OWL Magazine Korea

“Osaka, the Center of Otaku Culture: Den Den Town (2023)”

In Japan, the subculture known as otaku culture has flourished, with Tokyo’s Akihabara standing out as the pinnacle of this subculture. Similarly, in Osaka, you can find a place with a vibe akin to Akihabara, and that place is called “Den Den Town.”

Den Den Town is a representative electronics shopping district in Osaka, which has also evolved into a focal point for subculture, akin to Akihabara. Starting as an electronics shopping district like Akihabara, Den Den Town has developed into a hub for various subculture products, especially figures.

“Den Den Town Near Namba in Osaka”

Den Den Town is located near Namba and can be easily reached by about a 10-minute walk from Namba Station. Although it is currently referred to as “Den Den Town,” the actual place name is “Nipponbashi.”

In the Edo period, it was called Naga-machi, and in 1792 and 1872, the Osaka government changed the area’s name to Nipponbashi. During the Meiji and Taisho eras, shops dealing with clothes and second-hand books emerged, transforming the area into a shopping street.

After World War II, shops selling electronic products were added to the area, and through this process, it acquired the nickname “Den Den Town.” Today, it offers a diverse range of stores, from shops selling electronic products to those offering otaku items like figures.

“Various Stores like Animate, Kotobukiya, and Jungle in Den Den Town”

In Den Den Town, you can find various stores handling otaku products like Animate, Kotobukiya, Jungle, and more. Most of these stores are reasonably large, so while exploring the variety of products, time might slip away unnoticed.

Similar to Akihabara, you can also find places in Den Den Town inviting crowds to maid cafes. However, during my visit in the morning, perhaps due to the timing, I didn’t see the bustling crowds inviting people to maid cafes.

“Revisiting Den Den Town in 2023”

I had previously visited Den Den Town in 2018 during my travels in the Osaka area. However, at that time, I visited Den Den Town as the last itinerary, and the time to head to the airport was approaching, so I couldn’t explore it thoroughly. Therefore, this time, I took the opportunity to revisit some of the stores I hadn’t explored before, experiencing the unique charm of Den Den Town.

Of course, I couldn’t explore all areas of Den Den Town, but after visiting a few stores, I found them to be quite similar in concept, selling similar products. As a result, I didn’t feel particularly excited and decided to move on to other places.

Certainly, for those who have a hobby like collecting anime figures, visiting Den Den Town could be an enjoyable experience, where time flies by unnoticed.

“Japan, Osaka, Den Den Town”

  • Address: 4 Chome-12 Nipponbashi, Naniwa-ku, Ōsaka-shi, Ōsaka-fu 556-0005, Japan
  • Phone Number: +81 6-6655-1717
  • Website: Den Den Town
  • Operating Hours: 10:00 – 19:00