The Nishiki Market, a shopping street in Kyoto with 130 different shops!

The Nishiki Market is a historical shopping market that has thrived since the Heian period (794 to 1184). It has been called “The kitchen of Kyoto”, and is beloved by local people in Kyoto. The street is about 3.3 to 5 meters wide and 390 meters in length. It is the best place to learn the culture of Kyoto and the people’s way of life!

2017-04-21   Travel Destinations, Kyoto,

A Fish shop at the market


【CONTENTS】
The renown painter, Ito Jakuchu was born in a wholesale green-grocer in the Nishiki market.
From the west entrance to Nisiki Tenmangu
Take a sip of water from The Nishiki Tenmangu!

The west entrance of the market
The west entrance of the market

The renown painter, Ito Jakuchu was born in a wholesale green-grocer in the Nishiki market.

Let’s take a look at the market from the west entrance (Takakuradori). You can see a large sign with the kanji, “錦”printed on it, with flags hanging underneath. These types of flags can be seen everywhere in the market.

Ito Jakuchu’s work
Ito Jakuchu’s work

This is one of the works of Ito Jakuchu (1716 to 1800). He is a famous painter who still attracts collectors from all over the world. He was born in a wholesale green-grocer in the Nishiki market. He painted daikon, lotus root, pumpkins, and other unique vegetables on his works. On the right hand side of the entrance, you’ll find Jakuchu’s birthplace.

Jakuchu’s birthplace
Jakuchu’s birthplace

Let’s go and see more of the market!

From the west entrance to Nisiki Tenmangu

Dangoya
Dangoya

As I walked along the street, a dumpling shop popped up in front of me. They have warabi cakes, inaka dumplings, and many other delicious items. Odango, or dumplings, are loved by many in Japan as sweets to go with tea.

A Chopstick shop
A Chopstick shop
Chopstick rests
Chopstick rests

I found a chopstick shop with many different chopsticks and chopstick rests. It’s fun to choose!

Signboard

Next, I found a sign board that says, “The world’s spiciest spices”.

Shichimi chilli

You can buy many different kinds of spices, including ichimi and shichimi. Shichimi is usually used as a seasoning for Udon and Soba. You can also make your own shichimi chilli blend at this shop.

Fish shop

I overheard a conversation between a customer and the shop’s owner. According to them, the Nishiki market has a certain trust in fresh seafood with it’s patrons, so people who run restaurants, including historical and expensive restaurants, come here to buy their ingredients.

Curtain

I saw a picture of Jakuchu hanging in the arcade. It is so interesting to see his work!

Tsukemono shop
Tsukemono shop

The staff was making pickles (tsukemono) in a large barrel at a tsukemono shop. To make tsukemono, you need care for it everyday by mixing the ingredients.
⇒What is “tsukemono”?:tadaimajp.com/2016/08/tsukemono/

Tempura shop
Tempura shop

You can also buy many different kinds of tempura at the tempura shop!

Seasoned octopus eggs

These are seasoned octopus eggs in octopus heads. There are also soft squid bones and baby squid.
The price range is around 250 to 500 yen, so it’s affordable for a light snack.

The Nishiki Tenmangu Torii
The Nishiki Tenmangu Torii

The Tori is located at the end of the street.

Take a sip of water from The Nishiki Tenmangu!

A natural spring called, “Nishiki water” is located at Nishiki Tenmangu. Local people come here early in the morning to get water when they visit the temple.

One of the reasons why the Nishiki market has thrived, is because of the water. It was used to cool and keep food at a time before refrigerators. The water temperature is about 15℃~18℃.

Nishiki Tenmangu is also known as lucky place for academics, business, and health, so why not drop by if you’re in Kyoto?

Map

Sakaimachi, Chukyo, Kyoto 〒604-0000

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AUTHOR

kyoami

kyoami

Writer/ Translator

I love Japanese folkcraft article, traditional handicrafts and antiques. I’m seeking the Japanese people’s religious outlooks and its origins that are behind Japanese people’s unique sense and techniques rooted in the ordinary life.

Information

Address Sakaimachi, Chukyo, Kyoto 〒604-0000
Hours -
Price -
Close -
Access 6 min. by foot from JR Kyoto and Kintetsu Kyoto stations.
Phone 075-211-3882
Website http://www.kyoto-nishiki.or.jp (Japanese text only)