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Cool Things To Do In Osaka

by Pankaj Upreti
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Things To Do In Osaka

Please read our below list for the best things you can do in Osaka-

1.Introduction

Located in the Kansai region of Honshu in Japan, Osaka is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Japan. The city has gained its popularity for a number of reasons and is best known for its attractions that will appease people from all age groups.

Apart from being a popular tourist destination, Osaka is also known for being Japan’s economic hub as it is the financial center of the country. If you are looking to spend some time in Osaka, this article is just what you need. We have curated a list of things that you must do in Osaka. To know more, read on:

2.Things That You Should Not Miss In Osaka

Here is a list of places that you must visit in Osaka. Read on to know more:

1.Osaka-Jo

Also known as Osaka Castle, this is one of the most important landmarks in Osaka, Japan.
Osaka-Jo | Photo Credit – Faustino Garcia

Also known as Osaka Castle, this is one of the most important landmarks in Osaka, Japan. The castle was built between 1583 to 1598 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who is also responsible for the unification of Japan.

The best time of the year to visit the castle is during the Spring season as you would see the place come alive with pink canopies. A visit to this place will enable you to marvel at Japanese architecture and will surely leave you with awe.

2.Osaka Aquarium

If you are looking for places to visit in Osaka along with your children, Osaka Aquarium is just the right place for you.
Osaka Aquarium | Photo Credit – David Offf

If you are looking for places to visit in Osaka along with your children, Osaka Aquarium is just the right place for you. The aquarium is famous all over the world for its presentation of the aquatic animals of the Pacific Rim. The aquarium has achieved this by recreating their natural habitat so you have the chance to have an authentic experience.

Known as Kaiyukan, the aquarium has over fifteen large tanks, amongst which “Japan Forest” is one of the most famous. When at Osaka Aquarium, make sure that you take out time to visit their tanks like “Pacific Ocean” and “Antarctica”. Kaiyukan is known for its interactive exhibitions so be assured of a good time. Here you have the chance to see over 30,000 creatures that belong to over 620 species.

3.National Bunraku Theatre

Located in Chuo-ku, the National Bunraku Theatre is a complex which consists of two halls and an exhibition room. The theatre opened in 1984 and was accorded the status of the fourth national theatre of Japan.

If you are interested in learning about the Japanese art of bunraku, this is just the place for you. Here you will be able to check out a number of puppets which are operated by three puppeteers while explaining Japanese epics and legends dating from the 17th and 18th centuries.

4.Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine

Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine | Photo Credit – Mith Huang

Also known as Sumiyoshi-taisha, this shrine is considered to be the main shrine of all the Sumiyoshi shrines in Japan. The shrine has been around for a long time as it dates back to the 3rd century. The shrine is famous among the locals by the name of Sumiyoshi-san and Sumiyossan.

This place receives a huge footfall on the New Year’s Day as it is a common Japanese custom to visit the place on the first day of the year. The shrine is also famous for its beautiful architecture which is also marked by its shrine grounds and the beautiful Sorihashi Bridge.

5.Tower Of The Sun

Built by the Japanese artist, Taro Okamoto, this is one of the most unique buildings that you will see in Osaka.
Tower Of The Sun | Photo Credit – Dick Thomas Johnson

Built by the Japanese artist, Taro Okamoto, this is one of the most unique buildings that you will see in Osaka. Characterised by three faces on the front and back, Tower of the Sun has become the cultural symbol of Osaka. With a height of over 70 meters, Tower of the Sun is a sight to look at and we recommend you to visit it.

6.Universal Studios Japan

Universal Studios Japan | Photo Credit – Thord Daniel Hedengren

Universal Studios Japan is one of the most famous theme parks that you must visit. Located in Osaka, the park is similar to the Universal Orlando Resort and has a number of attractions for people of all ages.

The park has been operating since the year 2001 and is known for being one of the most famous tourist spots in Osaka. So if you are a fan of Universal Studios and cannot get enough of them, this is just the place for you. Here you shall be able to understand them intimately.

7. Taste The Local Food Of Osaka

One of the best things to do in Osaka is to taste its local food. This place is a major attraction to food lovers from all over Japan. The best way to experience the culinary culture of Osaka is to take a stroll and stop by restaurants and stalls as per your choice.

However, make sure that you get the taste of Okonomiyaki, which is a kind of pancake made out of shredded cabbage and coated with a number of toppings. We also recommend you to try out kushikatsu which is made up from a  number of different meat and vegetables. 

8.Shitennoji Temple

Shitennoji Temple is a Buddhist temple in Osaka and is one of the most famous temples in Osaka, Japan.
Shitennoji Temple | Photo Credit – .Martin.

Shitennoji Temple is a Buddhist temple in Osaka and is one of the most famous temples in Osaka, Japan. The temple is considered to be the first Buddhist and oldest official administered temple in Japan. The temple dates back to the 6th century and was built under Emperor Suiko.

These days the temple is under reconstruction so will find a number of small structures scattered across the compound. The architecture of the temple is a sight to behold in itself because it consists of different styles.

