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We really only had three-days and two nights for our first trip to Kyoto. So we planned as much as we could during those three days, including both sightseeing and eating! After we dropped off our luggage at the Hyatt Regency Kyoto, we wasted no time and took taxi directly to the market.The four-hundred-year-old Kyoto Nishiki Market is one of Japan’s most iconic markets and a must-visit place for tourists.
How to get to Kyoto Nishiki Market
Bordered on the west by Takakura-dori and on the east by Teramachi-dori, the Kyoto Nishiki Market is very easy to reach.
- From Kyoto Station, catch the Karasuma Subway line and get off at Shijo station, which is a short walk to the Takakura-dori entrance (near where the red dot is in the map).
- If you are taking the Hankyu Line, you can get off at the Karasuma Station.
- If you are taking a taxi, tell the driver to drop you off at the side street by Daimaru store, that is where the Takakura-dori entrance of the Kyoto Nishiki Market is.
Since we had been traveling all morning, we were feeling hungry by the time we arrived at the market entrance. Not sure if there were sit-down restaurants inside the market, we decided to have a quick lunch at the ramen shop (the red dot on the map above). The ramen hit the perfect spot!
Kyoto Nishiki Market – the “Kyoto Kitchen”
After lunch, we made our way to the market, which was busy but also very pleasant. Known as “Kyoto’s Kitchen”, many food-related things can be found in this lively retail market, from fresh and dried seafood, fresh and pickled produce, soft and hard sweets, to knives and cookware. There were so much yummy goodies here that we had a difficult time not wanting to try everything or take home all the cute stuffs!
My favorite snack in the Kyoto Nishiki Market was the giant roasted chestnuts and hot rice crackers! The kids had soft ice cream and Snoopy mochi from the Snoopy shop. My daughter picked up a pair of chopsticks from the Chopstick shop and had her name engraved onto the chopsticks (free of charge). The market also sells various type of dry rice seasonings. I regretted not picking up any of them as I was just overwhelmed (they all tasted good to me!)
The Kyoto Nishiki Market is open seven days a week, although many shops are closed on Wednesdays. Most stalls open around 9 a.m. and start closing around 6 p.m. You can easily spend a few hours here just wandering along. At the other end of the market was a covered shopping street with small shops, restaurants and bakeries. We walked through it quickly, then hopped into taxi towards Nijo Castle.