Though small and unassuming, the Kamigata Ukiyo-e Museum in the heart of Dotombori is a gem of a museum for Japanese art lovers. Fans of woodblock prints will find much to delight them here.
Kamigata Ukiyo-e Museum - image © Florentyna Leow
Tucked away down a side street in the heart of the Dotombori district is the unassuming Kamigata Ukiyo-e Museum. Ukiyo-e are an Edo-period genre of woodblock prints depicting scenes from the ‘Floating World.’ For starters, think pictures of theaters, teahouses, beautiful women - images that take you away from the everyday.
This museum is unusual in that it only displays works made in Kamigata, which is the old name for the Kansai (West Japan) region. Furthermore, these works themselves are unusual as they’re centered primarily around kabuki - the traditional theatrical form where all roles are played by men, including the women’s parts. Much like movie posters, ukiyo-e prints played a major role in marketing kabuki plays to the masses during the Edo period.
The museum is relatively small and can be explored in under an hour for just JPY500, making it a nice reprieve from shopping nearby. If desired, visitors can try their hand at woodblock printing in the museum for an additional fee.
Kamigata Ukiyoe Museum
1-6-4 Namba, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, 542-0076
11am-6pm (last entry 5:30pm)
Closed Monday, or the following Tuesday when Monday is a national holiday
Junior high and elementary school students: 300
Subway and Train: 2-minute walk from exit 14 of Namba Station.
Official Website (English)
Where Are These Places Located?See these places on the Inside Osaka Google map:
- Open the Osaka map
- You will see the list of places on the left hand side. (Click the 3-line icon in the top left corner if not). Scroll down or use the map search (the magnifying glass icon) to find the place you want.
- Click the name of the place in the list. Its location pin will be highlighted on the map.
- Map pins are color coded - BLUE: Hotels / Ryokan / Guesthouses | VIOLET: Ryokan | PINK: Places to Eat | GREEN: Shops | YELLOW: Things to See and Do
- If you're using the map on your phone, open the map and then search for the name of the place. The map will then zoom in on its location.
Osaka Vacation Checklist
- For all the essentials in a brief overview, see my First Time In Osaka guide
- Check Osaka accommodation availability and pricing on Booking.com – usually you can reserve a room with no upfront payment. Pay when you check out. Free cancellations too
- Need tips on where to stay? See my one page guide Where To Stay In Osaka
- You can buy a Japan SIM card online for collection on arrival at Osaka's Kansai International Airport. Or rent an unlimited data pocket wifi router
- View my comprehensive Packing List For Japan
- Compare flight prices and timings to find the best Japan flight deals
- If you're visiting more than one city, save a ton of money with the Japan Rail Pass – here's why it's worth it
- Get a prepaid Icoca card to make travelling around Osaka easy – here's how
- Find out why travel insurance for Japan is essential – World Nomads is well-regarded