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Osaka: 15 Enchanting Winter Illuminations in 2023-2024

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Osaka transforms into a winter wonderland for illumination enthusiasts! We introduce 15 exciting illumination events held in Osaka in the winter of 2023-2024, including Christmas markets, energetic events at Universal Studios Japan, and captivating neon installations at Osaka Castle.

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Each year, dazzling lights spread across Osaka, adorning famous landmarks in the city. Visitors can enjoy Christmas illuminations while visiting historical and art spots, as well as places full of nature.

In this article, we introduce 15 locations with winter illuminations in Osaka - from enchanting gardens to shopping centers and award-winning displays. Osaka's famous illuminations are sure to make your heart soar with excitement!

15 Dazzling Illuminations in Osaka 2023-2024

1. Osaka Midosuji Winter Illumination
2. Osaka Castle Illuminage 2023
3. Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan
4. Wonder Night Hill 2023 - Sakai Green Museum Harvest Hill
5. Hirakata Park- Flowering Illumination
6. Illumination Expo 2023 × EXPOCITY
7. Osaka Hikari Renaissance
8. Namba Hikari Tabi Namba Parks
9. Osaka Christmas Market
10. Hankyu Umeda Main Store Christmas Market
11. Osaka GRAND WISH CHRISTMAS 2023 Joyful Winter
12. Umeda Sky Building Rumi Sky Walk
13. Universal Studios Japan: No Limit! Christmas
14. Diamor Holy Fantasy 2023
15. Osaka Station Twilight Fantasy: Forest of light that brings happiness

1. Osaka Midosuji Winter Illumination

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta

The Midosuji Osaka Illumination is one of Osaka's top winter events. The wide-spanning illumination, stretching on Midosuji Avenue from the Hanshin-mae intersection to the Namba west exit intersection, has captivated people's hearts. In fact, it even won a world record in 2015 for having the most illuminated trees on a single street!

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta

This impressive illumination is held each year alongside Osaka Hikari-Renaissance, creating the main highlights of the Festival of Lights in Osaka. Taking place in Osaka's Midosuji Avenue and Nakanoshima, the path is paved with beautiful multicolored lights. We are certain that visitors to the award-winning Midosuji Avenue will be star-struck!

Osaka Midosuji Winter Illumination

Period: November 3 - December 31, 2023
Hours: 17:00 - 23:00 *December 31 until 1:00 AM
Venue: Midosuji Avenue (Hanshin-mae intersection - Namba west exit intersection)

2. Osaka Castle Illuminage 2023

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024
15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photos by Pixta
Osaka Castle Park and Nishinomaru Garden have been transformed into a neon paradise. This event merges futuristic art with historic tales, displaying fascinating neon installations scattered across the garden's grounds.

Guests can enjoy learning about Osaka's ancient history and its warlords dating back to Japan's civil war age (15th - 16th century).

Visitors can walk among vibrant electronic landmarks while viewing the brilliant Osaka Castle lit up in all its glory. The event offers photo spots around every corner, including a neon play area for both adults and children to enjoy.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta

Osaka Castle Illuminage 2023 - 2024

Period: November 22, 2023 - February 25, 2024
Hours: 17:00 - 22:00
Regular admission ticket: Adults - 1,500 yen, Children - 800 yen
Priority Admission Tickets: Adults - 2,000 yen, Children - 1,300 yen
Venue: Osaka Castle Nishinomaru Garden
Official website: Osaka Castle Illuminage

3. Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
An aquarium with festive illuminations and sculptures? That's right! At the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, visitors can enjoy a display of ocean-themed lights combined with Christmas.

The area boasts a large tree with a globe at its feet, surrounded by colorful light installations that share Christmas and ocean motifs. These include jellyfish lanterns and swirling sculptures resembling ribbons and ocean waves.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
In the past, the aquarium has showcased a gigantic whale shark illumination swimming up the building. The centerpiece of the aquarium, the jellyfish tree, has changed multiple times, featuring a variety of sea creatures such as dolphins, whales, and penguins. In a recent update, the installment now showcases aquatic creatures like dolphins and killer whales swimming around the gigantic globe centerpiece under a Christmas tree.

Osaka Kaiyukan Illumination

Period: TBA (*In 2022, the illumination was held November 19 - March 5)
Hours: 17:00 - 21:00
Venue: The area around Kaiyukan's entrance

4. Wonder Night Hill 2023 - Sakai Green Museum Harvest Hill

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Located in a peaceful spot of Osaka, surrounded by greenery and nature, Wonder Night Hill 2023 promises to captivate your heart with magical illuminations and sculptures at Sakai Green Museum Harvest Hill. Visitors have the opportunity to explore five different enchanting areas within the 350,000 square meter interactive agricultural park, each offering a unique experience and a different world.

One of the areas, the Ice Age of Light, showcases shining diamond blue fields with elegant rainbow deer, creating a mesmerizing display. Nearby, brilliant displays of animals such as penguins and polar bears are surrounded by light.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
The venue's sparkling play area features 20-meter-tall sequoia trees adorned with different lights that create a rainbow pathway. Guests can enjoy beautiful sounds in this area while seated on playfully designed moon-shaped chairs. It is the perfect spot for fun selfies and photography.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Other charming attractions include Candy Road, where cute candy illuminations cover the park trees and light up the pathways.

Also, the exhibition "A World of Glittering Insects" offers a unique and amusing experience as gigantic robot insects move within a rainbow-lit field. Ladybugs, praying mantises, beetles, and butterflies come to life with anatomic movements and illuminations, providing a delightful experience for insect lovers and children.

Wonder Night Hill 2023

Period: October 28, 2023 - January 28, 2024
Hours: 17:45 - 21:00 (last reception 20:30)
Admission: Adults 1,500 yen, Children (4 years old and above) 800 yen, Dogs 500 yen
Location: Osaka Prefecture, Sakai City, Minami ward, Hachigamineji, Sakai Green Museum Harvest Hill

5. Hirakata Park: Flowering Illumination

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of atpress

Experience the enchantment of Hirakata Park's annual event, an amusement park of light that will transport you into a fairytale. This year, the park's theme is Flowering Illumination, combining dazzling illuminations with natural flowers, fairy sculptures, and more!

The main highlight is the magnificent flower fairy tree, standing tall at 13 meters. At night, the tree blossoms into a beautiful flower symbol, surrounded by a glistening and enchanting fairytale-like garden. This captivating display is a result of the park's dedicated gardening staff and skilled illumination professionals, competing to create the most fascinating spectacle using real and illuminated flowers.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
To celebrate the park's 10th year of annual illuminations, the area for art displays has been expanded to feature seven illuminated areas for the first time. Each area offers scheduled light performances throughout the day and interactive elements.

Guests can indulge in magical attractions such as a flower fortune-telling fountain, a lantern square adorned with 500 floating lanterns, doors, and flowers of light glowing in seven colors, a Butterfly Garden (perfect for memorable photos), and the famous Hikari no Hana Tunnel embellished with lights!

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of atpress

In addition, the park offers serene areas filled with soft illuminations. One such example is the Classic Light Garden, where warm illuminations cast a golden glow on a rose garden. Guests can also enjoy smaller illuminated areas like Tree Road and Crystal Road, both featuring pathways embedded with illuminations in the trees and gardens.

For those seeking relaxation, the Garden Toy Box is a delightful attraction. Here, visitors can float on water and traverse through illuminations on charmingly designed floats while resting their feet.

Hirakata Park Flowering Illumination

Period: Novmber 3, 2023 - April 7, 2024
Hours: 17:00~
Admission Tickets: Adults - 1,800 yen, Children - 1,000 yen
Venue: Hirakata Park
Official website: https://www.hirakatapark.co.jp/illumination/

6. Illumination Expo 2023 × EXPOCITY

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of atpress
After a three-year hiatus, the Winter Illumination Expo makes its highly anticipated comeback. Already having showcased a special summer illumination in 2023, the Expo'70 Commemorative Park is set to dazzle visitors with its winter illuminations.

The park features multiple facilities spread across five different areas. During the daytime, visitors can explore Japanese gardens, museums, flowers, and forests.

As night falls, the park's famous Tower of the Sun comes to life, with its 70-meter-tall structure illuminating the surroundings. Created by Japanese artist Taro Okamoto, this iconic tower has captivated millions of visitors. This year's enchanting winter illuminations, featuring colorful projection mapping, are sure to entice even more visitors to experience the magic of this magnificent landmark.

