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Osaka Prefecture

Architecture Tours

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Our most recommended Osaka Prefecture Architecture Tours

Nara: Big Buddha, Bambi and Backstreets Cultural Tour

1. Nara: Big Buddha, Bambi and Backstreets Cultural Tour

Accompanied by your tour guide, head straight to one of Nara’s top historical sites and one of the largest wooden buildings in the world, the Todaiji temple. Its famous centerpiece is the 15-meter bronze statue of the Great Buddha, Vairocana. On our way, you will be greeted by the friendly deer of Nara. The deer are divine protectors of the ancient capital living in perfect harmony with the locals. Next stop is the second of the seven great temples of Nara, Kofukuji. Make a brief stop at the Sarusawa pond, well known for its turtles and the pretty scenery surrounding it; this is considered a perfect spot for a romantic evening walk in Nara. Move forward into the quiet alleys and backstreets of Nara-machi, the well-preserved former merchant's district, where you will be able to see and experience unique traditional arts and crafts. As the best way to experience a city is through its food, you will get the chance to test some of our favorite local delights. The last stop of your journey will take you to a shopping street, where you can find colorful and diverse shops, perfect for souvenir hunting.  Both the JR Nara station and the Kintetsu station are within comfortable walking distance from the finishing point of the tour. Your guide will be happy to help you with directions to your hotel or to provide a restaurant recommendation for lunch. Do not forget to ask for more hints and tips on what else there is to do in Nara during your time here. 

From Osaka: Kyoto Top Highlights Day Trip

2. From Osaka: Kyoto Top Highlights Day Trip

Visit some of Kyoto's most famous cultural sites on this day-long bus tour from Osaka. Hop aboard a comfortable coach and drive to Japan's ancient capital to see the brilliant torii gates of the Fushimi Inari Shrine, the UNESCO-listed Kiyomizu-dera temple, and the golden pavilion of Kinkaku-ji. Kyoto is filled with ancient historic sites dating back to the 6th century. Get dropped off first at the Fushimi Inari Shrine, a Shinto shrine famous for its thousands of vermilion torii gates. Spend time wandering the brilliant paths before heading to your next destination. Arrive at Kiyomizu-dera, one of the most iconic temples in Japan. Take ample time to wander through the temple. Walk across the impressive wooden stage, which juts out from the hillside and was constructed without the use of a single nail. Next, stop at Kinkaku-ji, also known as the Golden Pavilion due to the fact that it's covered in gold leaf. Wander through the immaculate gardens surrounding the temple, admiring the original Japanese designs that have been preserved since Ashikaga's time. Finish the day in Arashiyama, which has been a popular nature-viewing destination since the Heian Period. Take a stroll through the cool Sagano Bamboo Forest and listen to the distinct rustle of bamboo leaves as you walk. In the late afternoon, hop on the bus back to Osaka.

From Osaka : Private Full-day Tour to Kyoto

3. From Osaka : Private Full-day Tour to Kyoto

Start the tour with pick up from central Osaka and travel to historic Kyoto. Over the course of the day, you'll be presented with a balanced view of this historic city and its surroundings. The Arashiyama district is the first stop, and it is here where you'll be introduced to Japanese garden and temple design. Tenryu-ji Temple has one of the most outstanding, timeless examples of Japanese gardens surrounding it's simple-but-majestic temple buildings. Then it's time for a walk up through the famous bamboo grove - a photo opportunity not to be missed - before arriving at the entrance to luxurious Okochi Sanso. Here you will try some matcha (Japanese green tea), before exploring the winding paths that connect the buildings, views, and garden areas. Afterwards, you'll enjoy a stroll alongside the river, then have free time for lunch and even a bit of shopping, if you wish. Next, enjoy the atmospheric streets of the Goin district, complete with a gurgling stream and rows of traditional tea house and restaurant buildings.  Not far from the Gion is Fushimi Inari-taisha, arguably the most famous Shinto shrine complex in the entire region. After having a look around you'll end your tour with a visit to the famous Torii gate.

