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Things to do in Dotonbori

Our most recommended things to do in Dotonbori

Welcome to Osaka: Private Tour with a Local Host

1. Welcome to Osaka: Private Tour with a Local Host

Experience Osaka like a resident on a private walking tour with a local host. Get tips on what to see and do, and learn the best ways to get around. Benefit from pick-up at your accommodation and get familiar with your local neighborhood. Discover where to buy groceries or where the best local places to eat are located and much more. Alternatively, meet at a central landmark or intersection to start your walking tour. Venture beyond the usual tourist sites and discover places you would never read about in the guidebooks. Avail of an itinerary that can be tailored to your interests and specific needs. Ride on the public transportation system, at your own expense, if you prefer. Chat with your guide about life in the city and its many traditions. Feel more confident getting around and exploring on your own by the end of your experience.

Osaka: Main Sights and Hidden Spots Guided Walking Tour

2. Osaka: Main Sights and Hidden Spots Guided Walking Tour

Osaka is known for great food, quirky characters and an urban history much longer than Tokyo's. Get under the skin of this unique city on this guided walking tour with a professional English-speaking guide.  Start off with a visit to Osaka Castle Park. You won't go inside the castle, but will get to admire the grand and imposing exterior, and will stroll around the surrounding park.  Here you'll learn about the history of Osaka and how it was almost robbed from the Japanese 400 years ago.  A quick train ride takes you to Tsuruhashi, to explore the maze of Korea Town. Explore the narrow streets and alleys of this pre-war commercial district.  Another quick journey by public transport will take you to modern Harukas building. Enjoy the view from one of the high floors, then head underground to explore the food hall of the department store underneath. See high quality products for sale like killer puffer fish and Kobe beef, amongst others.  Not far from Harukas is the traditional district of Shin-sekai. See the slightly crumbling local highlights, perfectly frozen in time.  Next, head to Namba, considered to be the center of Osaka's present-day shopping, dining, and entertainment culture. Visit Dotonbori, Osaka’s version of Times Square in New York, and explore the quirky back streets with their own individuality and surprises in store. You’ll visit Kuromon Ichiba, a fresh fish market that's played a pivotal role for more than 150 years.  Finally, explore Doguyasuji, a kitchen and cooking district. Look around at the wax food models, Japanese "noren" (curtains that hang at kitchen entrances) and giant pottery pieces. 

Osaka Bar Hopping Food Tour

3. Osaka Bar Hopping Food Tour

After meeting your local tour guide at exit 15B of Namba station, the guide will take you around a food alley, located near Dotonbori. This narrow alley reminds people of the historic old days of Osaka with Japanese style Izakaya bars lined up in the alley and including a small temple called Hozenji temple. Many locals come to relax and enjoy local food there at night. After walking around the alley, you'll visit the first Izakaya bar that serves various types of Osaka's traditional food such as Kushikatsu (fried skewers). The combination of this local food and drinking local Beer, Sake, and Shochu will definitely pump up your night!  After enjoying delicious fried skewers, you and your local guide will go to the next izakaya bar of the bar hopping tour. At this place you can eat a traditional Japanese food which most tourists don't really know. Osaka is known for their variety of foods because they import from all over the world.  Of course you can grab many more drinks on this nightlife bar tour! The night tour is not over yet! Afterwards you continue the bar hopping night tour by pub crawling through more bars!  Lastly, you will hop on to other bars in an area called Ura-Namba, where hidden traditional and delicious restaurants are located. You go to one of the most unique nightlife food alleys around there. A collection of 20 kinds of Izakaya bars and eateries filled daily full of locals grabbing a bite to eat at night. Have a seat and enjoy your meals and drinks in front of a bar serving small Japanese plates such as Yakitori (chicken skewers) and grilled vegetables. You can also try sushi, takoyaki, Okonomiyaki ( Japanese savory pancake origins from Osaka) or many other kinds of delicious local food from many bars in this food alley. They will deliver the meal right to you!  Before going back to Namba station, you drop by Dotonbori and take memorable photos with friends and the guide you met on this night tour! The atmosphere of Dotonbori is totally different at night compared to the day. At night it is very vivid and unique like the local people who live in Osaka. By the end of this tour, you'll surely get to know how distinctive and special this city really is. After all this city is known amongst travelers as being the nightlife "Party City" of Japan!

