OSAKA

We spent two days in Osaka after our skiing trip in Niseko in December 2015. One and a half days were spent in Universal Studios Japan, and another half a day in Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan. We also made a half day trip to nearby Nara, before heading over to Tokyo… Read about our trip in NisekoRead about our trip in Nara, or Read about our trip in Tokyo.

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Why We Like Osaka
  • The Wizarding World of Harry Porter in Universal Studios, particularly for Harry Porter fans. This is the newest attraction, and draws the biggest crowd in Universal Studios. Though our kids were too young (or short!) for the most popular ride, i.e. Harry Porter and the Forbidden Journey, we enjoyed taking a stroll inside The Wizarding World, taking the Flight of the Hippogriff ride, and taking a tour inside the impressive Hogwarts castle.
  • Osaka Aquarium has a big petting pond, which our kids liked the most inside the aquarium. They enjoyed it so much that they got their sleeves soaking wet without realising it (and we had to dry their clothes using the hand dryer inside the toilet!).
Cayden & Julia Petting A Stingray In Osaka Aquarium
Cayden & Julia Petting A Stingray In Osaka Aquarium
What We Dislike About Osaka
  • Universal Studios gets very crowded during the December holiday period. Luckily, we had the Express Pass, which allowed access to the rides via a separate and much shorter queue
  • Universal Studios has fewer rides for the very young and gives a less magical feeling than Tokyo Disneyland
  • Osaka Aquarium is on the whole less impressive than S.E.A. Aquarium in Singapore
Cayden & Julia Petting A Small Shark In Osaka Aquarium
Cayden & Julia Petting A Small Shark In Osaka Aquarium
Accommodation In Osaka

Hotel Universal Port

  • Good location: walking distance to Universal Studios, train station and ferry terminal, though there are other hotels even closer to Universal Studios
Amanda, Cayden & Julia Taking Photo In Ferry Terminal
Amanda, Cayden & Julia Taking Photo In Ferry Terminal
Food In Osaka
  • Restaurants, eateries and cafes in Universal City Walk, just outside of Universal Studios
  • Several restaurants in Tempozan Marketplace, just next to Osaka Aquarium

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Practical Tips For Osaka
  • Get the Universal Express Pass to save precious queuing time. Universal Express Pass 3, 5 or 7 gives you access, via a separate and much shorter queue, to 3, 5 or 7 designated rides respectively
  • Universal Express Pass 5 or 7 (but not 3) also gives a timed entry to The Wizarding World of Harry Porter. You can also get a timed entry ticket in the park itself. Without it, entry to The Wizarding World may not be allowed when congested
  • Universal Express Pass can be bought in advance in Hotel Universal Port, which is one of the Official Hotels, or in Universal Studios Japanese website. For other hotels, try asking the concierge about the Universal Express Pass
  • For translation of the Japanese website, you can use the translation tool in your web browser or install a translation plugin for your browser
  • Quicker to take a ferry to Osaka Aquarium (10 min) than using land transport. Check the ferry schedule  as it leaves only every 30 min or 1 hr

 

Hogwarts Express Train In Wizarding World
Hogwarts Express Train In The Wizarding World Of Harry Porter
Butterbeer Stall In Wizarding World
Butterbeer Stall In The Wizarding World Of Harry Porter

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Cayden & Julia Playing With Magic Wand In Wizarding World
Cayden & Julia Playing With Their Magic Wand
Julia Taking Photo With Cookie Monster
Julia Taking Photo With Cookie Monster In Universal Studios

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