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Home - Travel - Sightseeing Guide - Kanto - Tokyo - Central Tokyo
Nihonbashi
# 17   of 73 most visited
sights in Tokyo

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Nihonbashi Bridge

Nihonbashi (日本橋), literally meaning "Japan Bridge", is a city district of Tokyo, just north of Ginza and northeast of Marunouchi and Tokyo Station. The bridge, after which the district is named, has been the mile zero marker for Japan's national highway network since the early Edo Period.

Formerly a wooden bridge, the Nihonbashi was reconstructed in stone during the Meiji Period, and was covered by an expressway in the 1960s. You can cross a partial 1:1 replica of the original wooden bridge in the Edo-Tokyo Museum in Ryogoku.

Mitsukoshi Department Store

As the "center of Japan", the Nihonbashi district has enjoyed much commercial prosperity over the centuries and the area has flourished with bustling markets, shops and merchants lining the streets. During the Edo Period, the Mitsui family, one of the most powerful merchant families of the era, chose it as the site for their Edo branch of Echigoya, a highly successful wholesale business and predecessor of Japan's first Western style department store. The store exists nowadays as Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi, the Mitsukoshi Company's flagship store.

In recent years, Mitsui has been the major force behind redeveloping the Nihonbashi district with several new skyscrapers that offer an attractive variety of shopping and dining in addition to office space. These include the Coredo buildings, the Nihonbashi Mitsui Tower with the Mandarin Oriental hotel on its top floors and the Muromachi East District, a trendy shopping and dining zone with a modern, yet traditional design inspired by the Edo Period merchant district.

Shopping and Dining

Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi
Shops: 10:00 to 19:00 (basement through third floor until 19:30)
Restaurants: 11:00 to 22:00
The construction of Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi's seven story main building was completed in 1935, and the Tokyo Metropolitan designated it a "historic structure" in 1999. There is an adjacent 10 story annex building that has direct connection on a few floors. It is possible to spend an entire day shopping here, and many shops are decidedly high end.

Coredo Nihonbashi
Shops: 11:00 to 21:00
Restaurants: 11:00 to 23:00
Everything closes one hour earlier on Sundays and national holidays
Closed: January 1
Located just beside Nihonbashi Subway Station, Coredo's approx. 50 shops and restaurants are spread across the lower five floors of the large building. The basement has one of central Tokyo's few regular supermarkets. Two more Coredo buildings, Coredo 2 and Coredo 3 are located further north in the Muromachi East District.

Muromachi East District
Shops: typically 10:00 to 20:00
Restaurants: typically 11:00 to 23:00
Closed: typically January 1
Located just across the street from the Mitsukoshi department store, the Muromachi East District is a newly redeveloped shopping and dining district. The area has a modern, yet traditional design inspired by the Edo Period merchant district with features such as stone paved pedestrian walks and shops that sell traditional goods and food such as knives and dried bonito.

Museums

Mitsui Memorial Museum
10:00 to 17:00 (entry until 16:30)
Closed: Mondays (or following day if Monday is a national holiday)
Admission: 1000 yen (or 1200 yen for special exhibition)
The museum has elegant exhibition galleries in which objects are displayed from the art collection of the Mitsui family, the same family that opened the nearby Mitsukoshi department store. The museum was opened in 2005 and has regularly changing themed exhibitions and a reconstruction of a teahouse. It is located in the Mitsui Tower complex that also houses the Mandarin Oriental on its top floors.

Currency Museum
9:30 to 16:30 (entry until 16:00)
Closed: Mondays, national holidays, December 29 to January 4
Admission: Free
English: Moderate
Located in an annex building across the street from the Bank of Japan, the museum was opened in 1982 to commemorate the bank's centenary. A detailed history of currency in Japan is displayed, and there are plenty of interesting historical coins and bills on display.

Any Questions? Ask them in our question forum.

How to get there
Nihonbashi Station on the Ginza, Tozai and Asakusa Subway Lines or Mitsukoshimae Station on the Hanzomon and Ginza Subway Lines bring you into the very center of the Nihonbashi district. Nihonbashi can also be accessed in a 5-10 minute walk from the Nihonbashi Exit of Tokyo Station.

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User Ratings
Ratings for Nihonbashi:
japan-guide.com Rating:
  interesting  
User Rating (by 962 users):
70/100
  mildly interesting

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30.  Nihonbashi (Tokyo)   2066
31.  Shinagawa (Tokyo)   2031
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34.  Fushimi Inari Shrine (Kyoto)   1851

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English Links
Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi
Official English website.
Mitsui Memorial Museum
Official English website.
Currency Museum
Official English website.

Japanese Links
Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi
Official website.
Coredo
Official website of Coredo Nihonbashi and Coredo Muromachi.
Mitsui Memorial Museum
Official website.
Currency Museum
Official website.

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