Osaka: Guided Pub Crawl

4. Osaka: Guided Pub Crawl

Experience the nightlife of Osaka throughout an exciting pub crawl. You can meet new people as you visit various bars and clubs, mingling with your fellow crawlers. Avoid the need to plan your night and avail of the services of a fun guide with good local knowledge. You will typically start the night in a relaxed bar with space to sit down to get to know each other, enjoying a free shot and getting the chance to win some free drinks. Things will heat up at the 2nd bar, with more music and some games and activities to get to know your fellow participants. Next, continue to a 3rd bar with space to dance and a table to sit down at if you prefer. Then it will be time to make your way to a club to end the night on the dance floor. You can stay until closing time at 5:00AM if you want to mix with the locals, who will start arriving at around 12:30AM if you want to see how they have fun. You may even get invited to an after party if any are available, which they often are.

Osaka: 1- or 2-Day Metro Pass

5. Osaka: 1- or 2-Day Metro Pass

Save time on route planning and avoid complicated transfers on crowded public transport with your Osaka Metro Day Pass. Choose from a 1 or 2-day pass depending on which option you select.  With this pass, you will be able to ride not just the Osaka Metro but also Osaka city bus. Also, benefit from discount coupons at about 30 attractions across the city including Osaka Castle and Tsutenkaku Tower.

Osaka: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour by Private Vehicle

6. Osaka: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour by Private Vehicle

Discover how Osaka has centuries more history than Tokyo and a merchant culture that still strongly resonates today on this full-day guided tour by private vehicle.  First stop is a visit to the Osaka Castle, where you will explore the grounds and enjoy the view of the castle’s exterior. Then, visit what is said to be the oldest Buddhist temple in Japan, Shitennoji.  Next, head to Shin-sekai. A short stroll around the area will show you typical foods, games, and Osaka's famously bad fashion sense. After lunch, visit the Harukas building to admire views across the city as you soar up a glass elevator. At the basement of this tall building is a local marketplace with some of the finest foods on display, such as Kobe beef and high end sushi.  You will then explore Dotonbori, sometimes compared to New York's Times Square. Explore the side streets and hear interesting stories from your guide. Finally, visit the market of Kuromon Ichiba, where there's a deep history and unique vibe.

Osaka City: Food Origins Exploration Game

7. Osaka City: Food Origins Exploration Game

Play a 1.5-hour exploration game in the heart of Osaka city and discover the historical changes of the city from the Edo period to the present. Explore food heaven in Osaka, follow the clues, and try delicious and peculiar dishes along the way. Follow each culinary clue on your smartphone and get exact directions to the next location so you will not need a map, GPS, or guide. Unlock the secret story of each place as you solve the problems and guess the answers. Play individually, as a group, and solve the clues together as you walk or split into smaller teams and compete against the others. Download the app, go to the starting point, and begin the adventure!

Osaka: 2-Hour Kuromon Market Walking Street Food Tour

8. Osaka: 2-Hour Kuromon Market Walking Street Food Tour

Kuromon Market, also known as the "Kitchen of the Nation,” is one of the most important culinary centers of Japanese culture. Most of the family-owned businesses in the market have been there for decades. Renowned for its bounty of delicious street foods, Kuromon is much beloved by locals. Try authentic local foods, like takoyaki, grilled scallops, grilled yakitori skewers, and much more — your guide will help you sort through the array of food stalls to pick the best that the market has to offer. With the tour including enough food samplings to fill you up, make sure you come hungry. All the while, you’ll pick up insights into authentic Japanese culture as you learn about the fascinating history of the market, as well as Osaka’s contemporary and historical role in the country’s culture. You’ll also get some great tips from your guide about where to buy some souvenirs if you so desire.

