2016 Japan fall trip (day 12)

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December 8

6:31 am – Got up

10:59 am – Off we go
…to Osaka.

It’s been mostly temples and shrines before this day so we decided to change it up a bit.

Remember the building from last night?


Seriously though, I’m curious to know what goes on in there

We took the Keihan Railway to Osaka.


Keihan Railway map

I got excited when the train arrived as it was sort of a double-decker train.


Look out for this train

Initially we weren’t able to sit on the double-decker part of the train. But on the next stop, I dragged her on to the train’s ‘second floor’ as some seats became vacant. What can I say, I wanted to see what it was like up there.

We walked from the station we got off (I forgot the name) all the way to the castle. It was a different way from the ones I’ve gone through previously.


Osaka Castle from far away

I think previous images of Osaka’s manhole I’ve had before were taken at night. So…


Osaka manhole design (in daylight)

1:09 pm – Osaka castle
We came in from the south side of the castle grounds.


Osaka Castle map

How to get there: I’ll take Osaka station as the starting point. It’s about a 10-minute, 160JPY train ride on the Osaka Loop Line for Tennoji. Get off at Osakajokoen and walk a bit. If I’m not mistaken, this will take you through the park with the giant fountain and come in through  the castle’s north east side.

The castle tower is open from 9 am to 5 pm except from December 28 to January 1. Entrance fee is 600JPY. You can get in until 30 minutes before closing time.

As for Nishinomaru garden, they are also open from 9 am to 5 pm, but from November through February, they are only open until 4:30 pm. During cherry blossom season, they are open until 9 pm.

The garden is closed during the New Year holidays and on Mondays, or the following day if the Monday is a national holiday. Typical entrance fee is 200JPY. It changes to 350JPY during the extended hours of the cherry blossom season.

This was a bit interesting. We first saw her walking along the tree-lined path with us.


Just out on a walk…

The next time we saw her she was sitting on an open space near the trees.


…and then writing a poem (maybe?)


Osaka Castle’s manhole design


I think this was the NHK building nearby


Late lunch: curry dog


Osaka Castle


The entrance to the castle tower is on the right

There was a performer near the castle. He had a permit and music and props and everything.


He’s good


The other side of the castle


Calm waters

We also visited the plum garden. It wasn’t plum season, so…


…it looked a bit creepy


Birds at sunset

4:24 pm – Osaka station
We were on our way to Umeda Sky Building.


Grand Front Osaka

Remember the movie promotional event a few days ago at Fushimi Inari Taisha? Well, there’s one here also. But this time, it’s in the form of an ice rink.

Still can’t remember the name of the movie. There’s the poster though.


Would have loved to try to skate on the ice



4:41 pm – Umeda Sky Garden area


They might have moved this info board on a different place

How to get there: It’s less than a 15-minute walk from Osaka station.

The garden observatory is open from 10 am to 10:30 pm. It’s at the top of the building, so you’ll be going through two escalators and an elevator ride. You can get in until 10 pm, and the entrance fee is 1000JPY.

We didn’t go up to the observatory, but there was a German-themed Christmas event that time.


Christmas all around


The giant Christmas tree in the middle


German food options


The place all lit up

5:26 pm – Osaka station
We went back to Osaka station on our way to Dotonbori.


We met a mascot while we were at the station

We got hungry so we tried Manneken waffles.


Murasaki Iro (purple yam? ube!) flavor

6:33pm – Dotonbori


The famous crab at Dotonbori

How to get there: Namba station is the closest to Dotonbori. Take the Midosuji line from Osaka station to Namba station and walk a bit to Dotonbori. The train ride takes less than 15 minutes and costs 240JPY.

This is a good place to buy souvenirs too, as there’s a Don Quijote nearby.


The place is always lively


Obligatory Glico man picture

I’m really bad at taking night time photos.

10:02 pm – At apartment

11:53 pm – Sleep

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