Jimbocho, or 'old book town', gets its name from the 140 secondhand bookstores located in the Kanda area. There are also 30 bookstores specializing in new publications, and nearly 500 publishing houses, one of them being the Isseido Shoten. Since many of Japan's foremost universities are located in this area, this bookstore is even more significant. A trip to Jimbocho wouldn't be complete without a stop at Isseido Shoten, known for an extensive collection of old and rare books and manuscripts. Browse for bargains or just to soak up the rich wealth of stored knowledge. English volumes as well as Japanese editions are available.
First opened in 1935, the historic Tsukiji fish market created an outer market region, thanks to its massive popularity. Known as the Tsukiji Outer Market, this vibrant landmark sells a variety of items like fresh produce, fish, utensils as well as ready to eat food. The market came into existence as a need to cater to non-wholesale customers, who were initially barred from entering the area for it was solely commercial. Even though the historic inner market has shut shop, you can still enjoy the unique shopping culture at the Outer Market.
Maruzen is one of the major bookstore chains in Japan. The Nihonbashi store is the flagship of the line, located in the center of Tokyo near the Imperial Palace. Maruzen has a voluminous collection of titles in English and of course an almost unparalleled collection of books, CD-ROMs and microfilms in Japanese. There is also a broad selection of periodicals and newspapers in English and Japanese. Photo buffs will find a superb assortment of books in English on photography and the visual arts.
Akihabara refers to the eastern side of the Chiyoda section of Tokyo. A vibrant and trendy hub, it is sometimes referred to as the "Electric City" because of the high concentration of stores selling all things electronic. Find the latest video games, gadgets, iPods, and cameras at Yodobashi Akiba, a nine-story flagship store, or peruse the Tokyo Animation Center where you can watch showings and demonstrations on gaming and animation. Almost every shop here deals with electronics, so the possibilities are endless for technology lovers!
A replacement for the Tsukiji Fish Market, Toyosu Market consists of two buildings, where one is used for fruits and vegetables and the other, for seafood. Overlooking the Tokyo Bay, the market opened its doors to the public in October 2018. Stretching over an area of 408,000 Square meters ((4,391,675 square feet), the fish market building serves as a host to approximately forty food stalls that are accessible to the visitors. Also found here is a viewing deck on the second floor and rooftop overlooking the city's picturesque landscape. More than just a market, one can also enjoy tours, events and seafood restaurants in this market.
Landmark Tower is located in the ultra modern Minato Mirai 21 development on Yokohama's waterfront. It is Yokohama's showcase community of sleek high-rise buildings, ultramodern shopping malls, museums, hotels, convention centers, office buildings, and homes. There's even an amusement park with a huge Ferris Wheel that's perfect for sightseeing. As Japan's tallest skyscraper, Landmark Tower is the centerpiece for Minato Mirai 21 and is home to the Yokahama Royal Park Hotel Nikko, the Sky Garden Observatory, Landmark Mall with 190 shops and boutiques, a medical clinic, 48 floors of office space, a 230-meter moving walkway that connects Landmark Tower with Sakuragi-cho Station, and three floors of underground parking that accommodates 1,400 cars! Landmark Tower also features one of Japan's important cultural properties, the Dockyard Garden—an authentic replica of the stone dockyard originally constructed in 1896. This is a playful reproduction with scores of restaurants "hidden" behind the huge stone blocks of the drydock.
Do you like confectionery made in Japan? If so, visit Tokyo Okashi Land! Tokyo Okashi Land is a shopping zone where you can enjoy various kinds of candy produced by popular Japanese companies such as Glico, Morinaga and Calbee. In addition, there are some limited items which are sold only in Tokyo Okashi Land. Don’t miss them! Tokyo Okashi Land is directly connected to Tokyo station, so you can readily visit it when you are passing through Tokyo station.
For all you choco lovers, Pierre Hermé's Bar Chocolat is almost like a mini Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. You will be absolutely amazed by the variety of chocolates available here. Located in an old flagship store, this is definitely one of the best places to try out some of the richest chocolate in the Orient. The profiteroles filled with vanilla ice cream and mint leaves drizzled with chocolate will send your taste buds into a trance. The Macaroon Plenitude is rich and coconutty. Some of the best chocolates available here are Makassar, Garance, Mogador, Ouvre toi and Truffes Nature.
The Yaesu Book Center is located just outside Tokyo Station. Every month, millions of travelers pass through Tokyo station, and Yaesu Book Center is a favorite stop for many of them. Yaesu Book Center has an immense collection of books, dictionaries, photo books, maps and travel guides in Japanese and English. They have a very broad selection of foreign magazines in English.
This branch of Takashimaya is the largest department store in Japan. Bright and modern, it feels like a huge, classy shopping mall. Inside are three restaurant floors, a Sega amusement center, an Imax theatre and the famous Tokyu Hands hardware store. With an annex building housing the Kinokuniya Bookstore as well as all the Japanese gift products you could ever need, it is not surprising that Takashimaya has become a favorite with foreigners and locals alike.
Well-known and respected luggage manufacturers Yoshida Kaban opened this store in up-scale Marunouchi in 2002. The classy, muted atmosphere of the store encourages peaceful shopping; the hushed dark wood tones and thoughtful displays have an almost reverent feel. One of the main attractions of this particular branch is you can purchase limited editions here.