Between November 22nd and November 25th, I was able to go to Osaka for a small trip and it was absolutely amazing! My time in Japan in 2017 did not allow me to visit Osaka, so I had no knowledge of how Osaka would differ from Tokyo.
One of the things I noticed was that people in Osaka step on the opposite side of the escalator when they want to walk up compared to Tokyo. Also, on trains, people are much more open. While my friends and I were on the train to our youth hostel, we were in conversation with an older man about why we were in Japan and all that fun stuff. This is where I first encountered the Osakan accent and realized I could barely understand it.
I did not do a crazy amount during my Osaka trip due to it raining the first full day we were there. In order to have a fun time even in the rain, we decided to go to Kaiyukan, which is one of the best aquariums in the world. I had lots of fun just looking at all the different creatures. The design of the aquarium was really cool too!
The second day, we went to Universal Studios Japan, which I believe was the best part of the trip. I’m a thrill seeker, so being able to ride genuinely fast coasters was so much fun. My favorite coaster was the Jurassic Park one, where it was superman-styled. I also loved the Wizarding World section, which had one of the coolest rides i’ve ever been on to date. This was the first time I had been to Universal since I was 11.
I also enjoyed all the Japan-exclusive rides and collaborations. One prime example was the Jujutsu-Kaisen 4D ride, which is often rotated with other popular anime series. There was also a Snoopy section, Hello Kitty stores, and other characters I do not believe are at the ones in the United States.
The most unique part was Nintendo-Land, which is coming to Hollywood in a few months. Stepping into that part of the park was like being in another world as it felt like I had stepped into a level of a Mario game. It was, however, incredibly packed, but at least the Mario Kart ride was a lot of fun!
The last day in Osaka was spent shopping and exploring Shimbashi and Dotonbori street. This was where all the shopping streets were and where the funny R18 gacha was located. I also tried Ichiran ramen here for the first time. I did not try Takoyaki because I don’t eat seafood, but it smelled really good.
Overall, I had lots of fun in Osaka. I wish I could have seen much more, but there was not that much time for the trip in the first place, so we had to pick and choose what to do. I still had a great time and highly recommend Osaka as a place to visit when going to Japan!
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My name is Ana and I am enamored by different cultures. Growing up with a mother whose family lived in Paraguay meant constant exposure to something that was so different and yet, so intriguing. I knew from a young age that I wanted to explore all that the world had to offer. My dream is to work in international marketing and be able to travel the world while learning new languages, traditions, and making lifelong friends.