After breakfast, make your way to the station for one last ride on the shinkansen, which will whisk you to Osaka, Japan’s third largest city.
On arrival in Osaka, make your way to your accommodation to check in.
Osaka is defined by its flamboyance, fun-loving people, and fantastic food and drink - this is a place to enjoy and indulge yourself and allow people to impress and entertain you, rather than potter around temples. The city's food and sake are world renowned, thanks to a plentiful supply of high quality ingredients from the surrounding region, the port, and long-established merchants with preferential connections.
Once home to a high proportion of Japan’s historic merchant class, the city retains a thriving trade and shopping culture, including the longest commercial street in Japan. Dotonbori, a tourist hotspot since the 1600s, is the best known district for food and nightlife. Namba and Shinsaibashi are Osaka’s main shopping districts - here you’ll find the international designers and high street favourites - while Den Den Town is otaku-central, with an array of electronics, manga, anime and cosplay.
Your afternoon is at leisure and you may wish to visit Osaka Castle, arguably Osaka’s most famous landmark. Osaka Castle has been restored many times over centuries of - well, doing its job as a defensive structure, really, and being set on fire several times in the process. Originally built in the late 1500s, the pretty wooden structure seems more charming than threatening, but it sits atop sheer stone ramparts that are now largely hidden by cherry trees, and withstood months of siege during the shogun era. Although the present castle was largely rebuilt in 1931, the views from the top floor of the surrounding gardens and city are stunning, and an excellent introduction to the city.
In the late afternoon make your way to a designated meeting point in the glittering district of Dotonbori for an introduction to Japanese street food. The subject of postcards and tourist photos in equal measure, Dotonbori is a restaurant mecca that has long been referred to as Osaka’s entertainment district and former 'pleasure district'.
Over the course of the evening, with the help of your guide, you will explore the backstreets and buzzing markets, sampling some popular Japanese snacks and local delicacies. Two particularly well-known Osaka food offerings, which locals are especially proud of, are takoyaki (fried octopus balls) and okonomiyaki (pancake with cabbage, pork, ginger, nori, and sauce), both of which you will have the opportunity to taste. You will also visit a sushi bar where, in addition to sampling the fresh sushi you will be able to interact with the chef. Your gourmet journey concludes with a glass of local brew at one of the neighbourhood’s small, but stylish bars.
If you would like to continue exploring independently, just advise your guide, who will be able to recommend a restaurant for dinner. Alternatively make your own way back to your hotel.
Why not end your stay in Japan with the most quintessential of Japanese experiences - a Karaoke session?
Overnight in Osaka
Today is at leisure until your transfer to Kansai Airport for your onward flight.