The first leg of our Japan 2017 trip was dedicated to Osaka area in Kansai region. We allotted three days in Osaka, 2 days of which are for touring the city. We availed the 2-day Osaka Amazing Pass and we were able to save a lot. Now let me share with you the different tourist attractions we visited using the Osaka Amazing Pass.
In my opinion, Osaka Castle is the most famous Osaka tourist attraction. This castle was built in the 16th century leaded by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and holds a significant place in Japanese history. Entering the castle will cost you JPY600. The castle is divided into 8 floors. Each floor tells different stories such as how the castle was made, armors, etc. The top floor is a view deck. As such with all Japanese tourist attractions, you go up to the highest floor by elevator and walk your way down to each floor to maximize your viewing time.
Osaka Castle Gardens is also a famous place. This holds quite a number of Sakura trees (Cherry blossoms trees), making it a place most tourist want to visit especially during spring time. I have read that entrance fee to the garden cost JPY200, but we were able to enter without a cost.
There are a lot of pigeons and crows in Japan. You will see most of them are not afraid of people. Neo was able to play with some during our Osaka Castle ground tour.
Another famous tourist attraction in Osaka is the Tsutenkaku Tower. It was built in year 1912. The Tsutenkaku Tower is like a merging of the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Troimphe. It has an observation deck on the 5th floor and dedicated to Billiken, the God of happiness. The Tsutenkaku has lot of information about Pocky, one of Japanese’s famous snacks made by Glico. Entrance fee to Tsutenkaku Tower is JPY700, and JPY300 for kids Neo’s age.
Just a close walk to Tsutenkaku Tower (you can even view it on Tsutenkaku Tower’s view deck) is the Osaka Zoo (Tennoji Zoo) that houses a polar bear. This was part of itinerary but we forgot to check if it was open during our scheduled visit. Unfortunately, it was close. We just did some photo op and walked along the area that sells a lot of Takoyakis.
Tempozan Ferris Wheel
Tempozan Ferris Wheel is one of the world’s largest Ferris wheel with the height of 112.5meters. Riding it costs JPY800, with no discount fare for kids. It has 60 gondolas, 4 of which have transparent floors. We didn’t ride the transparent floor gondola as we need to wait for almost 30 minutes to ride one.
Tempozan Ferris Wheel is very close to Osaka Aquarium (Kaiyukan). The Osaka Amazing Pass offers JPY100 discount for Kaiyukan entrance as part of the TOKUx2 coupon.
Tempozan Ferris Wheel is situated just above the Tempozan Marketplace, a mall, which houses the Naniwa LegoLand Discovery Center. The Osaka Amazing Pass we availed offers JPY600 discount for adult entrance fee and JPY100 discount for kids during our visit. Now, it is included in the Osaka Amazing Pass.
Another close attraction to Tempozan Ferris Wheel is the Captain Line at the Port of Osaka. Most Japanese use this boat to transport from Bay Area to Universal Port, where Universal Studios Japan is located. It is a quick 15-minute ride which cost JPY1300 for 2-way for adults (JPY500 for children).
We were able to have a quick tour of the Universal City Walk, the area in front of Universal Studios Japan, where you will find the Osaka Takoyaki Museum. Nothing too fancy though, just a lot of Takoyaki to eat and souvenir items.
Tip: If you will ride the Captain Line days before going to Universal Studios Japan, I suggest you buy your ticket during that visit. This will save you a lot of time instead of falling in line and buying USJ tickets during your actual visit.
Tombori Cruise is a boat ride along Namba area. Namba is where the famous Dotonbori is located. The boat ride cost JPY 900. This is a 20-minute ride along Dotombori Gawa River. You will get to see different Japanese establishments, buildings, and even residential areas along Namba.
While at Dotonbori, don’t forget to try different cuisines as all of them are delicious, a thing Dotonbori is famous for. You can also go shopping at Don Quijote for pasalubong items. Or just walk along Namba area and savor as much Japanese culture as you can. 🙂
I’m ending this post with our photo of the famous Glico Running Man at Namba area. Wait for my next blog post about our 2nd day of using the Osaka Amazing Pass.
PS: This was originally published last May 2017 in my previous blog: Baby Neo’s Mama.