One of the biggest markets in Japan, the Kochi Sunday market, was launched in Kochi every Sunday over 300 years since the Edo period.Located next to the entrance to Kochi castle, over 400 stalls’ owners start their day bright and early in the morning.It runs more than a kilometer long. When things are in full swing, you’ll find much of the neighborhood congregating in the marketplace and gossiping. Many stalls focus on locally seasonal goods, such as fresh fruits, vegetable, Inaka-Sushi, traditional Japanese sweets, Japanese pickled vegetables, and seafood. You will also find Takoyaki and Karaage (Japanese Fried Chicken) that are commonly seen in Matsuri (Japanese festival). In addition to food stalls, occasionally, there are some cute handy craft stalls.
To avoid the Sunday crowds, we get up early to enjoy the market.
So lucky we visit the market in mid-February. In Japan, Pomelo (Chinese grapefruit) is plentiful in the early spring. This booth provides samples for the Pomelo which are very tasty.
It’s a stall for lovely planters. The stall’s owner is really friendly and teach us how to water them. We really like these sweet planters.
The delicious looking of Inaka-Sushi is attempting. We can’t help but buy a box of them.
“Kumachan”(山の石けん屋 西熊家) is a local soap store opened in 2007. It is famous for its soap bar made with wild pigs’ oil and deer’s oil. Apart from it, plenty of products are available, such as hand-made soap bars made with coconut oil and evening primrose oil. Foreign travelers are big fans of those products.
An interesting handcrafts stall offers scale model cars of Tosa electric railway. Talking with the owners is a kind of fun. He is enthusiastic with crafting different types of scale model cars though we only see the Tosa electric railway train in the stand. We find the tiny model houses are also his works.
A cute family shoot of the stall’s owner! People in Kochi always give us a warm-hearted feeling. After noticing that we are foreigners, he talks to us friendly and picks up the traffic sign plate when we want to take a picture. The plate was used in the real Tosa railway system.
The color of the tea is similar to the Niyodo River (Niyodogawa) which is known as one of Japan’s most beautiful rivers running through Kochi. This unique tea is sold by “Herb Niyodogawa”.We fall in love with this light sweet and floral infused tea immediately.
Different types of herbal teas.
With such amounts of stalls, we can’t finish visiting this market in the morning, especially when the stall owners are greeting us friendly and occasionally. We stop by booths and have lots of fun chatting with owners. Thus we know that their culture centers around hospitality. The kind and pleasant atmosphere is the reason that makes this local market a must to visit place! Come and explore the culture while strolling the Sunday market in Kochi.
Address : Otesuji, Kochi City, Kochi Prefecture
Contact : Street Market Section, Industry Policy Division, Commerce & Tourism Department, Kochi Municipal Government
Business hours : Sundays 5:00-18:00 (5:30-17:00 from October to March) Closed on January 1 and 2, and during Yosakoi Festival (August 10 – 12)Access : ●About a 10-minute walk from JR Kochi Station on Shikoku Railway’s Dosan Line
Official website: http://www.city.kochi.kochi.jp/site/gairoichi