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Top 6 Water Cruising Tours in Osaka

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Top 6 Water Cruising Tours in Osaka

 

 
 
Cruise tours are becoming more and more popular among travelers in Osaka. Also called 'Aqua Metropolis', the city of Osaka has a long history that developed around its rivers. From a boat you can get an original view of landmarks like Nakanoshima and the Osaka Castle. Also, the cruises themselves are very different and unique. I definitely recommend trying one!
 

1. Ninja Cruise

Osaka ninja cruise

 

Learn katana - Osaka ninja cruise

The super-popular cruise where you can admire Osaka's cityscape while wearing a ninja costume!

During the cruise you'll be taught various ninja techniques like the Kuji Goshinbou ninja spell, how to use a katana and how to throw a shuriken. Engage in sword battles on the ship, take ninja-pose pictures and wave at the astonished passersby on the shore. You surely won't be bored on this cruise.

※Notes
Due to constructions on the Higashi Yokobori river the cruise won't pass through the Dotonbori area from January to April 14, 2018. It will operate on the Okawa and Nakanoshima courses instead. The Dotonbori course will restart from mid-April 2018.  In this cruise you can take a commemorative photo in front of the Glico signboard. The disembarkation point is  the Nihonbashi pier west of Dotombori, perfect to enjoy shopping and food after your ninja experience.

 
Throwing shuriken - Osaka ninja cruise
Learn how to throw the shuriken!
 
The ninja spell Kuji Goshinbo, Osaka ninja cruise
Kuji Goshinbou, the ninja spell
 
Osaka ninja cruise
Will you win the sword fight against your fellow ninjas?

■ For a limited time, a Ninja Night Cruise and Ninja Sakura Cruise are also available
 

Osaka ninja night cruise

 

Osaka ninja sakura cruise


A special Ninja Night Cruise will run on February 18 and 19 from 7:00pm. It starts from the Hachikenyahama pier and leisurely winds its way towards the busy market streets of Dotonbori. There will be ninja shows along with taiko performances. During the cherry blossom season (March-April) a Sakura Cruise is also available.
 

Information

Ninja Cruise
Address: 1-1 Temmabashikyomachi, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
Departure times: Twice a day Saturday and Sunday, 10:00am and 2:30pm
Price: Adults 4,500 yen, children (from 2 years old to 6th grade) 3,500 yen, reserve the entire boat 30,000 yen
Duration: approx. 1 hour
Same day reservations: not available
How to book: website or phone (06-6131-9768, Japanese only)
Crewmembers speaking English and Chinese are available
Access to boarding location: Hachikenyahama Pier, short walk from Exit 18 of Temmabashi Station.
Website: http://ninja-cruise.com/
 

2. Osaka Castle Gozabune 

 
Osaka Castle Gozabune Cruise

Admire the Osaka Castle tower from a glistening golden boat sailing along the moat

This gorgeous golden Japanese boat will take you on the inner moat of the Osaka Castle. While enjoying the scenery of the four seasons of Osaka Castle from the ship, you can see Japan's highest stone walls built by the Tokugawa shogunate. The daimyo's seal is chiseled into the stones. Enjoy the famous castle from the water while listening to an audio guide about its history.
 
Osaka Castle Gozabune Cruise - the beautiful golden boat
The golden boat sailing under Gokurakubashi Bridge
 
Osaka Castle Gozabune Cruise - cruising by the stone wall
Lazily cruising by the stone wall
 

Information

Osaka Castle Gozabune Boat
Address: 1-1 Osakajo, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
Times: 10:00am - 4:50pm (last departure). Last departure changes to 4:30 from November to February. Departures are every 10-15 minutes. Cruises might be cancelled due to bad weather.
Price: Adults 1,500 yen, children (elementary-middle school) 750 yen, seniors (65+ years old) 1,000 yen
Duration: approx. 20 minutes
Same day reservations: available
How to book: on site
The commentary audio on  the boat is available in Japanese and English. English speaking staff is available at the boarding location.
Access to boarding location: 10 min. walk from Osakajokoen Station on the JR Osaka Loop Line
Website (Japanese-only): https://www.banpr.co.jp/大阪城御座船/
 

3. Ofune Camome Breakfast Cruise

 
Ofune Camome Breakfast Cruise

Have a healthy breakfast in a cozy small boat

The charm of Ofune Camome is that, being a very small boat, you will be very close to the water. You can see the wind rippling the water surface and feel the boat sway gently. All the while you'll be admiring Osaka's old buildings like the Central Public Hall and the Suisho Bridge. The breakfast cruise is not the only cruise that they offer. You can also try their bar time cruise and Doboku cruise. In the latter you'll cruise through the harbor's majestic structures.
 