Osaka: Local Foodie Tour in Dotonbori and Shinsekai

9. Osaka: Local Foodie Tour in Dotonbori and Shinsekai

Discover 2 of Osaka's most interesting neighborhoods, Dotonbori and Shinsekai, with a local guide. Soak up the incredible engergy of the city and immerse yourself in its gastronomic culture as you visit the best local food haunts. Get the chance to sample 8 of Osaka's local delicacies, from okonomiyaki, which is a type of savory pancake, to kushikatsu and takoyaki, a delicious traditional Japanese appetizer. During the tour, visit popular tourist attractions as well as off-the-beaten-track local fooderies as you learn about Osaka's development. Witness the striking contrasts between modern and traditional architecture as you make your way between unchanged, traditional building and modern developments.

Osaka: Hotspots and Hidden Gems Kickstart Private Tour

10. Osaka: Hotspots and Hidden Gems Kickstart Private Tour

You will get an insightful understanding of everyday Japanese customs, including topics that other local guides may not be comfortable letting visitors know about, so please ask me any questions (im half Japanese, half Australian....biracial, so more open-minded haha) First you'll slip through the non-touristy hidden maze of bar/restaurant zones in central Osaka, and even get a short glimpse of a Yakuza clubhouse (it’s safe and we’ll just walk past it). After check out the traditional Kuromon Ichiba Market seafood market where top chefs continue to shop at everyday. We’ll contrast that by ducking into quiet cobblestoned back alleys to uncover a mystic temple and its centuries-old unique history, while passing boutique eateries and hidden shops. Be prepared for a sensory overload as we navigate wacky larger-than-life billboards highlighting modern Japanese culture. You’ll get to hear plenty of interesting stories about Osaka while we amble down the central downtown Dotonbori river....and get some fantastic photo opportunities. The America town further down the road provides a curious insight of what Japanese people think what America is hahaha. The retro town of Shinsekai is just as intriguing with its mix of crazy fishing restaurants to its ancient Japanese gaming palors...it provides a lot of nostalgia! You’ll be dazzled by the retrograde neon all over the city and the exciting nightlife that Osaka is so famous for. This tour is known for exposing the contrasting faces of Osaka! Note: You will go to all the above places mentioned on the 3hr tour Note: On the 4hr tour we will visit all of the above plus 3 extra places: a knife shop (a private demonstation given), go down a plethora of off the beaten paths full of authentic restaurant alleys, full coverage of the Dotonbori River area with more of a deeper insight to Osaka local life. Note: Osaka Castle will only be visited on the 5hr tour (as it take over an 1hr to view this 15 acre land that Osaka Castle is built on. I hope my tour is more than memorable!:)

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What people are saying about Dotonbori

Overall rating

4.1 / 5

based on 263 reviews

The tour was excellent. It was pleasant and very informative that, time (5 hours) flew by so fast. Andrew was right on time. He is amazingly knowledgeable, well mannered and cultured. The tour was relaxed yet professional. I would strongly recommend this company and will likely use them again.

Dan my guide was amazing. So many areas of Osaka he took me to in only 4 hours, well planned out and explained, plus so many little tidbits about Japanese culture and spots I never would’ve learned on my own. Amazing day and we had lots of fun. Highly recommend!!!

es war eine schöne Tour. wir sind zu Fuß durch Osaka gelaufen und wurden zu vielen interessanten Orten gebracht. der Guide hatte viele Informationen parat und ist auf Fragen und individual Wünsche eingegangen.

Levi, our tour guide is excellent. He knows very well the history of Japan. Very friendly, accommodating and helpful. He is full of vibrant and very passionate with his work. This tour is worth every penny.

Great experience to. Explore every things new in city tour of Osaka had a dream city tour with my guide & cover almost each & every sport in day tour from 9 am till 5.30 pm evening .