Welcome travel fans!
I’ve been traveling around the world for 20 years and most of my trips were to Asia. I think I have been crazy about Japan since I was a child and I will be happy to share this passion with you…
Among all the places in Japan Osaka is especially known for its eye-catching neon signs, extremely delicious food, charming people, loudly spoken Osaka-ben dialect, thousands of cozy bars (called izakayas), lots of attractions and the world’s best place to try Fugu.
Osaka is a large port city, a busy commercial center, a kitchen of Japan and a home for almost 3 million people.
On top of that it is a great stop before traveling to sacred Koyasan or spiritual Kumano Kodo, or a perfect stay to explore Nara & Kobe.
Whatever you like, Osaka will offer even more…
What we propose
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Our experts have insider knowledge of unique and off-the-beaten-path destinations that aren't typically found in guidebooks.
Your itinerary will be fully customized to your interests, preferences, and travel style.
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Since 2015, our site has been offering expert travel itinerary planning services that result in a comprehensive, user-friendly PDF guidebook personalized to each client’s unique needs and preferences, featuring daily summaries, attraction recommendations, dining suggestions, maps, a curated database of tested accommodations worldwide, as well as detailed guidance on car rental options and ongoing support via phone and Whatsapp.
Our personalized routes from A to Z include many unique and little-known places, along with detailed information such as parking addresses, tips, and exact directions, making the trip more exciting and enjoyable while saving travelers time during preparation and on their journey.
Natural Beauties and Lakes
Osaka Castle Park
1-1 Osakajo, Chuo Ward
open 24 hours
5-55 Chausuyamacho, Tennoji Ward
open from 7 am to 10 pm
1-18 Minookoen, Minoh
Tsurumi Ryokuchi Park
2-163 Ryokuchikoen, Tsurumi Ward
from 9 am to 5 pm. Last admission is at 4:30 pm.
1 Chome Dotonbori, Chuo Ward
stores close at 9 pm, restaurants typically close at 10 pm
1 Chome-11-18 Shitennoji, Tennoji Ward
from 8 am to 4 pm
2 Chome Nipponbashi, Chuo Ward
typically from 8 am to 6 pm
Attractions For Kids
Universal Studios Japan
2 Chome-1-33 Sakurajima, Konohana Ward
from 10 am to 7 pm
1-108 Chausuyamacho, Tennoji Ward
from 9:30 am to 5 pm. Closed on Monday.
Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan
1 Chome-1-10 Kaigandori, Minato Ward
Weekdays - from 10 am to 8 pm, Weekend - from 9:30 am to 8 pm
Kids Plaza Osaka
2 Chome-1-7 Ogimachi, Kita Ward
from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm
from 9 am to 5 pm. Last admission is at 4:30 pm
Osaka Museum of Housing and Living
Kita Ward, Tenjinbashi
from 10 am to 5 pm
Osaka Science Museum
4 Chome-2-1 Nakanoshima, Kita Ward
from 9:30 am to 5 pm
Cup Noodles Museum Osaka Ikeda
8-25 Masumicho, Ikeda
First time in Osaka
Purpose: visiting top sights
Osaka and around
Purpose: visiting top sights & hidden “gems”
I always try to find the best to share with you and I believe that these “gems” are really valuable. And I also know that time is priceless and you are in hury. So let me propose just a few gems not to be missed…
2 Chome-8-69 Osaka, Tennoji Ward
from 5 am to 6 pm
Namba Yasaka shrine
2 Chome-9-19 Motomachi, Naniwa Ward
from 6:30 am to 5 pm
2 Chome-8-17-1F3 Nishishinsaibashi, Chuo Ward
from 1 pm to 7 pm. Closed on Sunday.
from 10 am to 2 am (last entry at 1 am).
3-46 Shiroyamacho, Ikeda
from 9 am to 7 pm. Closed on Tuesday.
Osaka Amazing Pass
Once you are in Osaka consider purchasing 1-Day or 2-Day Osaka Amazing Pass to ride buses and trains unlimitedly, enjoy 35 sightseeing spots for free and get special offers at 25 facilities & 67 shops
3 confusing train stations in Osaka
Check your ticket before you come to the station for departure or learn more about your transfer station in advance.
