In Japan’s long history of emperors and shoguns, Osaka was named the capital several times, and it has the history to prove it. There’s much to do here, from watching the cherry trees bloom in spring to gazing out over the city from the remarkable Umeda Sky Building. Curious? We bet you are. From ancient shrines to modern high-rises, accommodation in Osaka is a front-row seat to Japan’s thriving economic hub.
Things to Do in Osaka
You’ll be able to tour everything from 16th-century citadels to futuristic skyscrapers from our hotels in Osaka, including some of Japan’s most famous landmarks like Osaka Castle. Long before rappers were rockin’ the bling, the shogun who built the castle covered the tea room entirely in gold. Blinded by the light? The Umeda Sky Building is the perfect contrast, a futuristic steel skyscraper with the stunning Floating Garden Observatory on the 39th floor. While it’s not one of the tallest in Osaka, the 360-degree outdoor deck will have you walking on air. Hope you’re not afraid of heights!
If you’d rather keep your feet on the ground, accommodation in Tennoji is a great home base for exploring the city. It’s near one of the largest rail and subway hubs, plus tons of shopping, dining and architectural claims to fame. The Abeno Harukas skyscraper is the tallest habitable building in Japan, and the Shitenno-ji Temple was the first Buddhist temple in the country. If you have more artistic leanings, unleash your inner geijutsuka at the Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts in Tennoji Park. Meditate on Buddha heads and wrap your mind around tiny netsuke sculptures worth more than your car.
Getting To & Around Osaka
International flights to Osaka will land at Kansai International Airport (KIX), 50 km south of the city in Osaka Bay—the perfect introduction to this futuristic city, as it’s located on an artificial island that was created especially for the airport. From there, hop on the JR Line to Osaka Station downtown. The train also makes stops throughout the city, including Tennoji to the south and Shin-Osaka to the north, across the Yodo River. Osaka hotels are always on the right track thanks to the extensive subway and rail system: convenient to all the attractions within the city and beyond, it won’t leave you railroaded.
Best Time to Travel
There’s no argument here: Japan’s spring and autumn seasons make for wonderful Osaka holidays, though you can travel at any time. In late October and November, autumn brings turning leaves and lower prices, but late March through May are by far the most popular months to go, and for good reason. The spectacular sakura (cherry trees) are blooming, and the weather is gorgeous and sunny, with temperatures in the high teens and 20s. One of Japan’s biggest festivals, Tenjin, takes place in July in Osaka. If you’ve ever wanted to see traditional lion dancers or a goblin riding a horse, this is your chance.
You don’t have to be a monarch to find the perfect castle. Book one of Wotif’s great deals on Osaka accommodation and you’ll be living like royalty before you can say “biru, onegaishimasu” (beer please!).