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Osaka is the third largest cosmopolitan city in Japan known for its varied and magnificent food, vast underground shopping malls, and extremely friendly and outgoing people. With a population of 2.7 million,Osaka is the capital of the Kansai region and the city is often called the Manchester of Japan. People travelling to Japan often skip the Food Capital by following the standard route Tokyo – Hakone – Kyoto – Miyajima and Hiroshima which is pretty sad as Osaka has much more to offer to its visitors than tonnes of delicious food and Osaka Castle!
Where to Stay in Osaka
As you would expect from a major Japanese city, Osaka has no shortage of options when it comes to accommodation. As always, I’d suggest you stay somewhere central, to make accessing all the attractions as easy as possible.
The best places to stay in Osaka are Namba and Umeda. However, my suggestion would be to stay near Namba Station. from Namba station it is an easy 5-minute walk to Dotonbori Arcade, plenty of shops, cafes, restaurants and street food options.
You can find alternative hotels in Dotonbori here.
You can find apartments in Osaka here (Airbnb + up to 41 € off).
Read more reviews and compare Osaka hotel prices here.
Here are 21 Interesting Facts about Osaka you probably didn’t know:
The founders of Osaka – Rennyo, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Godai Tomoatsu and Seki Hajime, were actually not from Osaka. Osaka’s founders contributed to the advanced development, architecture and modernizing the city and the subway system in Osaka.
The name “Osaka” translates to“large hill” or “large slope” due to the fact that the city is surrounded by mountains.
After Tokyo and Yokohama and with a population of over 2.5 million people in its greater metropolitan area, Osaka is the third largest city In Japan.
Osaka is also the capital city of the Kansai region and the largest of the Osaka-Kobe-Kyoto trio.
Osaka is famous for being the business center of Japan, but it also has a very rich history and unique culture! Osaka has roughly 3,395 temples which is the second most temples in Japan! The city is also home to many archeological ruins, ancient burial mounds, the most historical and retro buildings in Japan, and a large number of traditional events and festivals being held here every year.
Osaka was the capital of Japan many times due to its important port with lots of trade and business opportunities.
Naniwa-no-Miya Palace was built in the year of 650 in Osaka and was Japan’s first full-scale palace!
Due to its strategic location, Osaka has become the buzzing Economic Center of Japan and the gateway for travelers and traders from all over the World!
The World War II destroyed almost all of Osaka’s historical monuments, buildings and tourist attractions. Many of these were rebuilt after the war.
Osaka Castle – the most famous building in Osaka, is a reconstruction and the third incarnation of the original one. The original Osaka Castle was built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and was destroyed during the Natsuno Jin battle in 1615. A Tokugawa’s version of Osaka Castle was built on top of it but some 50 years later, even this initial reconstruction was destroyed in a fire caused by lightning.
Being a gourmand’s paradise and food heaven, Osaka is known as the “nation’s kitchen”. The most famous dishes from Osaka are takoyaki and okonomiyaki and the most famous food district in Osaka (and the very best I’ve ever been to!) is Dotonbori.
Back in the days during the Edo period Osaka served as the center for rice trade.
One of the symbols of Osaka is the Dotonbori Glico Sign which is a huge billboard made by Ezaki Glicoin in 1935. The billboard which you can see nowadays is the sixth incarnation (from 2014) of the original one.
With its 2,6km, the Tenjinbashisuji Shotengai in Osaka is the longest shopping street in Japan! Tenjinbashisuji Shotengai is home to more than 600 permanent shops, boutiques and restaurants.
You can see some Fossils from the Jurassic to Cretaceous periods in Umeda’s underground shopping complex for free!
Osaka’s Aquarium “Kaiyukan” is one of the largest aquariums in the world!
People of Osaka use their own dialect and some locals even refuse to use the official high Japanese language even when they are not in Osaka.
Osaka is the birthplace and is still very famous for its Kabuki and Bunraku theatres.
The favourite sport in Osaka is Baseball and almost all of Osaka’s train companies own or owned a baseball team!
Located in osaka, Universal Studios Japan is the very first Universal Studios outside of the United States.
Osaka is a city with a strong comedy culture so saying to somebody “You are funny” is the best compliment for the people of Osaka! Therefore the food capital of Japan feels more friendly than other major cities.
Ready to visit Japan? Start looking for your Japan accommodation now while it’s fresh in your mind.
Want stylish accommodation in Japan you can afford?Find the cheapest prices for the best accommodations possible:
- Click here to search for hotels in Japan (Booking.com)
- Click here to search apartments in Japan (Airbnb + up to 40 € off)
- Click here to search hostels in Japan (Agoda)
Rental Car in Japan
Rentalcars.com searches all the big car rental companies in Japan and finds the best price for you. This is probably the easiest way to rent a car in Japan and around the World.
If you are the type of person who prefers joining a tour, there are all kinds of guided tours around Japan including Mount Fuji.
Enjoy the day!
*This post contains Affiliate Links. I only recommend high-quality items and services I am confident about. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.
Continue reading this series:
Osaka: The Ultimate First-Timer’s Travel Guide