting and it doesn't make us heavy at all. The stomach is perfect and the wide variety of foods makes it difficult to choose what we want to try today.

Tsukiji Market, the fish market in Tokyo

It's 5:15 in the morning when, after taking the first JR and with something in our stomachs (juice 100 Y, coke 120 Y), we planted ourselves on that visit that made us so excited before coming. At these hours Tokyo's fish market or Tsukiji Market is a hotbed of seafood workers and transporters. It is more than a fish market (and in Galicia we have them very good), there is everything here and it works at a frenetic pace.


They have been saying for many years that the Tokyo fish market will move to a new site in Toyosu but the reality is that the new date is leaving at the end of 2018 (still unconfirmed). What has changed since our first contact is the way to see it for tourists since the number of visitors to the tuna auction has been limited to 120 per day. What does this mean? That if you want to be one of the two shifts of 60 people (the first from 5.25-5.50 and the second from 5.50-6.15) you have to sign up at the Osakana Fukyu Center at Kachidoki Gate that opens after 5:00 a.m. The problem is that they are assigned in order of arrival and there are people who stand in line much earlier. How much? There are those who speak that if you arrive after 3: 45-4 you can no longer enter the second group. Another option is to hire the guided tour through a Tsukiji Market tour

One of the things that surprises us the most is that there is hardly any fishy smell, not like in the Galician fish markets where we are from. Is it because the download and sale goes so fast that it does not give time? What bugs! There's everything here. What are these? Mussels the size of a tennis racket?

But if something is impressive are tuna auctions. They say there are more than 400 varieties from all over the world, more than 2,300 tons and transactions of up to 17 million dollars a day (which is said soon). Tuna is one of the jewels of the Japanese market and there is an area enabled for tourists to see their auctions. And here we are.

¿You have seen that tuna? I have not seen similar bugs in my life, and it is not that I live in a bad area since Galician fish markets have a lot of variety and great fishermen (and what about Cádiz?). I recently read a story that was titled, now I believe it uffsss !. This tuna auction area is really huge. Ring the bell… the bidding begins !!. A group of shoppers with a cap on their heads and pencils in their hands do not stop screaming. The auctioneer is another show, live, singing, up there, in his wooden box, it seems that he has been injected with adrenaline. Sing piece by piece, numbered for buyers who can check their meat with a cut that is made on the back of each, with that art takes them in rows in a matter of minutes.

Tsukiji Market is the largest fish market in Japan, Asia and the world, Only the Japanese consume one sixth of the world's fish (that's how healthy they are).

There it is unloaded, auctioned, cleaned, chopped, prepared and supplied the fish already turned into sushi or sashimi, even in the own fish market stalls. And not only tunas ... this is our piece, nothing despicable, right? hehehehe

Well, with emotion we have barely told you how we arrived: we entered the fish market around 5:15 from Shimbashi Station (There is a walk of approximately 15 minutes from there to the market) and we did it through the seafood area to get to the tuna auction part is at the bottom of it all.

Nikko, a sacred place around Tokyo

After passing through a supermarket to buy something to eat without wasting much time (food 294Y, water 130Y), we return to the same station from where we are heading to Ueno to catch the Shikanshen to Utsunomiya (45 min), and from there the Nikko Line to Nikko (45 min). All with the Japan Rail Pass, as usual.

A little messy, right? The another option for free goes through the Limited Express of the Tobu company departing from Asakusa directly to Tobu-Nikko in 2 hours but does not allow the use of the JRPass so you would have to pay about 2800 Y


Although we always give you all the information to organize the trip on your own, if you have little time or prefer to forget about preparations, you have the following option COMPLETELY IN SPANISH and with VERY GOOD OPINIONS from other travelers. This is a private guide who will accompany you all day explaining Nikko. The price is per group, not per person, but the transport runs from your account. If you are interested book in advance because it is usually quite demanded and with limited availability of dates

Nikko tour from Tokyo

Once in Nikko we have Divided the visit into two parts: one in which it mixes nature and sacred place in a large area of ​​temples and another area composed of a lake and a large waterfall that is very worthwhile, Kegon Falls.

I don't know whether to come quite excited from the previous visit or because it looked very touristy, the area of ​​the temple complex did not thrill everything we expected after receiving so many recommendations of the place. I also assume that there is a time in travel when if you have seen much of one thing, in this case temples, you are already a little tired.

Temple area in Nikko

Without going into much detail, the first thing we did was take a bus (190 and each) until the Shinyo Bridge and from there go up to the temple area of ​​Nikko park. In an office we buy a combined pass for all temples (1,000 Y per person), we sugar (coca cola 120 Y) and start with the Rinnoji-Temple where we buy one of the gifts we bring (1,000 Y)

Continuing with the rutilla, the next one we see is Toshogu, Shinto, a beautiful complex with a 5-story pagoda that represents earth, water, fire, wind and sky. It was built between 1634 and 1636 and hasthe Futarasan chapel, the oldest structure in the district, from 767.

This area of ​​temples belonging to the Edo period are distinguished from the temples of that time by having numerous ornaments and being much more overloaded. The interiors are also full of lacquered, detailed sculptures with bright colors and painted panels.

