Osaka is one of the most visited cities in Japan. It has a very different vibe from the capital city of Tokyo and the ancient capital city of Kyoto. This city is uniquely its own, and definitely a must-visit for those planning a trip to Japan. On top of that, it has countless very Instagrammable photo sites, and we have rounded up the 20 most Instagrammable spots in Osaka!
1. Dotonbori Glico Sign
One of the most iconic attractions of Osaka is Dotonbori, and more specifically the Glico sign amidst other giant signboards. The sign, installed in 1935, shows a character running and has his hands raised above his head. Get a shot right in front of the sign on the Ebisubashi Bridge or from the Tombori River Walk.
You should also read this article to understand how to find the secret Glico Man photo spot!
Want to get amazing photos in Dotonbori by night? Join this Photo Trip by Tom Kitano. It’s one of our local photographer in Tokyo and he will take amazing Neon style pictures of you in Dotonbori!
And for more options, you can also read our last post about our best photoshoots in Osaka!
Translated to mean “New World”, Shinsekai lights up entirely at night with colourful signboards, loud music and the famous Tsutenkaku Tower. It’s an extremely vibrant town, best for street food and vintage shopping. While the best time to take pictures is at night, Shinsekai is also just as photogenic in the daytime.
Amerikamura, which means “America Town”, is Osaka’s version of Harajuku. This neighbourhood is where the city’s subcultures call home. It’s a great area for shopping, with over 2,000 stores. You might even spot a street performer or two while you’re there.
4. Osaka Castle
Osaka Castle is an extremely popular attraction in not only the city but in the whole country. It’s one of the most iconic castles in Japan. Smack in the centre of town, it offers an amazing landscape view of the city. Surrounding the castle is a gorgeous, big park. Many locals often go there for a jog, picnic or a casual stroll.
Location: Osaka Castle
5. Shitennoji Temple
The oldest Buddhist temple in Japan is Shitennoji Temple, and it can be found in Osaka. What better reason is there to want to take a picture of this attraction? On the temple grounds, there are Zen gardens, ponds and even weekend markets.
Location: Shitennoji Temple
6. Sumiyoshi Taisha
Another popular attraction is Sumiyoshi Taisha, a shrine with a beautiful garden. The main highlight of this shrine is its red footbridge. Many visitors would pose in front of the pond with the bridge behind it for a ‘gram-worthy shot!
Location: Sumiyoshi Taisha
7. Umeda Sky Building
Umeda Sky Building is a significant skyscraper in all of Osaka. There are two observation decks on two separate buildings, offering spectacular views of the city’s skyline. The views from up top as well as the unique building itself are both great for backdrops of an Instagram picture.
Location: Umeda Sky Building
8. Namba Yasaka Shrine
In the Namba neighbourhood, you can find the Namba Yasaka Shrine. This is different from Yasaka Shrine in Kyoto, as the one in Osaka features a giant lion’s head. This sculpture serves as a podium for traditional lion dances, but is also a famous photo spot.
Location: Namba Yasaka Shrine
9. Kaiyukan Aquarium
Osaka’s Kaiyukan Aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in the world. Much aquatic life can be found here, including whale sharks and manta rays. The building of the aquarium is so huge, you can definitely find a spot on the path around tanks that offer great backdrops featuring a whale shark or two.
Location: Kaiyukan Aquarium
10. Nakanoshima Island
Tucked between the Dojima and Tosahori Rivers is a 3 km-long sandbank called Nakanoshima Island. It’s in very peculiar surroundings, with commercial and governmental buildings all around. But that’s the best part about this location. It’s like a quick escape from the modern world into this bite-sized nature.
Location: Nakanoshima Island
11. Hirakata T-SITE
A little different from your typical shrine and temple shot, Hirakata T-SITE is actually a bookshop. It’s a little further out of Osaka, but worth the travel. You’ll find bookshelves as tall as 7 meters! After taking your Insta-worthy shots, shop around the mall for Japanese souvenirs and clothes from local brands.
Location: Hirakata T-SITE
12. Tsurumiryokuchi Expo ‘90 Commemorative Park
Tsurumiryokuchi Expo ‘90 Commemorative Park consists of a few facilities, including a greenhouse, a rose garden, a Japanese garden, a windmill hill, and a forest of almond trees. With various attractions in just one location, you’re bound to get a few great shots here.
You May Also Like: Cutest Cafes In Osaka
13. Osaka Mint Museum
This might be a weird place for pictures, but the Osaka Mint Museum is a popular spot for cherry blossoms in spring. While the head office of the Japan Mint is responsible for coin supply, the cherry trees out front of the building are the highlight rather than the coins. Even if you’re not here in spring, the Mint Museum in the building is actually a really good picture spot too.
Location: Osaka Mint Museum
14. Universal Studios Japan
What better place to take Instagram-worthy pictures than in an amusement park? Universal Studio Japan has various areas that are unique to the Japan location, including Harry Potter and the new Super Nintendo World!
Location: Universal Studios Japan
15. Tempozan Giant Ferris Wheel
Nearby the aquarium, you’ll be able to find the Tempozan Giant Ferris Wheel. This Ferris wheel is 112.5 meters in diameter, and from the top, you’ll be able to see Mount Ikoma on a clear day. At nighttime, the Ferris wheel lights up a colourful array of displays.
Location: Tempozan Giant Ferris Wheel
16. Ikutama Shrine
Ikutama Shrine is an extremely popular shrine for festivals for the locals. This shrine is a very good example of a classic Shinto shrine in Japan, offering an authentic experience. It’s also a little underrated in comparison to the shrines in the city, so it wouldn’t be as crowded as the others.
Location: Ikutama Shrine
17. HEP FIVE
A favourite shopping spot, HEP FIVE is a unique landmark with a giant red Ferris wheel on top. There are about 170 shops in the building, as well as restaurants and cafes. The Ferris wheel also offers amazing views of Osaka, but the highlight is the red gondolas. We recommend taking pictures inside these gondolas for the best shots.
Location: HEP FIVE
18. The 33 Tea and Bar Terrace
A great place for brunch, the 33 Tea and Bar Terrace not only serves amazing Japanese and international dishes but also provides a stunning view of the city for free. It’s such a popular spot that it does get very crowded, especially on the weekends. If you really want to visit this place, be sure to book a table in advance.
Location: The 33 Tea and Bar Terrace
19. Abeno Harukas
Nothing beats Abeno Harukas when it comes to views, because it is the tallest skyscraper in all of Japan. The observation deck is on the 60th floor that has an admission fee, but the open-air garden on the 16th floor is free of charge. Both floors provide great picture-taking opportunities.
Location: Abeno Harukas
20. Katsuo-ji Temple
Last but not least, Katsuo-ji Temple can be found in the mountains north of Osaka. A visit to this temple takes up a good portion of the day, but the travel is worth it. There is a koi pond, hidden smoke machines by the bridge and large temple buildings everywhere! It’ll definitely feel like you’re in a dreamy movie scene.
Location: Katsuo-ji Temple
I hope you enjoyed this list of the most Instagrammable spots in Osaka!
Osaka is a great place for food, shopping, and picture-taking. The city offers a mix of traditional and modern picture spots that are unique to Osaka only, so definitely mark them on your map before your next trip here!