Are you off to Japan and want to enjoy Osaka fully? Then here’s the coolest Osaka, Japan Itinerary in case you need to feel Japan’s second-largest city. I wanted to visit and do most of these things during my last visit but my schedule didn’t permit me so when I get back to Japan, these are the things that I will be doing!
Kansai Area is famous for traditional Japanese activities; for instance, most people do the Osaka-Kyoto-Nara trip. If you have enough time, you should spend more time in the heart of Kansai, Osaka!
Before you start your tour, I suggest buying an Osaka Amazing Pass as this will help you in your travels in Osaka. The pass costs JPY 2,700 for one day, and JPY 3,600 for two days. This will allow you to enter sites as well as get selected train rides within Osaka for free. However, you can use it on your Day 2 and 3. So without further ado, here is your ultimate 3-Day Osaka Itinerary Guide.
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3 Day Ultimate Osaka Japan Itinerary
Day 1: Osaka Japan Itinerary
If Tokyo has Disney Resort, Osaka has Universal Studios. This is a must when you visit Osaka! Potterheads will love the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and butterbeer! Plus, there are Japanese quirks like Hello Kitty, One Piece, and Dragonball. From morning until night, you’ll enjoy this theme park. Don’t forget to take pictures with the characters and see the night show plus fireworks!
Day 2: Osaka, Japan Itinerary
- Osaka Castle (Opens at 10 AM)
- Castle Museum (JPY 600, free with pass)
- Nishinomaru Garden (JPY 200, free with pass)
Start your day by going to the most famous landmark in Osaka, the Osaka Castle. The grounds are huge and also feature a shrine, museum, and a stunning Japanese garden. After walking around, you can get lunch at Miraiza Osaka-jo. It’s a mall in a historic building near the Castle. If you have already eaten lunch, you can proceed to the Illusions Museum inside or get a Ninja or Samurai Experience.
- Illusions Museum (JPY 1,200, free with pass)
- Aqua-Liner – Osaka Suijyo Bus:(JPY 1,700, free with pass)
- Osaka Museum of Housing and Living (JPY 600, free with pass)
Go out of Miraiza Osaka-jo and off to the pier near the castle and ride an Osaka Suijyo Bus, the Aqua-Liner. On the river, you can see the view of Osaka; the castle, houses, and skyscrapers. Get off at OAP pier and ride to the Osaka Museum of Housing and Living. Be transported in the Edo Period as you walk the recreated town.
- Umeda Sky Building – Kuchu Teien Observatory (JPY 1,500, free with pass until 6 pm)
- HEP FIVE Ferris Wheel (JPY 1,500, free with pass)
Before the clock strikes 6, you should be at Umeda Sky Building. It’s a 30-minute ride from the museum, so it’s better to travel before 5 PM. Search also the sunset time so you can catch it on the Observatory. You’ll have a perfect view of the city! You can get dinner nearby or at HEP FIVE. End your day riding the famous red Ferris wheel before going home. It closes at 11 PM.
If you bought the Osaka Amazing Pass, you would save JPY 7,300 – 2,700 = 4,600 without including the transportation expense. It’s pretty convenient. However, I suggest buying the two days pass as there’s more!
Day 3: Osaka Itinerary
- Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan (JPY 2,300, with pass JPY 100 off)
Go to the largest one of the world’s largest aquarium with about 620 species and 30,000 creatures. From tiny salamanders to penguins, to rays, to whale sharks; they are in here. You can see them as they “just keep swimming.” It’s enormous; it might take you a half day.
When you’re done there, you can go to Dotonbori. Take a picture of the famous “running man.” You can also do your souvenir shopping and more food tasting of Japanese Cuisine.
- Tsutenkaku Tower (JPY 800, free with pass)
- Spa World (JPY 1,200/1,500, with pass JPY 200 off)
Proceed to Tsutenkaku Tower a.k.a. the tower reaching heaven. It’s a famous landmark in Japan where Billiken, the God of Happiness, is enshrined. The last admission is at 9 PM, so you still have time from Dotonbori. The final stop for this trip would be Spa World. Have a taste of Japanese culture through an onsen. You can get your stress away after your three day Osaka adventure!
