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About Osaka

Osaka is a wonderful port city on the Japanese island of Honshu that offers in abundance to travelers and tourists. It is also a commercial centre of Japan which is known for its modern architecture, a throng of restaurants and casinos, nightlife and hearty street shops. The place is known for the best sushi in the whole of Japan and also excels in serving warm delicious broth with wheat noodles and many other Japanese dishes. The new year in this port city is exuberantly celebrated with a week-long festivity. There are many tourist places in Osaka but the main historical landmark is the 16th-century shogunate Osaka Castle that has also undergone several restorations.

The famous streets of Dotonbori are the best place to experience the sizzling neon lights and the bustling street markets. Sumiyoshi-Taisha is among Japan’s oldest Shinto shrines. Osaka is a city of scenic parks, world-class shopping centres, and interesting museums with ages-old shrines and temples and a thousand backstreets to explore. Osaka is fondly called as kuidaore (meaning “Japanese Kitchen”), and eating oneself bankrupt is well encouraged and is the essence of the place.

Osaka is the third-largest city in Japan with thriving tourism attracted by a throng of tourist places in Osaka which was once the capital of Japan. Osaka is the economic powerhouse of Japan and the liveliest city that attracts most of the visitors in Japan. Osaka Castle Park, HEP Five, Expo Park, Minoh-Quasi-National Park, Universal Studios, the HEV, the various shopping and amusement plazas like the Namba Parks, Umeda Sky Building and the Tennoji Zoo and Osaka Aquarium; the list of places in Osaka is neverending. All you need to do is pack your bags, and plan a Japan trip to Osaka.

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Osaka FAQ's

Travel Advice

·         There are certain local rules and traditions applicable in every country, make sure you adhere to it.

·         Do not indulge in any fight or brawl with any individual.

·         Do not flaunt your valuables in a public space.

·         Make sure you are always alert and active.

·         Gather enough information about every destination you are traveling to.

·         Avoid undertaking a hike to an unknown destination.

·         Do not leave your valuables or cash in the hotel room.

·         Keep away from the touts.

·         Do not get involved in drugs of any forms.

·         To better interact with the locals, it is important for you to learn few words from the local language. 

·         Always take a room in the hotel that is known and famous.

·         Make sure your hotel is not located in any shady area.

·         Do not click pictures in an area that forbids you from taking pictures.

Drinking Law

The legal age for drinking in Osaka is 20 years. 

Our Recommendations: What you can’t afford to miss?

Osaka Castle

The spectacular Osaka Castle was completed in the year 1586 that is in a span of just 3 years. The castle was ordered built by renowned Japanese politician and warrior Toyotomi Hideyoshi. It was then the largest castle in Japan. Almost every Hideyoshi's military commanders was required to contribute stones to cater to the construction of this castle. The largest of all being the Higo-ishi stone which was used near the South entrance. It has exhibits which bring forth the history of the city along with the spectacular views over Osaka from the top floors. Another tourist attraction here in the Osaka Castle Park is the Hokoku Shrine. The shrine is dedicated to Hideyoshi and his family.

Shitenn?-ji Temple

Shitenn?-ji Temple is Osaka’s best known temple. Its history can be traced back to the AD 59. This is also the first Buddhist temple in Japan. Although rebuilt a couple of times through the centuries, the most recent reconstruction happened in the year 1960. This beautiful temple happens to be the oldest such religious site that is officially administered. To best explore this incredible place to see, you can take a guided tour to the temple. The significant highlights to the place include a five story pagoda along with a variety of other beautifully decorated buildings which include the Golden Pavilion embellished with its fine paintings and statues, the Lecture Hall which has a magnificent covered corridor that links three of the site’s gates. Besides this, the other buildings of prime interest in the complex include the hospital, teaching area and a pharmacy along with a beautiful garden.

Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan looks as if made of the giant Lego blogs. This is something that definitely makes the aquarium a great place to visit in Osaka. It is indeed one of the world’s biggest such attraction. This walk through the aquarium will take the guests on a fascinating tour of a variety of marine habitats including the Antarctica and Pacific Ocean as well as the Monterey Bay and the Great Barrier Reef. A myriad of Japanese marine life is also featured here. This includes native mammals, freshwater species and reptiles. All told, the aquariums flaunt of the 27 tanks. The biggest of these tanks is the 9-meter deep tank which is capable of easily accommodating the large marine life including sharks and manta rays.

Universal Studios Japan

Universal Studios Japan is one of the newest attractions in Osaka. It is indeed one of the city’s busiest and attracts over 10 million visitors on annual basis. This is also one of the only 4 Universal theme parks across the globe. The Osaka location assures a variety of renowned brands along with a few that are unique to this location. New additions here include the Hollywood Dream: The Ride which is a fun roller coaster that more likely travels backward at times; Universal Wonderland, which is a family friendly area that is ideal for those who travel with young kids and the rides based on the Spiderman franchise. If you go towards the Universal Cool Japan area including the One Piece Premier Show and the Monster Hunter, you’ll come across the uniquely Japanese themed characters and entertainment which can be seen in the rides which are based on the TV shows and the games. Also of prime interest to the fans of both the movies and books is the The Wizarding World of Harry Potter that is based on the prominent rides in the Orlando, Florida’s Universal's Island of Adventure.

The Tempozan Ferris Wheel

Tempozan Ferris Wheel offers some of the best views over Osaka majorly of the Tempozan Harbor Village and the port area in which it is situated. The iconic, wheel happens to be one of the major sightseeing attraction of Asia. The wheel is over 112 meter tall and has a diameter of 100 meters. It has been in operation ever since 1997 and provides a thrilling 17 minute journey which is particularly enjoyable during the night hours as then the wheel is decorated in a variety of colors as decided by the weather – blue for rain, orange when the weather is sunny and green for the clouds. It can be a great attraction especially for the adventure seekers who can opt for one of the special – ‘see through bottom’ cars to get incredible all round views of the Osaka Bay.

Twin Towers: Tstenkaku and the Kobe Port Tower

Osaka boasts of not one but rather two tall towers which have today become synonymous with the principal attractions of the city. The oldest of the two being, the Tstenkaku which is located in the city center. It stands on the site of a replica of the Eiffel Tower which was built in the year 1912 but later destroyed during the times of World War II. The current structure of the twin towers was completed in the year 1956. It still offers you the best views over the city especially from the Observation Level that is located on the fifth floor. There you can also find the God of Happiness shrine. Heading a little further away towards the outskirts of the city stands the 108 meter tall, red steel Kobe Port Tower. The tower opened in the year 1963 and boasts of an observation deck offering phenomenal views over the Kobe Port area and the city. The best time to visit these towers is during the night hours when both the towers are very well lit up.

What you will like there?

Shop til you drop

If you have the money to blow, you really ought to go shopping here. It is definitely the next best thing to spend your cash on after the endless sightseeing, food trips and sauna baths. Osaka is a reputable ‘mercantile mecca’ of Japan. Hence, it does makes sense to relish on the city’s economic prowess via one of the shopping districts here. In case you are on a lookout for the trendiest fashion wears, you can head to the stores of Midosuji and Shinsaibashi. To shop for the latest electronics and gadgets, one must visit town is the Denden Town. However, if you are sucker for the hip vintage, the most ideal hub is the Amerikamura. 

Famous modern landmark

Invariably, the most noticeable architectural wonder in the Osaka’s skyline is the arresting Umeda Sky Building. This mesmerizing piece of art by the renowned architect Hiroshi Hara is a result of the civic leaders in the 80s’ vision to come up with a ‘City of Air.’ As of today, it is occupied by the offices. It also has a grandiose “floating garden” observatory which is enveloped by the twin towers.