There are many private companies that may call the train station differently and you might be confused with that. Here are 3 confusing train stations in Osaka: 1) Osaka station (sometimes it appears as Umeda in your train ticket. So, it is equal to Osaka station), 2) Namba station (that one has a few different private train companies and those stations are disconnected) and 3)Shin-Osaka station (it is a station where the bullet train comes. It is not equal to Osaka station)
Confusing Namba station exits
Namba station in Osaka city has 32 different exits, so pay attention to know your exit and follow the proper sign, or find there a big map of exits with the list of main tourist spots, hotels, restaurants, and streets according to their exits
Fare Adjustment machines
If you have bought the wrong ticket or decide to change your destination in mid-journey, you can pay any excess fare at one of these machines. So don’t panic if you go to exit the station and you don’t have enough money on your IC card. Use “Fare Adjustment machines” to reload your card with cash. Just place your ticket or IC card (ICOCA, Pasmo, Suica, etc.) in the slot and the machine calculates your excess fare. Pay the excess with your charge card, notes or coins and the machine issues you with a new ticket to pass the barrier.
Hostels and Capsules vs Hotels
For those who are traveling alone or with friends I highly recommend staying in a hostel or capsule hotel. The majority of Japanese hostels/capsule hotels are very comfortable, clean and are a great value for money. Hotels in Osaka are 2 to 4 times more expensive, especially in the context that you need only a bed, in fact
Izakaya Toyo ($ - budget to moderate)
3 Chome-2-26 Higashinodamachi, Miyakojima Ward, Osaka, 534-0024, Japan 〒534-0024 大阪府大阪市都島区東野田町３丁目２−26
The chef Toyoji Chikumoto, grilling seafood in front of you with a flamethrower became a living legend and his Izakaya Toyo is one of the top destinations in Osaka. In 2019 Toyo was shown in the Netflix show (Street Food: Asia). He serves amazing street food and super positive energy!
Rakushin restaurant ($$$-expensive)
1 Chome-6-14 Fukushima, Fukushima Ward, Osaka, 553-0003, Japan 〒553-0003 大阪府大阪市福島区福島１丁目６−14, TEL.: +81664512323
A special place of the Michelin chef Shintaro Katayama where you will get an exquisite food and aesthetic hi-end experience. It is a sacred culinary theater with no menu but a chef's choice meal course to surprise you…
Kuromon Market ($ - budget)
2 Chome Nipponbashi, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0073, Japan 〒542-0073 大阪府大阪市中央区日本橋２丁目
The Market will offer the freshest seafood in its huge variety for a reasonable price. You can try many samples of grilled clams and crabs, sushi/sashimi sets, fresh fruits, juices, etc. It is a feast of indulgence especially for seafood lovers. Highly recommended!
Kani Doraku Dotonbori Main Branch ($$ - moderate)
1 Chome-6-18 Dotonbori, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0071, Japan 〒542-0071 大阪府大阪市中央区道頓堀１丁目６−18
For those who are crazy about crab in any of its appearance. Great crab dishes. Super delicious and unfortunately super popular. Reservation is a must.
2 Chome-10-70 Nanbanaka, Naniwa Ward, Osaka, 556-0011, Japan 〒556-0011 大阪府大阪市浪速区難波中２丁目１０−70
Really outstanding shopping complex with gardens, stores, restaurants and beautiful illumination. It is open until midnight so you can enjoy shopping then walk around and meet the sunset on the rooftop garden.
Grand Front Osaka
4-20 Ofukacho, Kita Ward, Osaka, 530-0011, Japan 〒530-0011 大阪府大阪市北区大深町４−20
It's a contemporary massive shopping mall with multiple levels offering more than 260 shops, restaurants, whisky museum, high-end brand stores and rooftop garden. It’s an elegant place for trendy people.
1 Chome-1-43 Abenosuji, Abeno Ward, Osaka, 545-6016, Japan 〒545-6016 大阪府大阪市阿倍野区阿倍野筋１丁目１−43
The Tallest building in Japan features a big department store with 44 restaurants, office, hotel, art museum, and observation deck. It’s a great place to spend time and not only for shopping. You can visit an art museum and top floor observatory deck with a great city view.
5-15 Kakudacho, Kita Ward, Osaka, 530-0017, Japan 〒530-0017 大阪府大阪市北区角田町５−15
HEP FIVE is not just a shopping mall, it’s full of spots to enjoy that will be very much appreciated by kids. Start your journey with entertainment (capsule toy vending machines or purikura photo booths, or other games), try amazing food, do shopping and finally enjoy 360-degree panoramic views riding the Ferris Wheel.
Shinsaibashi-Suji Shopping Street
2 Chome-2-22 Shinsaibashisuji, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0085, Japan 〒542-0085 大阪府大阪市中央区心斎橋筋２丁目２−22
It is a real retail therapy from discount to high end, surrounded by more shopping and tons of places to eat on the side streets.
