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Flights to Osaka, Japan

Osaka is Japan's third largest city. While Tokyo, Kyoto and Okinawa might be the usual go-to destinations when planning a trip to Japan, Osaka should not be overlooked. It may be a commercialised city, but it has the warmth and charm of a small town. The city offers a broad range of activities from sporting events to spending a day shopping and sampling food fare to exploring any of the museums and theatres dotted across the city.

Osaka is served by two main airports:

  • Osaka Kansai International Airport (KIX) – Built on an artificial island right in the middle of Osaka Bay, the airport is located approximately 50 kilometres from central Osaka. A taxi from the airport to the city centre can cost JPY17,000-21,000 (MYR649-801) and take around 39 minutes of travel time. For a cheaper alternative, take the train from the airport to Osaka Station for JPY950-1,300 (MYR36-50). However, the travel time would take around an hour and 15 minutes. Some of the airlines that operate flights from Kansai Airport include Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia X, Cebu Pacific, Japan Airlines and Singapore Airlines.
  • Osaka Itami Airport (ITM) – Officially known as Osaka International Airport, it is the main domestic airport serving the Kansai region. It is approximately only 14 kilometres from the city centre. A taxi ride from Itami Airport can take around 10 minutes and cost between JPY5,000-6,500 (MYR190-248). Taking the train will be a cheaper option for JPY210-240 (MYR8-10) with a travel time of around 25 minutes. Airlines operating from this airport include ANA (All Nippon Airways), United, Air Canada, Vietnam Airlines and Malaysia Airlines.

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Best Time to Visit Osaka

Osaka has a temperate climate where the summer season can get hot and stifling and winter season can get chilly.

If you want to see the cherry blossoms, the best time to visit Osaka would be from March to May. The Cherry Blossom Festival usually happens at the end of April to early May and would also coincide with the Golden Week which is four national holidays in a span of seven days. So it is good to remember that this will be a peak travel period, popular tourist spots can get crowded and flights, as well as accommodation rates, will be high. However, if you want to see leaves changing colour for the autumn season, book flights between October to early December. Both seasons will have mild temperature averaging 15-22 degrees Celsius and is drier compared to other months.

Summers in Japan from June through September can see temperatures soar to an average of 29 degrees Celsius. You can also see heavy rains during this season. However, the popular Tenjin Matsuri Festival is held in July, so this may be a good reason to brave the heat and occasional rain showers.

By the end of December through February, the cooler temperature will be felt in Osaka with an average temperature of 7 degrees Celsius. The months of January and February are Osaka’s coldest months.

Things to do in Osaka

There are many things to do while spending your holiday in Osaka. Here are just a few of the more popular tourist spots:

  • Osaka Castle – Located in Chūō-ku, it is one of the most famous landmarks not only in Osaka but all of Japan. It features a museum on the castle grounds, attractive gardens and various exhibits.
  • Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan – Known as the Kaiyukan, it is one of the biggest aquariums in the world that showcases sea creatures from the Arctic to various marine life from the tropics. It has several habitats in the 16 main exhibits comprised of 27 tanks. Some of the themed displays include Antarctica, Great Barrier Reef, Jellyfish Area and Japanese Trench.
  • Dōtonbori – Also known as Dōtombori, it is one of the top tourist destinations in the city. It is a nightlife and entertainment area that runs along the Dōtonbori canal starting from the Dōtonboribashi Bridge to the Nipponbashi Bridge.
  • Universal Studios Japan – With only 4 Universal Studios in the world currently, it is a must-visit site for travellers looking for a thrill.

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