Osaka's old architecture - Ofune Camome Breakfast Cruise
Observe the old architecture from up close
 
Breakfast on the Ofune Camome Breakfast Cruise
This breakfast is delivered directly from Sugi Gohei, a plantation in the city of Hirakata, Osaka Prefecture
 

Information

Ofune Camome
Address: 1-1 Temmabashikyomachi, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
Price: 
Breakfast cruise - Adults 3,200 yen, Children (6-12) 1,600 yen
Camome cruise - Adults 2,100 yen, Children (6-12) 1,000 yen
Bar time cruise - Adults 2,100 yen, Children (6-12) 1,000 yen
Doboku Cruise - Adults 4,500 yen, Children (6-12) 2,200 yen
Duration: Breakfast cruise, Camome cruise and bar time cruise approx. 50 minutes. Doboku cruise approx. 3 hours (with intermission)
Same day reservations: available if there are spots left
How to book: Website or phone (up to three days in advance)
Access to boarding location: Hachikenyahama Pier, short walk from Exit 18 of Temmabashi Station.
Website: http://www.ofune-camome.net/english/index.html
 

4. Nakanoshima River Cruise

 
Nakanoshima River Cruise

The next generation cruise where the night view of Osaka is accompanied by beautiful sound effects

Surrounded by the Tosabori and Dojima rivers, Nakanoshima has been Osaka's core since the Edo Period (1603–1868). With this boat cruise you'll sail by the lit up bridge, the old architecture and the neon-illuminated downtown. But the unique feature of this tour is the use of headphones. Here's a unique chance to admire the night view while listening to traditional Japanese instruments.
 
Cruising with headphones - Nakanoshima River Cruise in Osaka
You'll cruise the river while wearing headphones
 

Information

Nakanoshima River Cruise
Address: Fukushima (Hotarumachi) harbor, 1-1 Fukushima, Fukushima-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
Times: 5:00pm - 9:00pm
*1:00pm - 9:00pm on April 28-30, May 3-6 and August 11-15.
*Departures are every 30 minutes (except for 4:00pm and 4:30pm)
Price: Adults 900 yen, children (elementary school and below) free for up to one child per adult. 400 yen/child for more than one child per adult.
Duration: 20 minutes
Same day reservations: available
How to book: On site. The boarding ticket booth opens 1 hour before the first cruise
Access to boarding location: Fukushima (Hotarumachi) harbor, 4 min. walk from Exit 3 of Hanshin Fukushima Station / 6 min. walk from Exit 6 of Keihan Nakanoshima Station / 8 min. walk from Fukushima Station on the Osaka Loop Line / 11 min. walk from Exit 3 of Higobashi Station on the Yotsubashi Subway Line
Website (Japanese-only): http://www.ipponmatsu.co.jp/
 

5. Osaka Duck Tour

 
Osaka Duck Tour

A new kind of experience that explores the wonders of Osaka on an amphibious bus

The bus driver suddenly becomes the captain! The large bus will splash into the Okawa River from a slope in Sakuranomiya Park. After cruising through the downtown area, the bus will once again hop onto the land and run through the streets of Osaka. During the tour you'll be entertained by a knowledgeable and funny guide.
 
Osaka Duck Tour amphibious bus
Roam freely between land and water with this amphibious tour
 
Osaka Duck Tour - the bus goes in the water
The lushly green scenery that you can see from the water is heart-warming
 

Information

Osaka Duck Tour
Address: Kawa no Eki Hachikenya, 1-2 Kitahamahigashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
Times: 9:15am - 5:15pm, 5 cruises/day. 4 cruises/day from December 1 to March 19.
Price: Adults 3,500 yen, Children 2,000 yen, children 2 years old and below 500 yen. From December 1 to March 19: adults 2,900 yen, Elementary school students and below 1,800 yen, children 2 years old and below 400 yen.
Duration: approx. 90 minutes (approx. 75 minutes from December 1 to March 19)
Same day reservations: available. Advance reservations are recommended.
How to book: Website or phone
The guides speak only Japanese. There is an English pamphlet on the website.
Access to boarding location: Kawa no Eki Hachikenya, 5 min. walk from Temmabashi Station
Website: http://www.japan-ducktour.com/osaka/
English pdf Pamphlet: http://www.japan-ducktour.com/osaka/pdf/pamphlet_winter2018.pdf
 

6. Aqua-Liner Water Bus

 
Aqua-Liner Water Bus Osaka
Admire the Osaka Castle and Osaka's trademark retro buildings

The Osaka Castle-Nakanoshima Tour is the popular choice here. It cruises down the Okawa River which runs through the city center. You'll pass by the Osaka Mint bureau, a brick building made in 1911 and other neo-renaissance buildings like the Osaka City Central Public Hall. Rows of beautiful cherry blossoms bloom along the riverbank in spring.
 
Osaka city's Central Public Hall - Aqua-Liner Water Bus
The Osaka City Central Public Hall is reflected on the water surface.
 
Aqua-Liner Water Bus in Osaka with cherry blossoms
The scenery is especially beautiful in spring
 

Information

Aqua-Liner
Address: 2-banchi-saki Osakajo, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
Departure times: Osakajo Pier - every hour at :00, Yodoyabashi Pier - every hour at :20, Hachikenyahama Pier - every hour at :30, OAP Pier - every hour at :40
Price: Adults 1,700 yen, children 850 yen. Special Spring Price (March28-April 15): Adults 2,000 yen, children 1,000 yen
Duration: approx. 55 minutes
Same day reservations: available except for special spring time
How to book: Phone
Japanese and English available
Access to boarding location: short walk from Osakajokoen Station on the JR Osaka Loop Line
Website: http://suijo-bus.osaka/english/aqualiner/
 

Cruising the Aqua Metropolis Osaka


We definitely recommend including one of these boat tours in your travel plans. They're a great chance to escape the crowded streets and explore the water city from a different point of view. Who knows what you will discover!
 

*This article is based on a coverage made in December 2017.
*Times , routes and prices are subject to change.

 

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THIS ARTICLE IS BASED ON INFORMATION FROM 07 23,2018 Author:DiGJAPAN! 編集部

 

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