Tenjin Matsuri

Top choice cultural in Osaka

This is one of Japan's three biggest festivals and is dedicated to Sugawara Michizane, the Japanese deity of scholarship and learning. Try to make the second day, when processions of mikoshi (portable shrines) and people in traditional attire start at Osaka Tenman-gū and end up in hundreds of boats on the Ō-kawa. There's a huge fireworks display as night falls.