The second largest city in Japan and one of the most popular tourist destinations, Osaka is an ancient city with a young soul. With the Kansai International Airport proximity to popular locations in Japan such as Kyoto and Kobe, Osaka is a great end or starting destination for travelers. Renowned for the excellent shopping experience without putting too big of a dent in your bank account, Osaka has many different districts and areas to experience and to shop in and I was slightly overwhelmed when I arrived. To help you avoid buying touristy tchotchkes or trinkets, here is a list of places you can visit to avoid falling into those traps.
Takoyaki Golf ball
- Website: Takoyaki Golf Ball
Bargain hunting at DON QUIJOTE stores
Don Quijote stores are like Daiso made even better! Here you will find everything you might want ad a whole bunch of new stuff that you will want to bring back in your luggage: KitKats in all flavours, cup Noodles, sweets, makeup, handbags and more.
- Shop location: Japan, 〒542-0084 Osaka Prefecture, Osaka, Chuo, Souemoncho, 7−13
2. Herbis Plaza ENT
Image Credit: Herbis.Jp
If you are a devotee of high-end fashion, Herbis Plazas collection of famous international fashion stores and Japanese luxury stores will be sure to delight you. While the international stores may be something you are familiar with, they have been known to carry unique items to appeal to local Japanese taste and trends.
The local Japanese stores will obviously be of more interest to veteran shoppers as many of them have never branched out beyond Japan’s shores. If you get an attack of the munchies while shopping, the basement has a large selection of Japanese and Italian restaurants and cafes to refuel you.
- Shopping mall location: 〒 530-0001 2-2-22 Umeda, Kita-ku, Osaka
3. Pokemon Center Osaka
It’s a Pokemon Centre, the Eldorado for Pokemon fans across the world. What more do we need to say? But seriously though, there are collectable items and every Pokemon neatly stacked upon rows and rows of shelves even if your interest is lukewarm, you know someone who is a Pokemon fan. But just by simply being in the store and being surrounded by every conceivable Pokemon item will be sure to trigger a flood of childhood nostalgia.
- What to buy: Pokemon bento boxes, limited edition t-shirts, glasses cases, plush toys, cards.
- Pokemon Center location: Daimaru Umeda Store 13F, 3-1-1 Umeda, Kita-ku, 530-8202, Osaka Prefecture
4. Shinsaibashi Shopping Arcade
One great spot to visit within is Shinsaibashi OPA. The OPA is a shopping centre that has a wide variety of fashion and retail items. Featuring high fashion stores, second-hand thrift shops, and even limited edition Casio G-Shocks that you cannot find outside of Japan, Sake stores and more, the OPA is a popular meeting spot for the young people of Osaka.
- Location: Japan, 〒542-0086 Osaka Prefecture, Osaka, Chuo, Nishishinsaibashi, １丁目4−3
AmerikaMura or “Amemura”
Known as the “Harajuku” of Osaka, America Mura, or the American Village, is located in the western part of Shinsaibashi. Typically called “Amemura,” this area has a lively atmosphere and populated with the latest trends in teenage fashion and cafe trends.
- Location: Nishishinsaibashi 1-8-18, Chuo-ku, Osaka
- Madarake location: 530-0027 Doyama-cho 9-28, Kita-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka
5. Den Den Town, Nipponbashi
The Nipponbashi area has long been known for its affordable electronics, gadgets and appliance stores. One of the most well-known locations within the area is Den Den Town. An electronics paradise similar to Tokyo’s Akihabara (or if you are from Singapore or Malaysia, Sim Lim, and Lowyat).
Top stores in Den Den Town:
- SuperPotato for vintage games – Location: Osaka-shi, Osaka Naniwa-ku, Nihonbashi 3-8-18, Hirata building the first floor.
- Cospatio for all things Cosplay
- Melon Books for manga – Location: Osaka prefecture Osaka-shi Naniwa-ku Nihonbashi 4-14-1 Ikeda Building 3F.
- Sofmap for second-hand electronics
6. Namba Parks
This shopping mall is an oasis in an urban jungle. Full of boutique stores, this shopping mall features cult brands such as Givenchy and more. It is unique for its roof garden in a multi-shopping complex that can be a breath of fresh air to the heaving crowds of the nearby districts of Dontonbori and Shinsaibashi. The outdoor event space is a popular venue and many performances can be enjoyed here.
Top stores in Namba Parks:
- Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten for houseware and products made of high-quality hemp fabric Narazarashi.
- Village Vanguard for niche books, CDs, and DVDs
- Namba Parks location: 〒556-0011 Osaka Prefecture, Osaka, Naniwa Ward, Nanbanaka, 2 Chome−10−70
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