What to do in Osaka, Japan in a day
Only got a day in Osaka, Japan? To make the most out of your short visit, here are some fun things to do in Japan’s third-largest city.
Learn about instant ramen
Start your day by visiting the Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum, which is nearest to Ikeda station. Open from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., this place gives visitors a peek into the history of instant noodles, which has become a new food culture.
The museum is named after Momofuku Ando, the inventor of chicken ramen which is said to be the world’s first instant noodle product. The two-floor structure is home to a replication of Ando’s research shack, an exhibit paying tribute to Ando, a tunnel displaying different types of cup noodles, a small interactive theater, a library and a ramen factory.
For a small fee, you can try your hand at creating their own instant ramen or design your own cup noodles.
Eat takoyaki, okonomiyaki
While Tokyo is popular for its shopping finds, Osaka is particularly known for its food. While you’re here, make sure to try Osaka’s regional dishes such as takoyaki or octopus balls and okonomiyaki, a savory pancake containing a variety of ingredients.
Visit any (and I mean any) of the restaurants or stalls you find in Osaka, and you are bound to have a great meal.
Get a view of the city
Enjoy a view of the city from the Umeda Sky Building, which is a few minutes away from Osaka station. The 173-meter-high building is the centerpiece of Shin Umeda City, a real estate project that was completed in 1993.
You can take photos and walk around the observation deck for 700 yen per adult (around P300). There is also a souvenir shop where you can buy snacks and other cute items, although these can also be purchased in stores in different parts of the city.
Visit a castle
Continue your sightseeing by dropping by Osaka Castle, which is considered an “emblem” of the power and fortune of general and politician Hideyoshi Toyotomi. The impressive structure and its surroundings are best visited during the cherry blossom season as the place turns into a sea of soft pink and white petals.
The castle opens at 9 a.m. – but touring it may take a lot of time. Instead, take a stroll at the park and enjoy the view of the castle from the outside.
End your one-day visit to Osaka by heading to Shinsaibashi, the city’s main shopping area. This busy 600-meter long shopping street features several establishments, from high-end fashion brands to homegrown concepts.
Just north of Shinsaibashi is Dotonbori, which is also known for its shops and restaurants.