Japanese Puppet Theater

Osaka is a home to the original Japanese art of puppetry that has been around ever since the 1600s. This is the very reason why they have preserved the Bunraku which is the popular Japanese puppet theatre for centuries now. In this theatre, several shows are conducted which feature life like puppets and eerie which ought to blow your mind. One of the most renowned restaurants of Osaka, Cui daore also brought their very own doll outside the theatre in the scurry street of Dotonbori. 

Rich history with a cheaper price tag

A trip to Japan can be really pricey especially if you wish to explore and experience the fascinating history of the city. Fortunately, there is also a preserved historical treasure in Osaka which can take you back to the Edo period for just $6.50. besides this, there is a vast array of places to see for all the history buffs. If you wish to splurge, do make a visit to the picturesque temples, shrines and castle parks.

Big city with a small-town vibe

Osaka is the biggest commercial center that has a population which is largely composed of the merchant class. However, despite being populous and busy, the city is able to embed and capture the country charm within the urban vibe. In Osaka, you can make a choice amidst the vibrant and vivacious nightlife of the Umeda district or compete with the pushy housewives’ in Namba during the bargains in the market. You can also relish on the sumptuous meal at one of the many ethnic restaurants in the entertainment districts. Also enjoy a fine dine experience at the traditional sushi joint in one of the secret corners of the city.

Osaka has a bevy of mouthwatering culinary goodies

The most quintessential reasons to fall in love with any city is the food it offers. Osaka’s rich cuisine lures all. It is often believed that the people who visit Osaka tend to spend more on the rich cuisine of Osaka than on anything else. The city’s reputation in the food scene can be traced back to the Edo Period (1600-1800) wherein the city gained the status of the rice-trade hub of Japan. Osaka also boasts of a variety of signature dishes that will let you eat until you drop. Do try out the egg balls with grilled octopus filling called Takoyaki, top selling meat dish or the pancake-like seafood called Okonomiyaki, deep fried tofu called Kitsune Udon, fried flour and the thick wheat-noodles with soup. In order to experience the best gastronomic experience, you can make a visit to the over crowded Dotonbori district near Namba station.

Korea is a heartbeat away

One most vital thing which makes Osaka the most ideal place for travellers is its easy access to the other beauty in the East – Korea. Only a ride away, the Korea Town is situated in the Tsuruhashi which is the working class district. Here you can shop for a slew of KPop memorabilia, ever famous Kimchi and the Korean fashion pieces. 

People in Osaka

Last but obviously not the least, is the people of Osaka. People in this city of Japan are charming and very adorable. The city assures the travelers to enter and leave this magnificent city with a clamorous laugh just because it in the DNA of the locals here. Here the locals are known for being funny, brash and open with a dash of quirk. The city is a nice blend of Japanese modernity and the laid back old world charm. You can expect the same level of cultural flavour from Kyoto and citified energy from Tokyo, bereft the degree of crowd. 

Recommended reads for destination (govt. websites, travel forum articles)?

Website: Official Website


When is the best time to visit Osaka?

The best time to visit Osaka can be any time of the year as it experiences a temperate weather but summer is best to be avoided because it can be extremely hot and humid. However,   the best times to visit Osaka are the fall (October/November) and spring (March/April/May).

It is always a good choice to check the list of festivals if you aim for a specific time to visit along with the many tourist places in Osaka. You can visit this vibrant city during the New year’s eve to rejoice in the festivities and the cold comforting weather. Crab and fugu are some of the quintessential dishes of Japan which are more likely to be served in winters, so despite the cold and icy winters; a gastronaut can still think about going to Osaka during the winter season.

How to reach Osaka?

If you want to travel from India, the best way to Osaka is that you first land at Narita International Airport, Tokyo and then opt for the subway, a car or a bus to travel to Osaka. This way you can travel cheap and it will be more convenient.

Which are the best resorts to stay in Osaka?

Some of the luxurious resorts which offer an experience and not just a stay in Japan are listed below. You can try one of these to make your sojourn more comforting.