The one we liked the most for its integration with nature and its huge cedars around, immense rather (although its stairs are also endless to be day 13, hehehe), the Taiyuin-byo.

Tokugawa Lemitsu was a Shogun who chose the Nikko area to create Taiyuin-byo, his own mausoleum that was completed in 1653, two years after the death of the Shogun. To speak of Taiyuin-byo, for its magnificence and wealth, is to speak to Japan of Nikko as a synonym for splendor.

Well, it's over temples. Coca cola with sugar for exercise (120 Y) and we go back down to the main road looking for the Nishi-sando stop (STOP 9) where we take the bus (punctual, as always) on the way to Chuzenji-Onsen around where two other natural wonders were found. It takes 25-30 min and costs 950 Y per person from the previous stop.

Lake Chuzenji and the great waterfall of Kegon-no-Taki

We are still surprised by the cleanliness of the streets, even here, and although we have not yet seen sweepers, it seems that each merchant collects their own area. If that happens in Spain there is a clean and three dirty areas, hehe. The fact is that all Japan is impeccable

Well, without deviating from the story, the way up between the mountain and tunnels is beautiful. It reminds us a lot of the 7 revolts of Segovia, because of the route that the road describes, furrowing the mountain until we finally reach an end station of the route. Just at the previous stop there was a cable car that leads to beautiful views (Akechidaira stop) but today does not seem to make day for it. We eat? We chose a Japanese site that has nothing but a menu in their language that neither they understand…

I keep trying everything and, after hitting to show the guides with photos, today it was the turn of the Ramen. !!! EXCELLENT !!! For a tureen like me. By now we have eaten almost everything we set out to ... tempura, sushi, sashimi, soba and udon, dashi, kushiyaki, yakitori, ramen and okonomiyaki (Among many other things we do not even know the name). Suggestions are accepted for these last days (they will be welcome). By the way, does anyone know a place to eat fugu (puffer fish)in Tokyo and in decent security conditions? (UPDATE: we would get it years later, you can read it in) It is that we have been told today that it was not season ... snif snif. The food costs us here 2,460 Y.

Finished the meal, we headed towards the Kegon-no-taki waterfall which has an elevator to go down to its base (530 and per person). The truth is that it is wonderful to see it from there and today the flow was especially abundant. A pity that the sun did not rise to take some better photos, anyway, as Alberto told us in the comments days ago, we are having a lot of luck on the trip, the great weather so far by removing a couple of showers, one that fell day 5 but he caught us in the food and we almost did not find out and today practically the same, in the food, but we used the same to buy 2 raincoats (800 and both).

The waterfall of 97.8 m we find it at its best, beautiful, within the forest and considered one of the three most beautiful in the country. It seems that it was created after the strong explosion of Mount Nantai that blocked the Daiy River and originated both waterfalls and Lake Chuzenji. Here they also have a coin of those of remembrance that we are collecting (400 Y) from all visiting sites.

Before returning we take the opportunity to go through some souvenir shop (if yes, we already know that you want gifts, you do not need to repeat it, hehehe), buy water (120 Y) and come to see the Chuzenji Lake, as we said before, today was not the best day (yes, some monkey was having a great time with our beautiful companions Catalan travelers that we found days ago and we saw them here again, the world is very small. Greetings to them if one day they read us)

From there from back to Tokyo. Bus to the Nikko Station (40 min), Nikko Line to Utsonomiya (45 min) and Shikashen to Ueno (45 min). It is a good time to remind you that if you have doubts with the transports you read all the details in and, because they are very simple to use.

Return to Tokyo and have a quiet dinner at Edoya

As the day started very soon (at 4 in the morning), we will enjoy the free dinner we have in the Edoya Hotel (You can read our Edoya Hotel reviewand also the Fukudaya Hotel review from when we returned years later). The truth is that we dined very well to be free (well, we paid for the beers, 862 Y), also perhaps because we thought they would give us rice and water. No, we could choose 2 dishes from a variety.

We do not have much time before falling as we write these lines but one thing that draws our attention especially (and lately we share a lot) is that, between the heat and the swings of the trains, the Japanese live in a eternal world FLEX, is to sit in the car and fall asleep.

Sometimes it looks like a horror movie in which you are the only one who is not affected by the virus, hehehehe ...

Anyway, we do not roll up, we already know that we do not answer everything related to the day in this live story and on the fly, in this short time at night before sleeping we hung some photos and little more, yes, to We will do the return. Anyway, many thanks to the family (parents, uncles, grandmothers, sister, tom), Ruth, Juve, Tilo, Sacribros, Errante (without whom this would not be possible), Sergio, Boris, Bernardo, Sonia, Alberto, Monica, Ana, Ble, family and, algogoku, carmenisergi, KAORU, Charo, Zoku, MYA, Arantxa, neku, JAAC, PELINES, Elena, wood, GUS, and all who read the blog anonymously. After meeting the Tokyo fish market and Nikko temples, there is one day less, snif… This is going very fast although at times it seems that 1 month ago we left.

Isaac, from Tokyo (Japan)

CHAVETAS GUIDE: DAY 13(use "SAVE AS" from the browser to download) | Download the whole guide of Japan in PDF
10,466 Y (approx. 64,89 EUR) and GIFTS: 1,400 Y (approx. 8,68 EUR)