Osaka is Japan’s second largets area after Tokyo.
It is a very lively, energetic place.
It is famous for delicious food and entertainment like comedy shows.
People living there are generally open to foreigners and you will feel that you are welcomed.
Local people are called Kansai people, (people living in the west part of Japan),
and they are generally more friendly and open compared to Kantou people (people in the east part of Japan).
While Kantou people respect personal spaces and tend to have certain distance from others, Kansai people like to interact with others and talk about business.
It is very interesting to see people behave differently in different parts of Japan.
If you are visiting Tokyo(which is in Kantou), I highly recommend that you visit Osaka(Kansai) as well to see the differences.
Here are some of the best things to do in Osaka.
Visit Osaka Castle
In 1583, Toyotomi Hideyoshi started building the castle to be the center of Japan under his rule.
It is one of the most famous castles and was the largest castle during the sixteenth century.
The castle grounds cover about 60,000 square meters.
The main central tower is 55 meters high.
There is a museum inside and garden around it.
You can enjoy the panoramic view of Osaka city.
Hours: 9:00 to 17:00
600yen to enter
Eat at Dotonbori
Dotonbori is the center of food culture of Osaka(The culture is called Kuidaore, meaning to eat yourself into bankruptcy).
People in Osaka are very passionate about food,
and serve a lot of delicious food that make you spend a lot!
This area has been a busy district with entertainment and food stores since the Edo period.
Below are some of the must-try food and famous restaurants.
(Deep fried meat,seafood, or vegetables on a stick)
Restaurant: Kushikatsu Daruma
Hours: 11:30 to 22:30
Price range:Around 2,000yen per a person
(It is a pancake like food with fluffy batter and lots of ingredients such as vegitables, noodles, siced pork, and eggs. The taste varies depending on the restaurant.)
Hours: 11:00 to 22:00
Price range: Around 1,500yen
(They are ball shaped dumplings with batter or eggs and flour with sliced octopus, onions, and ginger. Usually some sweet source and mayonnaise are put on top with green onions and bonito flakes. They are VERY hot inside so becareful when you eat!)
Hours: 12:00 to 23:00(Mon to Fri), 11:00 to 22:00(Sat, Sun)
Price range:1,000yen to 2,000yen
(It is barbecued beef. Usually customers cook themselves on a grill on the table. Osaka has the most Korean influence in Japan, and it is believed that this style is brought from Korean culture)
Hours:17:00 to 23:30(Mon to Fri), 16:00 to 23:30(Sat, Sun)
Price range:3,000yen to 4,000yen
(Blowfish that is eaten raw. It is poisonous to eat blowfish without a careful preparation, but fugu chefs are trained three years to get a license to serve at a restaurant so you don’t need to worry. Enjoy the rare opportunity to try fugu in Osaka!)
Hours:11:00 to 23:00
Price range:2,000yen to 8,000yen
Go sightseeing around Tsutenkaku
It is a tower known as the Eiffel Tower of Osaka.
It is a symbol of Osaka, and it is in the district called Shinsekai(New world).
In the area, there are a lot of stores and huge bath complex as well as large pools.
You can go in side of the tower and enjoy the view from the 5th floor!
Hours:9:00 to 21:00
700yen to enter the tower
Take pictures at Shitennoji
It is one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Japan(founded in 593),
built to save the souls of people and bring peace to Japan.
Gates at Shitennoji temple are guarded by wooden statues,
or Niou(Benevolent Kings).
There is the Gokuraku-jodo Garden(Pure Land Garden, or Buddhist paradise) and the Treature House (Buddhist statues, paintings, various documents, and national treasures are stored inside)
The area is great for taking pictures.
Enjoy seeing this historical building and beautiful garden!
Open 24 hours
300yen to enter the garden, 500yen to enter the Treasure House
Osaka is a perfect place to enjoy Japanese cuisine and the lively atmosphere talking over drinks.
Osaka never sleeps like other big cities of Japan, and you will never get bored shopping and checking restaurants that serve delicious meals.
Be prepared to Kuidaore there!
•By train: Take Nozomi Shinkansen to Shin-Osaka and take JR train to Osaka
(Time: About 2 hours an 45 min Price:13,780yen)
•By bus: There are various buses go to directly to Osaka.
Please refer to the link Kosokubus
(Time: About 9 hours, Price: 3,000yen ~)
Take JR Tokaido Sanyo Main Line New Rapid Bound for Himeji
(Time: About 29 min, Price: 560yen)
Take JR Tokaido Shinkansen Nozomi Bound for Shin-Osaka and then take JR train to Osaka
(Time:About 1 hour, Price 5,830yen)
Where’s the best place to eat in your country?
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See you next time!