Nara: Private Tour with Private Guide

4. Nara: Private Tour with Private Guide

Discover Nara on a fully customizable tour. Nara is in close proximity to Kyoto and Osaka, and its rich collection of traditional sites make it an ideal destination for a day trip from either of its larger neighbours. Start your day by meeting your guide at your hotel or chosen location, then choose sites you wish to visit depending on your interests. Example 6-hour Itinerary: Meet your guide at the designated meeting point you chose and let the tour begin. First visit Kofuku-Ji temple, a historic site that has been registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Discover several designated National Treasures here including the Buddhist sculpture masterpiece, the Statue of Ashura. Next, head for Todai-Ji temple, a World Heritage Site that is Nara’s most famous landmark. Admire the statue of Kongo Rikishi at Nandaimon Gate and Japan’s largest Great Buddha statue. Stroll through Nara Park which is famous for its wild deer species. Enjoy the verdant natural setting of Nara while taking part in the popular activity of feeding the deer inside the park. Then discover Kasuga Taisha temple, another World Heritage Site with an impressive red main shrine. Explore the Kasuga-Taisha National Treasure Hall which contains valuable works of Buddhist art.

Osaka City: Food Origins Exploration Game

5. 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!

Kamakura: Private Guided Walking Tour with Local Guide

6. Kamakura: Private Guided Walking Tour with Local Guide

Discover Kamakura’s historical sites, favorite local spots, and hidden gems on a private walking tour with nationally licensed guide. Choose from a 6 or 4-hour tour, whose itinerary can be customized to fit your interests. Located 1 hour from Tokyo, be introduced to some of the best spots, restaurants, and shops in Kamakura, which is home of the samurai and of great cultural importance to Japan. Visit and enter the interior of the huge Great Buddha statue, a symbol of great importance for Kamakura. Admire the is famous gardens of Hase-dera. During the rainy season (around June), 2500 colorful hydrangeas of 40 varieties bloom all at once to create a wondrous spectacle. Go to the Zeniarai Benten Shrine where legend says that when money is washed in the holy water of the shrine’s spring you will earn more money. Head to the Hokoku-ji Temple known for its splendid bamboo forest garden. Here, sample matcha tea while admiring the view of the forest.

Osaka: Guided Walking Tour around Osaka Castle

7. Osaka: Guided Walking Tour around Osaka Castle

Meet your guide at JR Osaka station and then take the train from there to Osaka Castle. First, you will visit the Osaka Museum of History. You'll see a replica of the great council hall of Naniwanomiya Palace and learn about the history of Osaka. Then, visit Nishinomaru Garden. This is a great spot to take some photos with Osaka Castle in the background. Next, you'll head to Otemon, the main gate of Osaka Castle where you'll marvel at the gigantic stones used to build the castle walls. In the main castle area, you will also visit Osaka Castle Tower, see the reconstructed golden traditional tea ceremony room, and admire the amazing view from the observatory. Don't miss the authentic Samurai uniforms that they used to wear into war. After your visit to the castle, have lunch at MIRAIZA OSAKA-JO, and then enjoy a cruise on the castle moat in an traditional boat to view the high stone walls and the gardens from a different perspective.

