Osaka is so much more than the home of Japan’s Universal Studios location. The second largest city in Japan is renowned for its vibrant dining scene, its many historic monuments, and its streets full of neon lights. Spend a few days in Osaka and you won’t be short of things to see or do, but make sure you save some energy for lengthy night walks since the city really comes to life after dark. These photos were taken on seemingly endless evenings wandering the streets of Osaka and its surroundings.

1

Tsūtenkaku

Tsūtenkaku tower can be seen soaring above the old neighborhood of Shinseki in the South of Osaka city. Known for its bright street lights and restaurants on nearly every corner, Shinsekai was built to resemble both Paris and New York, and today is one of the most bustling tourist areas of Osaka.

2

Dotonbori

Internationally famed for its food, entertainment, and nightlife, Dotonbori is a must-visit when in Osaka. The area runs along the Dotonbori canal and is packed with a mix of locals and tourists year-round. This is one of the best areas to simply sit down and people-watch.

3

Glico man

Hoards of people gather all around Dotonbori as soon as the night falls. The busiest spot in the area is a bridge from where various hundred-feet tall adverts can be appreciated. Glico man, the most famous of them all, has been shining over Dotonbori for over 70 years.

4

A bird’s eye view of Osaka

There’s nothing like getting a sense of scale of a city than by seeing it from above. Opt to stay in a hotel that offers an amazing view like this one; it’s well worth it to take in the entire city in one glance.

5

Kuromon Ichiba

Kuromon Ichiba, one of my favorite markets in Japan, has been a staple in the local food scene for nearly 200 years. Sample a host of seafood delicacies, including fresh clams, octopus, and some of the most amazing sushi you’ll taste on your trip.

6

Street reflections

On a late-night stroll through the city, I came across this building with all the lights and lanterns that one would expect when visiting a bustling Japanese city. I decided to use the reflection from the puddle opposite to take a photo, and before long I turned around to find 10 other people crouching down to take the same photo, too.

7

Osaka Castle

One of the most iconic sites in the city, the Osaka Castle is truly magnificent from near and afar. The castle was built in the early 16th century, and played a major role in the unification of Japan. Get there early to avoid the crowds, and take a stroll around the moat surrounding the castle.

8

Nara

A short train ride from Osaka is Nara National Park. This place is home to a huge population of deer that flock at the sight of any visitor who buys deer cookies from one of the local vendors. Nara makes for a great day out. Of course, the main attraction is the interaction with the deer, but there are also plenty of temples and museums to enjoy.

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