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Published on 04.04.2016
Ameyokocho in Ueno is a half a mile stretch of really cheap food and goods. It started to rain while we were there, so we had to pull out the umbrellas! We walked around checking out all the small shops selling things ranging from shoes to 1000 yen bags of random assorted candy. There are also some extremely cheap places to eat with interesting choices of food. Some of the menu items are as cheap as 500 yen or about 3 or 4 dollars.
Ameyokocho was originally a shopping area known for candy shortly after the war. Then became known as one of the bigger black markets in Japan selling imported American goods. So there are two possible theories where the name Ameyokocho came from. Yokocho in Japanese basically means street or avenue. And ""ame"" either comes from the word for candy (""ame"") or from the beginning of America. No longer a blackmarket, they mostly just sell cheap clothing and imported goods. The way the show prices are often very deceptive because they tend to use red lettering over yellow paper, a combination I associate with sales.
If you plan on trying to haggle, be careful as that isn't really big in Japan and can possibly come off as rude. You may be able to get them to give you a discount if you buy in bulk, but other than that we don't recommend you haggle.
Ueno is also extremely accessible. About a 30 minute walk from Asakusa, it is totally possible to squeeze both of these areas in to one day. Getting to Ueno is also quite easy because it's on the Yamanote Line which is the circular line that goes to many of the major areas in Tokyo including Tokyo Station and Shinjuku Station. Ameyokocho is just a few minutes south of Ueno park and station between Ueno station and Okachimachi station.