What to Do in Osaka Part II - Osaka Local Tram, Shinto Shrine, Local Market and Shinsaibashi-Suji!

When in Osaka, these local adventures could all be squeezed in one day! How do I know? Because we did! If you haven't read What to Do in Osaka Part I, I suggest you read that one first. This is a two-part series of a long one day adventure in Osaka, Japan.

sumiyoshi-red-bridge

Local Osaka Tram
A great and such a filling meal should only be paired with a great walk. The bus would no longer return for us and we were to commute back to Hotel Vista Grande before dinner.

local-osaka-tram

We were off to do something local for a change. We were near the Ebisucho station, the end station of the local Osaka tram!

ebisucho-station

I was ecstatic for the surprise ding-ding and quickly shelled out 200 yen for the initial ride.

osaka-tram-ebisucho-station

The stops were in Japanese and I didn't even see the next station platforms,

osaka-tram-railroad

there were no electronic signs that tell you where you were and you have to know where to get off!

osaka-tram-railroad

I was no match for the grandpas and grandmas aboard this tram.

tram-coming-osaka


Sumiyoshi Taisha (Shinto Shrine)
We hopped off the tram and arrived at the Sumiyoshi Shinto Shrine.

sumiyoshi-station-osaka

I was taken away with the empty spaces and tranquility of the place.

sumiyoshi-taisha-chigi-roof

The unique red bridge was one of the highlights for me. I had difficulty crossing it.

sumiyoshi-taisha-entrance

By the time I had stopped clicking and started listening to what this place was all about, the introduction had already ended. If you are a believer, most of them apparently already bowed and had a coin with a whole readied before they entered the gates. When they reach the right place, those with intent rang a bell and those who had made a conscious effort got to exchange this coin for a wish or prayer.

shinto-praying

I asked about the gods and why there were no statues like Buddhist temples. The people were also limited to praying outside. Based on my understanding on the guide's answer, the Shinto belief is that the spirit is already within you and around you (you are not separate) so you only had to look into the mirror, for example, to remember that it is always with you. Hidden behind curtains inside the structures are not statues but a mirror, a sword or a jewel (symbols of Shintoism). I liked the forked chigi on the rooftops. It made me smile and remember why I was here in the first place. I had won this trip because of a photo I sent to AirAsia X with best represented an X.

shinto-shrine-chigi

How to Get There

Kohama, the Local Market
After that moment of peace, our guide took us to the small alleys near the shrine and we passed by the quiet residential area. She said that she was going to take us to a local market which almost looks like the Shinsaibashi. She said this was where the locals, her for one, shopped.

kohama-osaka

It was a lot smaller and void of throngs of people. One thing I didn't like about this place were the bicycle riders. Most of the stalls were also not opened.

local-market-osaka

We still bought chocolates (multi-flavored limited edition KitKat is somehow very popular in Japan),

japanese-chocolate--candy-store

takoyaki,

takoyaki-grill

okonomiyaki,

osaka-okonomiyaki-bacon

this potato croquette

japanese-potato-croquette

and umeshu (like a plum, alcohol drink made of ume fruit).

umeshu-drink-japan

We had an encounter with the cross-bred grapefruits

cross-breed-grapefruit

and these tubs of pickled veggies.

pickled-vegetable-japan

 Walking around the residential area near the market to the station was eerie but fun.

osaka-houses

You get to see local restaurants, people who are most probably going home and the Japanese garage parking lot (insane and innovative use of small space)!

japan-parking-lot

Shinsaibashi - Suji
We made it back to our hotel which was near Shinsaibashi-Suji via Metro (from Tamade Station Blue Line to Namba Station same Blue Line). Click on the image below to enlarge.

tamade-station-osaka

Our guide even taught us to buy Metro tickets! Haha.

how-to-buy-metro-ticket-osaka

We were back to reality when we reached Shinsaibashi. Oh, the lights, the signs and the wave of people came crashing in!

shinsaibashi-suji-osaka

I hope I can find our gracious Osaka guide Sachiko-san again in the future. She was uber awesome to be with just because she brought us to these places and answered my tons of questions!

japanese-tour-guide


osaka-castle-picture

12 comments:

  1. i suggest you go to this place's
    1. Osaka castle is a recreation of a 17th century castle that played an important role in the unification of Japan.

