Everyone who comes to Tokyo will definitely pay a visit to the famous Tsukiji Market. While the market is well known for their Tuna fish auctions which have since moved out of the complex, many people come here for fresh seafood meals as well. You can read my review on Sushi Kuni if you are looking for a good restaurant in the outer market. Other than fresh sashimi and sushi, The Tsukiji outer market has many other things to offer as well.
Throughout the market, you can find many stores like this selling dried seafood items like dried seaweed, dried shrimps, scallops, ikura, crab roe etc. For those of you who love to cook, you will find many quality Japanese food ingredients here which is probably cheaper than back home.
There are also speciality stores which sells only dried cuttlefish like this small pop up shop. You can either eat the dried cuttlefish on its own or choose to roast or barbeque it for the fragrance to be released. This is a perfect snack with alcohol.
There are also a couple of traditional Japanese knife shops which sells all kinds of knife as well as provide sharpening services. For those who cook often and understand what a good cutting tool can help in your culinary process, can check out these shops.
The shops facing the roads also sell fresh produce like Japanese vegetables and fruits.
You can also see some really interesting sights like this huge fish head
There is also an entire street filled with stores selling Japanese street food and other than fresh seafood, you will also find many shops selling the Japanese omelette.
The tamago slice is extremely popular and there are many stores selling this item. The egg roll itself is well cooked with a soft and slightly sweet and eggy taste.
There are also a couple of small shops selling rice balls with various different fillings for the visitor to fill their stomachs.
One of the more popular item is the grilled crab and scallops. You can also grill fresh oysters on the spot. These stalls are very popular so there is always a queue for them but there is no doubt about the freshness of seafood.
There is also this very interesting cuttlefish snack which looks as thin as a piece of paper. The stall is extremely crowded so I did not catch a glimpse of how this was made but the cuttlefish is pressed and grilled till it is as flat and thin as a piece of see through paper.
This is something that is becoming very popular with tourist who visits Tsukiji. It is inari sweet bean curd wrapped on rice and topped with amazing load of fresh seafood toppings like the uni, crab meat, salmon, ikura etc. I did not manage to take a picture of this since I did not eat it but I did spot many people standing around having this. You can check out the blog I got the photo from where more detailed description is given on the street food.
For foodies, you can spend an entire day at Tsukiji outer market eating street snacks to shopping along the various shops as well as getting quality food from some of the restaurants. Most of the shops here take cash but for those selling expensive seafood items also take credit card. For tourist, there is a tax refund counter within the market so as long as the shop you purchase from supports tax refund, you can get the cash back within the market.
For me, as I stuffed myself too much at Sushi Kuni, I did not managed to eat much of the street food except for the tamago. For beef lovers, I did pass one particular nostalgic corner shop by the main road which sells a huge pot of braised beef meat for gyudon. The smell of the pot really do smell good and it looks very popular so I would recommend beef eaters to also try that on top of all the street food and fresh sashimi. So do remember to come here with an empty stomach to fully enjoy the Tsukiji market experience.
Address: 5 Chome-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo City, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan
Operating hours: Most shops open around 9 am and close by the late afternoon