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This video, titled "[Osaka Travel Vlog] Osaka Travel - Popular Spots💯 & Delicious Food🐙 #Day1" (【大阪 観光Vlog】大阪 旅行 人気スポット・グルメ🐙を満喫💯 #Day1), was uploaded by "Shindy Life."

Osaka is one of Japan's largest cities, on par even with Tokyo. Osaka is also known as a town of warm-hearted people who cherish laughter and value the bonds they form with others.
The video introduces some of the most popular spots in Osaka, including Sennichimae Shopping Street, Namba Grand Kagetsu, and Shinsekai, where the famous landmark, Tsutenkaku Tower, is located.
Osaka is also known as the food capital of Japan, and is famous for its delicious cuisine. You can find tasty dishes at places like "JAPANESE TAVERN NAGAHAMA" (大衆酒場 ながはま) and "Yamazaki Gyoza" (餃子の山﨑) which also appear in the video.
Before reading further, experience what it's like to travel to Osaka via the video. You're sure to want to visit Osaka after watching it!

There are so many tourist attractions in Osaka that it's easy to be overwhelmed and not know where to go. Below, we've compiled a list of the 27 best things to do when touring Osaka. You're sure to find a place that's to your liking! We hope this list can help you enjoy your trip to Osaka!

Image of Dotonbori, Osaka
Photo:Dotonbori, Osaka

Osaka is THE place to be if you're looking to experience the rich food culture of Japan. One of the most famous culinary spots in Osaka is Dotonbori. This street is line with famous restaurants such as "Kani Doraku," a restaurant known for its delicious seafood and the large crab that adorns the main entrance.
Takohachi (たこ八) and Takoyaki Doraku Wanaka (たこ焼きたこ焼き道楽和 わなか) are two famous takoyaki restaurants offering "takosen," a popular snack made of takoyaki sandwiched between shrimp-flavored rice crackers! You can also enjoy pork buns from "551 Horai," a restaurant in Japan famous for its unique commercials.
If you visit Dotonbori, don't forget to take a photo in front of the large Glico sign seen from Ebisu Bridge while enjoying the food. It's the most iconic photo spot in Osaka!

Universal Studios Japan
Universal Studios Japan is the most popular theme park in Japan's Kansai region. It features both Harry Potter- and Spiderman-themed areas, and visitors can enjoy rides based on Hollywood movies. The park is full of attractions with characters from popular movies and shows that both children and adults alike can enjoy. Tickets can be purchased from the official website, but some travel agencies also offer package plans that include tickets and a one-day pass to Hotel Universal Port, the official hotel of Universal Studios Japan.

A Video Article Related to Universal Studios Japan

Osaka Castle
Osaka Castle is a symbol of Osaka and attracts many tourists each year. It is also loved by the local people, and is known for having been built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi, a famous Japanese warlord.
The castle tower has a heroic presence, and was reconstructed in 1931 with donations from the citizens of Osaka. Since its reconstruction, the castle has been used as a history museum, displaying a wealth of cultural assets related to the Sengoku Period (1467-1615 AD) and Toyotomi Hideyoshi. The observatory also offers a view of Osaka's modern skyscrapers. An admission fee of 600 yen is charged to visit the Osaka Castle Keep, which serves as a history museum.

A Video Article Related to Osaka Castle

Osaka Castle Park
Osaka Castle Park is an urban park with Osaka Castle at its center. With a view of the historical Osaka Castle Keep, Osaka Castle Park is a popular place for tourists and citizens of Osaka to relax and enjoy the flowers of Japan's four seasons.
In the spring, visitors can enjoy the plum grove with 1,270 plum trees of some 100 varieties, the cherry blossoms of Nishinomaru Garden with approximately 300 cherry trees, and the colorful autumn leaves of the ginkgo trees in the fall. Other events, such as music concerts, are held at Osaka Castle Band Shell and Osaka-Jo Hall.

A Video Article Related to Osaka Castle

Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan
Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is a must-see tourist attraction for families sightseeing in Osaka.
One of the world's largest aquariums, Kaiyukan reproduces the natural environment of the Pacific Ocean, with 30,000 plants and animals of 620 varieties on display. Of particular note is the giant tank, which is 9 meters deep and 34 meters long, reproducing the environment of the Pacific Ocean, where large stingrays, migratory fish, and the symbol of Kaiyukan, the whale shark, can be seen swimming at their leisure. Whale sharks can be seen only in four places in Japan, one of which is Kaiyukan.

