Osaka EXPOCITY – The Largest Complex in Japan Is Finally Open!

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  • Have you already heard? The largest complex in Japan has just opened recently in Osaka. The first few things that will catch your attention when you arrive here will be the big Pikachu statue in the Pokemon Gym and also two Gundam robots in fighting positions located right in front of the Gundam Cafe.

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    There are nine entertainment sections and a brief explanation will be given on each of them below.

    1. Nifrel

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    This is the first building on the left as you arrived at the Osaka EXPOCITY. This is actually an aquarium and the company managing this place is Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan. I have yet to check out this place because of the long queue in the morning, but I heard that they incorporated art with the displays of the land and sea creatures. Don’t miss out the display of the white tiger too, which is supposes to be one of the main attractions in this place. Thus, the reason many white tiger plush toys are on sale in the Nifrel gift shop. The entrance fee is 1900 yen, slightly cheaper than Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan. One good way to estimate the crowd for the day might be checking out the website’s ticketing page. Information is shown at the bottom of the page where they show an estimation of the visitors number expected for the day.

    Nifrel Website

    2. Pokemon ExpoGym

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    This building is located next to Nifrel is the Pokemon ExpoGym. Yep, you got that right! In Japan, there are many Pokemon Stores and Pokemon Pop-up stalls but there never has been a Pokemon Gym before. This Pokemon Gym is divided into a few sections. The part where you have to pay is, of course, to try out their gym. The other sections such as the shop and cafe areas are free for everyone to enter. Just like other Pokemon Stores, this one offers its own exclusive Pikachu plush toy wearing the gym attire. And in the shop, there are food and drinks for sale. What makes this interesting are the nicely decorated Pikachu cups and definitely the Pikachu Popcorn container.

    If you are interested in working out in this gym, you must first purchase the Pokemon Gym Expo Pass which costs 500 yen (you only need to purchase this pass once). In addition, you have to pay the entrance fee to visit a gym. For detailed information, approach the ticket counter and let them advise you on the pricing and plans.

    Pockemon Gym Tickets

    3. Anipo

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    Anipo is a small outdoor animal-themed amusement area mainly for children. This is definitely a nice place for parents and children to enjoy the fun rides together.

    4. Osaka English Village

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    This “village”‘s main purpose is to help visitors improve their English. This place is designed like an American village, allowing visitors to have an overseas experience without the need of travelling. There are many sections such as Dinosaur Park, Native American Village and Times Square area. This place could be a great way to improve your English, having fun while learning at the same time.

    English Village Website

    5. Orbi Osaka

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    This entertainment area is produced by Sega, one of the well-known entertainment companies in Japan, in collaboration with UK’s BBC Earth. There are theater and entertainment exhibitions available to experience the wonders of nature. Orbi opened recently on January 29th, 2016 so the exhibitions are all quite new!

    Orbi Website

    6. 109 Cinema

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    In my opinion, a shopping complex is definitely not complete without a movie theater. What significantly differentiates this place from other cinemas are the following features, 4DX motion chairs with multisensor effects, IMAX theater with next-generation laser projection and superb sound quality as well as having the largest screen in Japan! Sounds really cool, right? I just can’t wait to see the “Star Wars” in this cinema and try out their 4DX and IMAX options.

    7. LaLaport EXPOCITY

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    Any complex definitely has their shopping area. And this is the exact main purpose of the Lalaport EXPOCITY area. Here, you can find many shops such as Tsutaya bookstore, EdiOn electronics store, popular clothes brands such as UniQlo, Muji, Zara, Daiso 100yen store, Kiddyland and many more. Check out the following website for a complete list of the tenants in Lalaport EXPOCITY. The information center is also located in this building on the first floor, so you can ask a staff to give you guidance to get to a shop you’re looking for.

    LaLaport Shops
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    Extra information:
    If you are a fan of Kapibara character, why not check out the BC Bakery. This bakery makes some awesome character buns. I found this cute bakery by chance, as it is not well advertised!

    8. Entertainment Field

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    This is, basically, an entertainment area located at the LalaPort EXPOCITY and its theme is “Shaun the Sheep”. Here, you can enjoy the farm world of Shaun and his friends. There are 2 sections: Shaun Family Farm and Workshop area. Both sections require different entrance fees, so be careful when you pay for one. While there, why not check out the exclusive goods of Shaun and his friends. Check out their website to find more information on this place.

    Family Farm

    9. RedHorse Osaka Wheel

    This area houses the biggest Ferris wheel in Japan as well as the official shop and restaurant, Redhorse Marumie Plaza. Currently, Redhorse Marumie Plaza is only open for customers while the Ferris wheel is scheduled to open in spring 2016 (no exact date yet). Once it is completed, the Ferris wheel will stand at over 120 meters tall. As a fan of Ferris wheels, I am looking forward to having a ride on it. It most likely will be super crowded during the opening as people would love to take the ride and possibly enjoy the cherry-blossom viewing of Banpaku Park area from this Ferris wheel.

    There is also a nice open area at the entrance of the complex so you can just sit and relax there if you have had enough of shopping and sightseeing. The Banpaku Expo Park is only 5 minutes away from the complex so why not check out the park too if you have some extra time. There are few ways to access Osaka EXPOCITY by public transport, you can either take the monorail and get off at Banpaku Kinen Koen station, or take the bus from JR Ibaraki station and get off at EXPOCITY Mae bus stop. The complex is accessible by walk from either destination!

    EXPOCITY Website

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