Visitors attending the Illumination Expo 2023 at EXPOCITY can also enjoy Christmas illuminations as part of the park's Expocity event from November 17 to December 25, 2023. Additionally, rows of zelkova trees adorned with lights will captivate guests from Friday, November 17 to Wednesday, February 14, 2024.

Illumination Expo 2023×EXPOCITY

Tower of the Sun Illumination Period in 2023: December 1- 3, 8-10, 15-17, 22 - 24, 28 - 30
Venue: Expo’70 Commemorative Park Natural and Cultural Garden

7. Osaka Hikari Renaissance (14 - 25 December 2023)

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Osaka Hikari Renaissance illuminates the bustling Nakanoshima district in a stunning display of vibrant colors. As one of the main attractions of the Festival of the Lights in Osaka, this event surprises visitors with its bold and captivating illuminations. In previous years, the renowned artist group NAKED, Inc. showcased mesmerizing projection mapping, adding to the spectacle.

Located near the picturesque riverscape of the aquatic capital, OSAKA Hikari Renaissance 2023 aims to highlight Osaka as a city connected by water, paying tribute to its residents and the waterfront connections that define it.

The event has previously utilized the magnificent Osaka Central Public Hall, a historic building that symbolizes culture and art history. With over a century of history, it has served as a gathering place for people and provided a serene environment for learning. The venue is the perfect setting to bring everyone together to enjoy the beauty of illuminations.

OSAKA Hikari Renaissance 2023

Period: December 14 - 25, 2023
*Osaka City Hall Illumination Facade and Nakanoshima Illumination Street will be closed from November 3 to December 31, 2023.
Venue: Nakanoshima Park from around Osaka City Hall

8. Namba Hikari Tabi Namba Parks

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
Namba Parks is an ideal destination to unwind after a long day. This high-rise shopping center, situated in Namba-Naka Nichome, offers breathtaking views of the city from its cleverly designed multilayered rooftop garden. With a variety of delicious restaurants and fashionable clothing stores to choose from, Namba Parks is a central hub for shopping and dining.

The rooftop garden resembles a sky-high forest, boasting approximately 10,000 trees. Visitors can immerse themselves in nature as they explore various spots, including flowing water features, fountains, and seating areas.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
The garden is home to over 500 plant species, which coexist beautifully with the enchanting winter illuminations. During this time, the garden comes to life with illuminated tunnels, rivers, fountains, hedges, and multi-colored trees. Notably, the 2022 exhibition introduced fascinating art sculptures, including mesmerizing 3D diamonds.

Namba Parks is a perfect destination for relaxation, whether you're visiting with friends and family, or on a romantic date to admire the illuminations. Additionally, it serves as an excellent starting point for exploring other light-up events in the area. Consider embarking on a walking tour of Minami ward's seven unique illuminations, starting from Namba Square. Discover more exciting areas around Namba Park to enjoy in 2023!

Namba Hikari Tabi Namba Parks

Period: November 10, 2023 - February 18, 2024
Venue: Namba Hikari Tabi (Light Falls)” Namba Parks
Additional illumination areas:
- Rooftop Sky Illumination - Takashimaya Osaka store
- Center Gate of Light - Namba Center Gai
- Lucky Charms Illumination - Ebisubashisuji
- Shopping Street Shinsaibashi - Daimaru Shinsaibashi store
- Dotonbori Light Object (scheduled)
- Wonderland of Light and Water - Tombori River Walk
- Minami Area

9. Osaka Christmas Market 2023

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Ten-shiba (Tennoji Park) is being transformed into a charming German winter wonderland, filled with the joy of Christmas. From December 1 to 25, the park will host a 17-stall German-style Christmas market, offering guests a delightful opportunity to immerse themselves in the festive season.

Visitors can indulge in a unique shopping experience, browsing through authentic German goods, including nutcrackers and ornaments directly imported from Seiffen, Germany's renowned toy village. For those with a sweet tooth, Christmas-themed sugar cookies will also be available. Additionally, workshops featuring candles and flowers will take place, providing a chance for people of all ages to participate and create cherished memories.

As you enter the magical event at Ten-shiba, you'll be greeted by a wonderful Christmas photo spot. Christmas trees adorn the garden areas, beautifully framing the iconic Osaka sign, with the backdrop of Abeno Harukas, Japan's tallest skyscraper.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
The Christmas market will also offer a range of delicious treats, such as spiced mulled wine served in a mug, hot cocoa, and both alcoholic and non-alcoholic German beer. Visitors can savor various German dishes, including meat dishes and soups. Iced cookies can be purchased as souvenirs or presents, providing a tasty reminder of this festive experience.