Osaka: Local Food Beyond Dotonbori Small Group Tour

8. Osaka: Local Food Beyond Dotonbori Small Group Tour

Taste the big city, bright lights energy in the famous Dotonbori and Namba districts, then immerse yourself in local food and culture as you explore the areas where the locals play, and visitors almost never do. With dinner and drinks included and a group size of no more than six, it's going to be more like a night out with friends than one of those assembly line-style tours. All guides speak excellent or native English, have lived in Osaka forever or at least many years, and absolutely love the city. Your evening starts in the heart of Dotonbori, right on Ebisu Bridge, best known as the perfect vantage point to see the "Running Man" gargantuan LCD sign, plus all the other giant signs and screens that wallpaper this area. Think Times Square in New York, with all the buzz but none of the cars. Pass all the big highlights, then duck into some narrow side streets steeped in history. Hundreds upon hundreds of restaurants and bars line these streets. Along the stroll, you'll be provided with a painless cultural primer to help you better to understand the sense of place, allowing for a richer, more complete idea of what Osaka's all about. Osaka people are known for "kuidaore," which means eating to the point of your demise; along these lines, you can expect a teeming cavalcade of goodies passing your eyes and into your mouth at each of the three different tachinomi visited. It is at these restaurants that people eat and drink while standing at bars or counters, similar to how tapas are often enjoyed in Spain. Look forward to being welcomed like a local first in Namba and later, after a short train ride, in Amagasaki. Technically not a part of Osaka but rather a separate city, Amagasaki has an industrial past and a vibrant food scene bursting at the seams with friendly, animated locals who honestly enjoy speaking with visitors and are thrilled to have you in their neighborhood.  Over the course of the evening, expect to enjoy Japanese treats like kushi katsu (fried food on sticks), nikomi (slow cooked meats in a miso sauce), some fish dishes, and a host of other items. There is no fixed menu, so the tour can be customized based on your needs and desires. And then there's the alcohol — taste great sake, shochu (a distilled wheat or sweet potato drink), and of course beer and other things.

Osaka: Shinsekai and Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine Photoshoot Tour

9. Osaka: Shinsekai and Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine Photoshoot Tour

After arrival at the meeting point, the photographer-guide will take you on an unforgettable adventure through Shinsekai and Tsutenkaku. Explore the local spots, and pose for photos in front of Tsutenkaku. Then, walk around the most photogenic places in Shinsekai recommended by photographers. After taking photos in Shinsekai, stroll along the local shopping street to a local tram station. At the station, take photos with a colorful tram. If there are not so many passengers, you can also have photos taken inside the tram carriage. About 15 minutes later, you will arrive at the Torii gate of Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, one of the most historical buildings in Osaka. In the shrine, have photos taken with the famous bridge and lanterns at sunset.

From Kyoto or Osaka: Private Walking Tour through Nara

10. From Kyoto or Osaka: Private Walking Tour through Nara

Go on a private city walking tour through Nara and explore the fascinating history, culture, and food scene of this city. 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. Meet your guide in Kyoto or Osaka and take the train to Nara, the city where Shinto Buddhism was born. See some of Japan’s most significant temples and shrines. Marvel at art and architecture dating back to the 8th-century.   Walk down quiet streets and shaded paths lined with cherry blossom trees and be amazed by Nanto Shichi Daiji, the seven great Buddhist temples. Discover the magical, wood-built architecture overhung with thousands of lanterns at the fairytale Kasuga-Taisha Shrine. At the famous Nara Park, you can see the iconic tame deers that come close enough to greet you. If you are hungry this would be the perfect opportunity to check out the restaurants and cafes at Higashimuki Shopping Street. In this street, you will also find all sorts of souvenirs.  This tour can be fully personalized depending on your preferences. Your guide can provide you with tips and recommendations for the rest of your stay in Nara.

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What people are saying about Osaka Prefecture

Overall rating

4.2 / 5

based on 96 reviews

The experience was good. Mariko our guide was very kind. This trip was a good way to spend one day in Kyoto without having to worry about logistics. I wish though that some areas we would have more time but it's understandable given the time we've received as it's about 40-50 minutes between each site. Overall, I'm glad we did this tour. It made everything so much easier.

Very nice the tour. Deer, the great Buddha and the guardians, temples, and ends in a commercial area with restaurants. 4h tour The guide very attentive and walking at our pace.

Great experience....Very comfortable trip. Our guide Rika was very sweet and well informed. Would like to visit Kyoto again for sure...!!!

Our lady guide was caring and helpful to the old age as my sister and I had this visit with our mum, who is 83.

The game in Osaka was an amazing experience to do with kids. We enjoyed it a lot.