That’s it, you just booked your plane tickets to Land of the Rising Sun ?!
If Tokyo and Kyoto have already conquered you, the gastronomy and the warm atmosphere of Osaka have taken you over. Japan’s western metropolis is among the top 3 Japanese cities to visit. But what to do in Osaka? With its vibrancy, modern architecture and tasty local cuisine, this cosmopolitan city has it all.
Here are 10 ideas of the best things to do in Kansai’s capital.
? Osaka, the third largest city in Japan
Because of its size and its 2.7 million inhabitants, Osaka is the third largest city in the archipelago. Located in the Kansai Region southwest of the island of Honshu in Osaka prefecture, this port city played an important role in the country’s industry after World War II and remains one of the Japan’s economic lungs. Osaka trains with Kyoto et Kobe the three urban centers from the Kansai region. Considered the gastronomic capital of Japan, the metropolis is particularly known for its Street food.
? Best things to do in Osaka
The kansai capital has something to delight travelers with its lively district Nope and he is famous doton buri street that never sleeps The city is also known for his castle and its spiritual places most surprising Osaka is also a mecca for entertainment with its amusement parksson Aquarium gigantic, his popular dishes and its theaters. You sure won’t get bored in Osaka.
? Stroll down Dotonbori Street
Lying in the heart of the Namba district south of osaka, Dotonbori it is without a doubt the most touristic place in the city. This commercial street next to the canal of the same name is full of restaurants and bars that will offer you the best local specialties. At night, from giant neon signs and giant screens light up the street to amaze passers-by. Among them, the poster Glico and his athlete, which has become a symbol of the district. Above the Kani Dokaku Restaurantwe can see a giant crab, another local pet. Bustling day and night, the place is ideal for soaking up the busy atmosphere of Osaka and tasting delicious japanese street food.
? Partying in the Namba district
Namba district also known as minami It is the hottest in Osaka. At night, the bustling streets take on a festive atmosphere and shine with a thousand lights under the neon signs. You can smell the delicious aromas of Japanese street food. After a good meal and a drink in a izakayathe district offers many entertainments such as karaoke, pachinko parlors et discos.
? Shopping in the Shinsaibashi district
Within l’arrondissement Chuo-kunot far from Dotonbori, go to the Osaka’s most commercial districtnamed Shinsaibashi. The place is famous for its shopping malls, its large shopping center 600 m long hyper-frequented and its shops. It should be noted that trade has not stopped radiating in this district since the Edo period. In Shinsaibashi, shopaholics will have a picnic.
? Visit Osaka Castle
The center of Osaka, home to one of most famous castles in japanese history and its huge green park. Emblem of the city, this 16th century building has been rebuilt several times and only the moats and walls are original. However, its architecture offers amazing contrast with the surrounding urban landscape. It costs about 600 yen for the visit, or about 5 euros. Inside the building you will find a museum that presents osaka castle story, a symbol of the unification of Japan in the era of the samurai. The icing on the cake: from the top of his dungeon, you will have a Incredible views over the city of Osaka.
? Marvel at the Kaiyukan Aquarium
Southwest of Osaka, in the Minato district, is one of the largest aquariums in the world. Kaiyukan is an urban aquarium located in Osaka Bay, where you can see more than 600 underwater species of the Pacific Ocean. The site is home to ponds of impressive size and no less than eleven tons of water! The visit begins with a passage through a fish tunnel before climbing to the eighth floor to find otters, penguins and others aquatic specimens. The main attraction remains the aquarium mascot: the whale shark.
? Recharge at Shi Tenno-ji Buddhist Temple
In the popular neighborhood of Tennoji, a stone’s throw from the station, you can visit one of the temples buddhists the oldest in Japan and the largest in Osaka. Erected in the 6th century, at the behest of the Prince Shotoku this spiritual place dedicated to 4 Heavenly Kings of Buddhism it is most peaceful. Despite several fires, the complex was rebuilt preserving its original architecture. Note that you can access the interior of the pagoda, which is very rare for a temple in Japan.
⛩ Discover the Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine
In the south of the metropolis, not far from the famous Namba district, there is one of the most beautiful sanctuaries. Shintoism of Japan in Sumiyoshi Ward. Founded in the 3rd century (before the arrival of Buddhism in Japan), Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine offers a unique architectural style and a history dating back to ancient Japan. Class National Treasurethis place of worship venerates the 4 Sumiyoshi tanjin kami and Empress Jingu. Immerse yourself in the serenity of this sacred place, where calm reigns outside hatsumode period (Japanese New Year).
? S’amuser at Universal Studios Japan
Universal Studios Japan is the franchise’s first park outside of the US! Every year this amusement park attracts many tourists from all over the world to Osaka Bay. Please note that the site is easily accessible by train. Your theme? The Cinematic Universe of American Blockbuster Moviesvideo games and the greatest japanese manga. Discover the magical universe ofHarry Potterthe roller coaster flying dinosaur not forgetting the exciting interactive race Mario Kart.
? Take to the skies at Umeda Sky Building
The Umeda Sky Building is an impressive skyscraper composed of two 40-story towers, linked together by an observatory. Located in the north of the city, in the futuristic district of Umeda, the building was built in 1993 in the end of the Japanese economic boom. With its glass walls and original structure, the building designed by Hiroshi Hara It stands out for its modern architecture. At the top of the building, a great reward awaits you: Le Kuchu Teien Observatory either floating garden observatory offers an incredible 360 degree panorama of the entire city! In the afternoon you can admire the sunset over the mountains while as soon as night falls, the cityscape will shine brightly.
? Taste culinary specialties
Kushikatsu in a bowl at a restaurant in Osaka.
Without a doubt, Osaka is a city where you can eat well. Food lovers and fans of japanese gastronomy you’ll love the local specialties like takoyaki, okonomiyakito them kushikatsu or even the kitsune udon.
Takoyaki are absolutely delicious octopus fritters with vegetables and ginger. Always based on octopus, the tako tamako are very tasty caramelized skewers in which there is a quail egg. Okonomiyaki is a pancake mix from Osaka made from cabbage. This grilled tortilla is loaded with many ingredients. You can find them everywhere in the city. Nevertheless, those in Dontonbori and Namba districts are very famous. For those who don’t like cabbage, a variation with green onions is called negiyaki. In Osaka you will find many varieties of kushikatsu to enjoy with a beer at the izakayas. These are fried skewers made from meat, fish or vegetables that are endlessly available. Finally, kitsune udon, a thick noodle soup served with fried tofu and dashi broth, is famous for its sweet taste.
For his lively atmosphere and its various points of interest, Osaka has many tourist attractions to satisfy the whole family. And you, what is your program?