Nipponbashi DENDEN Town
Japan, 〒556-0005 Osaka, Naniwa Ward, Nipponbashi, 3 Chome, 〒556-0005 大阪府大阪市浪速区日本橋３丁目 〜５丁目
People say it is Osaka's answer to Tokyo Akihabara full of electronics, anime, manga and video games. You can play, do shopping, eat great food and enjoy a great time here.
Tenjinbashisuji Shopping Street
5 Chome Tenjinbashi, Kita Ward, Osaka, 530-0041, Japan 〒530-0041 大阪府大阪市北区天神橋５丁目
It is the longest arcade shopping street in Japan, 2,6 km long. It features about 600 shops that range from good old specialty stores to very Osaka-like lively restaurants. It is located very close to the Osaka Museum of Housing and Living so it could be visited after the museum.
Sennichimae Doguyasuji Shopping Street
14-5 Nanbasennichimae, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0075, Japan 〒542-0075 大阪府大阪市中央区難波千日前１４−5
It is a market where you can find typical Japanese goods and tons of kitchen items. Wide variety of ceramic bowls, bakeware, cookware, decorative door curtains, shabu shabu pots, trays, chopsticks, replica food displays, cooking equipment and of course, souvenirs. Available for both retail sale and wholesale.
Osaka-Kizu wholesale market
2 Chome-2-8 Shikitsuhigashi, Naniwa Ward, Osaka, 556-0012, Japan 〒556-0012 大阪府大阪市浪速区敷津東２丁目２−8
The very local market in Osaka is not as big as Kuromon Ichiba market but still nice. Here you will find fresh seafood, shellfish, oysters, fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables stores.
Osaka Municipal Central market
1 Chome-1-86 Noda, Fukushima Ward, Osaka, 553-0005, Japan 〒553-0005 大阪府大阪市福島区野田１丁目１−86
It is a busy market with early-morning tuna auction,
Ikuno Korea Town
4 Chome-5-１５付近 Momodani, Ikuno Ward, Osaka, 544-0034, Japan 〒544-0034 大阪府大阪市生野区桃谷４丁目５−１５付近
The town has only been around for about 15 years and welcomes visitors to come and enjoy the delicious food and authentic Korean feel. You can try & buy Korean food, daily goods, and even Korean-style clothing.
Osaka is safe, however there is an area called Nishinary I would recommend to avoid when in Osaka due to many bag snatchers and homeless people. Osaka locals usually avoid this area and call it dangerous.
Tobita Shinchi, a centuries-old red-light district, is now the largest red-light district in Japan with about 200 kiosks inside. The youth kiosks are full of girls in their 20s.
It is not a tourist attraction…
Tennoji area is a good choice for staying due to popular attractions such as Abeno Harukas, Shinsekai retro entertainment district, Tennoji Park, Tennoji Zoo, Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine and Shitenno-ji Buddhist Temple. There are also plenty of places to eat.
The Namba area is great for staying while in Osaka. Close to this area you can find Kuromon Ichiba Market, Dotonbori Arcade famous for its history and great restaurants, and DenDen Town, where you can shop for electronics.
Osaka Excel Hotel Tokyu
Great stay, comfy rooms, nice views, good location. Feels like a 5 star hotel. Booked a room on sale so feel like I scored a steal
Ninja & Geisha Capsule Hotel
The interior is from the Edo period, all about geisha and ninja themes.
Great ambience, facilities and staff
Hotel Yu-shu (Ryokan)
Great traditional hotel with a futon floor. Very tidy and nice place with friendly people. Good traditional experience.
For a couple (4 to 5-star)
Family of 4 (4 to 5-star)
* Single capsules in female and men dormitories
** Japanese-style double room, 2 futon beds, high quality & service
*** Superior double 23m² room with 1 large bed
**** A plate of 10 skewers in Dotonbori
***** 1-Day Osaka Amazing Pass (covers many sights)
****** Mini/Compact class, 5 seats
******* Japanese-style quadruple room, 2 beds and 2 futon beds, high quality & service
******** 2x Superior double 23m² room with 1 large bed
********* Toyota, Standart class, 5 seats
Breakfast at the hotel or Kuromon Market
Osaka Castle Museum & Park
Lunch at Kenzan
Explore Umeda & Kita districts
Umeda Sky Building
Dinner at Kani Doraku Dotonbori Main Branch
Shinsekai and Tsutenkaku tower
Lunch at Rokusen
TeamLab botanical garden
Dinner at Dotonbori (try delicious street food and walk around)
Shopping at Namba Parks
Lunch at Matsusakagyu Yakiniku M Hozenji Hanare (beef specialty restaurant)
Relax at Spa Suminoe (onsen)
Dinner at Tetchiri Kuromon Hamato (Fugu restaurant)
Ohatsu Tenjin shrine
Lunch at Shabutei Nishi Umeda
Shopping at Shinsaibashi or Tenjinbashisuji Shopping Street
Dinner at Dotonbori
Photo Session at Wasabi Osaka (Kimono Photo Studio)
Lunch at Izakaya Toyo
Osaka History Museum
Shopping and playing at Nipponbashi DENDEN Town
Dinner at Rakushin (special experience at Michelin star restaurant)
1 Nagaikoen, Higashisumiyoshi Ward, Osaka, 546-0034, Japan 〒546-0034 大阪府大阪市東住吉区長居公園1
2 Chome-4-14 Nanbanaka, Naniwa Ward, Osaka, 556-0011, Japan 〒556-0011 大阪府大阪市浪速区難波中２丁目４−14
2 Chome-14 Nipponbashi, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0073, Japan 〒542-0073 大阪府大阪市中央区日本橋２丁目14
City areas closed for vehicles
Shopping streets leading to famous temples and shrines are typically closed to all motor vehicles except those making deliveries. There are also streets in historic preservation areas that are closed to most vehicles.
