Top things to do in Osaka

Top Choice Castle in Osaka

Osaka-jō

After unifying Japan in the late 16th century, General Toyotomi Hideyoshi built this castle (1583) as a display of power, using, it's said, the labour of 100,000 workers. Although the present structure is a 1931 con…
Top Choice Notable Building in Osaka

Abeno Harukas

This Cesar Pelli–designed tower, which opened in March 2014, is Japan's tallest building (300m, 60 storeys). The observatory on the 16th floor is free, but admission is required for the highly recommended top-level …
Top Choice Area in Osaka

Amerika-Mura

West of Midō-suji, Amerika-Mura is a compact enclave of hip, youth-focused and offbeat shops, plus cafes, bars, tattoo and piercing parlours, nightclubs, hair salons and a few discreet love hotels. In the middle is …
Top Choice Area in Osaka

Dōtombori

Highly photogenic Dōtombori is the city's liveliest night spot and the centre of the Minami (south) part of town. Its name comes from the 400-year-old canal, Dōtombori-gawa, now lined with pedestrian walkways and wi…
Top Choice Street Food in Osaka

Wanaka Honten

This famous tako-yaki (octopus dumplings) stand, just north of Dōguya-suji arcade, uses custom copper hotplates (instead of cast iron) to make dumplings that are crisper on the outside than usual (but still runny in…
Top Choice Sushi in Osaka

Yoshino Sushi

In business since 1841, Yoshino specialises in Osaka-style sushi, which is hako-sushi ('pressed sushi'). This older version of the dish (compared to the newer, hand-pressed Tokyo-style nigiri-sushi) is formed by a w…
Top Choice Cultural in Osaka

Tenjin Matsuri

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 p…
Top Choice Okonomiyaki in Osaka

Chibō

One of Osaka's most famous okonomiyaki (savoury pancake) restaurants, Chibō almost always has a line, but it moves fast because there's seating on multiple floors (though you might want to hold out for the coveted t…
Top Choice Tempura in Osaka

Yotaro Honten

This two-Michelin-starred restaurant specialises in exceptionally light and delectable tempura served at the counter where you can watch the chefs, or in private rooms. The tasty sea bream dish serves two to three p…
Top Choice Sushi in Osaka

Endo Sushi

Trek out to Osaka's fish market to taste the exceptionally fresh sushi at cosy Endo, in business for over a century. You can choose from four different sushi sets of five pieces each; we recommend starting your day …