Tour Tokyo's Tsukiji Market
See giant tunas and bright red octopus and taste the freshest sushi in Tokyo at Japan’s oldest fish market.

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Organized Chaos in Tsukiji

On the way out the door to the Tsukiji Fish market, I tossed a CLIF bar in my bag. I had read somewhere that sushi is breakfast food in Japan and I had also read about the excellent places to pick up fresh sushi near the fish market (imagine such a coincidence!). In hindsight, the CLIF bar was a great hedge against my rapidly deteriorating appetite for sushi. After a walk through the market, I had no desire for anything that once lived in water…

As I navigated my way to Tsukiji station, I grew increasingly curious about what I’d find at the market. I had seen the photos of giant tuna and I imagined that the market would be busy, but I was definitely not expecting so much chaos. Unlike many other landmarks in Tokyo, it was not immediately clear that I was in the fish market. From the outside, it looked like a garbage factory. Lots of trucks, boxes, and turret trucks. Don’t know what a turret truck is? Practically a death sentence when there are hundreds of them zipping around without much regard for visitors.

The outer market was lined with merchants selling produce, and once I had made my way inside, I was intoxicated with the smell of… you guessed it, fish. I didn’t mind it at first, but after awhile, it was obnoxious and overwhelming. Boxes upon boxes of sea urchin, squid, octupus, eel, crab, shrimp, and various types of fish, surrounded me.

I spent the rest of my time in Japan eating Tempura.

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