  • Fraser Residence Nankai Osaka
  • Swissotel Nankai Osaka
  • The Ritz- Carlton Osaka
  • Hilton Osaka
  • Courtyard by Marriott Shin- Osaka
  • Sheraton Miyako Hotel
  • Mitsui Garden Hotel Osaka
  • Intercontinental Hotel Osaka
  • ANA Crowne Plaza Osaka
  • Hotel Brighton City Osaka

What are the best public transport modes to commute around Osaka?

The best modes of transport are the subway, the bus, and the railways. For heavy travelling a 24- hour pass can be procured, while IC transferable storage cards can be used for payment.

Which are the best places for shopping in Osaka?

The best places for shopping in Osaka are listed below:


  • Sennichimae Doguya-Suji: In this market, you get to buy cooking utensils, supplies and cooking devices and if not buying then you can gorge on some of the best Japanese snacks in the eateries that are lined up in the market.
  • Den Den Town: From cameras to calculators, this electronic paradise offers every gadget that you are searching for, often at a discounted price.
  • Shinsaibashi suji: A retail bustling area that carries a rich Osakan history. With uncountable coveted brands Prada and Louis Vitton, this place is a hub of Kimono tailors, well-stuffed bookstores and jewellers.
  • Tempozan Marketplace: A three-story, modern shopping complex housing nightclubs, international stores, restaurants and other entertainment units.
  • Tennoji: From antiques to fashion, you find everything at Tennoji that also stands as one of the oldest markets in Osaka.
  • Nan  Nan Town: For an underground and casual shopping experience, visit this place where Japan’s underground shopping craze began.
  • Ame-Mura: Meaning American town serves best to the trendy fashion seeker.
  • Umeda Shopping Arcade: It is a series of underground shopping malls under the Umeda railway station.

What is the best local cuisine in Osaka? Where can I get to try it out?

Osaka is thronged with a number of restaurants and eateries with an abundance of food and delicacies. The best local cuisines of Osaka which are not to be missed are:

  • Sushi & Sashimi: Yoshino Zushi, Harukoma Sushi and Toki sushi are some of the excellent restaurants in Japan to try a mouth-filling plate of sushi.
  • Yakiniku & Horumon (Japanese BBQ): La Shomon in Kobe, Susumu, Matsuzakagyu in Osaka are some of the places where you can try the Japanese beef and meat.
  • Ramen (typically wheat noodles): Ramen Yashichi and Hakata Ippudo Ramen are some of the best Japanese restaurants to try the noodle dish.
  • Takoyaki (batter ball stuffed with Octopus): Takoyaki Wanaka and Koga Ryu Takoyaki are some of the known restaurants which serve the perfectly shaped Takoyaki.
  • Japanese curry: Oretachi no curry ya, Camp curry, and Ghar curry are few of the exemplary restaurants which can make you taste the best of Japanese curry.
  • Udon (chewy and thick Japanese noodle): Kitsune Udon, Chitose Nikusui and Senshyu Udon are some of the top-notch Udon serving restaurants in Osaka.
  • Okonomiyaki:  Ajinkya Okonomiyaki and Okonomiyaki Kiji are the best places to try these pancakes like dishes which are extremely different than a pancake.

Which are the famous pilgrimage places to visit in Osaka?

Osaka has many shrines and temples encapsulated into many stories from the past that takes you to a journey of Japan in an entirely different way. Listed down are some of the recommended pilgrimage places to visit in Osaka.

  • Hozen-ji: It is a small temple of the Pure Land sect of Jodo, Hozenji which stands like a timeless temple between the sizzling neon lights of Dotonbori district.
  • Isshinji: It is the sight of six Buddhas made of human bones.
  • Namba shrine is a Shinto shrine in downtown Osaka and is located in Midousuji.
  • Ikasuri shrine is small Buddhist temple in Osaka.
  • Nakayama-dera: It houses three statues of the famous Kannon and was founded in the twelfth century.
  • Shitenn?-Ji Temple: A Buddhist temple which is sometimes regarded as the oldest officially administered and the first Buddhist temple in Japan.
  • Ohatsu- Tenjin shrine: Attracts the young couples and lovers fro being an evidence of its romantic past.
  • Osaka Temmangu Shrine: It is the most famous Tenjin shrine that also hosts the Tenjin fest every year, mostly in the month of July.