    2. Shinsekai has a colorful history. It was developed in 1912 — its streets were modeled after New York and Paris. One of the worlds largest amusement parks was built here — Luna Park. It's glory days peaked in 1923 after Luna Park experienced a series of suspicious fires and was closed

    3. Universal Studios Japan is very similar to Universal Orlando Resort. It had 11 million visitors in its first year. It was the first theme park anywhere to get that many visitors in its opening year.

    ReplyDelete
  2. 1. There's a chain store named Chococro that sells croissants with chocolate and other flavorings in the middle. They're delicious and a lot of people coming back because of their croissants.

    2. Visit Minami, a place wherein you will find great, cheap foods.

    3. Dotonbori - if you want to chillax while you're in Osaka, it's the best place to visit theaters, restaurants, and cafes.


    ReplyDelete
  3. Try to visit Umeda Sky Building - Floating Garden Observatory - They said that it's Best to visit early in the morning before the view is obscured. A perfect place if you want to appreciate both Japansee architecture and engineering and the greater Osaka Kobe area in once glance!

    ReplyDelete
  4. This is not unique for me but I would love to go there, the place is so clean and very attractive as well as the foods and also the people are look like very friendly and shy..

    ReplyDelete
  5. You should go to Kyoto. It is the second most popular tourist destination in Japan. :) You'll find Japan's preserved historical sites there! :D Have a safe trip.

    Name: Yani L. Calumpang
    Email: yumi_tsubaki@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. You should set a day aside to walk around the Osaka Wan or Osaka Bay which houses the world-famous Osaka Aquarium.The place is also known as the Kaiyukan Aquarium, one of the largest in the world and the shining instance of Japan's tourism at its very best. Of all the attractions at the Osaka Wan, the Aquarium remains the unique travel idea during your stay in Osaka. The word “Kaiyukan” which means “to play in the sea pavilion” is one of the world's largest aquariums. Apart from the Kaiyukan, the Osaka Bay is home to the Tempo-zan harbor Village and the Suntory Museum. Featuring a large number of galleries that is a storehouse of impressionistic, post-impressionistic, and modern art and photography, the Suntory Museum is one of the best tourist attractions for all the lovers of contemporary art.

    Marlene R. Yanga
    marlenerivera31@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. You should go to Kyoto. I heard a lot of raves in that place. And the happy place,of course,Universal Studios. I read about that awesome in some other blog. Oh boy,how they enjoyed.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Have you visited Osaka's Spa World? It is said to be the largest in Japan. There are two themed areas (after all, it's a spa theme park), designated for either Men Only or Women Only. You can enjoy hot baths. And there is also a pool area. I want to visit Japan someday.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love searching Kinkaku-ji, Kyoto on google beacuse I really love the place so unwinding,so relaxing.It wasone of the peaceful place I've seen

    ReplyDelete
  10. Osaka

    1.Universal studios is great place to go if you want to take a break from temples and castles. It is a little pricey but some of the rides are really worth it. Most prominent is the spiderman ride! Experience it for me :)

    Tokyo
    1. Rainbow Bridge!! one of Tokyo's famous landmarks

    ReplyDelete
  11. Minami (Namba) - Best shopping when you are in Osaka.

    Nanba Grand Kagetsu - Tourist attraction at its best

    Universal Studios Japan - Most famous attraction thereis!

    ReplyDelete
  12. best place to visit , Dotonbori - The heart of Osaka nightlife, this area is filled with theaters, restaurants, cafes, bars, arcades and nightclubs. (according to internet sources)


    Shinsaibashi - a shoppers paradise...

    Osaka Castle Park - Parks and wildlife place

    ReplyDelete

Hi. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I'd love to hear from you =)