JAPAN could be one of the most sought-after destinations by a lot of tourists around the world. Definitely, there are a number of reasons for that.
In Japan, there is so much to experience – from their colorful culture to their delectable cuisine and historical attractions.
One of major destinations in the country is Osaka. It is the third largest city of the Land of the Rising Sun. It could offer several representations of why the country must be among your must-visit destinations. In fact, by roaming around the metro, whether in the morning or at night, you can already enjoy a lot of activities, including shopping and food tripping!
Of course, going to Universal Studios in Hollywood is one of my dreams as well. However, since my budget would really not allow me to go there, the one in Osaka is already perfect.
Known as the first-ever theme park in Asia, the Japan Universal Studios has several attractions.
It boasts of my personal favorite Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue, Snoopy Studios, Sesame Street, Shrek’s 4-D Adventure, and the extra fun though feared Hollywood Dream -The Ride, among others.
Osaka Castle Park
If you want to enjoy Japan’s history, visiting one of its castles is definitely a good idea.
The Osaka Castle Park is home to the 15-acre Nishinomaru Garden, a perfect spot to view the cherry blossoms (Sakura) in bloom.
Should you want to experience hanami (flower-viewing), you must visit the place during spring season, which falls between end of March and early part of May.
For shopaholics and food lovers, Dotonbori is the best place to be.
With Osaka being known to be a hub for gastronomic treats, Dotonbori is one of its most famous stops among tourists, including Filipinos.
While roaming around city’s major entertainment district to have a taste of authentic Japanese dimsum and takoyaki, you will be amazed with the array of food stalls, restaurants, and shopping nooks you can find there.
Aside from dimsum and takoyaki, you must never leave Osaka as well without trying the world-famous Kobe beef. It is kinda pricey, but the taste is all worth it!
After having a gastronomic feast, my friends and I immediately went straight to the shopping stores to look for pasalubong. Of course, that is something we, Filipinos, never forget whenever we are out for a trip.
While scouring for the best deals, you somehow doubt if you’re indeed in Japan. Why? Filipinos are everywhere! All you could hear are Tagalog-speaking tourists. Therefore, it feels like home when you are in Dotonbori.
Don Quijote and Glico Running Man
Talking about pasalubong, Don Quijote and Glico are two of the names that come to mind whenever you are in Japan.
Don Quijote (or Donki for locals) is a store that sells all kinds of memorabilia and goodies you can buy for your loved ones back home. They have food items and second-hand luxury bags (like Louis Vuitton) to choose from.
Aside from the fact that their prices are lower compared to other shops, they also offer tax rebates if your purchase is worth at least 5,000 yen.
Glico is one of Asia’s biggest confectionery companies that manufacture Pocky, pretzel sticks coated with chocolate or other flavors.
The company is represented by the Glico running man that has been lighting the Dotonbori canal for at least eight decades now. It is so popular that tourists make sure to take a snap with the Glico running man as background.
Dewa mata, Osaka! Arigatou gozaimasu, Japan!
(Sorry, we forgot to take snaps of the food and stuff we bought. We probably got so excited that we forgot about it. Shoutout to Ria Araneta for some of the photos I used in this article!)
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