Shinsekai is an Osaka Neighborhood with an Interesting History
Shinsekai (新世界), meaning “new world”, is a neighborhood with an interesting history. Located in the southern part of Osaka, Shinsekai was originally modeled after Paris, complete with a large, Eiffel Tower-like structure.
It used to be home to Luna Park, an amusement park, although that shut down in the late 1920s. Since the shutdown of Luna Park, Shinsekai became a desolate and rather poor area. For a point in time, it was actually considered a somewhat “dangerous” area because a large population of homeless people had moved in.
Today, the area is again booming with business and a unique place for tourists to visit.
The highlight of Shinsekai is the Tsutenkaku Tower, which is located in the center of the neighborhood. This tower had replaced the previous Eiffel Tower-looking structure after World War II ended.
It is 103 meters tall, and offers some of the best views of Osaka around. On a bright, clear day the views looking over Osaka are unobstructed and picture perfect. The panoramic view is a reason alone to venture out into Shinsekai.
Around the base of the tower, you’ll find plenty of shops and restaurants. It was a little touristy, but reminded me of a less crowded Dotonbori. There were even a Zubora-ya, a restaurant known for their famous “fugu”, or blowfish dish.
Most of the shops seemed to be souvenir shops, which is another reason why Shinsekai is fun for tourists. Mixed in amongst the shops, you’ll find plenty of pachinko parlors also.
It is a very picturesque neighborhood with all of the colorful signs and the tower looming in the background.
Shinsekai also sits next to Tennoji Zoo and Park, which is another great location to visit if you have the time.
１-１８-６ Ebisuhigashi, Naniwa Ward, Osaka, Osaka Prefecture 556-0002, Japan
[posted by Beth]
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