Last Updated on March 3, 2023 by Jella Erhard
Why choose Osaka over Tokyo
Do you have only a few days in Japan? Go to Osaka! You’ll get more for your money in Osaka and will have a better overall experience. When planning a holiday to Japan, most people look around in Tokyo only. It is the capital, the biggest and the most known. But is it the best choice for everyone?
Well, do not think we are against Tokyo, it is a great city worth to visit. The reason for raising this question is to help plan an active, eventful time in Japan in a considerably low budget. There are loads to see and experience in the capital, but did you know how much Osaka has to offer? In the “nation’s kitchen” you get to see such amazing things as the Osaka Castle, the Aquarium, Floating garden and the famous Universal City (including the Harry Potter Park).
Besides the many sights in the city, there are great programs nearby, including hopping over to Kyoto for a day or two, spending another day in Nara. Or enjoy a spa day and relax in Kinosaki Onsen. Right, right, there is plenty to see in and around Tokyo as well, why do we make you choose? The answer is easy, just the accommodation prices are much more budget friendly in the smaller city. So the money saved on your room/flat can be spent on all the great attractions.
A few tips before you arrive at Osaka
If your flight lands late, do not worry, there are frequent trains to the center, just pick the closest stop to your base and worst case a taxi will take you there. Taxis are quite expensive (a 2 km ride will be around $7), so try to find a station nearby!
It is a common mistake to think Japanese don’t speak English. Almost everyone will understand you and definitely will be able to show you in the right direction or help you out. That doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate if you are able to say hello or thank you in Japanese.
Traveling off-season (January, February October-December) would save you money and time in cueing, however, you better bring warm clothing! End of January and whole February, October are quite nice.
A flat on Airbnb suitable for up to 4 people: $16/night. In the center with everything in 15 mins reach most. While in Tokyo, you are lucky to find a room for two twice the price.
JR train 5-day pass to travel in and around (including Kansai airport, Kyoto etc…) 9000 Yen ($80). Might sound expensive, but getting around will not be cheaper in any parts of the country and you already saved that on accommodation.
Food & Drinks
Here are our favorite things to visit in Osaka
Thank you for reading!