Where can one enjoy adventure activities in Osaka?

There is a plethora of things and places that can give a chance to enjoy adventure activities in Osaka, some of which are as follows:

  • Enjoy the grandiosity of the Universal Studios in Osaka
  • Take a spin ride on the giant wheel at HEP FIVE mall.
  • Take a tour of the Osaka Castle Park
  • Meiji-no mori Minoh Quasi-National Park is the place to be for a wild encounter.
  • Climb through the mesmerizing routes of Mt. Kongo.
  • Expo Park: For culture, sports and Leisure.
  • There is a plethora of things and places that can give a chance to enjoy adventure activities in Osaka, some of which are as follows:

    • Enjoy the grandiosity of the Universal Studios in Osaka
    • Take a spin ride on the giant wheel at HEP FIVE mall.
    • Take a tour of the Osaka Castle Park
    • Meiji-no mori Minoh Quasi-National Park is the place to be for a wild encounter.
    • Climb through the mesmerizing routes of Mt. Kongo.
    • Expo Park: For culture, sports and Leisure.

Which are the famous museums in Osaka?

The famous museums in Osaka that shed light on the past and primitive living of Japanese culture can be witnessed in many museums and Osaka houses the most of them. Out of the many tourist places in Osaka, the miscellany of Museums in this Japanese land is remarkable.

  • Osaka Castle Museum
  • National Museum of Art, Osaka
  • Abeno Harukas Art Museum
  • National Museum of Ethnology
  • Osaka Museum of Natural History

Osaka Reviews

Sally Hoang
Reviewed: 09 Apr 2024
Easy booking, scan QR code at entry, enjoyable theme park.
Sally Hoang
Sally Hoang
Sally Hoang
Sally Hoang
Sally Hoang
Sally Hoang
(4+)View All
Paul Alvin Magsalin
Reviewed: 30 Sep 2023
My child really enjoyed the USJ experience! It was very convenient to book online, we don't need to fall in line to buy tickets.
Paul Alvin Magsalin
Paul Alvin Magsalin
Paul Alvin Magsalin
Paul Alvin Magsalin
Erwin Leinweberr
Reviewed: 27 Jul 2023
Long Story Short: All Good
Erwin Leinweberr
Erwin Leinweberr
Erwin Leinweberr
Erwin Leinweberr
Amar Ramdhave
Reviewed: 12 Nov 2024
As a traveler who booked this incredible Japan tour package through Thrillophilia, I can't help but share the amazing experiences I had. It was not just a trip; it was a magical journey into the heart of Japan's culture and beauty. One of the highlights was the boat ride on Lake Ashi, offering breat... Read More
Serenity Salinas
Reviewed: 29 Feb 2024
My experience with Thrillophilia's was amazing. I booked Classic Tour of Japan with Thrillophilia and that was nothing short of extraordinary. The itinerary was well-crafted, allowing us to explore Japan's rich cultural heritage, iconic landmarks, and picturesque landscapes. Our guide was not only k... Read More
Serenity Salinas
Serenity Salinas
Serenity Salinas
Serenity Salinas
Serenity Salinas
Shwet Pilla
Reviewed: 20 Jan 2024
Our Japan tour booked by Thrillophilia was a truly remarkable 11-day journey. Tokyo's vibrant atmosphere captivated us as we explored iconic sites like the Imperial Palace and Senso-ji Temple. The breathtaking views from Mt. Fuji's fifth station showcased its majestic conical shape. In Kyoto, the to... Read More
Shwet Pilla
Shwet Pilla
Shwet Pilla
Shwet Pilla
Shwet Pilla
Shwet Pilla
(3+)View All

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