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7 Things to See in Osaka, Japan: A Complete Guide

8 mins. read

Osaka is Japan's second biggest city, but it's very different from ultra-modern Tokyo and traditional Kyoto. It has its own unique character and even the locals speak a special Osaka dialect. At first, Osaka may just seem like any other big city with tall buildings, busy workers, and lots of traffic. But look closer and you'll find Osaka has something for everyone to enjoy. Osaka used to be Japan's economic centre and has a rich history. It's famous for its incredible food scene with traditional Japanese restaurants lining every street. Osaka is even the birthplace of the sushi train! If you want to taste the best, most authentic Japanese cuisine, Osaka is the place to go. The city is so serious about food that its culture revolves around it.

But Osaka offers more than just amazing food. There are many things to see in Osaka that will make your trip memorable. This blog discusses 7 incredible things to do and see in Osaka.

Top 7 Things to See in Osaka, Japan

Osaka may not look special at first, but take the time to experience its food, attractions, and history with these 7 incredible things to see in Osaka:

  • Osaka Castle
  • Dotonbori
  • Shinsaibashi
  • Bunraku Theatre
  • Universal Studios Japan
  • Bay Area
  • Minami

Osaka Castle

Osaka Castle

Osaka Castle is a beautiful ancient castle that was built in the 1500s. It is one of the oldest buildings in Japan that was not destroyed during World War II bombings. The castle has tall towers, big gates, and strong walls. While the outside looks very old, the inside has been updated with modern amenities. Around the castle is a large garden called Nishinomaru Garden. The garden has a huge lawn surrounded by about 600 cherry blossom trees. There is also a guest house and a viewing area where you can see the whole castle from a distance. On the castle grounds, there is a shrine honouring an important historical Japanese figure. Visitors can also go to the Osaka Museum of History, which is nearby, to learn more about the city's past. Osaka Castle is a remarkable landmark that combines old Japanese architecture and history with modern updates. It allows people to experience Japan's cultural heritage in a beautiful setting.


No trip to Osaka is complete without visiting Dotonbori, the heart of the city's famous food scene. This lively area is known for its bright neon lights and huge, flashy signs advertising various restaurants and food stalls. In Dotonbori, you must try the delicious street food that Osaka is famous for. Some highlights are takoyaki (fried octopus balls), okonomiyaki (savoury pancakes), and kushikatsu (deep-fried skewers of meat and veggies). This is the kind of tasty food that defines Osaka's unique culinary culture. But Dotonbori is more than just about eating. Walking through the area is an experience in itself. It's a lively, energetic place with crowds of people exploring the sights, sounds, and smells. The atmosphere is exciting and vibrant. Visiting Dotonbori allows you to really experience Osaka's buzz and taste its most beloved local foods. It engages all your senses - the flashy lights, mouthwatering aromas and lively chatter.


The Shinsaibashi shopping district is a shopper's paradise and one of the best things to do in Osaka. This bustling area has a great mix of high-end designer boutiques, vintage and second-hand stores, and local souvenir shops. It's the perfect place to find unique gifts, the latest fashion trends, or traditional Japanese goods. Shinsaibashi combines modern shopping with classic items in a lively atmosphere. The district buzzes with energy and embodies Osaka's modern shopping and consumer culture. The streets are filled with people hunting for bargains, souvenirs, or that perfect new outfit. This district allows you to shop to your heart's content - from trendy clothing to antique trinkets. Browsing the shops while soaking in the vibrant atmosphere is a must for any visitor to Osaka.

Bunraku Theatre

Traditional Japanese puppet theatre called Bunraku has been an important part of Osaka's culture for centuries and is regarded as one of the best things to see in Osaka. Bunraku originated in Osaka a long time ago. It involves intricate puppets manipulated by master puppeteers to act out stories on stage. Watching a Bunraku performance is one of the best ways to experience authentic Japanese culture. At the Bunraku Theatre in Osaka, you can see these elaborate puppet shows. They provide English audio translations and written scripts so you can follow along with the Japanese dialogue. Going to a Bunraku puppet performance allows you to witness an ancient Japanese art form that has been preserved and cultivated in Osaka for hundreds of years. It's a unique opportunity to be immersed in traditional storytelling through the highly skilled art of puppet theatre.

Universal Studios Japan

If you want a day full of excitement and thrills, you must visit Universal Studios Japan (USJ) in Osaka. This famous theme park brings your favourite movies and characters from the big screen into real life. At USJ, you can experience the magical world of Harry Potter, going inside the wizarding castle and village. Or get your heart racing on the intense rides in the Jurassic Park area with its huge dinosaurs. The park has incredible rides, shows, and attractions inspired by popular movies and books. It's a perfect blend of entertainment and amazement for guests of all ages to enjoy. USJ is one of the top attractions in Osaka. It allows you to step into the worlds you've only seen in movies and television. From wizards to dinosaurs, the park brings fantasy to life right before your eyes.

Bay Area

The Bay Area in Osaka is a popular tourist destination made up of several city districts located along the bay. These areas were built on man-made islands as Osaka expanded over time. In the Bay Area, you'll find many wonderful attractions and views. There's the impressive Osaka Aquarium showcasing marine life from the Pacific Ocean region. You can also ride the giant Tempozan Ferris Wheel for amazing panoramic views of Osaka city and the bay, especially beautiful at night. The Bay Area is home to the Naniwa Food Theme Park, designed to look like an old Japanese neighbourhood full of restaurants offering traditional cuisine. Nature lovers can visit the peaceful Nanko Bird Sanctuary. With its waterfront locations, the man-made islands of Osaka's Bay Area offer tourists a fun cluster of top attractions like the aquarium, Ferris wheel, theme parks and more in one convenient area.


Minami is the heart of Osaka's vibrant nightlife district. This lively area comes alive after dark, with streets and establishments staying open past 1 am. The brightly lit streets are filled with the delicious smells of Japanese street food vendors. Minami offers an abundance of dining and shopping opportunities for visitors and locals alike. For those looking for the latest edgy fashion trends, Amerikamura is the place to go. It's considered Osaka's version of Tokyo's trendy Harajuku district, with unique youth fashion stores and thrift shopping. Whether you want to eat, drink, shop, or just soak in the lively atmosphere, Minami delivers the full vibrant nightlife experience Osaka is famous for. Its bright lights, bustling streets, and a multitude of restaurants and retailers create an energetic scene that lasts all night long.

These amazing things to see in Osaka ensure to have a beautiful trip in Japan. Make sure to book Osaka tour packages in advance to avoid any last-minute hassle.

May 19, 2024


Veena World
Veena World

We are an Indian travel company founded in 2013 and excel at domestic and international tour packages including guided group tours, specialty tours, customized holidays, corporate MICE travel, inbound travel and destination weddings.

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