Shinsaibashisuji Shopping Street
Shinsaibashisuji Shopping Street stretches 580 meters from north to south and is a leading attraction in Osaka's Minami district. It's lined with approximately 180 stores, including Daimaru, a Japanese department store chain, as well as clothing stores, and restaurants. The historic shopping street, which has existed since the Edo Period (1603-1868), is now a highly popular tourist attraction among both locals and foreign tourists alike.
It's also a recommended spot for those looking to enjoy Osaka's rich food culture, including Osaka's famous takoyaki (fried balls of octopus), okonomiyaki (savory Japanese-style pancakes), and kushikatsu (deep-fried skewered pork cutlets). To get there, simply get off at Shinsaibashi Station from the subway. It's an arcade shopping street, so it's the perfect place to go even when the weather is bad.

Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine

Image of Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, Osaka
Photo:Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, Osaka

Sumiyoshi Taisha is so popular that it's said to be synonymous with Hatsumode (the first temple or shrine visit of the New Year) in Osaka. The historical Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, which dates back to 211 AD, is full of interesting sights. Historically intriguing spots await you, such as Sorihashi Bridge, which is approximately 20m long, 3.6m tall, and 5.5m wide, the unusual torii gate with square pillars, and the four main shrines, which are designated as National Treasures.

Shitennoji Temple

Image of Shitennoji Temple, Osaka
Photo:Shitennoji Temple, Osaka

Shitennoji Temple was built as the first state-sponsored temple of Japanese Buddhism. It's a popular spot because it was built by the famous Prince Shotoku.
Lining the temple grounds are a number of beautiful vermilion-lacquered buildings reminiscent of the Asuka Period (circa 592-710 AD). Niomon Gate, the five-storied pagoda, Kondo Hall (the main temple hall), and Kodo Hall (the lecture hall) are stunningly beautiful. Many of them are designated as Important Cultural Properties or National Treasures, so they are recommended spots for history buffs as well.
It's also said to bring good luck in academics, good health, and children rearing, so be sure to pay a visit!

Kuromon Market

Image of Kuromon Market, Osaka
Photo:Kuromon Market, Osaka

The market is called Kuromon Market (黒門市場, lit. "Black Gate Market") because the gate of Enmyouji Temple–located near the market–was black.
The 580-meter-long shopping street is lined with approximately 150 stores, and is a place where one can experience firsthand the lively atmosphere of Osaka. In addition to takoyaki and okonomiyaki, there is a wide variety of delicious food to be enjoyed, including seafood skewers, tuna croquettes and other snacks, as well as fresh juices, matcha ice cream, and other delicacies. If you want to enjoy Osaka, the street food capital of Japan, to the fullest, Kuromon Market is a must!

Tempozan Ferris Wheel
The Tempozan Giant Ferris Wheel, one of the world's largest Ferris wheels, is located in the Tempozan Harbor Village amusement complex, a 5-minute walk from Osakako Station on the Chuo Subway Line. The view from the Ferris wheel, which is 100 meters in diameter, is nothing short of spectacular.
The 15-minute ride around the wheel offers an extraordinary view of not only the city of Osaka, but also Akashi Kaikyo Bridge. The Giant Ferris Wheel is illuminated at night and has been recognized as a Night View Heritage of Japan.

Osaka Museum of History

Image of the Osaka Museum of History, Osaka
Photo:Osaka Museum of History, Osaka

Located adjacent to Osaka Castle Park and Naniwa no Miya Palace Ruins, the Osaka Museum of History exhibits Osaka's 1,400-year history with full-scale reconstructed buildings and miniatures.
Its distinguishing feature is its hands-on experiences by actually touching and experiencing the exhibits with your own hands. The museum offers a daily changing menu of hands-on activities, such as experiences that let participants wear clothes that a Nara period (710-794 AD) official would have worn, or experiencing the work of a money changer from the Edo Period. This is a recommended tourist attraction for visitors with children and those interested in learning about Osaka's history.

Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Street
Did you know that Osaka has the longest shopping street in Japan? Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Street stretches 2.6 kilometers from north to south and is lined with some 800 stores.
It has become popular as a sightseeing spot where you can discover the daily lives and warmth of the people of Osaka. Nearby are Osaka Tenmangu Shrine and the headquarters of Kansai Television, and if you're lucky, you can even meet famous entertainers filming on location in the shopping arcade! If you walk slowly, Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Street can take 3 to 4 hours to explore, making it a good choice for those who want to experience the essence of Osaka.

