Japan:A Closer Look at Kansai – Part 2Feb 23rd, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Regional Travel Resources
Osaka is the largest city in the Kansai region and there is a healthy rivalry between residents of Tokyo and Osaka about which is the best city. Wakayma prefecture is home to an abundant supply of natural beauty and historic spots. Both prefectures offer visitors many interesting things to do and see so take some time to do a little research before you come to make the most of your visit.
As we delve further into things to do and see in the region, you might also be curious about what to eat in Kansai. Exploring the delicious cuisine of the region will only enhance your trip.
Visit the impressive eight story Osaka Castle that was built over 400 years ago and includes a number of interesting exhibitions. The 60,000 square meter grounds are a popular place to to view hanami (cherry blossoms).
See a Grand Sumo Tournament from March 15-29 at the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium.
Browse for souvenirs on Japan’s longest shopping street, Tenjimbashi-Suji, that is 2.6 kilometers long and spans the equivalent of three subway stops.
Stop by the Sumiyoshi-taisha Shrine, home to the Taiko-bashi Bridge, and a national treasure. The red arched Taiko-bashi Bridge is featured in a number of Japanese classic works of literature including the “Tale of Genji”.
The 48 Waterfalls of Takihata are the starting point for many of the hiking trails that traverse Mt. Iwaki and Mt. Makio. The Kotaki fall is the largest and is located behind the Kotakiji temple which is said to be named after the falls.
Stroll through the Japanese garden in Tennoji Park and learn more about the history of Osaka through the parks other historical spots.
If you are looking for Japanese cooking utensils or tableware the a visit to Sennichimae Doguya-Suji is a must. With over 45 stores spanning over 160 meters, the surrounding area is also home to antique dealers and second hands shops.
Entertain yourself with the rides and attractions at Universal Studios Japan
Learn how to make Kishu Lacquerware or go whale watching at Kushimoto Marine Park. These are just two of the hands on experiences in Wakayama, you can also go river rafting or dress in Heian Attire and walk a portion of the the ancient Kumano Pilgrimage route.
Peruse the Buddhist artifacts and artwork at the Koyasan Reihokan Museum.
Drive along the scenic Shirasaki Coast.
Visit the Wakayama Tourism website or the Japan National Tourist Organization’s Wkayama pages to plan your trip.
Odd Facts & Trivia
Osaka prefecture is the smallest in terms of area in Japan.
Are you a movie, anime or manga buff or do you just want to snap a classic image of Kansai? If so be sure to check out popular filming locations in Kansai to learn about which places appear in Japanese film.
Articles in the Japan: A Closer Look series:
- Japan: A Closer Look at Hokkaido
- Japan: A Closer Look at Tohoku – Part 1 & Part 2
- Japan: A Closer Look at Chubu – Part 1, Part 2 & Part 3
- Japan: A Closer Look at Kanto – Part 1 & Part 2
- Japan: A Closer Look at Kanto – Kanagawa
- Japan: A Closer Look at Kanto – Tokyo Practicalities
- Japan: A Closer Look at Kanto – Tokyo – Part 1 & Part 2
- Japan: A Closer Look At Tokyo:Lesser Known Facts And Figures
- Japan:A Closer Look at Kansai – Part 1