Words by Kumi Nagano
Since the Edo and Meiji eras, Tokyo has seen a boom in shopping districts. Some developed as wholesale markets, others a result of postwar black markets, while others grew to meet the demands of their student populations. Stocked to the brim, there’s nothing you can’t find in these specialised districts – and when we say specialised, we mean it.
Each area caters to a different kind of shopper, whether you’re looking for music instruments, ski equipment, books, kitchen utensils etc. Mostly, you’ll be buying from experts in the relevant field, which means you can also get the best advice. Often you can find goods for bargain prices, too. While these shops were originally aimed at professionals, these days many open their doors to the general customer as well. Here are six of the best to get you started.