Hakodate is synonymous with fresh seafood. With its vast collection of ingredients from Hokkaido, the Hakodate Asaichi Morning Market is a foodies’ heaven! In addition to an abundance of seafood like crab, sea urchin, salmon roe, and scallop sourced from the surrounding sea, you’ll also find a variety of agricultural produce and even processed products. This market started after the war, with stalls selling vegetables in a corner of the area in front of Hakodate Station. It has expanded since then into the large market of around 250 stores it is today. Over 1.5 million people visit the Hakodate Asaichi Morning Market each year, from tourists and locals to professionals in the food industry. Every day, the powerful and vigorous voices of the store owners reverberate through the market, filling it with energy and excitement. The market is easily accessible - it’s just a 1-minute walk from JR Hakodate Station. The Hakodate Asaichi Morning Market is open from 5:00 a.m to 2:00 p.m. (from 6:00 a.m from January to April/times vary by store). So it is also a great place for breakfast or lunch.
The Hakodate Asaichi Morning Market is roughly divided into three facilities. As soon as you exit JR Hakodate Station, you’ll see the Donburi Yokocho Ichiba restaurant arcade. Here you’ll find about 20 stores and restaurants mostly selling seafood rice bowls, which are filled with delicious fish and other seafood from Hakodate. Next door to the arcade is a 2-story building called the Ekini Ichiba. The main attraction here is the live squid pond. This is a popular place where you can fish for live squid yourself, and then have it cut up right there into super-fresh squid sashimi to eat immediately. The Asaichi Hiroba has fresh seafood and other produce, vegetables delivered directly from farms, souvenirs, and a food court. It’s a great place to take a break during your shopping. There are also many stores lining the main streets surrounding the market. Everywhere you go in the Hakodate Asaichi Morning Market, you can enjoy a friendly and fun shopping experience with local sellers.