Osaka Christmas Market 2023

Period: December 1 - 25, 2023
Hours: 11:00 - 21:00 (LO 20:30) *It may be canceled on days with rain or strong gales
Admission fee: Free
Venue: Tennoji Park TENSHIBA, TENSHIBA i:na

10. Hankyu Umeda Main Store Christmas Market

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
The Hankyu Umeda Store Christmas Market, situated near Umeda Station, welcomes visitors to a charming and delightful sweet spot that will transport them into a magical miniature Christmas village.

This enchanting event features small stores, popped-up archways, and tall shimmering trees, creating a whimsical atmosphere. As visitors embark on their shopping splurge, they can also indulge in Christmas-themed goods available at this adorable miniature market.

Hankyu Umeda Store Christmas Market

Period: to be announced

11. Osaka GRAND WISH CHRISTMAS 2023 Joyful Winter

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times

Grand Front Osaka has kicked off its celebrations early this year, marking its 10th anniversary by transforming into a magnificent playground. Under the theme of its anniversary event, GRAND PLAYGROUND!, the chic mall hosts a variety of exciting events throughout the year, aiming to bring people together for fun and enjoyment. And when it comes to Christmas, Grand Front Osaka doesn't disappoint!

Taking center stage at the Grand Wish Christmas 2023 event is the spectacular Joyful-Go-Round Tree. Standing tall at 12 meters, this dazzling attraction is like a moving merry-go-round, adorned with beautifully decorated Christmas trees and lights. From every angle, this attraction mesmerizes with its sparkling light performances and enchanting music, creating a magical atmosphere that can be enjoyed from both the upper and lower floors of the center.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
For two months, the area will be filled with enchanting Christmas festivities, including the LEGO® Holiday Festival at Grand Front Osaka and a host of other attractions as part of the Grand Wish Christmas 2023 joyful winter event.

Conveniently situated opposite Osaka Station, Grand Front Osaka will feature a stunning walkway adorned with 230,000 dazzling gold champagne lights. These lights will beautifully illuminate 72 trees surrounding Umekita Plaza, creating a magical atmosphere. Visitors can embark on an illumination walk, starting from Osaka Station and culminating at Grand Front Osaka, immersed in the captivating glow of the illuminations.

GRAND WISH CHRISTMAS 2023 Joyful Winter

Period: November 9 - December 25, 2023
Joyful-Go-Round Tree Hours: Weekdays 16:00 - 24:00, Weekends and holidays 15:00 - 24:00
Venue: Grand Front Osaka North Building, South Building, Umekita Plaza, and others. Joyful-Go-Round Tree Location: North Building 1F Knowledge Plaza

12. Umeda Sky Building Rumi Sky Walk

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Experience the sensation of floating among the clouds and strolling across the stars at the newly renovated Rumi Skywalk. As part of Umeda Sky Building's Floating Garden Observation Deck, this starry promenade has undergone a makeover in honor of the observation deck's 30th anniversary. Delicate 5mm phosphorescent stones now create a realistic sky, allowing guests to feel as though they are walking through a dazzling starry expanse with remarkable depth.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Located 170 meters above the ground, the Rumi Skywalk offers breathtaking views of Osaka's captivating cityscape. The illuminations on the deck can be enjoyed year-round, ensuring that visitors can partake in this incredible experience whenever they visit. The observation deck's starry path showcases a diverse array of space motifs, with planets suspended within the starry sky, alongside nebulas and shooting meteors.

Umeda Sky Building Rumi Sky Walk

Venue: Umeda Sky Building Floating Garden Observation Deck
Hours: 9:30 - 22:30 (last entry 22:00)
Admission: 1,500 yen for adults, 700 yen for elementary school students 4 years and older

13. Universal Studios Japan: NO LIMIT! Christmas

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
The NO LIMIT! Christmas 2023 event will be an unforgettable spectacle at Osaka's Universal Studio Japan, bringing a host of new and improved attractions. Get ready for Frosty's Electric Snow Party, a high-energy experience not to be missed, and marvel at the towering Christmas tree that stands over 30 meters tall at the park.

