Osaka is the economic beating heart of the Kansai region and is Japan’s third largest city. It lacks the architectural charm and elegance of Kyoto and Kanazawa but beneath the surface lies Japan’s food and entertainment capital. Osaka is fast becoming the younger and faster brother to Tokyo; it may lack refinement, but it more than makes up for that with unabashed fun.
With huge entertainment districts offering live music, karaoke and some of the best food in Japan, Osaka moves at a fast pace and it sparkles at night. With neon signs lit above bars and restaurants that spill into colourful streets, Osaka is the destination for the forward thinking Japanese that take the concept of work hard and play hard to new levels. With local delicacies, such as Takoyaki (fried octopus balls) as well as excellent sushi, this is also the place for foreigners wanting to push boundaries when it comes to Japanese cuisine. We highly recommend an evening guided food tour to make the most of it. Osaka also has its fair share of galleries, museums and upscale boutiques along with Osaka Castle and one of the foremost aquariums in Asia. Spend a night or two here, or alternatively a day trip from Kyoto.