See the real Osaka here
The shopping district centering on Namba is known as “Minami.” It’s a charming and lively area, where you can visit Dotombori, with its flashy Kanidouraku and Glico signs; Minamisemba and Horie, filled with unique shops and cafes; and Shinsaibashi, home to high-class brand shops and Amerika-mura (American Village), a front-running district in youth culture. There are also many theaters where you can see bunraku and kabuki, both part of the Kansai culture since the Edo period, as well as manzai style comedy. If you want to see the real, undistilled Osaka, be sure to visit Minami.
The birthplace of Kansai’s performing arts
When visiting Osaka, you can’t forget the local comedy. In the Minami area, manzai and comedic plays are performed daily at the Namba Grand Kagetsu（ＮＧＫ）, the home stage of comedy conglomerate Yoshimoto Kogyo. There are also many other places where you can enjoy Kansai’s performing arts in Minami, such as the Shochiku-za, which puts on various productions such as kabuki, musicals, and commercial plays, and the National Bunraku theatre,, where of course you can see bunraku.
Dotonbori, home of “Cui-daore”
Dotombori is filled with famous restaurants where you can enjoy Osaka food like takoyaki, okonomiyaki, tetchiri (blowfish stew), and udon. Showy signs in the shape of crabs or blowfish add to the excitement, giving you a feel for the active trade city of Osaka. South of the bustling Dotombori area is the more old-fashioned Hozenji Yokocho , a traditional shopping street with a nostalgic Osaka atmosphere.
Why not do some leisurely window shopping?
Horie is a fashionable neighborhood popular among young people, full of modern boutiques and classy cafes. Minami-semba, once the site of many lumber businesses, has transformed into a district of distinctive stores, unique hair salons, and Osaka designer shops. Be sure to visit these places when you come to Minami, as well as Amerikamura, a hot spot with the younger crowd. Large-scale shopping centers like Namba Parks and 0101 NAMBA MARUI are also lively destinations.
Distinctive shopping streets
Another part of Minami’s charm is the selection of bustling shopping streets, where you can shop, eat, or take a stroll. The Shinsaibashi-suji Shotengai, running parallel to Midosuji Boulevard, has a long history and about 180 shops, including Daimaru Shinsaibashi. Another unique shopping street is Sennichima Doguyasuji Shopping Street, packed with stores selling all sorts of tools related to food, from cooking utensils like knives, pots, and cutting boards, to dishes, sign curtains, and paper lanterns. You can also visit Kuromon Ichiba, stocked with fresh foods, and Nippombashi DENDEN Town, an electronics district on par with Tokyo’s Akihabara.