Here you will find a temple that is built around the aesthetics of the 7th century as well as a temple which is modern in nature. A visit to Shintennoji Temple will introduce you to the culture of Japan and we highly recommend it.

3.Museums To Visit In Osaka

Osaka is known for its museums that will thrill you to the core. Here is a list of museums that you must visit in Osaka, Japan. 

1.Kamigata Ukiyoe Museum

If you are interested in Japanese traditional art and want to learn more about it then Kamigata Ukiyoe Museum is just the place for you. This museum is the only museum in the world that contains a permanent exhibition of Kamigata Ukiyoe, or Kamigata woodblock prints.

You will find about fifty works in their permanent exhibitions which will help you understand the nuances of Kamigata woodblock prints. If you are an art lover and would love to learn more about new styles of art, this museum will certainly delight you.

2.Maishima Pottery Museum

You will get the opportunity to use marine clay which comes from Osaka Bay.
Museum | Photo Credit – Alvin Leong

Are you interested in pottery and always wanted to try your hand at it? If yes, you must visit Maishima Pottery Museum. Here at the museum, you will get the opportunity to use marine clay which comes from Osaka Bay.

The major attraction of the museum is that you need to be a pro in order to partake in a pottery workshop. This is an ideal place for beginners because here you have the chance to learn by making mistakes. If you are traveling in Osaka with your family and looking for things that you can do together, we recommend a visit to this museum.

3.National Museum Of Ethnology

National Museum Of Ethnology | Photo Credit – cotaro70s

If you are interested in learning about the ethnology of not just Japan but other places of the world, this museum is just for you. Through an exhibition of ceramics, costumes, vehicles, masks, you shall be able to learn a lot of ethnology. There are galleries in the museum which are dedicated to Japan, Africa, Southeast Asia and India.

4.Osaka Museum Of Housing And Living

Osaka Museum Of Housing | Photo Credit – Stephen Kelly

If you are interested in history and want to gather information about the bygone days of Osaka, this museum is just the place for you. An open-air museum, this museum consists of a number of models of houses and other buildings ranging from the 17th to 19th century.

With a visit to this museum, you’d be able to learn about the townscapes of the Meiji, Taisho, and Showa periods. A visit to the Osaka Museum of Housing and Living will make for a thrilling visit and we highly recommend it.

5.Osaka International Peace Center

Famously known as Peace Osaka, this peace museum is one of the best places to visit in Osaka, Japan. The museum was established in the year 1991 and has grown in popularity ever since. The focus of this museum lies in documenting the destruction of the city during World War II.

This is an important museum to visit as it is based on pacifist ideals and aims to promote non-violence. If you wish to know more about the history of Japan and its wars, visit Osaka International Peace Center.

6.Momoduku Ando Instant Ramen Museum

This museum is one of the most unique museums that you will visit in Osaka, Japan and we highly recommend it.
Noodles | Photo Credit – Jessica Spengler

If you love noodles and cannot get enough of them, make sure that you take out time to visit Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum. A place like no other, this museum is dedicated to our all-time favorite food, instant ramen.

This place is interesting because here you will find a huge replica of a cup noodle, which will be enough to generate cravings for some noodles. One of the major attractions and perks of the museum is that here you can try a number of different noodles.

Not just this, they also organize a number of workshops through which you can try out hand at making some noodles. When at the museum, make sure that you check out the statue of Momoduku Ando, the person who is credited with inventing instant ramen. This museum is one of the most unique museums that you will visit in Osaka, Japan and we highly recommend it.

4.Adventurous Things To Do In Osaka

Make the most of your visit to Osaka by indulging in some thrilling activities. Here is a list of places that you must visit to have an adventurous time in Osaka.

1.Experience Dotonbori

Experience Dotonbori | Photo Credit – shankar s.

Dotonbori is one of the must-visit places in Osaka and we highly recommend it on your visit to Osaka, Japan.  Here at Dotonbori, you will find everything, right from bars to cafes. This place comes alive at night, so if you are looking for things to do at night in Osaka, this is just the place for you.

When at Dotonbori, we recommend you to take a stroll along the Tombori Riverwalk, which is a famous activity amongst the people who come to experience Dotonbori. You can opt for a river cruise in the Tonbori river.

If you have more time on your hands, you could spend some jolly hours indulging in some shopping at Shinsaibashisuji.

2.Abeno Harukas

Osaka is famous all over the world for its skyscrapers and Abeno Harukas is one of them.
Abeno Harukas | Photo Credit – m-louis .®

Osaka is famous all over the world for its skyscrapers and Abeno Harukas is one of them. This building is not just the tallest in Osaka but also in Japan. Abeno Harukas has now become a symbol of Osaka and we highly recommend you to visit it.

When you visit Abeno Harukas, make sure that you stop at the 5th floor, where you can not just enjoy a view of the city but also spend some time at a cafe located on the very floor. One of the major attractions of the building is its Observation deck from which you can catch a marvelous view of the city.

