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Going to touch down in Osaka anytime soon? Consider exploring some of the more interesting places in Umeda, the glamorous, more flamboyant side of the area. With high fashion shops and classy restaurants, Umeda will immerse you in that bright lights, big city feel while giving you access to some of the most interesting sites in Kansai.
Nakazakicho is a Japanese hipster paradise. One of the only neighborhoods in Osaka spared from WWII bombing, this area was mostly rundown and ignored until around 10 years ago. Slowly, the traditional buildings were renovated and trendy cafes and shops moved in. Nakazakicho is a dream for vintage lovers. This is one of the only areas in Osaka to have multiple fantastic vintage clothing and furniture stores. This is the perfect place to pick up a unique Japanese souvenir for that picky friend back home.
Character cafes tend to skip the Osaka area, with almost all of them being in Tokyo. That said there are two permanent Osaka cafes which are both in the Umeda area. The Pom Pom Purin restaurant is down in the Hankyu Sanbangai shopping area under Hankyu Station’s central entrance. This cafe is almost too precious for words, even the chairs are customized to look like Pom Pom Purin. This one has an Osaka only menu with dishes like okonomiyaki and dessert takoyaki. Don’t leave without ordering the Pom Pom Purin pudding. Creamy and decadent, it tastes like a delicious creme brulee in the shape of a puppy.
Gudetama took the world by storm and he hasn’t released his grip yet. The Gudetama Cafe in the HEP 5 building is a perfect place for get your fix of the world’s laziest egg. The food isn’t just cute, its also delicious. White curry is a not a common menu item in Japan, and while it’s almost too cute to eat, it’s one of the most popular dishes.