Osaka is distinguished by its nightlife, food and straightforward demeanor. Its laid-back, hedonistic attitude is best evidenced by the term kuidaore, loosely meaning "eat yourself to ruin," and the prefecture's abundance of nationally famous comedians. And yet, this packed prefecture has plenty of history and culture to explore, including Osaka Castle and Shitennoji Temple. It's easy to make friends with the welcoming, brash residents at hole-in-the-wall bars and izakaya, or over local foods such as takoyaki, okonomiyaki and kushikatsu.
From Tokyo, take the Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen to Shin-Osaka Station. The trip takes approximately two and a half hours. From Shin-Osaka Station, transfer to the JR local line and ride to Osaka Station. From Kansai International Airport (KIX), take the Nankai or JR lines to Tennoji or Namba stations.
Osaka is an excellent base for exploring the greater Kansai region, which includes Kyoto, Nara, Kobe and Wakayama. Each of these areas is a one-hour train ride from Osaka’s central transportation hubs (Osaka Station in the north, and Namba Station and Tennoji Station in the south). Kansai International Airport (KIX) is rivaled only by Narita Airport in Tokyo in size and scope, and is serviced by all major airlines. There are many direct flights between KIX and many major cities in the US, Europe and Australia.
Bits of octopus combined with pickled ginger and green onions, mixed in a batter and grilled in a special mold. The r...
Osaka Kongo Bamboo Blinds
Bamboo blinds predate the Heian period (794-1185), and were first used inside the Imperial palace and the residences ...
Iwa okoshi are candied puffs made from millet. Theyve been produced in Osaka since 1185. Think of them as cereal bars...
Okonomiyaki are savory pancakes made with shredded cabbage, flour, egg and dashi, and either cooked at your table for...
A sea of pink fills the prefecture's parks and boulevards, and the city comes out in full force to celebrate the gorgeous views at Osaka Castle, Yodogawa Riverside Park and the Osaka Mint.
Festive spirits and outdoor amusements ease the heat, and Osaka's foremost festival, the Tenjin Matsuri, thrills crowds. People head for the prefecture's southern beaches, and summer fireworks displays brighten the night.
As summer's humidity dissipates, the leaves turn fiery and provide a pleasant impetus for outdoor adventure. The Midosuji Parade brings a vibrant procession of floats and marching bands down Osaka's grand boulevard.
Warm spirits battle the cold weather with holiday illuminations and end-of-year festivities. Runners from all over the world gather for the Osaka International Women's Marathon.