Osaka.

osaka airport
Photography by Takahiro Bessho

Osaka

You may think Tokyo is the place to be, but when you get to Osaka, make sure you try the places/food below. They're unique to Osaka and they will lead you into different areas of this city where everything is so different to Tokyo.

Spa World

Spa world osaka
Address: 3 Chome-4-24 Ebisuhigashi, Naniwa Ward, Osaka, Osaka Prefecture 556-0002, Japan
Hours:
Tuesday Open 24 hours
Wednesday
(Labor Thanksgiving Day)
Open 24 hours
Hours might differ
Thursday Open 24 hours
Friday Open 24 hours
Saturday Open 24 hours
Sunday Open 24 hours
Monday Open 24 hours
Prepare to walk through gates that spray cool water all over you before entering Spa World. This was a completely unique experience because it was the very first visit to an onsen - a public bath. Yes, you are completely naked but yes, you get a small towel to cover up for when you walk from one bathing area to the next. It sounds frightening, but the Japanese culture is so different to ours that it is completely normal and you will feel at ease. There is a female level and a male level too, each with their own salt sauna, massage parlour, restaurant and outdoor area. If you're in Osaka, visiting Spa World is a must to get in touch with the true Japanese culture and tradition of bathing. 

Takoyaki 

Dotonbori osaka japan

Photography by John Asano

Osaka is the home of Takoyaki! Tomekichi Endo has been noted as creating takoyaki in 1935 and since its inception, it has spread to all parts of Japan as a popular street food cuisine and is sold in all Japanese restaurants both in Japan and around the world. Although the flavours combined quite unique and unusual (octopus, tempura, ginger, green onion, takoyaki sauce, mayonnaise, green lava and shavings of dried bonito) the finished ball-shaped snack is a delightful snacks and components of it melt in your mouth, leaving you feeling full and enjoying the full palette of flavours in this unique food. You can find it nearly everywhere in Osaka - best to do some trials and then find a place that you like the best. Dotonbori is a great place to try takoyaki as there are numerous street vendors and quaint restaurants with it as their signature dish.

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