Though it does not boast impressive temples and golden pagodas like Kyoto and Nara, Osaka distinguishes itself as a fun and exciting Japanese city and worthy travel destination, mainly because of its swinging nightlife.
During the day, the city’s industrial side is more apparent, with millions of its inhabitants flocking to offices, factories and work places to slave away the day. And as we observed, the Japanese take their work duties and obligations very seriously, and they are probably some of the most hardworking people we have ever seen. But when the sun sets in Osaka, and work is officially over, many city dwellers choose not to rush back to their homes to console their tired feet. Instead, Osaka folks let their hair down, throw their stress out the window and chug their well-deserved drinks at the city’s liveliest nightlife spots; giving a whole other meaning to the saying ‘work hard, play hard’.
Of course, the locals are not the only ones invited to this extravaganza, hundreds of tourists from all over are also lured to the city’s bustling streets, brightened up by hundreds of neon lights. So if you know you’re going to be in Osaka, maybe waiting for your flight somewhere else, (like we were), Chasing Places strongly recommends that you spend at least a night in the city. And once you do, you will appreciate this other side of Japan that makes this country truly unique.
In the Pursuit of a Good Time
It was New Year’s Eve and we wanted to celebrate with a bang. Having heard of Osaka’s wild nightlife, we immediately made plans to visit the exact neighborhoods that earned the city this reputation. We soon found out that the district to be in is Dotonbori (sometimes called Dotombori), located in the Osaka Minami area. This district is characterized by two main spots, the Dotonbori Arcade and the canal named Dotonbori-gawa. Once we got there, it was honestly quite hard to really pinpoint the start and end of ‘Dotonbori’. It was a sprawling district that seemed to have made extensions to adjacent neighborhoods.