Breaking tradition, No Limit! Christmas transcends stereotypes and immerses guests in a vibrant celebration filled with dazzling performances and captivating lights. DJ Frosty, the star of USJ Christmas, will take center stage, spinning electrifying sets accompanied by dancers and mesmerizing light displays. Characters beloved by visitors, including Elmo, Snoopy, Hello Kitty, and more, will join in the festivities, dancing and spreading holiday cheer in their festive attire.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Don't miss the return of popular attractions such as the Super Nintendo World Christmas decorations, which have been a hit in previous years. Additionally, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter town will be transformed with a blanket of snow, offering an authentic experience for all the Potterheads out there.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Picture courtesy of PR Times
Guests have the exciting opportunity to meet their beloved characters and marvel at the magnificent party Christmas tree. This dazzling tree is adorned with vibrant rainbow lights and extravagant ornaments, reaching toward the sky and symbolizing the soaring energy and excitement of the festive season.

As a central attraction in the theme park, the party tree embodies the electrifying spirit of the electronic party, radiating energy and creating an atmosphere of joyful celebration.

NO LIMIT! Christmas 2023

Period: November 21, 2023 - January 8, 2024
Location: Osaka, Konohana, Sakurajima, Universal Studios Japan
Official Website: https://www.usj.co.jp/web/en/us

14. Diamor Holy Fantasy 2023

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
Every year, snowflakes twinkle and dance above the halls of Diamor Osaka fashion street, creating a magical pathway leading to an enormous champagne-colored Christmas tree. This splendid sight is part of the Diamor Holy Fantasy, an enchanting illumination event held beneath the bustling streets of Umeda. The underground shopping mall is designed to resemble a charming European street corner, adding to the allure of the experience.

Guests can leisurely shop to the cheerful melodies of Christmas music for two months, immersing themselves in the festive atmosphere. Throughout the day, sparkling illuminations cast a mesmerizing glow, creating a captivating ambiance within the mall. The majestic tree serves as an ideal photo spot, offering visitors the opportunity to capture the beauty of the illuminations even during daylight.

Diamor Holy Fantasy 2023

Period: November 11 - December 25, 2023
Illumination Hours: 9:00 - 23:00
Location: Diamor Osaka
Official Website: https://www.diamor.jp/ (Japanese)

15. Osaka Station Twilight Fantasy - Forest of light that brings happiness

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
Get ready to celebrate the moment you arrive at Osaka Station, where the popular Twilight Fantasy event fills the air with festive cheer. The station is adorned with vibrant trees, brilliant archways shaped like red gift boxes, and golden light pathways guiding guests through the station. It's as if you've stepped into a scene from a heartwarming Christmas movie.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
Following the yearly theme of nature, the city of Osaka seamlessly combines the station's attractions and infrastructure with enchanting lights and lush greenery. The result is a captivating ambiance that spreads throughout the station and surrounding facilities.

15 Enchanting Osaka Illuminations in 2023-2024

Photo by Pixta
The main venue, Toki no Hiroba Plaza, is a beloved tourist spot adorned with two magnificent gold and silver clocks. These iconic clocks serve as meeting points for friends, families, and couples, and are beautifully enhanced with ornaments and greenery to create the ultimate Christmas tree. As visitors arrive, they can immediately immerse themselves in the festive spirit, exploring the mesmerizing Christmas illuminations that abound at this remarkable glowing station.

Osaka Station Twilight Fantasy ~Forest of light that brings happiness~

Period: November 18 - December 25, 2023
Venue: JR Osaka Station, Osaka Station City 5F Toki no Hiroba Plaza

Enjoy the Winter Lights in Osaka

Osaka is an exciting destination at any time of the year but the winter illuminations add even more charm to this vibrant city. We hope that the events featured above serve as an incentive for you to enjoy the hospitality of this city in winter.

Main image by Pixta

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Kate_T

Tokyo,Japan

Assistant editor at MATCHA since 2023, Kate is a photographer who enjoys traveling Japan's hidden gems and adventuring off the beaten path. Living in Japan since 2018, she has traveled across different areas of Japan. From indulging in Aomori’s apple pies and fiery festivals to exploring the quaint charm of Nagasaki’s cat-filled streets she is always searching for new areas full of atmospheric beauty, festivals, and seasonal events to capture on camera.Assistant editor at MATCHA since 2023, Kate is a photographer who enjoys traveling Japan's hidden gems and adventuring off the beaten path.

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