Osaka, Osakan prefektuuri, Japani
18th Nov 2015
Budget Travel, City Ride, Cruise
J-Hoppers Osaka Guesthouse, Osaka, Osakan prefektuuri, Japani
APPLE - iPhone 5s
It was early morning and the sun hadn't even properly rose yet when I exited the overnight bus and was welcomed by the first sights of beautiful Osaka. I immediately knew I would love this city but it wasn't surprise. I had already spent one month in Tokyo and me loving the whole Japan wasn't anything new. The photo above was one of the first things I saw when exploring in Osaka. Even the normal buildings and settings are beautiful in that city!
My first intention was to find tourist office and recommend starting from there to everyone. The staff were kind and tried to help me even if I had no idea what I wanted to do in Osaka with my two short days I had. They gave me long list of places to be visited in Osaka. If you are like me and only staying in Osaka for a few days I recommend the Osaka Pass. For me it saved a lot of money and took me to places I wouldn't have gone without the pass.
The clock wasn't even 9am when I continued my day towards the next stop: Osaka Castle. This is the must go place for everyone exploring Osaka. It's photogenic (see the photo above), full of history and packed with tourists. If you aren't interested about historic things some parts of the castle may be boring for you (or if you are lazy like me climbing the stairs is torture!). However the scene from the observation deck is BEAUTIFUL.
To continue my own travelogue and place I want to recommend for everyone is exploring the Osaka bay area. There is aquarium, food theme park, mount Tempozan (Japan's smallest mountain, only 4,53 meters above sea level) and Tembozan Ferris Wheel. Like you can see the bay area has many interesting things to do but on the top of my own places to be visited in Osaka list is taking cruise and exploring Osaka from its deck. The ship I took was pirate themed and I loved every second. Wind on my hair, Titanic moment, seeing the Osaka from new perspective, hearing travel stories from other passangers and sharing my own travelogue with them.
Next place on my travelogue is Umeda Sky Building. Japan is full of cool observation deck but Umeda Sky Building was the scariest one for me. I have absurd fear of heights and was scared for my life for the whole time I spend on the top levels of this architectural building. Being scared doesn't mean I didn't love the place and would but it on my places to be visited in Osaka list. The views are beautiful and totally worth of mentioning on my travelogue! Also some people would think that the building's too long escalators are cool (for me it was hell. I just clinged to the side of the escalator and hoped I would get safely to the top.)
When you are exploring Osaka and Japan you shouldn't forget visiting temple or shrine. I recommend Shitennoji temple. Just remember to be respectful because shrines and temples are well tourist attractions but also places for religion.
When the sun is setting and day closing its end must to go place is HEP FIVE entertainment and shopping complex. There go to the huge Ferris Wheel. You will get beautiful view to the city and even more beautiful sunset. You can even play your own music in the cars and have own small party to celebrate your successful exploring in Osaka. Perfect way to end your travelogue.
If you aren't yet ready to return your accommodation, make your way towards Namba and Minami. There you can see the beautiful lights of Osaka closely and see the life of locals spending their evenings.
I hope there was few tips to what put on your places to be visited in Osaka list. Of course, you can also take small trips to close cities like Kyoto or Nara. The photo above is from Kyoto's bamboo forest. Beautiful right? Because the travel between Osaka and Tokyo by train only takes 25 minutes and costs about 500 yen, one of my must do things in Osaka is to take day trip to the nearby city. (I may even love Kyoto more than Osaka so if you have time I totally recommend.) You should however be warned that you will fall in love with Osaka. After spending there that one night I returned three times to explore more the amazing city of Osaka and add amazing adventures to my travelogue.