Osaka Castle

Osaka Castle: Our most recommended tours and activities

Osaka: Daytime Cherry Blossom and Food Tour

1. Osaka: Daytime Cherry Blossom and Food Tour

The Hanami spirit during Cherry Blossom season in Osaka is celebrated in many parts of the city but, perhaps the best place to see the blossoms is around the Osaka Castle area. Experience this walking tour of the castle grounds, exploring the gardens and surrounding neighborhood. You'll taste local treats and beverages from festive street stalls, explore the history of the district, and finish up with an amazing Japanese lunch at a delicious Soba restaurant. Sakura season is short, lasting for about one month from the first tiny buds to the finish of the season, with the peak being about two weeks. It is impossible to predict exact dates each year, but this limited-edition tour is offered in the time period which is the most famous for Hanami. Along with your guide, you'll learn about the history of the area as well as the meaning and reason behind the Sakura season. You'll also taste local specialties that are bound to be pleasing to the eye and to the palate. You'll will try local snacks and enjoy a special Hanami seasonal lunch at an amazing Soba restaurant.

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. 

Welcome to Osaka: Private Tour with a Local Host

3. 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: Highlights & Hidden Gems Private Walking Tour

4. Osaka: Highlights & Hidden Gems Private Walking Tour

Join a friendly local guide in an authentic experience of electrifying Osaka. Get a personalized tour of the city’s fascinating history, culture, and fantastic food scene as you’re led between its liveliest districts – and a few off the tourist trail. You'll be paired with guides that are passionate about the place they call home and who choose to spend their free time sharing it with like-minded travelers matched to them. First, meet your guide at Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine. Dating back to the 3rd century (before the introduction of Buddhism), it’s one of Japan’s oldest shrines, and one of the few examples of Sumiyoshi-zukuri – purely Japanese architecture. Then, hop on the train to the high-energy entertainment district of Namba, an area that’s buzzing with locals looking for a good time 24/7. Stroll down lively streets to Kuromon Market, a covered space packed with over 100 shops and vendors selling street food, shellfish, and souvenirs. (If you’re feeling peckish, point out the seafood that tickles your fancy, from scallops to sea urchin, and watch a vendor cooked right in front of you!). Next up, explore tranquil Hozenji Yokocho, a stone-paved lane packed with long-standing Japanese bars and restaurants that retains the spirit of the Osaka of yesteryear, and see Sennichimae Kitchenware Street – a street dedicated entirely to kitchen utensils and food supplies! Peer into the shops and restaurants lining the Soemon-cho entertainment district, an area with more than 400 years of history, and get lost in Den-Den Town, the perfect place to geek out over cameras, computers, pop culture, games, and anime. After that, get blinded by Dotonbori, a snapshot of typical Osaka, where colossal food signs and flashing lights illuminate your path (don’t miss the eye-catching Glico Running Man above Ebisubashi Bridge), then take a pleasant walk through to Shinsaibashi and the creative, youth-oriented America-mura – a treasure trove of retro stores, independent galleries, and cool cafés. Finally, see the iconic Osaka Castle, a symbol of the city and one of Japan’s most famous landmarks. Your personalized itinerary will be planned according to the number of hours booked and adapted to your preferences. Once you’ve booked, someone from the local tour operator's team will be in touch, so let them know if you have any special requirements.

Osaka: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour by Private Vehicle

5. 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: Private Discovery Tour with a Local

6. Osaka: Private Discovery Tour with a Local

Orientate yourself and check out a few of the most famous attractions in Osaka with your personal guide. You'll be paired with guides that are passionate about the place they call home and who choose to spend their free time sharing it with like-minded travelers matched to them. Let a local kick-start your trip by showing you the highlights and giving you a priceless insight into city life, from advice about cultural practices to the best spots to eat authentic local food. Explore Osaka like a local and make the most of your time in Osaka from the start. Follow the unique route which your local host has designed specifically for you, either by walking or using public transport so you can get familiar with how to move around the city. Learn about the city’s cultural practices, heritage, culture and cuisine as you explore the city together, perhaps stopping to try some authentic local street food or visiting a shrine. Your local will give your trip the best possible start, helping you to make the most of your time in Osaka.

Osaka: Hotspots and Hidden Gems Kickstart Private Tour

7. 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!:)

Osaka: Private Photoshoot with Professional Photographer

8. Osaka: Private Photoshoot with Professional Photographer

Spend an hour strolling through Osaka with a professional photographer to capture the best possible images of your tour. Learn about local monuments and do a photo shoot with your loved ones on a family-friendly tour accommodating a wide range of abilities. Receive professional instruction on how to take Instagram-ready images that you will cherish for a lifetime.

Osaka: Bespoke Family Friendly City Tour

9. Osaka: Bespoke Family Friendly City Tour

Meet your local host who will help to take the pressure off planning and navigating, so you can make the most of your time together as a family. You'll be paired with guides that are passionate about the place they call home and who choose to spend their free time sharing it with like-minded travelers matched to them. Your host will suggest things to do based on your family's personality and interests, creating a customized experience of the sights you'd most to see, hidden gems, exciting museums, and attractions that you'd struggle to find in a guidebook. See famous attractions like Osaka Castle, hands-on museums like the Science Museum, and family-friendly neighborhoods packed with delicious local eateries. Discover restaurants that everyone will enjoy - fussy eaters included - or get adventurous and try the local street food with your host by your side to recommend dishes based upon your family's tastes and any dietary requirements. At the end of the experience, your host can drop you off at one of the main kid's attractions like the fabulous Kids Plaza interactive museum so you can continue having fun for the rest of the afternoon.

Osaka: 1- or 2-Day Metro Pass

10. 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.

  • Guided tours
  • Private tours
  • City cards
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What people are saying about Osaka Castle

Overall rating

3.9 / 5

based on 198 reviews

We had a such a great time on this full day Osaka tour. Kevin was really great and friendly and such a knowledgeable English speaking guide. He knows everything there is to know about Osaka and Japan. The day was very well planned and having a car made the day so much more relaxing and effortlessly fun! Communication before the tour was also great, we knew before our trip started we were in good hands! He even showed us parts of Osaka we wouldn’t have on our own, just like a local. Very worthwhile if visiting Osaka. Can’t wait to come back again some day!

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.

Very pleasant visit and very nice and pleasant David, who is the one who guide us. Totally recommended and thank you very much David for making us have a good time

Amazing afternoon seeing Osaka highlights on my very brief trip! Everything was perfectly arranged, and Dan is so knowledgeable. Highly recommended!

Excellent guide in Spanish. Very located depending on what was requested on our visit.