Osaka Museum of Housing and Living
Osaka Museum of Housing and Living, which recreates the streets of Osaka in the Edo period (1603-1868), is a place where visitors can feel as if they have stepped back in time to Edo Period Japan.
It's the first museum in Japan to specialize in housing, history, and culture, and is a popular spot for tourists as it offers various cultural experiences, such as a matcha (powdered green tea) and kimono. The museum is also conveniently accessible as it is connected to the exit of the subway. Come and experience Osaka in the Edo period at the Osaka Museum of Housing and Living.

Kamigata Ukiyoe Museum
Kamigata Ukiyo-e depicts pictures of actors in kabuki plays that were performed in Dotonbori. This is the only museum in the world that permanently exhibits Kamigata Ukiyo-e. Kamigata Ukiyo-e is characterized by its depiction of people themselves, without glorifying them as in Edo Ukiyo-e. Perhaps the best part of Kamigata Ukiyo-e is that you can feel the friendly atmosphere of Osaka.

Umeda Sky Building

Image of Umeda Sky Building, Osaka
Photo:Umeda Sky Building, Osaka

The Umeda Sky Building was described as a thrilling skyscraper in the U.K. and was selected as one of the Top 20 Architectural Buildings in the World. The two connected buildings are an ingeniously beautiful sight.
The Umeda Sky Building houses restaurants, a movie theater, and an art museum, while the main feature is the Kuchu Teien Observatory, which is located 173 meters above ground and can be accessed from outside. The view from the top 40th floor is nothing short of spectacular. There is free access up to the 39th floor, where there is also a restaurant and bar lounge. It's well known for its beautiful views, especially at night.

Osaka Cupnoodles Museum
The Cupnoodles Museum is located in Ikeda, the birthplace of instant ramen.
In addition to learning about the history of instant ramen and Momofuku Ando, the founder of Nissin Foods, visitors can make their own original chicken ramen and cup noodle, making the museum popular among families and ramen fans alike.
The My CUPNOODLES Factory, where you can make your very own cup noodle, is especially popular. When sightseeing in Osaka, be sure to make a trip over to Ikeda.

Spa World
Spa World: The World's Greatest Hot Springs, is a hot spring theme park with hot spring bathhouses from around the world with different characteristics, as well as swimming pools and ganban'yoku (hot stone spas). It's a popular tourist attraction in Osaka.
There are 17 types of baths from 12 countries and 6 types of bedrock baths with different effects, so you can enjoy the feeling like you're traveling to more countries than just Japan. The amusement pool, with its exciting slides, can be enjoyed all year round and is very popular with families.

Tsutenkaku & Shinsekai
If you want to experience the authentic atmosphere of Osaka, Shinsekai is the place to go. With its gaudy billboards, neon signs, and stores with retro appearances, it's a hugely popular spot among both domestic and international tourists.
In addition to popular Osaka restaurants such as Daruma, the birthplace of kushikatsu (deep-fried skewered pork cutlets), you can also play target practice and games in the retro shopping alley Janjan Yokocho.
The symbol of Osaka, Tsutenkaku Tower, is also home to Billiken, a charm doll that is said to bring happiness, so be sure to go see him!

A Video Article Related to Tsutenkaku Tower and Shinsekai

Abeno Harukas
Abeno Harukas is the tallest building in Japan at 300 meters above ground. The highlight of the building is the Harukas 300 observation deck on the 60th floor, which offers a panoramic view of the city of Osaka from 300 meters above ground. The view of Osaka from the glass-walled indoor corridor is like looking at a diorama. The view is so spectacular that you'll feel as if you're walking in the sky.
For an even more thrilling experience, we recommend EDGE THE HARUKAS, where visitors can cross a glass deck at the top of the building with a safety harness.

Osaka Station City

Image of Osaka Station, Osaka
Photo:Osaka Station, Osaka

Osaka Station City, a commercial complex and station building located in Osaka Station, the gateway to Osaka, is another tourist attraction we recommend checking out.
The complex is home to a variety of stores, with the latest fashions to delicious foods and entertainment. The shops offer everything from high quality brands to local food and souvenirs, making it a popular destination for foreign tourists.
There is a wide variety of restaurants, including Japanese, Chinese, Italian, and French. In addition, there are eight plazas whose designs were supervised by renowned Japanese industrial designer Eiji Mitooka, that offer visitors a chance to take a break and relax. The outdoor Kaze-no-hiroba Plaza (Plaza of Wind), where visitors can enjoy the tasteful greenery, is another popular spot.

