Osaka along with Tokyo and many of the other Japanese cities is a great demonstration of an urban city scape. It is filled with skyscrapers and other buildings, which may be necessary as the Osaka metropolitan area is home to around 19 million people!
Throughout Japan’s history Osaka has been typically thought of as a merchant city and was known as the “nations kitchen” because of it vital role in the rice trade.
Nowadays it has become much more involved in the tourism sector playing host to huge aquariums and theme parks, however, sadly these are not free…
With all that in mind we present our list of the top five free things to do in Osaka:
5. Tenmangu Shrine
There are hundreds of shrines across Japan dedicated to the Shinto philosophy, one of the most important of these; Osaka Tenmangu shrine, is first up on our list of free things to do in Japan.
If you are visiting on the 24-25th of July then you are just in time for the Tenjin Matsuri festival that is held here every year.
The Tenmangu shrine is just a 5 minute walk from the JR Osaka-Tenmangu Station and is open daily between 9am and 5pm.
4. Panasonic centre
Up next on our list of free things to do in Osaka is the Panasonic centre, which can found just a short walk away from the main rail station.
Read an extract from the review by ‘Robert O.’ on TripAdvisor:
“You can touch and play with the equipment and gadgets, and ask questions of the knowledgeable staff. If you don’t speak Japanese, they will find you someone who speaks English. The latest photographic and home cinema products are great, the kitchen and bathroom products amazing, but what really impressed us is what Panasonic are up to with their energy capture & storage technologies for the home.”
The centre is open from 10am till 8pm.
3. Minoh Park
Minoh park (also spelled ‘mino’ or ‘minoo’ park) makes it to number three on our list of free things to do in Osaka!
One of the most popular times to visit parks in Japan is usually between early April and May in order to see the cherry blossoms. However Minoh park is much more popular in the Autumn to see the incredible foliage. The colours form a wide spectrum of reds, browns and greens throughout the season and is well worth a visit.
The hiking trail through the park follows the river and pass a beautiful waterfall which is the park’s main attraction.
2. Osaka Castle Park
You can find Osaka Castle Park taking up a space of over 100 hectares in the centre of Osaka.
Osaka Castle was originally built in 1582 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and was designed to mirror Oda Nobunaga’s headquarters yet surpass it in every way. It features five stories on the outside and 8 on the inside and the castle’s 2 gates, 5 turrets, well, and storehouse are all considered historically important assets to the Japanese government.