Nihonbashi is a business district in Chuo Ward, Tokyo, which grew around the bridge of the same name which has linked the sides of the Nihonbashi River since the 17th century. It is an area where people can experience the fusion of both historic and modern Japan.
At the end of the Tokaido and Nakasendo roads to Edo, the area grew as a major trading center and cultural hub and there are shops and theaters in the area giving a glimpse of that history. Although there is excellent food nationwide, Nihonbashi is home of a number of famous, well-established shops that have been standing for more than 100 years.
Its early development is largely credited to the Mitsui family, who had their wholesaling business in the area and built Japan’s first department store, Mitsukoshi, there. In later years, Nihonbashi emerged as Tokyo’s (and Japan’s) predominant financial district and is home today to the Tokyo Stock Exchange, the Bank of Japan and many other major businesses.