Osaka Castle is awsome, its the best thing to see in Osaka. The castle was refurbished after WWII and is absolutely georgeous. It is the largest wooden structure in the world. The castle is encompaed by a large park where the locals do things that people do in city parks but they also camp out there. It was really strange to me to see people camping out in the middle of a city park in a huge city but I guess there aren't a lot of places to go.
Osaka castle is the exterior reconstruction of a Heian period castle, with the air-conditioned interior of a museum. You'll learn more about the history of the castle (who lived in it etc), as well as view the art pieces of that era. Not much actually, if you're going for the authentic feel, because once you're inside, it's just like any other building.
Opening Hrs: 9.30am-5pm Cost 600 yen, but you get in free if you have the Osaka Unlimited pass.
Take the subway to Tanimachi4-chome (T25) ’J’¬Žl’š–Ú, and once you exit from the station area, there are signs pointing to the direction of the castle. It's walkable from the osaka museum of history.
Osaka Castle is situated in a large park and is really impressive. A totally different from any european-style castle but still you notice this is quite a fort. You have to pass several walls and gates before you reach the grounds of the castle itself.
When I went to Osaka Castle, there were dance teams doing energetic dances on a stage below the castle. It was very entertaining. The castle is fairy-tale white with gold trimmings. Very impressive on the outside. However, on the inside, it had lost all it's authenticity. You could forget you were in a castle and think you were in a narrow modern museum with tonnes of steps to climb. A little disappointing. However, it was cool to look at the old Samurai armour, and their samurai helmets with different designs. It was interesting to note how scary the armour would have looked to the village people back in the old days. Some used boar's hair for the face mask, and they looked like scary mythical beasts.
Osaka Castle is a bigger tourist attraction if visting the city , it`s a true Japanese work of art and from the top you can get some great views of the city, when near the top. It`s quite well priced and would recomend giving it a look if in the city. hopefully i will get the chance to put some pictures on soon.
Osaka-jo has a tumultuous history. Originally completed in 1583 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi as a result of the unification of Japan, it was destroyed by the armies of Tokugawa Ieyasu in 1615. Rebuilt by the same forces that destroyed it, it was destroyed again by the Tokugawa forces rather than letting it fall to the forces of the Meiji Restoration in 1868 (thanks Lonely Planet Japan 2003!). The castle standing today is a 1931 reconstruction of the original.
There are lots of interesting photos, items and minature models of the history of the castle and Osaka city inside the building. The climb up the stairs to the observation deck is steep but well worth it! The 360 degree views of Osaka are exceptional. Osaka is probably not the prettiest city in the world so do not expect jaw dropping views but the view is nice all the same (see attached photos) :) Admission is 500 yen.
Ah, Osaka-jo. THE symbol of Osaka. THE most visited tourist attraction in Japan (according to my good friends at the Osaka Tourist Board - I can only assume they've never heard of that little anthill known to the wise at Fuji).
You're expecting sarcasm I know. However, I'm sorry, but Osaka-jo is great! From a distance anyway. It looks beautiful and the surrounding park (Osaka-jo koen) is a great place to hang out during the spring, summer and early autumn (although during hanami it is overcrowded). We usually take a football or a frisbee and a few cans of chu-hi, great stuff.
The only disappointment is when you get close to the actual castle, which is when it's complete rebuild at the start of the 20th century becomes apparent - theres even a lift [that'd be elevator for my linguistically unaware readers in North America] attached to the side! The inside is also a complete waste of time, just a few dry displays and a not overly inspiring view of the business park.
That aside though, you can't visit Osaka and not take a trip to see the castle - during the day, to enjoy the park or at night, to see it eirily illuminated against the dark surrounding trees.
If you are going to stop over in Osaka, the only site worth visiting is the castle and its gardens. The castle is a very attractive classical daimyo period castle with one small problem -- it was built in 1931 (on the site of the 16th-century castle that had been destroyed). I got there too late to go inside, but that didn't really bother me because of the castle's relative youth and the fact that I would be visiting the castle in Himeiji (a real 16th century castle) in a few days. I did get a chance to walk the gardens and ponds, catching glimpses of azaleas aas they shed their last flowers and carp as the begged for food (have you ever seen a fish beg -- pathetic!). There are some great views of the city from above the high walls.
Osaka castle and museum.
This was very interesting as a re-creation of a japanese castle with a pretty good museum. Well worth a look with lots of picture opportunities and great views over Osaka.
Also pretty good teppanyaki stalls nearby.
I don’t know all of castles in Japan but I think Osaka castle is the biggest, the most beautiful one of them which I’ve ever seen. It was built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi around in 1585. He is still a hero of Osakan because he was based at Osaka and brought the whole country under his rule. He was the first man who did it in Japanese history. However it burned away during a battle Hideyoshi and Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder and 1st shogun of the government of Edo. Ieyasu won against Hideyoshi and Osaka castle was rebuilt by Ieyasu after the war. However it was destroyed by fire 40 years later. It was rebuilt again but burned away again at Meiji Restoration. Present castle was rebuilt through the donation of Osakans in 1931. It was made of concrete and is a construction of earthquake-proof structures.
Built in 1583 and expanded until 1598 Osaka Castle is nowadays a major tourist attraction in Osaka. The architecture is just great and the walk up the tower (a museum actually) gives an impression about the history of the castle.
9am - 5pm (extended in Spring & Summer)
Surprisingly this castle is the most visited tourist attraction in Japan. It certainly looks quite impressive from the outside but visitors may be surprised to learn that it's actually a 1931 reconstruction built from concrete! Inside is largely disappointing to be honest.
Much more impressive is the surrounding walls, gates and moats which I believe are original. An amazing feat of engineering.
Visiting the castle just before the sun goes down gives you the chance to see the Osaka skyline change before your eyes. The castle is also floodlit which highlights the architectural beauty of the building.
Chrysanthemums were the added attraction at the castle last week. As if the autumn colours from the surrounding park lands weren't enough, we were treated to some great displays in front of the castle as well. The Japanese take great pride in their gardens and the care and attention is very evident for all to see and appreciate.
Osaka Jo (Osaka Castle) is a stunning re-construction dating from 1959. Set in an extensive park (populated by some of Osaka's homeless), it is well worth a visit.
The park is most popular on the weekend and during cherry bossom season in March, when countless hanami (cherry blosssom viewing) parties take place.
The castle is illuminated at night and is particularly photogenic at this time although I don't recommend walking alone through the park at night (it's probably quite safe but it is one of the more dodgy areas of the city so I advise a bit of caution).
The castle contains a museum, but is disappointing for those expecting an authentic interior, and it is apparent that a lot more effort went in to the exterior. Despite this there are some interesting displays and the view from the top floor is good.
Admission to the park is free. Entering the castle costs 700 yen.