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10 Golden Week Events in Kansai: Osaka, Kyoto, and More!

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The string of public holidays at the beginning of May is known as Golden Week in Japan. Osaka, Kyoto, and other cities in western Japan are holding exciting events featuring flowers, gourmet delights, and activities that can be enjoyed with children. We introduce 10 recommended events.

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Exciting Golden Week Events in Kansai

In 2024, Golden Week spans from April 27 (Saturday) to May 6 (Monday). If you also take off the three middle days—April 30, May 1, and May 2—you can enjoy up to a maximum of 10 consecutive holidays!

In the Kansai area, including Osaka and Kyoto, various events are held to coincide with the public holidays of Golden Week. In this article, we have carefully selected and introduced 10 especially noteworthy events.

1. Nakanoshima Festival in Osaka


Nakanoshima Park. Photo by Pixta

Nakanoshima Festival is Japan's largest citizen festival and has reached its 51st edition. The theme for 2024 is "Looking Up, Moving Forward, Everyone Gather Here!!"

In the relaxing square in front of the Central Public Hall, there are numerous food stalls, stages for singing, performances, and street performances, offering many highlights.

Simultaneously, the Nakanoshima Film Festival and a flea market will also be held.

Duration: May 3 - 5, 10:00 - 16:00 (ends at 15:00 on the 5th)
Venue: Nakanoshima Park area of Osaka's Kita Ward, 1 Chome, Nakanoshima, Osaka City
Official website: (Japanese)

2. Smaregi Presents the Harapeko Circus in Osaka


Picture courtesy of Harapeko website

Smaregi Presents the Harapeko Circus, or the Hungry Circus, organized by Mainichi Broadcasting System, Ltd., is one of the leading food festivals in Kansai. Last year, approximately 120,000 people visited.

In 2024, around 45 establishments that locals in Kansai consider "Seriously Delicious" will gather. Moreover, there will be plenty of content for both adults and children to enjoy, including live performances by artists and workshops.

This year, Smaregi Inc, the provider of the cloud POS system Smaregi, is the special sponsor, and they also support mobile ordering.

Duration: May 2 - 6, from 10:00 to 19:00
Venue: Tsurumi-Ryokuchi Park
Official website: (Japanese)

3. Craft Gyoza Festival in Osaka


Picture courtesy of Craft Gyoza Festival

The popular Craft Gyoza Festival is the best chance to enjoy a variety of gyoza. This year marks the 3rd edition of the event in Osaka.

There will be 17 gyoza stalls, a fried rice booth, and seven stalls offering drinks and sweets. Among the total of 32 gyoza menu items, 16 will be craft gyoza making their debut in Osaka for the first time.

Featuring "avant-garde gyoza" created by chefs, light gyoza made with lemon or leeks, and many other types of gyoza, the menu is sure to whet your appetite just by looking at it.

Duration: May 3 - 12, weekends and holidays 10:00 - 20:00, weekdays 11:00 - 20:00 (only until 13:00 on May 3rd)
Venue: Osaka Castle Park - Sun Plaza
Official website:

4. Everyone's Favorite! Pet Kingdom 2024 in Osaka


Picture courtesy of Pet Kingdom website

Held at Kyocera Dome in Osaka, Everyone's Favorite! Pet Kingdom 2024 is an event that has been held since 2005, allowing visitors to experience the wonder of living with pets and the benefits of having them in one's life.

You can meet dogs, cats, small animals, reptiles, insects, ornamental fish, birds, and more! There are also places where you can interact with adorable animals, sections showcasing pet products and offering sampling, and a discounted pet goods outlet corner, among various other pet-related attractions.

What makes this event so popular is that they allow visitors to come with their pets!

Duration: April 28 - 29, 10:00 - 17:00
Venue: Kyocera Dome Osaka
Official website: (Japanese)

5. Nemophila Festival at Osaka Maishima Seaside Park


Photo by Pixta

While Ibaraki's Hitachi Seaside Park is particularly famous for nemophila flowers, there are many spots in Kansai where you can enjoy these lovely blue blooms.

One of them is the Osaka Maishima Seaside Park. In the approximately 4.4-hectare site overlooking Osaka Bay, around 1 million Nemophila plants, the largest in Kansai, bloom brilliantly.

During this period, you can also enjoy sweets inspired by Nemophila. Additionally, there are athletic facilities, observation decks, and hot springs, making it enjoyable for families with children or couples.