If you bought the Osaka Amazing Pass, surely you can save more than JPY 5,000!
Where to Stay in Osaka, Japan
Where to stay in Osaka, Japan if you want Luxury
Located near the stations, Umeda Sky Building and Grand Front Osaka is Intercontinental Osaka. With spacious and luxurious rooms with complete amenities, you would get a relaxing sleep. They have rooms and suites, an indoor pool and fitness center as well as a bathhouse. Check out my personal review with them in this article.
Price: King Rooms starts at USD 350
Where to stay in Osaka, Japan if you’re on a Budget
A few from USJ’s gate is The Park Front Hotel at Universal Studios Japan. This hotel has large rooms with separate bathroom and shower. There are onsite restaurants, convenience stores, and coin laundry on the premises.
Price: Standard Rooms starts at USD 125
Where to stay in Osaka, Japan if you’re a backpacker
Osaka Hana Hostel is in Chuo Ward near Shinsaibashi Train Station. They have dorm rooms with shared bathrooms as well as private rooms. You can cook your own meal at the shared kitchen.
Price: 6-Bed Dorms (Mixed and Female) starts from USD 17
List of Restaurants that you can try while in Osaka, Japan
Piere is a one-star Michelin Restaurant located in InterContinental Osaka. They serve French cuisine with Japanese Touches. I got to eat here and I highly recommend this. Everything is absolutely delicious!
Enjoy a fulfilling meal as you cook your own beef. Don’t worry, the chefs will teach you or assist you if you need help. The beef here in Matsusakagyu is absolutely delicious and melts in your mouth.
Try one of the best Katsus (breaded and fried meat cutlets) in Kimukatsu. It’s so juicy and mouthwatering; it will truly make you full. Make sure you have a reservation so that you won’t wait for long!
Frequently Asked Questions for Osaka, Japan
1. What are the languages spoken in Osaka?
Japanese is mostly spoken in Osaka, Japan. Though the Japanese know how to speak English, most are quite shy. If you don’t know basic Japanese, then, I suggest downloading google translate.
2. What currency do they use?
Japanese Yen are used throughout the city.
3. Are credit cards accepted?
Yes, major credit cards are accepted. However, for those small restaurants or shops, it’s better to pay in cash.
4. How much will you spend in Osaka?
It’s quite expensive in Japan; prepare at least USD 100 per day (with food and accommodation). You can pay JPY 1,000 per meal at a restaurant. However, what will make you spend are the attractions and shopping.
5. Do you have any saving tips?
- Use Osaka Amazing Pass so that you can save on attractions and transportation
- Avail Japan’s tax exemption program for tourists
- For breakfast, if it’s not free at the hotel, you can buy onigiri (rice balls) at the convenience stores
- Bring water container and refill it, water is quite expensive (about JPY 100+)
6. Where to purchase Souvenirs?
You can shop for Japanese souvenirs at Tokyu Hands or Don Quijote.
7. Where to stay in Osaka, Japan?
Namba or Umeda districts are great places to stay. However, you can also book near attractions or train stations.
- Backpacker’s travel: Osaka Hana Hostel – starts at USD 17
- Budget travel: The Park Front Hotel at Universal Studios Japan – starts at USD 130
- Luxury travel: InterContinental Osaka, starts at USD 350
8. Is it safe to travel to Osaka?
Yes, Japan is one of the safest places to travel in the world. Japan is my first international country, and I traveled it solo. You don’t have to worry as people are polite and kind; however, you always need to be vigilant.
9. Should I get travel insurance before heading to Osaka?
10. Do I need a visa for Japan?
Philippine passport holders need a Japan Tourist Visa to enter Japan. As for other nationalities, please check if you need one before going.
11. How to get to Osaka?
There is Kansai International Airport that serves Osaka. There are flights from the Philippines, the rest of Asia, the US, Canada, and Europe. You can also travel via train or bus if you are coming from Tokyo or other parts of Japan.
I hope you find this 3 Day Osaka Itinerary helpful for your future adventures in Japan! If you have any questions, please feel free to ask me. Don’t also forget to comment about your experience in Osaka. Happy Travels!
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