The building also has other attractions like stops and dining venues, so you will never run out of things to do.

3.Tempozan Ferris Wheel

Tempozan Ferris Wheel | Photo Credit – S.

If you are taking the trip to Osaka along with children, you cannot miss the Tempozan Ferris Wheel. Located at the Osaka Bay, next to Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan stands the famous Tempozan Ferris Wheel.

With a height of 112.5 meters and a diameter of 100 meters, Tempozan Ferris Wheel is quite a sight to behold. The wheel has been in operation since 1997 and a one-point was also the tallest Ferris wheel in the world.

You can take a ride on the wheel and enjoy the stunning sites of the city. If you are looking for things to do at night in Osaka, you come here as the wheel is illuminated by lights and makes for a beautiful sight.

4.Umeda Sky Building

Known for being the nineteenth-tallest building in Osaka, Umeda Sky Building is one of the must-visit places in Osaka.
Umeda Sky Building | Photo Credit – hans-johnson

Known for being the nineteenth-tallest building in Osaka, Umeda Sky Building is one of the must-visit places in Osaka. The building is 173 meters in height and was designed by Hiroshi Hara.

The building is also known as “New Umeda City” and is famous for its “Floating Garden Observatory” which is located on the 39th floor. A visit to the observatory will enable you to experience the city in a new way as you’d be able to see it from a bird’s eye view.

There is also a restaurant in the basement so make sure that you stop by for some snacks.

5.Tsutenkaku

Tsutenkaku | Photo Credit – hans-johnson

Tsutenkaku, which means “Tower Reaching Heaven” is one of the most important landmarks of Osaka. Located in the Shinsekai district, the tower is about 103 metre in height with an observation deck located at a height of 91 meters.

This tower is also known as the Eiffel Tower of Osaka so make sure that you get some good pictures in front of it for your Instagram account. The tower is also associated with luck that is believed to come to those who stroke the bottom of its feet. So if you are looking to have a good time in Osaka, make sure that you visit Tsutenkaku.

5.Places To Shop At In Osaka

Osaka is famous for its shopping culture as it is home to a number of unique shops. Here are two destinations that you must stop by to shop in Osaka. 

1.Shinsaibashi

This is one of the best places in Osaka to shop for some souvenirs, which will always remind you of your time spent in Osaka.
Shinsaibashi | Photo Credit – hans-johnson

If you are looking to experience the local culture of Osaka, visit one of the most popular shopping streets of Osaka- Shinsaibashi. Here you will find everything, right from restaurants to nightclubs.

This is one of the top places to visit in Osaka as you will never run out of things to do. If you are taking the trip with youngsters, make sure that you visit the Video Game Bar Space Station. This is one of the best places in Osaka to shop for some souvenirs, which will always remind you of your time spent in Osaka.

2.Tenjinbashi-Suji Shopping Street

Tenjinbashi-Suji Shopping Street | Photo Credit – Tatters ✾

One of the best things to do in Osaka is to indulge in some shopping and there is no place better than Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Street. This place is an ideal location for shoppers for a number of reasons.

The first reason being that this is the longest shopping street in Japan so you are sure to find a large number of shops to choose from. Here you will find everything right from clothes to other household items.

This is also an ideal place to shop for some traditional Japanese medicines. Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping street is any shopaholic’s paradise as here one can find everything under the sun.

6.Some FAQs

FAQs are as follows-

1. What Should I Get From Osaka?

There are a lot of things that you can buy from Osaka which will serve as a reminder of the good time you spent here. If you are confused about the souvenir that you should buy, here are some suggestions:

i. Madame Shinko Brulee-

If you have a sweet tooth then Osaka is the right place for you because it is famous for its sweets. Make sure that you stop at Madame Shinko and buy their famous Madame Shinko Brulle.

ii. Baton D’or-

A luxurious version of Pocky by Glico, you will surely love Baton d’or. You can find it at Hankyu store, Umeda and Osaka Takashimaya Store.

iii.Starbucks Osaka Tumbler-

Buy Starbucks regional items which come in vibrant colors that will uplift your mood and remind you of Osaka.

iv.551 Horai Pork Buns-

551 Horai is a famous Chinese restaurant located in Osaka. Make sure that you stop by it to buy some of their delicious buns.

2. How Long Should I Spend In Osaka?

You can spend about a week in Osaka and not get bored of its tourist attractions. If you are not running on a tight schedule, you can also consider staying in Osaka for more than a week.

However, if you are from outside Japan and planning to visit other cities, you might want to spend just 2-3 days in Osaka and spend the rest of your time exploring other places.

3. What Are The Best Places To Live In Japan?

There are a number of places in Japan where you can choose to stay and their order would change as per your specifications. This list has been created keeping in mind the parameter of safety for tourists.

1.Tokyo

2.Kawasaki

3.Sendai

4.Hiroshima

5.Sapporo

6.Kobe

7.Okayama

8.Kyoto

9.Fukuoka

10.Osaka

Please also read about things to do in Massachusetts.


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