If you ever plan on coming to Tokyo and are wondering about what you should do that second day when you’re suffering from major jet lag, I would highly recommend heading over to the Tsukiji Fish Market. Famous not only for the large amounts of Yen changing hands from sellers to buyers, you don’t want to miss seeing some of the world’s freshest and most expensive fish! My first reaction upon seeing the large tunas was “Oh wow that’s a huge torpedo!”
Since 1935, when Tsukiji Fish Market first opened, countless amounts of seafood, from the most inexpensive seaweed to the most expensive caviar as well as fish ranging from commonplace sardines to 300kg tuna and rare whale meat, have passed through the doors. The most expensive fish sold at Tsukiji as of today was in 2001 when a 440-pound tuna was auctioned off for a price tag of $220,000 USD. The most recent expensive tuna sold was to a Hong Kong based restaurant weighing in at 512-pounds of beautiful bluefin tuna for a sum of $177,000.
Fishermen from the Osaka area were originally invited by the Tokugawa Ieyasu to bring their catches to Tokyo, then known as Edo, to provide fish and seafood to the Emperor and his family at the Edo castle. The unsold fish were later taken to another location close by, the Nihonbashi bridge, to be sold to locals and restaurants in a wholesale atmosphere. After the Great Kanto Earthquake on September 1, 1923, the Nihonbashi fish market was destroyed, and the Tsukiji Fish Market we know today was created.