10 Exciting Things to Do in Osaka

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Osaka is very well known for its approachable locals, vibrant nightlife, and fantastic food scene. It is a famous spot on most Japan itineraries. And although it is Japan’s third-largest city but it lacks the old-world charm that one finds in Kyoto. Moreover, it is less flashy in comparison to Tokyo. Although it falls short on beauty and glamour it makes up in character. It is a friendly city and has everything one can ask for within a tourist destination. Here is a guide to help you plan your trip to Osaka, Japan. Let’s get started!

10 Exciting Things to Do in Osaka, Japan

In case you are wondering about things to do in Osaka we have got you covered with all kinds of things. It doesn’t matter if you are looking for certain spots off of beaten paths, free things to do in Osaka or things to do during night, we are sure you will find everything you’re looking for in our article. Let’s have a look!

1 – Shiteno-ji Temple

It is one of the oldest temples within Japan and the most important Buddhist structure within Osaka. It’s a great place to peak into the religion of the country. Shiteno-ji Temple was actually built in the 6th century by Prince Shotoku in order to catalyse the spread of Buddhism in Japan. As the century passed by, the temple faced many fires and has also been reconstructed over time to reflect upon its original design. It is free to enter it but a small fee is charged for two of their onsite attractions, the treasure house and gokuraku jodo Garden. The fee for these two attraction is as follow:

Treasure House: 500 yen

Gokuraku-jodo Garden: 300 yen

One can witness historic paintings and writings in the treasure house.

2 – Minoo Park

After we survived the crowded streets of the city for a couple of days, we started craving to spend some time with nature. After doing some research we found out that if we go 45 minutes into the north of the city centre there is a park which is precisely a nature lover’s oasis. This Park is a pretty popular spot for families and local couples who wish to escape city life and have a fun day. It has a paved walking path that leads to a waterfall through forested mountains.

It takes about 45 minutes to reach the waterfall since the path is pretty much flat(ish). The waterfall marks the end of this trail. You will be able to see some restrooms and stalls selling snacks along the way. The Holiday weekend was the best time to visit Minoo since it wasn’t too crowded. It was only bustling with the locals. Furthermore, we spotted only a few foreigners so it felt quite peaceful. Once there, don’t forget to try the deep fried maple leaves as one can only find them here. A sweet batter is used to cover the tiny maple leaves before it is deep fried in hot oil. If you remember eating a waffle cone it’s kind of same. It’s crunchy and a little sweet. If we talk about the flavour, the leaves don’t really have any flavour but you can kind of feel them, if it makes sense.

3 – Play Pachinko

You can find many loud, confusing, flashy and sparkly gaming machines all around the country. From the large ostentatious establishments in major cities to the small venues in rural towns, no one is able to deny the Pachinko as it’s a big deal in Japan. Pachinko still stands for a billion-dollar industry but its popularity is on the decline. For sure it’s not actual gambling but still the Pachinko parlors have a similar atmosphere as the smoky casinos of Las Vegas. As a matter of fact, gambling is illegal in Japan. Therefore, instead of winning money you get silver balls. You can continue playing or purchase items like pokey sticks, stuffed animals, plastic toys and pringles with the help of these metal balls. And if you collect enough of them, you can even buy some electronics.

Most of the Pachinko parlours are packed with men of middle age. It seems kind of strange and to be very honest I can’t be the best judge since I am not really into machines or arcades. It’s not a pass time I see myself getting into but still I am glad that I tried it out. Nevertheless, I think you should try it. In fact, it is one of the most Japanese things that one can do and it is also inexpensive.

4 – Visit Osaka-Jo

100,000 workers were used to build the Osaka Castle which dates back to 1583. But it was destroyed just like a lot of other castles in Japan. The structure that we see today was built in 1931 and is also renovated. The castle is one of the most impressive buildings in Osaka despite the fact that it is no longer the original Castle and it is located in the middle of a leafy park which is encircled by a charming moat. You can see a selection of weaponry, some artwork, and also an observation deck with his present on the 8th floor.

5 – Explore Sumiyoshi Shrine

It is one of the oldest Shinto shrines in Japan. This shrine is one of the prettiest Shinto shrines and was built over 1800 years ago. Its beauty is because of its ornate architecture and dainty design features. You can also find a park that features a bridge over a glassy pond when you visit an actual shrine.

6 – Go Out in Dotonbori

If you want to go out and enjoy the place for that in Osaka is Dotonbori. You can go to Dotonbori in the evening to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere along with a hub of restaurants, bars, and cafés. You can even sit and gaze at the twinkling stars and enjoy the live music of nearby cafés and restaurants which in this part have their own roof terrace.

7 – Ride the Tempozan Ferris Wheel

One of the most iconic sights that you will find in Osaka is their Tempozan Ferris Wheel. Which is located at the edge of scenic Osaka bay. The reason why people are attracted to it is the chance that you will be able to take a spin on the wheel and check the pretty sides all across the city. You can even come to Osaka at the evening and enjoy a spin on the wheel along with a peaceful view of Osaka.

8 – Relax at Spa World

A complex in Osaka has a great range of spas, saunas, and pools. You can enter the spa world anytime you want since the facility is provided all 24 hours a day. One can go there and try onsen that are binding pools present outdoors. You can take in fresh air while bathing along with great views, all at the same time. There is a great range of spa treatments from which you can choose for yourself. The spa world is open for 24 hours hence you can also stay overnight if you are willing to buy their full pass. A thing to note here is that if you have any visible tattoos on your body then you won’t be able to take the pleasure of this facility. It is because Japan has very strict policies about tattoos.

9 – Watch a Sumo Spring Grand Tournament

In Osaka you will be able to enjoy a Sumo Spring Grand tournament which is held every spring. It invites you to find out more about the Japanese sport of sumo wrestling. These events start in March and are held inside the Osaka prefectural gymnasium in which you will be able to see some of the best sumo stars battle in the ring. You need to keep checking all their lists in order to see upcoming events since their schedule is often subject to getting changed.

10 – Have fun at Universal Studios Japan

After Disneyland in Tokyo, Universal Studios Japan is the second-largest and most important theme park in the country of Japan. You can go to Universal Studios Japan in order to check out anything and everything related to your favorite movies. It is said to be very much similar to Universal Studios located in the United States. One thing that you should always remember is that since it is in Japan you will find more of the Japanese local characters within the studio.

Conclusion

So, these were some of the best places that one can visit in Osaka, Japan. Your trip will be memorable if you visit just half of them. We hope that this article was useful. Thank you for reading!

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