Quick guide: Osaka Non-Mainstream 1 day Itinerary

Quick guide: Osaka Non-Mainstream 1 day Itinerary

written by riviolas February 12, 2018

Japan is my favourite country to visit because of their hospitality and
nature wonders all around the nation.
I have previously stayed in Japan for 6 months (only)
but I can say that I am quite familiar with the culture and the to-gos in Japan.

This time round, I’m only writing about Osaka because I realized that
there are quite a number of underrated places which alot of travellers
might have missed whenever they visit Kyoto or Nara.

In this article, I hope to convince you that Osaka isn’t just about
its historical castle, shopping heaven and fried food.
Hence, it might not be suitable for first time visitors who only want to tour around the main attractions.
I only have 3 points to bring up in this article and my unique selling point is at my last.
Please scroll all the way to the bottom if the first 2 are too mainstream to you!


Time estimate from Yahoo Train app.
– Very accurate. The time will never go off the schedule.
– Japanese Only.
Comparable to Navitime app.
– English equivalent of Yahoo Train app.

From Kyoto 
Travel time: Roughly 37min

From Nara
Travel time: Roughly 1h

From Kobe
Travel time: Roughly 34-40min

☆These places are all in Kansai region of Japan.
☆Traveling time depends on the speed of the train you take.

Now to the main point, below is the plan I’ve used the last time I visited Osaka.

1) Trekking to MINO WATERFALL

I recommend a morning visit in Spring, Summer, Autumn because this route is extremely beautiful when wild
flower blooms, or when the trekking route covers in summer green /autumn red.

I visited during the period when it was transiting from Summer to Autumn.
Was lucky to catch alot of Red Spider Lilies during my trek to the Mino waterfall.

I used to do some trekking in Singapore but it’s not really comparable.
I feel that the route to Mino waterfall is more rocky, more steep sometimes compared to
Singapore’s Bukit Timah Hill. If you are used to the rocky route at Bukit Timah Hill, this
would more or less feel the same, but with more wild flowers along the route.

The route to Mino waterfall isn’t that deserted, on the way, you will
see children running up the rocky terrains or Japanese elderly walking really fast
past you!  So if you are worried that you will get lost along the way, there isn’t a need to worry about!

Honestly, the waterfall is quite small. But, I enjoyed scenery along the way to the waterfall.
What’s more, the crowd isn’t as bad as parks filled with Sakura trees.
Which is why, underrated.
Although the route is very rocky, it is really breathtaking and
it’s a easy enough and good experience for trekking beginners.
Just be sure to wear sturdy shoes!
Please look forward to the wild flowers if you are visiting in Spring – Autumn period!

Mino Waterfall in Autumn – © Osaka Hostel

2) Osaka delicacies

When it comes to Japan, almost anyone can only think of Sushi, sashimi, takoyaki.
However, every region in Japan can server very different delicacies!
In Osaka, I highly recommend the following Osaka delicacies.

・カニ寿司  Crab Sushi

[Kani Doraku] is a iconic Crab Restaurant that identifies Osaka so much that
Singapore’s Jurong Point has that in the Japan Food Street too!
[Kani Doraku] is one of the must-try if you have a higher budget.
They serve courses of different crab meals. Even CRAB SASHIMI.
I tried it when I was there. It was extremely fresh and extremely sweet!
The con is you have to get someone to reserve for you or go straight to the Restaurant early to
make a reservation.
If you are staying in a hotel with concierge service, do get the receptionist to
make the reservation for you to avoid disappointment as they are extremely popular among
the locals.

・お好み焼き Okonomiyaki

Okonomiyaki is classic. I couldn’t find one on par in Singapore.
Okonomiyaki looks like a pancake but it’s actually a pan-fried cabbage dish mixed
with meat of your choice.

Some Okonomiyaki stores has alot of varieties to choose from.

For authentic Okonomiyaki recommendation which I have repeatedly go back for,
head to [Okonomiyaki Sakura] at Umeda/ Osaka Station.

・タコ焼き Takoyaki
Takoyaki is another Classic in Osaka. If you are visiting Dotonbori, Osaka, you can’t miss this
as well as the rest of Osaka delicacies. Any other restaurants is basically selling the same thing.

・串カツ Kushi katsu / Skewers
This is very Osaka thing which I personally do not like.
Kushi katsu are all fried skewers/ grilled mushrooms.
Please don’t go for this if you are already having a dry throat.
However, I have to say this, their fried skewers, for some reason, doesn’t feel as oily as Singapore’s
and doesn’t give me that overwhelming aftertaste when I am done with my meal.


Osaka, in my opinion, is a very youngster place to visit. |
Since they are famous for their comedians, they have very funny souvenirs which
can troll people off or terrible goods for 罰ゲームBatsu game/ forfeit games.
(Singapore’s Donki Hote has some of the funny Batsu game foods as well!)

Troll example:

From http://www.news24.jp

Shiroi no Koibito (Left) – White lovers, popular classic Hokkaido souvenir
Omoshiroi Koibito (Right) – Funny lovers, Osaka version


3) Indulge in affordable luxurious experience at SPA WORLD

After your long day from Mino to Dotonbori and probably lots of shopping/ window shopping at
Namba, Shinbashi, why not treat yourself to an affordable spa?

In my opinion, SPA WORLD is the main point of Osaka because it is so well worth it!

At only,
2400 Yen for 3hour pass
2700 Yen for 1 day pass.

You get to enjoy all sorts of hot springs from medicated to salt spa to milky beneficial ingredients!
I ALWAYS visit this place whenever I  drop by Osaka.

After the spa session, visitors can get a glass bottle of hot/cold milk from the vending machine.
I usually stay for 2.5h to 3h if I am alone.
Please take a look at the insides of Spa World!
So pleasing to the eyes!

Images below are all from http://www.spaworld.co.jp


Things to take note of:

・Genders are divided to different floors.
・Each floor has different themes, Europe Area and Asia Area.

European Zone
Even months : Men
Odd months : Women

Asian Zone
Even months : Women
Odd months : Men

・You are only allowed to bring a hand towel size cloth into the spa area.
Yes, you will see alot of bare bodies but it’s ok! What do you have that the rest don’t!

There are also other rules and advices you should heed.
You are advised to keep the those rules to avoid being fined.
Please read these if you are planning for a visit!
I will feel excited for you if you are!

I have come to the end of my quick guide to Osaka’s 1 day itinerary.
I hope I have given you enough of a rough fresh look of Osaka!

Till then!
With our adventurous spirits,



Leave a Comment

%d bloggers like this: