Total Guide to the Top 20 Activities in Osaka with Kids

This is my personally recommended total guide to the top 20 activities in Osaka with kids. My two kids love hands-on activities, parks, and of course Universal Studios! Osaka is one of my favorite places to go in Asia for kid-approved cultural activities and affordable family vacations in Japan.

A family vacation to Osaka, Japan is a must for families with kids, tweens, and teens traveling to Asia. And not just because you will find Universal Studios The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ and beautiful Osaka Castle covered in cherry blossoms! We loved a week in spring in Osaka with our two kids. I was so surprised how much there was to do and how many activities the kids could participate in easily. Talk about family-friendly! Safe, affordable, family-friendly and exciting to kids and teens of all ages.

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Traveling around Japan? Check out my guide to Odaiba near Tokyo for my top attractions with kids.

Top 20 Activities with Kids in Osaka, Japan

We had so much fun exploring Osaka. Kids will love so much all the unique places to go, activities, hip culture, and trendy shops. There are so many high-quality things to do with kids in Osaka!

  1. Kids Plaza
  2. Universal Studios The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™
  3. Osaka Castle
  4. Eat Osaka Cooking School
  5. KidZania Koshien
  6. Osaka Museum of Housing and Living
  7. Take a 1-hour Taiko drumming class (popular with kids!)
  8. Tokyu Hands Creative Life store
  9. Osaka Tenmangu Shinto Temple
  10. America-Mura vintage and fashion shopping district
  11. Gaming and Anime Tour (perfect for tweens and teens visiting Osaka!)
  12. Cup Noodles Museum
  13. Doguyasuiji Cooking and Kitchenware Street (think: Japanese fake food art class!)
  14. HEP 5 Giant Ferris Wheel
  15. Osaka Aquarium and River Cruise
  16. Legoland Discovery Center
  17. Kimono Tea Ceremony
  18. National Museum of Ethnology
  19. Dotonbori shopping district
  20. Ninja-Do Ninja Costume and Experience
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Osaka Family-Friendly Hotels

Holiday Inn Osaka Namba

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A family favorite near several choices of public transportation and walking distance to popular markets and shopping. This name-brand hotel offers dependable rooms, service and amenities that makes it easy to travel with kids! Click here to check prices and availability.

Hotel Sunroute Osaka Namba

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Central location, bright and colorful rooms that are budget-friendly, a bit small (but this is Japan!) with self-service laundry on site. I like the location of this one. Click here to check prices.

Hotel Universal Port

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4-star hotel located right near Universal Studios and includes a geothermal pool kids will love. Some of the rooms even have character themes for families wanting that extra something special to feel before they visit the theme park. Check their Universal Studio packages and rates here.


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Modern hotel with family-friendly perks and very clean rooms. Their pool is really cool too, perfect for when you’re done exploring for the day and the kids need to play! Check rates here.

Find your perfect family hotel in Osaka, Japan using Agoda! Agoda has the best selection of Asia hotels. Their prices usually are the most discounted and competitive for this region and I use them all the time for personal travel.

AirBnB in Osaka
AirBnB in Osaka, Japan

Use my link and get a $34 USD discount when you book your vacation rental in Osaka.

Where to Eat and Drink with Kids in Osaka

  1. Osho Gyoza (dumplings)
  2. Ippudo Ramen (multiple locations)
  3. J.S. Pancake Cafe
  4. Daiki Sushi
  5. Dotonburi Honten
  6. Chibo Okonomiyaki
  7. Takonotetsu (Tako-Maki)
  8. Cat Mocha (cat cafe)
  9. Soft Cream Land Sweden

Best way to get around in Osaka

Here are a few of my favorite tips for using public transportation in Osaka with kids, and getting to and from the Osaka airpiort.

Kansai International Airport (KIX) is about 1 hour away from the center of Osaka. Plan your arrival and departure to account for this time. The train schedule and maps are easy to read in English but may involve changing train lines or companies. There are also two companies offering airport express train services for about 770 yen per person — much cheaper than a taxi!
Famous for bicycles, many families in Osaka enjoy commuting on popular bike paths in all kinds of weather. Bikes are outfitted with toddler seats, covers, and umbrella holders. I enjoyed how quiet the parks, streets, and walkways were because of fewer cars and scooters.
Traffic follows the British system with driving on the right side, so make sure to follow arrows and remind kids to ‘look BOTH directions’.
Other nearby destinations include Kobe and Kyoto which you can do in a full day-trip. Fast trains make it possible to visit these historic and beautiful cities quite easily with kids.

Know Before You Go

Castles and temples are plentiful but may not appeal to kids after a few visits. Plan your timing to coincide with festivals, spring cherry blossoms in Osaka, or fall colors to get maximum enjoyment in Osaka with your kids.
Bring a travel fork and spoon set with you or ask for child chopsticks at restaurants. See my packing suggestions below.
Fruit in Japan can be quite expensive but is very high quality! Often there are supermarkets like Lawson’s and delis located in the major shopping malls to buy snacks.
If you plan on going to an onsen or spa, ask about their policy on tattoos. It is culturally common not to allow people with tattoos into onsen soaking pools. Some pools are family-friendly while others are adult only and separated by gender.
For families who like to wear costumes, matching clothes, or taking cameo pictures with animated characters, you’re going to love Universal Studios! It’s very common for teens and young adults to wear costumes for a day at a Japanese theme park.

Fun Market with Kids in Osaka

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Doguyasuji Market in Osaka

Doguyasuji Kitchenware Street
14-5 Nanbasennichimae, Chūō-ku, Ōsaka-shi, Ōsaka-fu 542-0075, Japan
Map Pin

An interesting market full of Japanese pottery, famous ‘fake food’ displays, and souvenirs, restaurants, Japanese knife shops, cooking utensils and ingredients. Fun for kids and foodies.

Nearby are great food stalls for a quick bite of tako-maki or Osaka’s famous egg omelet, Okonomiyaki.

What to Pack When Traveling to Osaka with Kids

  1. We always bring along our favorite Bluetooth speaker to play music or listen to podcasts in the room. Click here for my recommendation!
  2. My favorite black leggings for travel. Great for travel and Japan’s seasons and style.
  3. The absolute perfect carry on luggage. Find out my favorite tried and true spinner suitcase here.
  4. Eating out with kids in Asia takes a bit of advance planning. This family-friendly item is essential to bring with you!
  5. Lonely Planet Japan guidebook (also on Kindle).

More Useful Resources on Family-Friendly Travel to Osaka

Osaka Travel – Lonely Planet

Why you should book a trip to Osaka before everyone else – Travel & Leisure

Having Fun in Osaka with the Family – Osaka Convention and Tourism Bureau

Traveling around Japan? Check out my guide to Odaiba near Tokyo for my top attractions with kids.

If you’re thinking about where to go next, read our tips for travel to Cambodia, Vietnam, and Taiwan.

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