How to Have Fun in Osaka Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai



How to Have Fun in Osaka Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai



Osaka’s Tenjinbashi-suji is Japan’s longest shotengai or outdoor shopping arcade at approximately 2.6km (1.6mi). Not only is this shopping arcade long, it’s packed with some six hundred different establishments including stores, restaurants, and even a popular spot for renting kimono. Follow DiGJAPAN! on a little stroll down Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai to see all the good stuff there is to do here.

Enjoy the tastes of Osaka on the cheap!

If you're in the mood for good eats but don't feel like sitting down in a restaurant, Tenjinbashi-suji is a great place to be. Between 1-chome and 2-chome as well as between 5-chome and 6-chome* are stores that sell foods perfectly portioned for eating as you walk. Here are four popular options to check out.

*A chome (pronounced cho-may) can be thought of as one district of the given area.

The entrance to Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai, an outdoor shopping arcade in Osaka.

■ Takoyaki, the king of Osaka’s street food
Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, takoyaki is one of Osaka’s most popular meibutsu or local specialties. There is certainly no shortage of places where you can enjoy these delicious bites of breaded octopus. But if you want to go to a place the locals love, then Takoyaki Doraku Wanaka is the place. Here you can get an eight-piece takoyaki for just 400 yen. They also have four varieties of sauce for you to choose from: original, salt, soy sauce, and a hot and spicy “thick sauce.” While there, you can watch the expert staff cook up batches of ninety takoyaki at a time.

Takoyaki from Takoyaki Doraku Wanaka's Tenjinbashi Tenroku Location

Takoyaki Doraku Wanaka Tenroku Location | たこ焼道楽わなか 天六店
Address: 6-7-20 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 11:00am~10:00pm
■ Freshly fried and piping hot korokke
Nakamura-ya is said to make the most delicious korokke in all of Osaka. For those of you not familiar with this delicious treat, a korokke is the Japanese take on the French croquette. These are mashed potato patties that have been battered and deep fried. Usually other ingredients such as chopped meats, seafood, or vegetables will be added to the mashed potatoes. At Nakamura-ya, you can enjoy one made with savory mashed potato and onion for just 70 yen.

A korokke from Nakamura-ya

Nakamura-ya | 中村屋
Address: 2-3-21 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 9:00am~6:30pm (Saturdays 9:00am~6:00pm) | Closed Sundays and holidays
■ A lucky fish filled with delicious anko
If you’re a fan of anko-- a paste made from sweetened adzuki beans-- then picking up a taiyaki is a must. Here they carefully grill each fish-shaped sweet so that the pancake-like batter cooks up thin and crispy. Of course, each one is stuffed with plenty of anko. One piece is priced at 140 yen. Fun fact: because the sound “tai” occurs at the end of the word medetai, meaning auspicious, the sea bream or tai as it’s called in Japanese is considered a lucky animal.

Taiyaki from Naruto Taiyaki Flagship Store's Tenjinbashi Location

Naruto Taiyaki Flagship Store Tenjinbashi Location | 鳴門鯛焼本舗 天神橋店
Address: 5-7-1 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 11:00am~11:00pm
■ Fresh juices made from fruits and veggies
If you start getting thirsty, treat yourself to a refreshing, healthy juice from Juice Stand Pederu. Choose your preferred combination of fruits and veggies from the front of the shop, and they’ll squeeze you a delicious cup of fresh juice for just 400 yen.

Juice Stand Pederu

Juice Stand Pederu | ジューススタンドペデル
Address: 5-6-5 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 9:00am~8:00pm | Closed Mondays

Step back in time (and try on a kimono!) at this unique museum

Once you’ve had your fill of snacking, head to Tenjinbashi-suji 6-chome. Right beside the entrance to the shopping arcade is the Osaka Museum of Housing and Living (Osaka Kurashi No Konjaku Kan). Here on the eighth floor, you can explore a life-sized exhibit of an Osakan street as it looked in the early part of the 1830s during the Edo Period.

Tenjinbashi-suji 6-chome

You'll feel like you've traveled back in time once you enter.

Osaka Museum of Housing and Living (Osaka Kurashi No Konjaku Kan)

Entry to the museum is a reasonable 600 yen. For an additional 500 yen, however, you can get dressed up in a kimono and explore the exhibit in proper Japanese-style for thirty minutes. Reservations for the kimono experience often fill up before lunchtime, so it's recommended to get there in the morning.

The selection of rental kimono available at Osaka Museum of Housing and Living (Osaka Kurashi No Konjaku Kan)

Osaka Museum of Housing and Living | くらしの今昔館
Address: Sumai Joho Center 8F, 6-4-20 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 10:00am~4:30pm | Closed Tuesdays and for occasional maintenance | Adult admission: 600 yen; high school and college student admission (student ID required): 300 yen; middle school students and younger are free

Feast on super-cheap sushi

Sushi lovers won’t want to miss Tenjinbashi-suji 5-chome. This part of the shopping arcade is lined with a number of restaurants selling cheap, delicious sushi. To get the best deals, go during lunchtime. Be careful, though! It’s not unusual to see people lined up outside of popular places even before lunch starts at 11:00am. For an idea of where to go, check out this restaurant below.

The sushi shops on 5-chome in Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Arcade in Osaka

■ A nine-piece sushi lunch for just 540 yen!
You can get a great deal on sushi at Sushi Masa, a sushi restaurant that’s been in business for fifty years. The a la cart prices here are jaw-droppingly low, ranging from 108 yen for some of the cheaper options to just 432 yen for fancy stuff like toro (fatty tuna) and awabi (abalone). You can also opt for their lunch set which comes with nine pieces of sushi (tuna, shrimp, amberjack, squid, salmon, octopus, omelet, tuna roll, and cucumber roll) plus miso soup made from rich red dashi stock for just 540 yen.