Eat Osaka cooking school
Osaka city Chome, 1 Chome-4-7 Ebisuhigashi, Naniwa Ward, Osaka, 556-0002, Japan Chome, １丁目-４-7 恵美須東 浪速区 大阪市 大阪府 556-0002
Small private cooking classes in a warm atmosphere. Booking is a must!
Tachibana Sushi Activity
1 Chome-16-16 Nipponbashi, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0073, Japan 〒542-0073 大阪府大阪市中央区日本橋１丁目１６−16
Very cozy atmosphere where people say you can become a sushi master. Very helpful English-speaking owner. High quality and fresh ingredients. At the end, you can eat your own creation!! Highly recommended.
Japan, 〒663-8166 Hyogo, Nishinomiya, Koshientakashiocho, 3−47 ドルフストーリア甲子園
Great teachers teach how to make Gyoza, Sushi, Ramen and much more. Enjoy the process, have fun, and learn about delicious Japanese food from super friendly people.
Osaka-hommachibashi Osaka Delicious
apan, 〒540-0029 Osaka, Chuo Ward, Honmachibashi, 6−18 本町橋倶楽部 〒540-0029 大阪府大阪市中央区本町橋６−18 本町橋倶楽部
Very traditional experience, warm and friendly teacher, high quality ingredients and recipes. Unforgettable.
What is the Osaka Amazing Pass and where can I get it?
Osaka Amazing Pass is a card with a barcode for entering free sightseeing spots, have special offers in 25 facilities and 67 stores, and ride buses and trains unlimitedly. You can purchase a 1-Day or 2-Day Pass at all Subway stations, Tourist information center at Osaka train station, Tourist information center at Namba train station, Tourist information center at Kansai International airport, main hotels of Osaka, etc.
Is it safe in Osaka?
Basically Japan is very safe, however there is an area called Nishinary I would recommend to avoid when in Osaka. There are many cheap hotels in this area as well as many bag snatchers and homeless people. So keep it in your mind if you want to avoid stress in Osaka.
Where to eat in Osaka?
Frankly speaking there are so many places to please your stomach but my favorite are Kuromon Market and Dotonbori area.
Kuromon Market will offer the freshest seafood in its huge variety for a reasonable price. You can try many samples of grilled clams and crabs, sushi/sashimi sets, fresh fruits, juices, etc. It is a feast of indulgence especially for seafood lovers.
Dotonbori is a place of delicious street food and really nice restaurants to try the best of Kansai cuisine.
Where to stay in Osaka?
It depends whether you travel alone, with friends or you come with a big family. Of course, a capsule hotel or hostel will not correspond to your needs if you are a family. In this case take a hotel close to a popular tourist area or traditional Japanese ryokan with a family room. However, if you are on your own or with friends it is highly recommended to stay in a hostel or capsule hotel which will bring you absolutely unique experience and save your money in a big city.
And for a unique experience take traditional Japanese ryokan to learn more about Japanese culture.
How to use public transport in Osaka?
Consider OSAKA Metro Day Pass (1-Day or 2-Day Pass) to ride not just the Osaka Subway but also Osaka city bus. Also, benefit from discount coupons at about 30 attractions across the city including Osaka Castle and Tsutenkaku Tower.
Another option is the Osaka Amazing Pass (1-Day or 2-Day Pass), or use an ICOCA card purchased from vending machines at subway stations that will simplify your Agenda in Osaka.
I really don’t recommend driving in Osaka but do it if you want to visit hidden gems outside the city.
Anyway, my general advice is try to use trains/Subway as much as you can. It is a simple and efficient way to travel.
What to try in Osaka?
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