Every city has its icon or signature district and Dotonbori (also spelt Dotombori) in Namba is Osaka's loud and unabashed declaration of the city's personality and stake to fame. Being here actually made me feel small because everything about this electrifying commercial enclave is so larger-than-life, I felt as if I've been shot by a shrink ray.
|But the humungous LED signboards that lined Dotonbori Canal are just an appetiser to the real treat behind them... the massive food and shopping streets that sprawled in all directions and the giant sculpted signboards!|
|Perhaps the most famous of the 3D gigantic signboards that spun many copycats is this monstrous 6.5m installation of the Japanese Snow Crab. The legs and eyes move as if it is alive!|
|Giant octopus advertising a shop that specialises in Takoyaki (octopus balls).|
|Pufferfish lantern... a sure sign that tells you the specialty of the restaurant it advertises. We came here to try a 6-course fugu meal. Click here to find out more.|
|This looks really creepy!|
|The giant advertising mascots don't just go on the wall, but in the ground as well. These phallic whatevers look like some serious angry food that can do some real damage.|
|Quite a few shops selling Takoyaki (octopus balls) along the street and we decided to spend on this one because it had a long queue during our visit.|
|Grill baby grill... 5 for approximately S$4.50 and 10 for S$8.50. Our strategy at Dotonbori food street was to buy small so that we can sample more different foods.|
|The Takoyaki was piping hot with flakes and condiments melting all the succulent octopus balls. As I bit into one of them, a milky center oozed creamy hot filling onto the tongue.|
|Bring the drag on... This fearsome creature of Chinese mythology that seem to have too much make-up on is the mascot for Kinryu Ramen (金龍ラーメン), a popular ramen chain restaurant. Just along Dotonbori street alone, we saw 3 outlets and one of them had a really long queue. That many mouths can't be wrong so we decided to fill up here for the night's dinner.|
|After purchasing meal tickets at a vending machine outside the restaurant, we handed them over to the service staff and they prepared our orders. Huge pots are fuming in the kitchen like the firey belly of a dragon.|
The number of street food stalls and restaurants at the very lively Dotonbori are staggering. So it is best to come here hungry and eat your way down the flashy district awash with lights and Godzilla-sized signboards. And after dinner, there are plenty of retail shops around the area to browse for souvenirs and walk off the calories!