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Osaka: 8 Best Tourist Attractions in Nakanoshima Area

The Nakanoshima area of Osaka Prefecture is home to historic architecture, museums, and parks, and is one of the areas in Osaka that combines nature and art. Here are some of the classic sightseeing spots in the Nakanoshima area.

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Nakanoshima Park (中之島公園)

Nakanoshima Park was the first park established in Osaka City in 1891. The Nakanoshima Greenway, which extends from the park to the riverside, is planted with a variety of plants. The Nakanoshima Greenway, which extends from the park along the river, is maintained as a walking path that blends nature and art.

The Nakanoshima Rose Garden, consisting of approximately 3,700 roses of about 310 varieties, is also located in the park and is at its best from early May to early June and from late October to mid-November. Enjoy a leisurely picnic in this urban oasis.

The National Museum of Art, Osaka (国立国際美術館)

The National Museum of Art, Osaka is a museum that exhibits contemporary art. Its exterior is modern and uniquely shaped. It is one of the few museums in the world to be completely underground, with exhibition spaces on the second and third basement levels. The museum has a large collection of works by famous artists from abroad, including Cézanne and Picasso, as well as famous Japanese artists.

In addition to the permanent collection, there are also special exhibitions that are held only at the museum, so be sure to check them out when you visit.

Nakanoshima Museum of Art, Osaka (大阪中之島美術館)

The Nakanoshima Art Museum, Osaka is a relatively new museum that opened in February 2022. The collection, which has over 6,000 pieces in storage, consists mainly of representative Japanese and foreign works from the late 19th century to the present day.

The first and second floors are open lobby spaces where anyone can freely and openly visit and experience art. The building also houses HAY, an interior store from Denmark, the second directly managed store in Japan after Tokyo.

Osaka Prefectural Nakanoshima Library (大阪府立中之島図書館)

Nakanoshima Library is a historic library with a stately, retro exterior and central hall. Part of the building is designated as a National Important Cultural Property.

On the second floor, there is a restaurant specializing in open sandwiches called “Smørrebrød,” a traditional Danish home-style dish, as well as sweets and drinks. During the cherry blossom season, you can enjoy the view of the cherry blossoms from the window seats.

The Museum of Oriental Ceramics,Osaka (大阪市立東洋陶磁美術館)

The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka is a museum specializing in ceramics, covering the history of Chinese, Korean, and Japanese ceramics. 4,000 pieces are on display, two of which are designated as national treasures and 13 as national important cultural properties. The museum also features a variety of creative display tables, and once or twice a year special exhibitions and special exhibitions are held.

In addition, the entrance hall was renovated and renewed and expanded in the spring of 2024. The new glass-walled entrance hall has become a new photo spot in Nakanoshima.

Osaka City Central Public Hall (大阪市中央公会堂)

Osaka City Central Public Hall is located right in front of Nakanoshima Park. A neo-renaissance style public hall built in the Taisho era (1912-1926), it was the first building in western Japan to be designated a National Important Cultural Property. It is used for many purposes, including operas, lectures, school entrance and graduation ceremonies, etc. The exhibition rooms and free viewing area inside the building are open to the public free of charge, and visitors can view valuable documents and other items. Visitors are also encouraged to pay attention to details such as interior doors and lighting.

At night, the exterior is illuminated, making the Central Public Hall look even more attractive.

Tekijuku (Former Ogata Koan Residence), Osaka (適塾)

Tekijuku was a private school established by Ogata Koan, a leading doctor and Dutch scholar in the late Edo period. It is designated as a National Important Cultural Property because of its valuable architecture that retains its original appearance.

You can tour the building and gardens for a fee, and it is highly recommended for those interested in Japanese architecture.

Kitahama Retro Building (北浜レトロビルヂング)

Celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2018, the Kitahama Retro Building Building is a registered national tangible cultural property and features a lovely Western-style building.

There is an English antique coffee shop called Kitahama Retro, where afternoon tea sets with cakes and sandwiches and tea are popular.

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