Osaka's heartbeat Dotonbori is sandwiched between Nanba and Shinsaibashi. (Photo: Bonson Lam)

Osaka Dotonbori After Dark

Magic and nightlife between Nanba and Shinsaibashi

Bonson Lam   - 1 min read

Every evening the ladies of Osaka put on their lipstick and mascara, and with a flick of a switch, the city glows with flamboyance and fantasy. I am not just talking about the beautiful young things in Shinsaibashi, but the street upon street of larger-than-life neon signs, from the oversized Crab at Kani Doraku restaurant, to angry chefs and bloated Fugu or pufferfish characters that tread the borderline between agony and ecstasy.

This is Osaka. Larger than life, a fantasy that is altogether adult and childlike at the same time. The Dotonbori Bridge is a great place to enjoy this outdoor street theater. While the Kabuki playhouses from the 1600s and the golden age of rival Bunraku puppet theaters in the 1800s are long gone, this is a popular meeting spot. Chances are you will have difficulty finding your rendezvous amongst the crowds, for they are all mesmerized, spirited away in a world that is like a Hayao Miyazaki animation.

Getting there

Dotonbori is half way between Namba and Shinsaibashi stations on the Midosuji Subway Line, a leisurely and level 10 minute walk. There are many shops on the way, so if you get distracted, it could easily be more than a 10 minute walk.

More info

Find out more about Dotonbori.

Bonson Lam

Bonson Lam @bonson.lam

I knew my future was destined to be with Japan the moment I flew from Sydney to experience the atmospheric laneways of Kyoto last century.  I am humbled to have met many distinguished people during this time, especially the national living treasures of Japan, such as the doll maker to the Imperia...