The Most Romantic Places in Osaka

Dotonbori at twilight.
Dotonbori at twilight. | © m-louis .® / Flickr

Osaka may be known for food, shopping, and partying, but it also isn’t lacking in charm. From quiet strolls in the park to high-octane fun to love hotels, Osaka is sure to please. Check out these scenic, secluded, and sensuous spots for your next date in the city.

1. Umeda Sky Building

Building

Umeda Sky Building
© Prisma by Dukas Presseagentur GmbH / Alamy Stock Photo

The Umeda Sky Building lures lovebirds with its incredible views of downtown, especially at night, right from the city center. Consisting of two 40-story towers connected at the top by a “floating observatory,” this architectural wonder is the perfect setting for an intimate party of two, featuring plenty of heart motifs and a continuous soundtrack of love songs. Arrive at twilight to marvel at the pastel sky and watch the city sparkle. Also, don’t miss the underground market in the basement that brings early twentieth century Osaka back to life.

2. Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

Aquarium

Located on the shores of picturesque Osaka Bay is one of the largest aquariums in the world: Kaiyukan. Marine animals from Pacific Ocean habitats live here, including an enormous whale shark. The water tanks are enormous, with some acting as tunnels that envelop visitors. There is also an interactive exhibit where people can get up close with penguins, seals, and rays in enclosures that recreate the animals’ natural habitats.

3. Harukas 300

Building

View of the Osaka skyline at the top of the Abeno Harukas Building.
Courtesy of Roland Nagy / Alamy Stock Photo

Abeno Harukas is the tallest building in Japan. It contains a train station, shopping center, art museum, many restaurants, and more. It’s safe to say that you and your date will never be bored. The most exciting feature is Harukas 300, a three-floor observation deck and open-air atrium that provides fantastic views of the impressive urban sprawl that seems to stretch forever outward. Check out the “Lover’s Sanctuary,” a popular photo and proposal spot for couples.

5. Universal Studios Japan

Amusement Park

usj_universal_studios_japan_osaka
© pinguino k / Flickr

Known locally as USJ, this beloved theme park features attractions known and loved like Jaws and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, as well as exclusive themes like Cool Japan. At USJ visitors can pose for pictures with Hello Kitty, become a Monster Hunter or a Sailor Scout in one of the 4D experiences, or get chased around the park by zombies during Halloween. What’s more romantic than that? Couples visiting together often cosplay in matching outfits, if that’s your thing.

6. Spa World

Amusement Park, Health Spa

If combining the relaxation of taking an onsen (or hot spring) bath with the heart-stopping excitement of a water park sounds like your idea of a great time, then pay a visit to Spa World, a place that does both. The baths are segregated by gender, so only same-sex couples will be allowed to enter together, but the water park on the top floor is mixed gender and can be enjoyed by everyone. There are other facilities for shared fun, like relaxation areas, a food court, and an arcade.

7. Utsubo Park

Park

UtsuboPark-RoseGarden01
© inoue-hiro / WikiCommons

This city park hardly resembles the concrete commercial district that surrounds it. Complete with a fountain, stream, and flower garden, Utsubo is a gorgeous and romantic escape. Stop at a nearby convenience store and stock up for a picnic, then sit in the grass and simply soak in the view. The surrounding Honmachi area is full of upscale and trendy restaurants, perfect for a dinner date after an afternoon of lounging outside.

8. Hotel Bali An Resort Dotonbori

Love Hotel

balian_dotonbori_osaka
© Hotels.com

Spice up your relationship by booking a stay for two at a love hotel in the very city that coined the phrase. Dotonbori and nearby Shinsaibashi are full of these marvels, but the best is Hotel Bali An. This getaway is a tropical resort located in the heart of Minami. Entering Bali An takes you from the city straight to an island paradise, and for a very reasonable price. Love hotels usually come with a ridiculous amount of decadent amenities from hot tubs to mood lighting to karaoke, so be sure to take advantage!

9. BLEU

Bar, Restaurant, Chinese

Canal_Terrace_Horie_dotonbori_bleu_osaka
© Nankou Oronain / WikiCommons

BLEU is a riverside bar and restaurant with an ambiance that is both romantic and lively. The space is dim and neon-lit with a 360-degree panoramic view of the Dotonbori river and an oval-shaped bar that evokes the design of a ship. The restaurant serves Chinese cuisine and the bar offers fruity, original cocktails and other beverages. With special course menus available for an anniversary dinner and a riverside promenade just outside, this is an unforgettable date spot.

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