This might sound like a very strange question for many people, but have you ever fished in the heart of a metropolis, right between all the skyscrapers and business districts? Well, if your answer is no but the idea surely intrigues you, you might want to consider going to Ichigaya Fishing Centre in Tokyo's Kanda district.
C-san on Flickr
A.Davey on Flickr
Fishing is deep-rooted in Japanese culture and fishing trips to the countryside are quite popular during the weekends and holidays, but for those living in the heart of Tokyo or for those who do not really want to have to go out of the city, Ichigaya Fishing Centre is an amazing alternative. The centre is located on the Kanda River and divides a small stretch of it in several sections filled with full-sized carps as well as a small goldfish pond for small children. As a complete novice to fishing, removing the hook from the carp`s mouth was far more difficult than I imagined making that goldfish pond very attractive, but luckily one of my friendly neighbors helped me out. The ponds are plentifully filled with carp so you can easily catch about three to five carps within the hour and the bait you are given is also more than enough. There are nets stocked at the entrance of the docks for you to use freely and you will need to use them to wield in these large carps. However, do keep in mind that although it is ok to leave them in the net you are required to release your caught fish when you are done fishing.
Shinya ICHINOHE on Flickr
It is a great experience to enjoy for both beginners and experienced fishermen as people will gladly help you out if needed. The establishment has been around for 50 years already and apart from the fishing ponds also stocks carefully selected tropical fish, aquatic plants and breeding supplies. Amongst Tokyo's fishing enthusiasts Ichigaya Fishing Centre is one of their go-to places to get some of their essential supplies.
Shinya ICHINOHE on Flickr
You can access Ichigaya Fishing Centre by taking the local Chuo-Sobu Line to Ichigaya Station or head for Shinjuku Station which is just a ten minute walk away. For an hour of fishing there is a fee of 750 yen for adults, 650 yen for seniors and students and 430 yen for children with an additional charge to rent a rod and get some bait. The centre is open from 9:30 to 18:30 every workday and 9:00 to 19:00 on weekends throughout the year. Please be aware that it might get very crowded during weekends and holidays. For those living in Tokyo and would like to take this activity up more frequently, you may want to enquire the Ichigaya Fishing Centre staff for their point system through which you can earn discounts.