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A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Cairns, Australia
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151 posts
284 reviews
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A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Hello all again. I have another question for everyone. My husband is going to have his birthday on Sunday 18th December. It will be our last day in Osaka before flying to Helsinki, the next morning. I would like to make the day a little special for him. I know Hemiji Castle is under renovation so I dont think this would be on the agenda. I had thought of Kobe, but am not sure what there is to see, any help here? Otherwise any other suggestions to a day trip from Osaka (not Kyoto or Nara as we are doing that on the return journey). We both love history and museums, but am open to scenic views with good local food and other suggestions that may be a quick trip from Osaka. Thanks to all who have answered questions before and thanks again for this time.

Kanazawa, Japan
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1. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

HImeji Castle is under wraps, but Hikone Castle is doable as a day trip from Osaka. Not as big, but has a lovely garden next door, a good museum designed in the shape of the old palace, and a new romantic (?) old-style shopping street area nearby. There's a place there on the corner of the shopping street famous for its baum-kuchen cakes, which would make a great birthday cake.

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e7002.html

The baum kuchen is from here from memory:

http://taneya.jp/shop/shiga_mihori.html

Club Harie can be bought in Osaka, mind you, at higher-end places.

Kyoto, Japan
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2. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

If you are already planning on Nara/Kyoto for the other part of your trip and want to go somewhere close to Osaka then Kobe would be a nice day-trip. You could take the "City Loop" bus around town for the day and get off at Kitano, Harbor Land and China Town. If you want scenic views, you could also get off near Shin Kobe Station and take the ropeway up the mountain for a nice view. Or you could go up Mt. Rokko on the cable car. There are also a few museums in the city if you want. Kobe is a convenient trip from Osaka.

Cairns, Australia
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3. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Thank you both for your suggestions. I think we will go to Kobe for the birthday mainly as I found there is a Maritime Museum there which my husband will find interesting as our business is in shipping. But I also looked at Hikone Castle and will look at this day visit on return journey. I was interested to read that this castle is original and never rebuilt, also the museum and gardens may be of interest to us. My daughter will like the cakes and sweets that are nearby. I read up about baumkuchen and am now interested to try this cake. I see that Club Harie is in Hanshin Depato in Osaka so I am interested in purchasing a cake to take to Finland with us for the family to try. Thanks again for the great information, Julie

Tel Aviv, Israel
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4. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Hi there one other alternative is osaka castle in the morning and then head for the aquarium in the afternoon. Its the largest one in Japan and pretty amazing. It has more than just fish. There are seals, penguins etc and the feeding times are magic.

have a great day

angie

www.angietravels.com

Cairns, Australia
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151 posts
284 reviews
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5. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Hei angietravels....... Thank you for the suggestion for Osaka castle and aquarium. We decided to do the aquarium on a weekday hoping that it will not be so crowded as some reviews suggested this. My husband's birthday is on a Sunday. The aquarium looks amazing from what I have read about it so we are really looking forward to that day as well. Thanks again..Julie

Kanazawa, Japan
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6. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

The aquarium is expensive but cool - where else can you see a whale shark swimming around easily? Osaka Castle is a concrete replica, so be aware of that before boosting it too high on your schedule.

Kyoto, Japan
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for Kobe, Kyoto
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7. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

The Maritime Museum is also on the route for the "City Loop" tourist bus/trolley. It's near Port Tower in Meriken Park. There is also a memorial for the earthquake that struck Kobe in 1995 in that same area just beyond the Okura Hotel which is next to the Maritime Museum.

There are lots of great cafes and patisseries here in Kobe too. I just told someone on another post that we have the most cake shops in Japan here. Too many to choose from. You will easily find birthday cake somewhere.

Cairns, Australia
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151 posts
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8. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Thanks everyone for all the information. Kobe looks great for the birthday outing. Aquarium is a must for us even though it may be expensive but we dont have anything like that here in Cairns and I have read about the whale shark and touch tank. I am hoping it will be a great experience for our daughter. Osaka castle can wait.... I will be travelling to Osaka then onto Beppu every three months next year while our eldest daughter is living there and attending university.

Thanks again for all the help and suggestions. You are all so helpful and I am very grateful that this forum is able to help so much. Hope to be able to ask you questions again in the future.......Julie

Cairns, Australia
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9. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Hello again,

Just wanted to let you know that we went to Kobe for my husband;s birthday and it was a great day. We did Mt Rokko cablecar then maritime/kawasaki museum/port tower, then harborland for dinner eating at the fishermans wharf buffet. i am travelling to Kobe again in September as I am acting as tour guide for a neighbour and my daughter and her partner. Thank you for your great information and suggestion for our travel in December. My husband enjoyed the day!!

Kyoto, Japan
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10. Re: A birthday special day in or around Osaka

Glad you had a good time when you were here. Kobe is often overlooked in this area of Japan so it's nice to hear that you enjoyed it. Be prepared for some hot/humid weather in September. :)