It is often said that the events in Osaka mark the passage of time through the year like a clock. Regardless of the month people visit, there is always something exciting happening in the big city. Wether it be a seasonal must-see, like cherry blossom viewing, the autumn leaves, or a yearly festival like the Tenjin Matsuri and the various small festivities happening at local shrines and temples, there is plenty to do. Being in a metropolis offers a great chance to see traditional events, but also music, contemporary art, comedy and theatre, sport and a great selection for the family to do together. If you’d like to dig around to see what’s on offer, use the handy search function, or browse the list below.


Spring is Sumo season in Osaka, and one of the six major tournaments held throughout Japan occurs at the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium in March. Film buffs should keep an eye out for the Osaka Asian Film Festival, an excellent collection of films from Japan’s international neighbours. The cherry blossom viewing festivals at the end of March herald the beginning of school and a new fiscal year starting in April: the Japan Mint Bureau’s cherry blossom walk has been running for more than 120 years and is the crown jewel of the area. The weather in May and June bring flowers with them: rose garden viewing opens in Nagai Botanical Gardens, Nakanoshima Park, Utsubo Park and Tsurumi Ryoukuchi Park, and if you’ve had enough of that, Irises await you at the Shirokita Gardens.


The traditional spectacle of O-Taue Shinji (a rice planting ceremony) at Sumiyoshi-taisha Grand Shrine in June has been designated an important intangible folk heritage, and not to be missed if you’re into history and culture. A more lively and fun festival in the same month is the Aizen Festival at Shoman-in Temple, where women clad in summer yukata are paraded on long palanquins to the delight of yearning bachelors. July brings Osaka’s Tenjin Matsuri Festival with it—a mammoth of an event, and one of the biggest in Japan. Deities from the nearby shrine are paraded up and down the river and everyone drinks, eats and has a great time, with the night ending in fireworks.


Over 20 years in existence, Dance Delight, an annual street dance competition, attracts competitors from overseas to the stage to compete for the grand prize. The seasonal moon viewing festivals in September are best viewed at either Osaka Tenmangu and Sumiyoshi-taisha Grand Shrines, where the event have become spectacle. The world Super Junior Tennis Championships are held at the Utsubo Tennis Center in October, and the Osaka Marathon held later the same month, with the course going right through the city past a number of great scenic spots. The Japanese maple trees burst into colour at the end of November, with visitors flocking to Minoh Falls, one of the best places to see them.


Short days and chilly evenings in December would normally have people staying indoors, but in Osaka everyone heads out to see the various Illuminations around the city; a good example being the Osaka Hikari Renaissance Festival which brings light to the Nakanoshima and Midosuji Areas. Everyone heads to their local shrine on January 1st to make their first prayers for the year, some from 12:00 midnight, and trains run all night on new years to ferry people across the city. For something more light hearted, check out the Doya-Doya festival, a unique festival where men clad in only loincloths wrestle to grab banknotes said to bring good luck as they are splashed with cold water. The Plum Blossom Viewing at Osaka Castle Park marks the end of winter.

Event Guide July 2017

What's going on in Osaka this month??
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Osaka Marathon 2017

32,000 runners run through the city of Osaka, divided into seven rainbow theme colors.
PLACE : Start: Osaka Castle Park, Finish: INTEX Osaka
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The Art of Disney - The Magic of Animation

Exhibition aiming to discover "The Magic of Animation" that was brought by Walt Disney and his animators' imagination, innovation and the technology that made it all true.
PLACE : Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts
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In 2017, Osaka hosts one of Kansai's biggest fashion shows.
PLACE : Kyocera Dome Osaka
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Minamimido Bon Dance Festival

This is biggest Bon Dance festival in Osaka which has more than 2000 visitors each year!
PLACE : Minami-mido (Namba Branch Temple)
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Kitamido Bon Festival Dance

Spend a spirited and fun summer night in Kitamido.
PLACE : Kita-mido (Tsumura Branch Temple)
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Naniwa Yodogawa Fireworks Festival

See fireworks displayed as chrysanthemums, tree peonys, coconuts and waterfalls.
PLACE : The Yodo River Area
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Jazz Picnic In Inagawa 2017

Come and enjoy live jazz music on the grass!
PLACE : Inagawa Athletic Park
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Grand Evening Fish Market

This revival of a festival held in the Kamakura era features bidding in the ancient customary style and spot sales of fish.
PLACE : Ohama Park
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Sumiyoshi Festival

Sumiyoshi Festival is the last of all the summer festivals held in Osaka. Visitors step through a large ring made of thatch to purify themselves and wish for a good health.
PLACE : Sumiyoshi-taisha Shrine
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Kishiwada Port Festival

The summer night sky around Jizohama Beach in the Bay Area is lit up with beautiful fireworks during this festival.
PLACE : Kishiwada Port
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Night ZOO at Tennoji Zoo

Tennoji Zoo opens nighttime this summer.
PLACE : Tennoji Zoo
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Tenjin Matsuri Festival Dedication Fireworks Display

See 5,000 fireworks displayed in the night sky while watching a boat procession.
PLACE : Around the Okawa River
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Tenjin Matsuri Festival River Procession/Land Procession Viewing Seat Ticket

Have a real experience of Tenjin Matsuri Festival!!
PLACE : Naniwabashi, Tenmabashi, Sakuranomiya
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Tenjin Matsuri Festival

This festival is the greatest in Osaka boasting of a history of a thousand years.
PLACE : Osaka Temmangu Shrine
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Yomiyasai(eve of a main festival) of Tenjin Matsuri Festival

The Yomiyasai festival starts from a solemn ritual.
PLACE : Osaka Temmangu Shrine
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Daigaku Festival

See a rare Daigaku with 79 lanterns dangling on the 20m tall pole only at Ikune Shrine.
PLACE : Ikune Shrine
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Osaka Castle extending opening hours

Osaka Castle will have extended opening hours during summer!
PLACE : Osaka Castle
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Soemon-cho Summer Festival

See street stalls of well-known shops and enjoy outside stage performances.
PLACE : Soemon-cho
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Umeda Yukata Festival

Umeda will be filled with people in Yukata for 2 days. Come experience 2 days of Japanese culture that is characteristic of summer in Japan!
PLACE : Umeda Area
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