Let’s Go to Osaka

It’s our last day in Kyoto and we should be on our way to Tokyo soon. Until we got a call from a friend that is. She was asking to meet us before we head to Tokyo. So we packed our suitcases and made our way down to Osaka. We honestly did not have a lot of time to spend in Osaka. The trip from Osaka to Tokyo alone would be around three hours and that’s not including finding our way to our Air BnB host. But we couldn’t let an opportunity to catch up with friends pass by especially since we don’t come around that often to the land of the rising sun.

We're high up but we don't care!

We met up at Umeda/Osaka station and made our way to the Umeda Sky Building. It was a good walk from Umeda/Osaka station and when we got there, it became eerily familiar. As my memory came back to me, it turns out that this was where we took the bus to Hiroshima back when we were here in 2013. Those were pretty good memories.

Enjoying the view
Enjoying the view

The Floating Garden Observatory that connects the two towers of the Umeda Sky Building is accessible from the 39th story. It should be noted that I am actually afraid of heights and that 173 meters high is quite high. So what the heck was I doing up there? Well, the view is awesome for one thing. I should also mention that Japan has several of these tall towers with observation decks on different cities, but this one in Osaka was the only one we actually went up to. So yes, the view is great. And that was in the middle of the day. Imagine what it could have been at night. You can see practically all across Osaka from up there. This top floor is called the Sky Walk and it would be obvious why its named that when you are actually already there.

The view from up there
The view from up there

There is small pocket of space on top of the observatory called the Lumi Deck. This is a place where couples “lock” their promises on the Fence of Vows. The Lumi Deck can be accessed from the Sky Walk. And while it was windy and cool on the day that we went up to the Sky Walk, we heard that it can get freezing cold during the winter. We also discovered that Japan’s weather can change abruptly from time to time, so it’s best to check for rain or other undesirable weather conditions before going to the Sky Building.

Going back the way you came, you would already have noticed the souvenir shop which is (un-creatively) called the Sky 39 Souvenir Shop. There are items unique to the Umeda Sky Building that you can only buy here. You just need to keep your eyes peeled and your thoughts clear on whether you need them or not.

Matthew and Yumi (he's much taller now)

It was soon time for lunch and we decided not to go too far anymore. We just went back down to the basement level of the Umeda Sky Building and we were actually pleasantly surprised. Takimi Koji Gourmet Street is like a nostalgic era of Japan that is filled with restaurants and other food shops. We had our ramen here and some pretty good photos for our memories too. It was a great place to eat where the food is good and the prices reasonable. And all of it just some 10-15 minutes of walking from Umeda/Osaka station.

Alas, it was time to go. Time spent was short and sweet but we were happy to meet up with a good friend once again. Until next time, Yumi-san.