Period: April 6 - May 6, Weekdays 10:00 - 17:00, Weekends and Holidays 9:00 - 18:30
Venue: Osaka Maishima Seaside Park
Official website:

6. Osaka Comic Con 2024


Picture courtesy of Osaka Comic Con website

Comic Con, the world's largest event related to pop culture, originated in the United States and is held in Osaka and Tokyo in Japan.

This year's Osaka venue will feature a plethora of attractions, including the latest information on domestic and international films, comics, interaction with foreign celebrity actors, displays of movie props, and rare goods.

Guests like Christopher Lloyd from the "Back to the Future" series and Peter Weller from the "RoboCop" series will attend.

Period: May 3 - 5, 2024 *The event hours vary depending on the day.
Venue: Intex Osaka
Official website:

7. Kyoto Kids Expo 2024 and the Kyoto Gyoza Grand Strategy

京都 KIDS万博

Picture courtesy of PR Times

Heian Jingu Shrine is one of the most popular spots in Kyoto. In front of it, Okazaki Park will host two major events simultaneously: the Kyoto Kids Expo 2024 and Kyoto Gyoza Grand Strategy with Meat.

The Kyoto Kids Expo 2024 features a spectacular view of 200 koi nobori banners swimming in the sky. Additionally, there will be sports workshops and experiential events for families, including a Super Boost Motor Skills Class conducted by former members of the Japan women's national soccer team, as well as traditional fair games.

On the other hand, the Kyoto Gyoza Grand Strategy with Meat is a popular event that gathered over 100,000 participants last year. Renowned gyoza restaurants from across the country will gather to serve their specialty gyoza, and in the evening, attendees can enjoy bars as well.

Period: May 1 - 5, 2024
Venue: Okazaki Park in front of Heian Jingu Shrine
Official website: Kyoto Kids Expo 2024, Kyoto Gyoza Grand Strategy

8. Michigan Cruise on Lake Biwa


Photo by Pixta

The Michigan Cruises on Lake Biwa offers participants the chance to enjoy delicious cuisine and breathtaking views of the lake.

During the Golden Week of 2024, in addition to regular cruises, there will be night cruises on weekends and holidays, as well as various events like the Lake Biwa Spring Music Festival on April 28 and 29.

Aside from this, Lake Biwa features other popular spots like the Biwako Terrace, making it ideal for exploring around the lake during this period.

Period: April 27 - May 6, 2024
Venue: Otsu Port
Official website: (Japanese)

9. NESTA Family Adventure Week 2024


Picture courtesy of PR Times

The NESTA Family Adventure Week 2024 will be held in the adventure-themed park Nesta Resort Kobe located in Miki City, Hyogo Prefecture.

The highlight of the event is the spring fireworks! Due to the positive reception in the past, the number of launches, previously 520 per day, has been increased to 950 this year.

Additionally, there are various attractions such as the Adventure Bike Park where you can ride electric e-bikes on mountain trails, and the Animal Encounter Land where you can meet rare animals.

Period: April 27 - May 6 *Event dates vary depending on the specific activity.
Venue: Nesta Resort Kobe
Official website: (Japanese)

10. Awaji Flower Festival


Nemophila at Akashi Kaikyo Park. Photo by Pixta

During the Golden Week period on Awaji Island, a popular tourist spot in Kansai, various flowers can be enjoyed.

For example, at the Awaji Farm Park, an agricultural park where you can interact with animals and enjoy gourmet food and various activities, about 100,000 Nemophila flowers will be in full bloom!

Additionally, at the Prefectural Awaji Island Park, you can enjoy azaleas, at Akashi Kaikyo Park you can find Nemophila, and at Awaji Yumebutai, there are Daisy Margarets, offering a variety of flowers to enjoy at each location.

For more information, please visit the official website of the Awaji Flower Festival.

Period: March 16 - May 26, 2024
Venue: Awaji Farn Park and others
Official website: Awaji Flower Festival

Events Like Kyoto's Aoi Festival Continue After Golden Week

Although Golden Week in 2024 extends until May 6, there are still enjoyable events happening in Kansai, such as the Aoi Matsuri in Kyoto, which will take place on May 15.

Take this article as a reference and make sure to fully enjoy the spring of 2024!

Main image by Pixta

Written by



Mitoyo, Kagawa, Japan

I worked in a PR agency for corporate IR/CSR and a publisher which publishes a magazine focused on international cooperation before joining MATCHA in October 2017. 
In April 2019, I moved to Mitoyo City in Kagawa Prefecture. I write articles for tourists visiting Japan, and also contribute to regional revitalization.
My main focus is on writing about internet services, rental cars, hotels, and tourist attractions in western Japan.
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