I really enjoyed Osaka. It’s well located, has a good mix of past and present, and is easy to get round thanks to its efficient and vast subway system. Though it’s hard, I’ve decided to pick out my top 5 favourite things about Osaka. In no particular order:
This is the infamous “neon dream” of Osaka. Sporting a plethora of bright neon and LED advertisement boards, it sits in Osaka’s heart and is a must-visit when dark falls. You can also enjoy a Ferris wheel by the river, and a fuck ton of amazing restaurants and street food vendors.
This might seem like a cliche, but I don’t care. Osaka Castle is stunning. It was the first Japanese castle (on the mainland at least) that I visited, and it did not disappoint. Traditional architecture, pristine grounds, and a beautiful on-site temple means it embodies a lot of what I love about Japan.
One of Osaka’s best known temples, its distinctive pagoda towers above the grounds. It has several smaller temples within, all of which can be visited. It’s a little further out but worth the trip. The grounds are peaceful and well kept, and the architecture is beautiful.
This is an underground shopping district connected to Namba train station, one of Osaka’s main interchanges. It’s a brilliant way to make use of what would otherwise be dead space, plus it has a great selection of shops and eateries.
Last but not least, is the incredible Sumiyoshi-Taisha Shrine, a Shinto place of worship. It’s distinct red/orange woodwork, smattering of shrines, lanterns, and its tranquil grounds make it one of my favourites. I particularly enjoyed the little neko shrine, complete with neko statues you can buy and dedicate (I opted to bring mine home to show my cat).
Anyone else visited Osaka? Please share your top 5!