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The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan

Updated: Jul 20, 2019

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan
[Osaka by Day | Image Courtesy of Koi Visuals / Unsplash]

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan

Osaka is historically a place of local businessmen, and this has largely helped in shaping Osaka into a city with uber-thriving food culture.


Apart from the incredible food culture, Osaka locals have a distinct sense of humor you cannot find among people of Tokyo or Kyoto. Of course, Osaka is packed with so many attractions that if you only have a few days in the city, you have to make sure your itinerary is planned down to the last period so you won’t miss anything that’s worth experiencing in this one-of-a-kind city.

Here are the best day tours in Osaka you should not miss:

1. Tsutenkaku Tower Tour

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan
[Tsutenkaku Tower | Image Courtesy of O-seop Sim / Pexels]

A Tsutenkaku Tower Tour of the Shinsekai district lets you walk down memory lane and experience what it might have been in early 1900s Osaka. Now a vibrant entertainment district, Shinsekai is still popular among locals and visitors alike thanks to its bevy of cheap eateries, Instagrammable signages, and yes that yummy kushikatsu (deep-fried skewered meat and veggies)—a must-try when in this area.

At the heart of this old but still cool district is the 103m-high Tsutenkaku Tower from which radiates a seemingly endless network of pachinko parlors, old establishments, and izakaya (pubs). You can also climb the tower to get spectacular views of Osaka! Best to go just before dusk for both day and nighttime views. Don’t forget to touch the perpetually-smiling Mr. Billiken statue for good luck when you go up the observation deck.

2. Osaka Food Tour

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan
[Okonomiyaki | Image Courtesy of ZhengZhou Wikimedia / Commons]

No trip to Osaka is complete without the requisite food tour in what is considered the gastronomic heart of food-crazy Japan.

Of course, the best place to sample not only the best of Osaka cuisine but also the pulsating urban life of the city is at Dotonbori. Eat until your belly can take no more in this energetic district of neon lights, gaudy signages, and of course some of the best eats in Japan.

Don’t leave without sampling the best Osaka has to offer—okonomiyaki (savory pancakes), takoyaki (octopus dumplings), yakitori (grilled chicken skewers), gyoza (Chinese-style dumplings) among many other sumptuous and affordable treats. Don’t forget to take photos with the area’s iconic signages- the crab, the fugu (pufferfish), the ramen, the gyoza, among many other garish yet delightful 3D signs.

3. Tea Ceremony Tour

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan
[Traditional tea ceremony | Image Courtesy of mrhayata / Flickr.jpg]

Those who want to delve deeper into the very rich culture of Japan may want to experience the age-old tea ceremony while wearing traditional Japanese kimono. Prepare your own tea the traditional way and enjoy it against a backdrop of a tranquil Japanese garden or within a quiet ryokan while contemplating life and its many ups and downs.

4. Universal Studios Japan

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan
[Universal Studios Japan | Image Courtesy of Max Pixel]

A good part of your day should be spent at the massive Universal Studios Japan. USJ is teeming with attractions, rides, and shows that will keep visitors of all ages entertained the entire day. Choose from among the many Hollywood-themed rides and be amazed by the remarkable Wizarding World of Harry Potter and its delightfully recreated Hogsmeade village.

Don’t forget to buy a souvenir and chug a mug or two of everyone’s favorite Butterbeer! Lines can be kilometric, though, so if you have some extra cash you could purchase the (expensive) fast pass.

5. Free Walking Tours in Osaka

The Best Day Tours in Osaka, Japan
[Osaka by Day | Image Courtesy of Koi Visuals / Unsplash]

Of course, it still is best to go on a free walking or DIY day tours in Osaka. Despite being a highly urbanized, modern city, Osaka is perfect for walking and efficient public transportation can help you hop from one district to the next in no time. An excellent walking tour we highly recommend is a Minami-themed complete loop that starts in Shinsaibashi station and ends, well, in Shinsaibashi station.

Best to start in Dotonbori (after dark is perfect!) then walk around the Amerika-Mura hip enclave. Afterward, head out to Shinsibashi’s shotengai or market street past innumerable shops and cross over Ebisu bridge down Dotombori canal (you could take photos of the Glico running man here). Proceed to the Kani Doroku restaurant with the giant crab signage into Dotombori Street and make your way past countless restaurants, takoyaki kiosks, and more big signs.

Turn right down Sennichi-mae arcade until you reach Hozen-ji Yokocho, an older, quieter nook in Osaka. Continue walking until you reach the tiny temple Hozen-ji and make your way back to Senichi-mae arcade and Dotonbori strip. Cross over Tazaemon bridge, follow the path under Ebisu bridge and up onto Midō-suji, where you can stroll back to Shinsaibashi Station. Phew!

So there you have it! A lowdown of the best day tours you can take when you are in Osaka, a city that’s like no other!


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Osaka Localized provides visitors and travellers to Osaka with a unique perspective of this great city. What makes Osaka Localized unique is that our walking tour guides live and work in Osaka, have a passion for this city and love meeting and welcoming new faces. Find out more about our Walking Tours in Osaka.

A great experience for: Day Tours in Osaka, Group Tours in Osaka, Private Walking Tours Osaka, University Walking Tours Osaka, Things To Do at Night in Osaka, Activities in Osaka, Osaka Sightseeing Tour, Osaka Tourist Attractions.

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