Even though it is often on the list of top ten things to do in Tokyo (hence, I assumed to be a bit overdone), I found Tsukiji Fish Market to be a great experience for the senses, especially if you are a lover of fish. Although many people visit ridiculously early (5 AM) in order to catch the market in full swing, we decided to forgo that and instead arrived mid morning. We wandered around the shops adjacent to the main market and sampled some sushi from one of the more crowded sushi shops 寿司屋. We tried some salmon roe(いくら), tuna (まぐろ), scallop(ホタテ), and fried egg (たまご) – fried egg being the traditional way to test the freshness and the quality of the sushi shop/ chef. The fish mongers in the markets surrounding the main building offer some good deals and freshness is basically insured.
Tsukiji also is home to Japan’s first Yoshinoya. Yoshinoya, for those outside Japan, is the quick and easy way to get gyudon (牛丼), or a bowl of shaved beef on top of rice. This Yoshinoya was relocated from the original fish market area after it was destroyed in the 1923 Earthquake. The signage and interior are notably different from other chains you see around Japan, preserving the old-time charm of the original Yoshinoya. No coin fed meal ticket machines here!