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!
*A chome (pronounced cho-may) can be thought of as one district of the given area.
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.
Address: 6-7-20 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 11:00am~10:00pm
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.
Address: 2-3-21 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 9:00am~6:30pm (Saturdays 9:00am~6:00pm) | Closed Sundays and holidays
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.
Address: 5-7-1 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 11:00am~11:00pm
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.
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
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
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.
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
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.
Address: 2-1-23 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 10:00am~7:00pm | Closed for New Year’s holidays
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.
5-7-19 Tenjinbashi | Hours: 10:00am~7:00pm | Closed Tuesdays
Take a little break and explore Osaka Tenman-gu
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.
Dine like a local in the yatai area Ura-Tenma
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.
Address: 6-14 Ikeda-cho | Hours: 5:30pm~11:00pm | Closed for New Year’s holidays
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.
Address: 5-8 Ikeda-cho | Hours: 6:00pm~11:30pm
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.
■ 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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THIS ARTICLE IS BASED ON INFORMATION FROM 10 21,2016 Author：DiGJAPAN! Editorial Team
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