So we had arrived in Osaka early in the morning but for some reason we had difficulties getting to our hotel room despite seeing it on the first night we arrived. It took about an hour for us to find our way around and it was during the walk around we noticed that this area was kinda dodgy. There were people trying to sell random crap on the streets, presumably stolen goods as they included random remotes, gameboys, headunits, etc.
When we finally found our hotel, we couldn’t check in as it was too early, so we left our bags and went to find something to do, luckily we found an attraction nearby, known as Spa World. It however would open at 10am, about 40 minutes after we arrived, so it was more walking around to kill time. They had various shops and cinemas around, but interestingly enough, some of the cinemas would screen adult movies and it’d be freely advertised.
As 10am hit, we got into Spa World for a bargain price of 1000 Yen, as opposed to their regular fee of 3000 Yen. So Spa World, as the name suggests, is a large spa or onsen, this place had heaps of different spas and each differed in setting. Being Japan, these onsens are strictly full nude, bar a tiny little towel, this made it particularly interesting for us 4 guys.
After being vitalised and relaxed by the hot spas, we went to check in and head off to explore. Namba was our destination to be. Exiting the station you immediately see this funky building surrounded by an array of streets and overhead roads.
Our destination in Namba was Dotonbori street, a busy street full of restaurants, bars and shopping, along the way though, you see the area has heaps of love hotels, some quite vibrantly decorated like the one below.
By day, the streets aren’t very busy and this vibe followed throughout our walk towards Dotonbori, we were questioning whether or not this place is as busy as the guides say.
The place certainly is quirky though and the entrance to this hotel is rather interesting, not sure who the four people are supposed to represent though.
There was this place called “Sex Machine” and the store’s exterior was covered in red, despite it’s raunchy name, it only appeared to be a restaurant, whether or not it was more will be something we’ll never know.
Sign marking the start of Dontonbori, all the lights are off though.
Some of the shops here have very unique signage, including this fancy one with a little blow up man eating a packet of chips or something.
Here in this little shop called Little Osaka, we found plenty of lollies and chocolate, it’s here I decided to buy some of the giant green tea Pocky sticks =D.
While walking and looking around, it was interesting to see the cars going around, but even more surprising was when I looked into this car pack, three Lamborgini’s and a Ferarri! All were parked together and sectioned off, this guy must be loaded!
As it got late, this is when the place comes alive neon lights turn on and people line the streets telling you to go to their bar or restaurant. It’s also when the famous Glico running man display turns on and you can see it in its full glory.
There’s also heaps of clothing stores around here including a H&M where we spent a fair bit of time perusing, there was a nice jacket I wanted but I couldn’t get one in my size, they were all too small. On they way back, this store just lit up and inside each window you could see a display of clothing of some sort, very cool looking.
Heading back we could now see the Dotonbori sign light up in its wonderful colours, the other thing we noticed that was strange was the spelling of Dotonbori, on the side we came from, it was Dotonbori, while the other end was Dotounbori.
Walking back to the train station we saw these young boys outside practicing their break dancing moves, seems to be more popular than I had initially thought.
Heading back to Namba station, there’s this funky walk way where the wall is curvy and the lights fade in and out different colours. There’s also two travelators which make for an awesome place to do helicopters.