Sushi from Sushi Masa in Osaka

Sushi Masa Nakamise | すし政 中店
Address: 5-6-19 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 11:10am~11:00pm (L.O. 10:40pm); lunch hours: 11:10am~2:30pm | Closed Mondays

Get in a little shopping

One of the cool things about Tenjinbashi-suji is that it's not just a place for tourists; locals regularly go there to shop as well. For that reason, in addition to places that sell very Osaka-esque souvenirs, you can also take this opportunity to explore Japanese grocery and drug stores, clothing stores, and more.
■ Classy souvenirs with an Osakan flare
If you want some high quality souvenirs that reflect the character of Osaka, head to Tenjin MAIDO Ya. Here you can find liquor and seasonings made in Osaka as well as stylish tenugui (hand towels), folding fans, and more. Don’t forget to take a picture of the storefront; it’s decorated with paper lanterns on which phrases in the Osaka dialect have been written.

Inside of Tenjinbashi MAIDO Ya

Tenma Tenjin MAIDO Ya | 天満天神MAIDO屋
Address: 2-1-23 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 10:00am~7:00pm | Closed for New Year’s holidays
■ Update your wardrobe with some Japanese styles
Interested in traditional Japanese clothes? At Narita-ya, you can find everything from kimono to yukata, tabi socks, accessories, and lots more all at reasonable prices. Furthermore, they also sell remnants of kimono fabric and secondhand kimono.


Narita-ya Kimono Shop | 成田屋呉服店
5-7-19 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 10:00am~7:00pm | Closed Tuesdays

Take a little break and explore Osaka Tenman-gu

The Tenjin in Tenjinbashi-suji’s name is the name of the Shinto god of learning, and Osaka Tenman-gu Shrine is dedicated to this god. This shrine is something of a touchstone of local culture for those who live here. Many affectionately refer to it as Tenjin-san, attaching the Japanese honorific that carries the approximate meaning of Mr. or Ms. It is particularly famous for its spectacular displays of plum blossoms in the spring. It is also home to the Tenjin Matsuri, one of Japan’s “Big Three” festivals. It takes place July 24th and 25th. Definitely make plans to stop by when exploring the shopping arcade.

Osaka Tenman-gu Shrine

Osaka Tenman-gu Shrine | 大阪天満宮
Address: 2-1-8 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 9:00am~5:00pm

P.S. Be on the look out for the Osaka Tenman-gu Shrine and Tenjin Matsuri-themed decorations in the shopping arcade.

Interesting decorations in the shopping arcade


Dine like a local in the yatai area Ura-Tenma

Located on a side street around Tenjinbashi 5-chome is a place known as Ura-Tenma-- literally, "the backside of Tenma." At night, people come here to enjoy meals or a few drinks at bars, izakaya, and food stands called yatai.

Ura-Tenman at night

■ Dine on seafood fresh from the docks at Jizakana Tottsuan
This izakaya or Japanese-style dining bar serves seasonal seafood procured directly from the fishing harbor, and the decorations inside the izakaya celebrate this fact. There are fishing nets stretched over the ceiling and colorful “big catch” banners on the walls, giving the place the lively atmosphere of a fishing wharf.

Inside Jizakana Tottsuan

Here you can try various Japanese seafood dishes like maguro no kama yaki (the grilled pectoral fin of a tuna) for 550 yen, salmon sashimi for 280 yen, and tempura starting from 100 yen.

The menu at Jizakana Tottsuan

Jizakana Tottsuan Tenma Location | 地魚屋台 とっつぁん 天満店
Address: 6-14 Ikeda-cho | Hours: 5:30pm~11:00pm | Closed for New Year’s holidays
■ Enjoy top-shelf wine at the yatai Luv wine
This wine bar was created with a simple yet important purpose: to be a welcoming space where people could have easy access to even top-shelf wines. With an atmosphere that feels closer to a yatai food stall than an actual bar, guests can enjoy glasses of wine starting at just 600 yen and small meals and side dishes starting from 380 yen.

Luv wine

Luv wine
Address: 5-8 Ikeda-cho | Hours: 6:00pm~11:30pm



From cheap, delicious eats to bargain-priced shopping, there's plenty to enjoy on Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai. Not only that, this shopping arcade is located conveniently close to both Osaka and Umeda Stations as well as to hotels and guest houses. So when traveling through Osaka, definitely pay a visit to Japan's longest shopping arcade!


About Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai
This outdoor shopping arcade stretches for approximately 2.6 kilometers (approx. 1.6 miles) between 1-chome and 7-chome. It typically takes about 40 minutes just to walk from one end to the other. If you factor in time to eat and shop, you can anticipate spending around two hours there.

Map of the spots mentioned in this piece:
Access to Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai

■ Access to 1-chome, 2-chome, and 3-chome
Get off at Minami-morimachi Station (Tanimachi and Sakaisuji Lines) and Osakatemmangu Station (JR Tozai Line)

■ Access to 4-chome and 5-chome
Get off at Temma Station (JR Osaka Loop Line) or Ogimachi Station (Sakaisuji Line)

■ Access to 6-chome and 7-chome
Tenjimbashisuji Rokuchome Station (Tanimachi, Sakaisuji, and Hankyu Railway Senri Lines)


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