Namba Yasaka Shrine
Namba Yasaka Shrine is famous for its stage which is a temple inside the mouth of a giant lion. The stage was built as a symbol of the shrine with the idea that it should be something that would surprise the people of Osaka. The giant lion's head, standing 12m tall, 11m wide, and 10m deep, leaves a strong impression on those who see it. People come from all over Japan and abroad to see the lion's head. The shrine is believed to bring blessings for academic achievement, and is popular among athletes as it's said to bring luck in victory.

A Video Article Related to Namba Yasaka Shrine

Osaka Expo Park
Osaka Expo Park, located in Suita, was created to commemorate the success of Japan World Exposition, Osaka, 1970, or simply "Expo '70." The park is rich in nature and loved by many people, and includes a Japanese garden and a nature and culture garden.
The 70-meter-tall Tower of the Sun, designed by artist Taro Okamoto, is a powerful sight when seen up close! The La-La-Port Expocity commercial complex, which is very popular among children, is also located here, making it a great place for families to visit on a sightseeing trip.

A Video Article Related to the Tower of the Sun

Ohatsu Tenjin Shrine
Ohatsu Tenjin Shrine is located on Ohatsu Tenjin Dori Shopping Street, a 5-minute walk from Osaka Station, where nearly 100 restaurants line the street. Its official name is Tsuyu-no-Tenjinja, and it is also known as the birthplace of Sonezaki Shinju (The Love Suicides at Sonezaki), a joruri play written by Chikamatsu Monzaemon.
Ohatsu Tenjin Shrine became famous as a shrine for matchmaking because of an actual love suicide incident that served as the model for The Love Suicides at Sonezaki. Heart-shaped ema (votive plaques) and shuin (temple/shrine seals) depicting Ohatsu and Tokubei, the two main characters in the play, are very popular.

Minoh Falls and Minoh Park

Image of Minoh Falls at Minoh Park, Osaka
Photo:Minoh Falls at Minoh Park, Osaka

Minoh Park, a quasi-national park located around Mt. Minoh, is home to numerous attractions. In addition to the Minoh Park Insectarium, the promenade leading to Minoh Great Falls is perfect for a stroll. The most popular of all is Minoh Falls, which has been selected as one of the Top 100 Waterfalls in Japan. The name Minoh Falls (箕 Mi, meaning "winnowing basket" and 面 noh, meaning "surface") comes from the fact that the water falling from the 33-meter drop resembles the shape of a winnowing basket.
During autumn, when the leaves change color, Minoh Falls can be seen through the bright red maple trees, attracting many visitors.

National Bunraku Theatre
The National Bunraku Theatre, where you can watch Bunraku plays—a uniquely Japanese traditional performing art—is a 1-minute walk from Nihombashi Station. Bunraku, which is both highly artistic and popular, originated in Osaka. Famous bunraku plays include The Battles of Coxinga, created by Chikamatsu Monzaemon, and many more.
Designated as a UNESCO World Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2008, visitors can enjoy Bunraku with an earphone device that allows them to listen to what's being said on stage and commentary on the story. If you've never experienced Bunraku before, this is the perfect opportunity to do so!

A Video Article Related to Bunraku

Osaka Science Museum
The theme of the Osaka Science Museum is space and energy, and with exhibits that focus on hands-on learning, children and adults alike can enjoy learning about science.
In February 2022, the museum's planetarium was be renovated. It's a popular tourist spot where visitors can observe a starry sky as close to the real thing as possible on one of the world's largest domed screens.

Tenjin Matsuri (Tenjin Festival)

Image of Fireworks at Tenjin Matsuri, Osaka
Photo:Fireworks at Tenjin Matsuri, Osaka

Osaka's Tenjin Festival, held over a period of about a month from late June to July 25 each year, is known as one of the three major festivals in Japan.
Particularly famous is the fireworks display held on July 25. Every year, as many as 1.2 to 1.3 million people come to the festival to enjoy the approximately 5,000 fireworks that are shot into the night sky.
In 2022, because of the global pandemic, only a Shinto ritual was held, but in 2023, the restrictions on activities, put in place because of the coronavirus pandemic, will be relaxed and the festival will be held as usual.

Den Den Town
If you're looking for anime and manga goods, video games, and just electronics in general, the look no further than Nipponbashi Den Den Town! Den Den Town has been dubbed the "Akihabara of Osaka," and for good reason. You can find everything from maid cafes to retro games and anime figures in Den Den Town, and many people say that it's actually better than Akihabara. There's even a cosplay festival called Street Festa that takes place in Den Den Town every year in March! If you can't make it to Tokyo, or just want to experience Osaka's answer to Akihabara, definitely stop by!

