Osaka feels like Tokyo in miniature. It has the tool buildings, the cool modern aesthetic, the nightlife, the little pockets of ancient tradition. This isn’t meant as to disparage Osaka; the smaller size makes it much more pleasing to explore.
In Tokyo, if I wanted to do anything, I had to hop on a metro train and plan a whole day around it. I never saw Tokyo’s seafront and famous fish market as I just didn’t have time. Osaka, on the other hand, is just small enough to visit anywhere I want to on foot.
So yesterday I set out to walk on down to Osaka bay. It took me just under three hours each way, but it was a lovely walk through a very cool city in great sunshine, so I’m hard pressed to complain. On the way I saw parks, shrines, awesome architecture and cool shopfronts.
When I finally approached the sea front, and felt the cool breeze rolling in, I could see the enormous silhouette of a ferris wheel. I could hear the sounds of boats at work in the docks, and overhead I saw some pretty cool kites being flown by a couple of old gents.
In front of the water sits a rustic, green mermaid. Over the bay, I could make out the tops of rollercoasters and attractions at Universal Studios Japan. I could even make out the top of Hogwarts Castle’s towers.
As well as a food court and typical gift shops, there was apparently a Legoland Discovery Centre, whatever one of those is. It had a nice lego giraffe at the front, so that was good.
The main highlight is, of course, the Aquarium. It was probably the best aquarium I’ve ever been to, with big tanks full of an impressive variety of large and interesting oceanic flora and fauna. Because of this, it was also the worst aquarium experience I think I’ve ever had. It was absolutely jam packed with families and loud tourists and obnoxious children.
Still. Look at the size of these crabs!