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Namba Yasaka Shrine

This secret shrine is Osaka in a nutshell.

  • Namba Yasaka Festival Date: Annually on the third Sunday of January.
While Osaka’s Namba area is known for many things; eating, drinking, shopping and karaoke to name a few—shrines and temples aren’t exactly at the top of the list. Explore just a bit beyond the noise, however, and you’ll discover something that’s dazzling in an altogether different way.

Namba Yasaka Shrine in Osaka

Photo by: Geoff Whalan Right in the bustling heart of Namba.

A mere eight-minute walk from busy Nankai Station, Namba Yasaka Shrine is home to Namba’s guardian deity and part of a once flourishing complex of Buddhist temples that were burned down in wartime air raids.

Namba Yasaka is famous for its lion-shaped stage, which stands out as a unique piece of architecture, especially compared with the austere temple beside it. It’s not hard to draw a parallel with Osaka’s kaleidoscopic mix of traditional, retro, modern and futuristic, distilled at this secret shrine smack in the center of the city’s bawdiest entertainment district.

Namba Yasaka Shrine

Photo by: Stephen Kelly Don’t get too close.

The lion’s head stage was built in 1975 and has a delightfully retro feel, as striking as something you might find in Las Vegas or a theme park. It stands 12 meters tall and seven meters deep. The huge lion’s mouth is believed to swallow evil spirits and bring good luck, especially for those looking to do well in school and business matters. Because of this many people visit the shrine during exam time or the start and end of the financial year.

The third Sunday of January marks the shrine’s annual festival, during which a huge tug-of-war competition is held. This is to simulate the myth that the shrine’s deity once killed a giant snake that brought peace to the people of what is now the Namba area.

Things To Know

Opening Hours

6:00 – 17:00. Admission free.

How To Get There


2 Chome-9-11 Motomachi, Naniwa-ku, Ōsaka-shi, Ōsaka-fu 556-0016, Japan

By train

Namba Yakasa is about a 7-minute walk fromDaikokucho Station and an 8-minute walk from Nankai Namba Station.

Where To Stay

WellStay Namba
  • 2-8-10 Motomachi, Osaka-shi Naniwa-ku, Osaka, 556-0016 Japan
  • ¥6,210 - ¥33,840
  • 4.3/5 (92 reviews)
  • 0.1 km
Hotel WBF Namba Motomachi
  • 2-7-20 Motomachi, Osaka-shi Naniwa-ku, Osaka, 556-0016 Japan
  • ¥8,010 - ¥9,310
  • 3/5 (64 reviews)
  • 0.1 km
Grampus Inn Osaka
  • 1-13-18 Nambanaka, Osaka-shi Naniwa-ku, Osaka, 556-0011 Japan
  • ¥4,980 - ¥12,160
  • 3.27/5 (480 reviews)
  • 0.3 km
Hotel Il Cuore Namba
  • 1-15-15 Nambanaka, Osaka-shi Naniwa-ku, Osaka, 556-0011 Japan
  • ¥11,400 - ¥17,000
  • 3.92/5 (3,355 reviews)
  • 0.4 km
Hiyori Hotel Osaka Namba Station
  • 3-1-2 Nambanaka, Osaka-shi Naniwa-ku, Osaka, 556-0011 Japan
  • ¥23,114 - ¥27,835
  • 4.38/5 (321 reviews)
  • 0.4 km

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