6 Things You Must See on Your Osaka Trip
Check out these awesome sites during your trip to Osaka!
Osaka is such a fun place to go to get the perfect mixture of history and modern culture. Because it’s smaller than Tokyo, you can see the city without being completely overwhelmed by the amount of people running around. There are so many great things to do in Osaka, so to help you narrow your activities down, here are some things you must see during your stay.
1. Osaka Castle
This is a great way to learn about the history of Osaka. The castle is surrounded by a beautiful park that you could spend hours walking through. Past the moat is the Osaka Castle. There is a small fee to enter the actual castle, but it’s worth it. Once you get to the observatory level of the castle, you can see a great view of the gardens and the city. If you decide not to enter the castle, you can still see enough to make your visit worth it. There is a museum, but also make sure to walk around the grounds and read the informational plaques, too.
Location: Chuo District
If you’re looking for a fun place to hang out at night, go to Dotonbori. This is where you want to go for shopping and dining under the neon lights. It has a fantastic atmosphere and a nice mix of locals and tourists from around the world. Make sure to walk along the river walk and see the reflection of the lights in the water. You can even take a boat tour if you want. Say hello to the famous Glico Man sign and take a picture with him. There are plenty of food options here, so you can treat yourself to a fancy dinner, or just snack on street foods like takoyaki. Of course, you can visit during the day, but you’ll get the most out of Dotonbori at night.
Location: Chuo District
3. Universal Studios Japan
It’s not a historical learning experience, but Universal Studios Japan is a lot of fun. If you’ve been to other Universal Studios parks, this one is a little smaller in comparison, but still pretty similar. It can be pretty busy at the park, so plan to get there early so you can beat the rush. The busier areas at the park have timed entry tickets though, so it keeps it from being too crowded. All of the attractions are in Japanese, but it is pretty cool to hear famous characters like Harry Potter speaking in Japanese and doesn’t really take away from the attractions. Make sure to plan a whole day here, because you’ll want to see as much as possible.
Location: Next to Universal City Station
4. Spa World
Traveling can be exhausting, with long flights and lots of walking around, so it’s important to take some time to rest. The best way to relax and experience something new is to go to Spa World. Spa World is a massive spa with tons of different baths and saunas. This particular Spa World even has a swimming area, complete with waterslides! While many parts of the spa are separated by gender, there are plenty of co-ed areas if you’re with mixed company. While it may seem a bit daunting to soak in shared tubs in the nude, it really only takes about a few minutes to be completely comfortable. Of course, if it’s not for you, you can always sweat it out in the fully-clothed saunas. These saunas are modeled after historical and traditional saunas around the world, like Greek, Roman, and Balinese. A warning though, if you have tattoos, you might not be allowed in.
Location: Naniwa District
5. Take a Day Trip
Ok, so this isn’t exactly something to do in Osaka, but if you are staying in Osaka, it is so easy to hop on a train and take a quick day trip to another city. This allows you to take in more of Japan without having to book a bunch of different hotels in different cities. If you’re up for it, you’ll definitely want to check out Kyoto. It is a city rich in history and culture, but it is more laid back than the bigger cities. Many of the shrines and palaces are in walking distance, so don’t worry too much about transportation around the city. Another popular day trip from Osaka is Nara. Nara Park is a unique place to visit because it is filled with little adorable deer that you can hang out with. The novelty of spending time so close to nature is hard to pass up.
Location: Kyoto and Nara Prefecture
6. Osaka Aquarium
Here’s one that’s great for kids or for rainy days. Osaka Aquarium has an excellent assortment of sea creatures that you’ll be sure to love. There is a “petting tank” if you’ve always wanted to pet a shark or a stingray. The jellyfish exhibit is massive and features different kinds of jellyfish. The aquarium is also very close to the Tempozan Ferris Wheel, so you can go to both in one day.
Location: Minato District
Hopefully, you plan on spending a lot of time in Osaka, because you don’t want to miss out on these awesome sites and activities.
Photo Credit: inspirationseek.com
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