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710X200 Osaka Masthead


Osaka/Kyoto/Kobe

Kansai is a culturally unique region – it has developed its own distinctive dialect kansai-ben, and is regarded as the birthplace of the humble okonomiyaki.

The heart of Kansai is Kyoto, where you can visit some of Japan’s most important historic monuments and take a peek into its geisha culture. The modern metropolis of Osaka, she offers a wide selection of places, where you can indulge in shopping, eating and leisure. The port city of Kobe is one of Japan’s most attractive cities, reflecting its history of 19th century western influence and is home to the world-famous Kobe beef.

For anyone who truly wants to experience Japan, you cannot say you have seen it all until you have been to Kansai.

Choice of 220 Hotels
fr $35 per night
Lowest airfare to Osaka
fr $644 per person
 

 

Cherry Blossoms (Sakura)  
200X300 Osaka Castle

Osaka Castle (Osaka)
Osaka Castle - Osaka-jo, is a perfect place to experience the city’s natural beauty – especially from the castle’s 8th floor observation deck, which has one of the city’s best views. Outside the castle is the impressive stone walls and moat, while inside is the Nishinomaru Garden, featuring 600 cherry trees. In spring, it is a favourite spot for locals to hang out and attend hanami parties when the flowering garden turns pink (usually in early April).

Castle Tower
Opening hours 9am - 5pm (last entry at 4.30pm)
Extended hours at certain holiday and special exhibition.
It is closed from 28 December to 1 January.
Ticket price ¥600
How to get there 15-20 min walk from JR Morinomiya, Osakajokoen, and Tanimachi 4-chome Station.
Website Osaka Castle


Nishinomaru Garden
Opening hours 9am - 5pm (last entry at 4.30pm).
During the cherry blossom season, it opens till 8pm.
It is closed on Monday or the following day if Monday is a national holiday.
Ticket price ¥200
¥350 (Evening time during the Sakura season)
How to get there 5 min walk from Osakajokoen Station
10 min from Tanimachi 4-chome Station
Website Nishinomaru Garden
 
200X150 Kyoto Ninnaji

Ninna-ji (Kyoto)
Founded in 888AD, UNESCO-listed Ninna-ji is one of Kyoto’s most important Buddhist sites, and its Golden Hall, temple premises and gardens are designated as Japanese National Treasures. The main grounds are popular year-round – especially during Sakura season, when the garden turns vivid pink. A special highlight during Sakura season is the dwarf cherry trees surrounding its famous 5-tiered pagoda.

Opening hours 9am - 5pm (last admission at 4.30pm) March to November
9am - 4.30pm (last admission at 4pm) December to February
Ticket price ¥500 (Palace and garden)
¥500 (Reiho-kan hall) Limited to April to May and October to November
¥700 (Sakura season)
How to get there 20 min walk from JR Hanazono Station (JR Sagano line)
2 min walk from Omuro-Ninnnaji Station (Keifuku Railway Kitano line)
40 min city bus ride from Kyoto Station to Omuro Ninnaji bus stop
Website Ninna-ji
 
Shopping  
200X150 Osaka Shisaibashi

Shinsaibashi (Osaka)
With a long history dating back to the Edo period, today Shinsaibashi is Osaka’s most famous shopping area. Stretching over 600m long, the Shinsaibashi-suji covered shopping street is perfect for shopping and eating even on a rainy day. Here you can enjoy a wide range of food and shopping from its countless shops and restaurants. Well-known departmental stores and popular branded stores can be found here.

Opening hours 10am – 9pm (Varies across different shops)
How to get there 1 min walk from Shinsaibashi Station (Midosuji subway line)
Website Shinsaibashi
 
Food  
200X150 Kyoto Tofu

Tofu Cuisine (Kyoto)
While you can find tofu everywhere in Japan, Kyoto is well-known for her tofu especially yudofu. The yudofu was originally created for Buddhist monks who were forbidden to eat meat. Tofu is cut into small cubes and cooked in kelp broth. Thanks to its simple taste and warm texture, it is ideal for winter.

Website Tofu Cuisine
 
Activity  
200X150 Kobe Kinosaki

Kinosaki Onsen (Kobe)
The ancient town of Kinosaki Onsen is famous for its pretty, tree-lined streets and its many historic onsen. There are 7 famous public hot springs and other hot springs which visitors can enjoy. Many visitors can be seen in yukata strolling along the streets. It is possible to make a day-trip from Kyoto, Osaka or Kobe, but it is recommended to stay overnight in one of the town’s traditional inns.

Opening hours 7am - 11pm (for the 7 public hot springs)
Ticket price ¥600-800
How to get there 1 min walk from JR Kinosaki Onsen Station
Website Kinosaki Onsen
 
200X150 Kyoto Sagano

Sagano Scenic Railway (Kyoto)
One of Japan’s most famous sightseeing trains, the Sagano Scenic Railway travels along the Hozu River. Along the 25-minute route, the train will pass by the historic Togetsukyo Bridge and the ancient bamboo grove. The Sagano Scenic Railway operates most of the year. During spring, taking the train is a great way to appreciate the blossoming of sakura in the beautiful nature.

Opening hours 9am - 6pm
Ticket price ¥600 (adult), ¥300 (child)
For one-way ticket
How to get there 1 min walk from JR Saga Arashiyama Station
Website Sagano Scenic Railway