Last Saturday I had a wander about Tsukishima – a man-made island in Tokyo Bay, just across the channel from Tsukiji fish market (which I still haven’t been to despite living here five years…) Tsukishima was created over 100 years ago using earth that was dredged from the bay during the construction of a shipping channel. It’s an area rarely featured in guidebooks, although among Japanese people it’s probably best known as a mecca for monjayaki – a kind of runny pancake with different ingredients, such as seafood, meat and vegetables, mixed into the batter. There are seemingly hundreds of monjayaki joints packed along Nishinaka Street, but since it was a bright sunny day I didn’t fancy being stuck inside one of these smokey restaurants. (Monjayaki is great by the way – even if it genuinely does look like sick.)
Instead, I was content to potter among the backstreets and river inlets, ending up at Sumiyoshi shrine which is overshadowed by a number of residential high-rise complexes. Tsukishima is a place were the remnants of old Tokyo still remain, but with heavy development happening nearby for the 2020 Olympics, who knows how long it will last. Check out my walk in the video and photos below.
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Everything looks better in the sun. I found myself taking pictures of even the most normal scenes as I loved the way the light was hitting them.
Sunny high rises as you exit the station
Amazingly ridiculous No Smoking sign. The picture portrays a guy chucking a cigarette butt out of a car window and it hitting a baby in the pram.
Small shrine tucked away down an alleyway
Little river inlet with more high rises and fishing boats.
Tsukishima in the sun
Clothes hanging out to dry down the suburban backstreets
I don’t think I’ll ever tire of little shops like this
Plum blossoms in bloom at Sumiyoshi shrine
Large torii gate at the entrance of Sumiyoshi shrine
Plum blossoms and blue sky
Run-down shop in the suburbs
Udon shop. I love everything about this photo.
It was actually a National Holiday on this day so many shops had Japanese flags hanging outside. National Foundation Day is celebrated annually on February 11, celebrating the foundation of Japan and the accession of its first emperor, Emperor Jimmu at Kashihara gū on 11 February 660 BC.
Shop selling melonpan, a Japanese sweet bun
Beat-up sign with an area guide to Tsukishima
Chicken-katsu lunch at a mom-and-pop style restaurant. Basically breaded chicken fillet with rice, soup and kimchi.