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Regions of Japan

Hokkaido Tohoku Hokuriku
Shinetsu
Kanto Tokai Kansai Chugoku Shikoku Kyushu Okinawa Islands SAPPORO TOKYO NAGOYA OSAKA FUKUOKA FURANO KUSHIRO AOMORI SENDAI FUKUSHIMA NIKKO HAKONE SADO TAKAYAMA KANAZAWA ISE KYOTO NARA HIROSHIMA NAGASAKI KAGOSHIMA NAHA
Hokkaido
Hokkaido
  • Hokkaido
Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush
Tohoku
Tohoku
  • Aomori
  • Akita
  • Iwate
  • Yamagata
  • Miyagi
  • Fukushima
Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan. Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan.
Hokuriku Shinetsu
Hokuriku Shinetsu
  • Niigata
  • Toyama
  • Ishikawa
  • Fukui
  • Nagano
An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare. An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare.
Kanto
Kanto
  • Tokyo
  • Kanagawa
  • Chiba
  • Saitama
  • Ibaraki
  • Tochigi
  • Gunma
Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife. Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife.
Tokai
Tokai
  • Yamanashi
  • Shizuoka
  • Gifu
  • Aichi
  • Mie
Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan. Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan.
Kansai
Kansai
  • Kyoto
  • Osaka
  • Shiga
  • Hyogo
  • Nara
  • Wakayama
The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara. The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara.
Chugoku
Chugoku
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Okayama
  • Hiroshima
  • Yamaguchi
Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower. Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower.
Shikoku
Shikoku
  • Tokushima
  • Kagawa
  • Ehime
  • Kochi
Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving. Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving.
Kyushu
Kyushu
  • Fukuoka
  • Saga
  • Nagasaki
  • Oita
  • Kumamoto
  • Miyazaki
  • Kagoshima
The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky. The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky.
Okinawa
Okinawa
  • Okinawa
Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings

OSAKA Dotonbori & Shinsaibashi Bright lights, big city, in vibrant Osaka style

Bright lights, big city, in vibrant Osaka style

Hospitable Osaka established its reputation for commerce and entertainment back in the Edo period. In Shinsaibashi, and among the bright lights of the Dotonbori district, you'll find some of the best shopping and eating in Osaka. Come and experience the liveliest and most colorful area of Osaka.

Don't Miss

  • Dotonbori's lively nighttime atmosphere
  • Shinsaibashi-suji, eight blocks of retail heaven
  • People watching in Amerikamura, where the cool kids hang out

How to Get There

Shinsaibashi and Dotonbori are easily accessible via train from all points in Osaka.

From Osaka/Umeda Station, take the Midosuji Line to Shinsaibashi Station. Look for the exit to Shinsaibashi shopping arcade. If you walk the length of the arcade you will emerge at Ebisubashi bridge in Dotonbori. Alternatively, to reach Dotonbori directly continue on the Midosuji Line train to Namba Station.

400 years of entertainment and counting

Shopkeepers and merchants have been plying their trade around Shinsaibashi since the 1600s when an enterprising merchant (named Shinsai) built a bridge connecting the up-and-coming Shinmachi quarter to the theater district of Dotonbori.

While the traditional kabuki theaters and entertainment halls of Dotonbori have all but vanished there's no lack of drama and entertainment to be had in the lively streets where Osaka still comes to play. Packed with shops, bars and restaurants this is where you'll find the city at its most frenetic.

Shop, eat, drink, repeat

Almost a mile long, Shinsaibashi arcade stretches from Shinsaibaishi station to Dotonbori and is one of the busiest and oldest shopping streets in Japan. There are shops to suit every budget and tastes from high fashion to traditional crafts. Add on a limitless selection of cafes and restaurants, and you'll be lucky to emerge before nightfall.

At the center of it all: the Dotonbori Bridge

The Dotonbori district sits beside a 400 year old canal. The bridge over the canal is a popular place to take your photo (look out for the Glico Man; the enormous runner towers over Ebisubashi Bridge and is a famous Osaka landmark).

The bright lights and bars of Dotonbori draw huge nighttime crowds. Exuberant neon signs plus an assortment of giant mechanical sea creatures and clowns looking down on the action add to the fun.

Kuidaore (eat 'til you drop): dining Osaka-style

It won't take long to work up an appetite with the multitude of eating and drinking options in your path. The alleys and streets surrounding Dotonbori-dori—the main thoroughfare—are packed with izakaya, restaurants and bars. The crab restaurants here are famous. Or try Osaka-style sushi. Many of the larger establishments have English menus.

Along the riverside promenade you'll find stalls serving takoyaki, steaming bowls of ramen, okonomiyaki joints and an abundance of drinking spots. Pause for a drink while you watch the world passing by and enjoy the lights reflected in the water. If you feel overwhelmed by crowds, turn off the main drag into the quieter lantern-filled Hozenji Yokocho for a choice of traditional restaurants.

Photo of Dotonbori Bridge

Photo of adjacent shopping promenade

Amerikamura: street fashion and youth culture

West of Shinsaibashi, Amerikamura is named for its origins as a place to buy US goods after World War II and new and retro Americana abounds. This is where Osaka teens strut their stuff in a diverting fashion parade of uniquely Japanese street style.

Stop in Triangle Park (a tiny concrete seating place) to check out the latest trends before browsing the vintage clothing and record stores. There are plenty of quirky cafes to hang out in and if you stay till late, clubs and live music venues.

Many stores don't open until after 11 a.m., so arrive later in the day when Amerikamura's habitués are awake. The place fills up at weekends when there are usually flea markets and buskers in the mix.

Photo of Amerikamura

Orange Street

Osaka's furniture-making district, Orange Street and the surrounding Horie neighborhood has reinvented itself as a hub for designer clothing and trendy cafes. While it remains home to a few old-school furniture makers, the narrow streets are now lined with an eclectic mix of stylish boutiques, hip lifestyle stores and coffee shops.

Planning a trip

With many hotels in the area, easy dining options, and convenient access to the Midosuji subway line, Shinsaibashi is an ideal location to stay while you're in Osaka.

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