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JR Osaka Station's new terminal building opened on May 4, 2011. Great improvement. It has a simple lean-to roof that creates some space to build bridges and plazas above the train tracks.Very easy to get your bearings and remember which way to go wherever you wanna go.
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The pedestrian bridge above the train tracks gives a bird's-eye view of all or most of the tracks. I could never figure out Osaka Station until now.
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Inside Osaka Station.
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There are great spots to just sit or meet up with a friend.
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JR Osaka Station
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The new station buildings also have pleasant rooftop parks with a view.
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Rooftop garden for rent.
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Inside Grand Front Osaka, this coffee shop from Hawaii (serving Kona coffee) with a long line of people waiting to get in. We couldn't wait and reluctantly went to Starbucks instead.
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The Grand Front Osaka complex next to Osaka Station opened in April 2013.
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Osaka subways are more international than in Tokyo. This destination sign is displayed in Japanese, English, Chinese, and Korean. In Tokyo, we only see Japanese and English.
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Shin-Osaka Station's shinkansen turnstile.
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Bunraku puppet displayed inside Shin-Osaka Station.
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Drunken man inside Shin-Osaka Station.
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Large taiko shop (TaikoMasa) near Ashiharabashi Station on the Loop Line. This area has a number of taiko shops. Their quality taiko drums are made of zelkova wood (keyaki). They also make the taiko drums used in the Kishiwada Danjiri Matsuri.
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The inside of the taiko drums is covered with gold leaf for better sound.
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National Bunraku Puppet Theater. Bunraku is over 370 years old, even older than kabuki.
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Inside National Bunraku Puppet Theater. Photography is not allowed during the plays. Bunraku puppets can perform feats which human actors cannot. This can make it interesting. Bring binoculars though.
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National Bunraku Puppet Theater Museum
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National Bunraku Puppet Theater at night.
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Bento to Mixed Plate exhibition in 2001 at National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka.
     
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