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Toka Ebisu Festival

Millions of people pass through the sixth century Imamiya Ebisu Shrine during the three-day January festival to pray to Ebisu (or informally, 'Ebessan'), the god of business and wealth. The shrine maidens sell lucky bamboo fronds (fukusasa) loaded with lucky charms and coin talismans. Their offer is: 'Buy a frond and your business will prosper'. It's certainly a profitable time for the frond sellers. The highlight of the festival is 'Toka Ebisu' (10th Ebisu) when colourful palanquins bear geisha and other celebrities through the lantern-lit streets.

Date: 08 January 2019 - 12 January 2019
Venue: Imamiya Ebisu Shrine.


Shitenno-ji 'Doya Doya' Festival

A unique festival where two groups of lightly clad (headbands and loincloths only) young men compete for possession of an amulet.

Date: 14 January 2019 - 14 January 2019
Venue: Shitenno-ji Temple.


Osaka Sumo Basho

Osaka Sumo Basho is one of the six annual big sumo wrestling tournaments in Japan which attracts huge crowds of sumo fans. Tickets can be purchased on the day if you arrive early in the morning.

Date: 10 March 2019 - 24 March 2019
Venue: Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium.


Cherry Blossom Festival

The cherry blossom (sakura) season is celebrated throughout Osaka during the colourful month of April. Families gather in parks for picnics or visit the beautiful grounds at Japan Mint Osaka, which opens to the public for a week during the cherry blossom season.

Date: 01 April 2019 - 30 April 2019
(Date to be confirmed)
Venue: Osaka Castle Park.


Shoryo-e Festival

This festival features traditional gagaku court dance and music on a stone stage in the Kame-no-ike pond at Shitenno-ji Temple as a memorial service for Shotoku Taishi, the temple's founder.

Date: 22 April 2019 - 22 April 2019
Venue: Shitenno-ji Temple.


Aizen Matsuri

One of Osaka's bigger festivals, this is a Buddhist memorial service during which young women in yukata (light kimono) ride kago palanquins up the route from the station to the temple, shouting encouragements along the way.

Date: 30 June 2019 - 02 July 2019
Venue: Aizendo


Tenjin Matsuri

Osaka's annual Tenjin Festival sees a spectacular procession of thousands of people in traditional costumes carry exquisite portable shrines from Temmangu Shrine to Tenjin Bridge. There they board many ornamented boats and barges to proceed from the Dojima River to the Okawa River. Nightfall finally brings a dazzling fireworks display. This enormous and dramatic festival dates back to the 10th century and is one of the largest events of its kind in Japan.

Date: 24 July 2019 - 25 July 2019
Venue: Temmangu Shrine to Tenjin Bridge.


Sumiyoshi Matsuri

An ancient summer purification festival starting at the Sumiyoshi Taisha Grand Shrine and including a procession all the way to Sakai city.

Date: 29 July 2019 - 01 August 2019
Venue: Sumiyoshi Taisha Grand Shrine.


Shinnosai Festival

Osaka's Shinnosai Festival is dedicated to Shino (the Chinese God of medicine) and Sukunahikona-no-mikoto (the Japanese counterpart). The festival is celebrated in Doshomachi, Osaka's medicine district.

Date: 22 November 2019 - 23 November 2019
Venue: Sukunahikona Jinja Shrine


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Featured Hotels


Hilton Osaka Hotel

With its excellent location just outside JR Osaka Station, the Hilton Osaka offers convenience as well as luxury to its guests. There are four restaurants serving a variety of international cuisines, including Windows on the World, which boasts great views of the city from the 35th floor and live music every evening. The hotel has a business centre, a beauty salon, swimming pool and fitness room.

Imperial Hotel Osaka

This opulent hotel is in a pleasant location overlooking the Okawa River in the north of Osaka, and is just as luxurious as its famous Tokyo cousin. Purified air is pumped into the rooms, the service is extremely attentive and there's also a golf driving range. The Imperial Hotel's elegant in-house restaurants serve French, Chinese and a range of Japanese cuisines, including teppanyaki and sushi.

Hotel Nikko Osaka

Hotel Nikko Osaka is a top-class hotel in Osaka, close to the main nightlife and shopping arcades of the Minami area. The spacious rooms are supremely comfortable and decorated in a sleek, modern style, with the upper floors offering views of Mt Ikoma. There's a good range of restaurants, including three offering breakfast. There's also a business centre in the hotel.

Swissôtel Nankai Osaka

Swissôtel Nankai Osaka is located in the heart of Namba, above the Nankai train station, which makes it extremely convenient for direct access to Kansai International Airport. The rooms are modestly decorated and have great views over southern Osaka. There are also seven restaurants, bars, a gym, spa and indoor swimming pool.

Cross Hotel Osaka

This surprisingly stylish business hotel is just minutes away from the Minami shopping and nightlife scene. The decently sized rooms are decorated in modern colour schemes and include internet access. There's also a Japanese restaurant and a bar.

Hearton Hotel Nishi-Umeda

The Hearton Hotel Nishi-Umeda is part of a reliable and popular business hotel chain. It is conveniently located just behind the main post office next to JR Osaka Station. The rooms are small but clean, and come with cable TV and complimentary internet access. There's also a restaurant with a deck.