10 must do activities in Osaka

Jan 26, 2022 | Adventure Travel, Backpacking, Japan, Travel Tips

Osaka, located on the island of Honshu, is one of Japan’s biggest cities after Tokyo. It is not as traditional as other places in Japan, such as Kyoto, but it is still well worth a visit if you are considering a trip to Japan. Many locals will tell you that Osaka is one of the most easy going cities in the country, and the people here are known for their great hospitality, which means you will have the opportunity to learn everything there is to know about Japanese culture!

Many locals will tell you that Osaka is one of the If you are a foodie, you will be in luck in Osaka, which is believed to have one of the greatest culinary scenes in Japan. In addition, you can visit museums, galleries, and amusement parks throughout the city, making this a must-see city in Japan! So with that being said, let’s get started with 10 must do activities in Osaka for those who are planning a visit!

1. VISIT OSAKA JO

Osaka Castle was completed in 1583 using over 100,000 workers. However, like with many castles in Japan, it was demolished, and the current structure was rebuilt in 1931 and has been modified throughout the years.
Despite the fact that the castle is not the original, it is nevertheless one of the most spectacular buildings in Osaka, situated in the heart of a beautiful park and surrounded by a picturesque moat.

Inside the castle, visitors may see a variety of weaponry and artwork, and there is also an observation deck on the 8th level with panoramic views of the nearby park and greater Osaka city.

view of osaka castle with trees

2. VISIT SUMIYOSHI SHRINE

Sumiyoshi Shrine is famous for being one of the oldest Shinto shrines not only in Osaka, but also in Japan overall.

The temple was created over 1,800 years ago and is considered one of the most beautiful Shinto shrines in the world due to its elaborate construction and delicate architectural details.
Aside from the shrine itself, there is also a park here with a bridge that spans a sparkling, clear water pond.

Sumiyoshi shrine entrance bridge

3. DO A WALKING TOUR OF DOTONBORI

Dotonbori is well-known in Osaka as the spot to visit if you want to enjoy the highlights of the city.
This area of Osaka is the major centre of pubs, restaurants, and cafés, and you may come here in the evening to relax and explore.

Many of the cafés and restaurants here also have their own roof terraces, so you can sit outside, listen to live music, and gaze out over shimmering lights of the Osaka buildings all at the same time.

people on dotonbori street at night in osaka

4. RELAX AT SPA WORLD

Spa World, as the name implies, is an Osaka complex that includes a variety of spas, saunas, and pools. The facility is available 24 hours a day, and you may come here to test out the onsen, which are outdoor bathing pools where you can also enjoy the fresh air and sights.

You may also pick from a variety of spa services such as massages, and if you get a complete Spa World pass, you can even stay here overnight. One thing to keep in mind is that Japan has a very strict tattoo policy, so if you have any visible tattoos on your body, you may be unable to use the facilities.

 a relaxing room leading to an onsen

5. SPEND A DAY AT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS

Universal Studios Japan is one of the country’s most major theme parks, second only to Disneyland in Tokyo, and the second biggest in Japan. This is, as you might assume, identical to Universal Studios in the United States, and you may come here to see everything related to your favourite movies.

One thing to keep in mind is that there is clearly a Japanese spin here, so expect to encounter a variety of local characters as well.

Super Nintendo World in Universal Studios Japan, Osaka

6. WATCH A SUMO GRAND TOURNAMENT 

Every spring, the Sumo Spring Grand Tournament is held in Osaka, and it’s a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the unique Japanese sport of sumo wrestling. The tournament is normally held in March and is held within the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, where you can see some of the most famous sumo stars compete in the ring. Schedules are subject to change, so check the local listings to see what’s going on when you’re in town.

 2 men competing in sumo wrestling with referee

7.MAKE YOUR OWN BRAND OF INSTANT RAMEN NOODLES

The Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum, dedicated to the humble instant noodle, is one of Osaka’s most recognizable attractions. There are several unusual sights here, including a monument of Momofuku Ando, who is credited with creating instant ramen, and a large model of a cup noodle. As part of a series of programs, the museum also allows you to sample and even make your own noodles.

uncooked instant noodles

8.EXPLORE SHITENNOJI TEMPLE

Shitennoji Temple was constructed in the 6th century during the reign of Emperor Suiko, but it was destroyed during WWII, as were many other structures in Japan. Nowadays, the buildings were reconstructed, and there are a variety of various structures scattered throughout the area. Some of these are inspired by the 7th century, while others are more modern in design, making this an excellent spot to visit if you want to see varied types of Japanese religious architecture.

 

9. PAY RESPECTS AT PEACE OSAKA

Peace Osaka was designed to teach tourists about the significance of peace and as a memorial to all those who died in wars across the world. Some of the most important galleries here are dedicated to tragic eras in Osaka’s history, such as the bombs that destroyed most of the city to the ground during WWII. If you’re in town, this is a must-see for a touching look at how war has affected Japan and other countries across the world.

:the osaka peace centre building viewed from the outside

10.EXPLORE SHINSEKAI

Shinsekai is an Osaka area that was established prior to the war and then ignored for decades following. Tsutenkaku Tower, Shinsekai’s nostalgic icon, rises at the district’s centre. Following the success of the 1903 National Industrial Exposition, which attracted over five million visitors to the neighbourhood in only five months, the region was expanded into its current layout. Soon after the expo ended, work on improving and updating Shinsekai began.

The northern half of Shinsekai was designed to resemble Paris, while the southern half was designed to resemble Coney Island in New York. Tsutenkaku Tower was built in 1912, after the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Despite being dismantled after WWII, the tower was quickly rebuilt in 1956. The present tower stands 103 metres tall, with the primary observatory at 91 metres. In late 2015, a new open-air deck on top of the main observatory opened.

Shinsekai area at night, with lots of lights

Now that you have a taste of what the amazing city of Osaka has to offer, why not make it a reality and book a holiday to Japan!? We offer a 10 day, 14 day and Japan PLUS tours! Three different tours that will be perfect for you. Did we mention that our 10 day Japan tour is the reigning winner of the best tour in the world!? There is no better way to experience Japan than with us! You can find all the details of our japan tours here.

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