The Kansai Region

We’ve compiled the best of the best in The Kansai Region - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Dotombori-dori

    Chuo-ku | Neighborhood/Street

    If you only have one night in Osaka, Dotombori-dori is the place to go. Once Osaka's old theater district, Dotombori-dori is now a neon-lighted...Read More

  • 2. Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake Memorial

    Chuo-ku | Museum/Gallery

    In 1995 the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake killed 6,433 people, leveled vast areas of the city, and destroyed much of the harbor. Using documentary...Read More

  • 3. Himeji Castle


    Also known as Shirasagi-jo (White Egret Castle), Himeji Castle is visible as soon as you exit the train station. Universally beloved, it dazzles...Read More

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  • 4. Horyu-ji Temple

    Western Nara | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    This temple is the jewel in the crown of classical Japanese architecture. In the morning, elderly locals on their way to work pray in front...Read More

  • 5. Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art

    Chuo-ku | Museum/Gallery

    This striking concrete edifice was designed by acclaimed architect Tadao Ando. Working primarily with concrete, Ando is known for his use of...Read More

  • 6. Kasuga Taisha

    Nara Koen | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Famous for the more than 2,000 stone mantoro (lanterns) that line its pathways, Kasuga Taisha is a monument to the Shinto tradition of worshipping...Read More

  • 7. Mt. Rokko

    Kita-ku | Viewpoint

    Three cable cars scale Mt. Rokko, providing spectacular views of lush forests. If you think it's beautiful during the day, time you trip so...Read More

  • 8. Museum of Oriental Ceramics

    Kita-ku | Museum/Gallery

    Located in Naka-no-shima Koen, Osaka's oldest park, the Museum of Oriental Ceramics houses more than 900 pieces of Chinese, Korean, and Japanese...Read More

  • 9. Osaka Aquarium

    Minato-ku | Zoo/Aquarium

    This eye-catching red, gray, and blue building is Japan's best aquarium outside of Okinawa and one of the world's largest. More than 11,000...Read More

  • 10. Osaka Castle

    Chuo-ku | Castle/Palace

    Osaka's most visible tourist attraction and symbol, Osaka Castle exemplifies the city's ability to change with the times. Originally built in...Read More

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  • 11. Osaka Museum of History


    Informative as it is enjoyable, the Osaka Museum of History immerses you in the city's history from pre-feudal times to the early 20th century...Read More

  • 12. Shin Sekai

    Ebisu-Higashi | Neighborhood/Street

    Stepping into Shin Sekai is a chance to see the Osaka of a generation ago. Built in 1912, the neighborhood was meant to emulate New York and...Read More

  • 13. Tenno-ji Park

    Tenno-ji-ku | Park (National/State/Provincial)

    The best place to get away from the noise and concrete of the city, this park contains not only the Municipal Museum of Fine Art and the garden...Read More

  • 14. Todai-ji Temple

    Nara Koen | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Completed in AD 752, this temple complex was conceived by Emperor Shomu in the 8th century as the seat of authority for Buddhist Japan. An earthquake...Read More

  • 15. Amerika-mura

    Chuo-ku | Neighborhood/Street

    Though it takes its name from the original shops that sold cheap American fashions and accessories, Ame-mura (pronounced “ ah -meh moo -ra...Read More

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  • 16. Chinatown

    Chuo-ku | Neighborhood/Street

    If you're heading to Meriken Park, consider a short stop in Kobe's Chinatown. The area was originally a center for Chinese immigrants, though...Read More

  • 17. Chugu-ji Temple

    Western Nara | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    This temple was originally the home of Prince Shotoku's mother in the 6th century and is now a Buddhist nunnery. It houses an amazing wooden...Read More

  • 18. English House

    Chuo-ku | Historic Home

    This typically old-fashioned Western house was constructed in 1907 by an Englishman named Baker and served as a makeshift hospital during World...Read More

  • 19. Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum

    Higashinada-ku | Museum/Gallery

    Nada, one of Kobe's westernmost neighborhoods, is home to a number of museums and breweries—many offering free sake tasting. The most popular...Read More

  • 20. Harborland and Meriken Park

    Chuo-ku | Museum/Gallery

    No trip to Kobe is complete without a waterside visit. Within Meriken Park broken slabs of thick concrete and crooked lightposts are preserved...Read More

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