Up to this point, we have introduced some of the best sightseeing spots in Osaka. From here, we would like to introduce five unique experiences that you should consider checking out when traveling in Osaka.

Samurai and Ninja Experience (Japan Tatedo Association)
The "Samurai/Ninja Experience" allows visitors to experience sword fighting used in historical dramas. There are two courses available, a quick course and a regular course, and the staff will instruct you how to use a sword and how to stand in a fight, based on samurai culture. During the final event there are even sound effects, making you feel as if you were the hero of a movie! You can also have your video taken, so you can leave with a unique memory of your visit to Osaka.

A Video Article Related to Ninja

Ceramic Art Experience (Maishima Pottery Museum)
The Maishima Pottery Museum offers a variety of handmade craft experiences. The pottery-making experience is particularly popular. The most popular experience is the "Electric Potter's Wheel Workshop," where you can make teacups and bowls for daily use. You can make as many pieces as you like within the allotted time! The hand-molding experience, in which you can make your own original pottery using a hand-cranked potter's wheel, is great for beginners and children. Adding a pottery-making experience onto your Osaka travel itinerary is a great way to add some flavor to your trip!

Street Go-Kart Experience (Akiba Kart Osaka)
Wearing a costume of your favorite character, you can tour the sights of Osaka in a go-kart.
Overseas travelers will need a passport and an international driver's license. The view of Osaka from the go-carts is said to be exceptional! The attraction of this experience is that since you are dressed conspicuously, you will feel a bit like a celebrity as you are called out to and waved at by people.

Noh Experience (Yamamoto Noh Theater)
Yamamoto Noh Theater, located in Osaka's Chuo Ward, is a place where visitors can experience the history and traditions of Noh, which was registered as a UNESCO World Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2008. The tour begins with a lecture on Noh by a Kanze-school Noh performer, followed by an opportunity to try on the costumes used in Noh plays, and ends with a chance to put on a Noh mask and learn how to chant and perform Noh songs and gestures. Wearing authentic costumes of Noh, a traditional Japanese performing art, is sure to be an unforgettable experience!

A Tea Ceremony Experience at MAIKOYA

Image of tea ceremony
Photo:Tea ceremony

MAIKOYA offers an opportunity to experience the tea ceremony perfected by Sen no Rikyu, a tea master from Sakai, Osaka. MAIKOYA is popular among beginners as they can enjoy tea ceremony in a more relaxed atmosphere, as they are taught about tea ceremony and its manners. You will be served matcha green tea and Japanese sweets in a real tea room while wearing a kimono. This experience of Japanese hospitality is very popular among both Japanese and foreign tourists alike. For those who are not comfortable with a full-fledged tea ceremony, this is a great way to experience a more relaxed tea ceremony and make it a memorable part of your trip.

Minami is one of two major downtown areas in Osaka (the second being Kita, around Osaka and Umeda Stations) and refers to Namba, Dotonbori, where the famous Glico billboard is located, and Sennichimae home to the giant crab sign of Kani Doraku. It's known for its abundance of street food, restaurants, and places like Amerika-mura where you can go shopping.
If you're looking to explore the food culture of Osaka, some foods we recommend trying are Takoyaki, okonomiyaki, kushikatsu, yakitori, and ramen.

Osaka is one of the five largest cities in Japan, and is full of warm-hearted people. It's a city overflowing with attractions, with not only sightseeing spots and delicious food, but also a variety of facilities offering hands-on activities. Additionally, Osaka is only a short distance from popular tourist destinations like Kyoto and Kobe. You can visit places, like Nankinmachi, the famous Kobe Chinatown, or see the historic tourist attractions of Kyoto in just a 30-minute train ride. 15 minutes if you take the shinkansen!

We hope this travel guide will be a useful reference for you during your travels in Osaka. The interactions you have with the wonderful people of Osaka are sure to become a memorable chapter of your trip to Japan.


Written By
Last Updated : Jun. 22, 2023
平敷 篤(Atsushi Heishiki)
My name is Atsushi Heishiki, a writer who loves Japanese culture and lives in Okinawa.
The 33 Best Things to Do in Osaka, Japan in 2023! Famous Tourist Attractions, Hidden Gems, and Unique Experiences, All in One Travel Guide!
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