How to use JR Pass in downtown Osaka. Find how much you can use Japan Rail Pass in Osaka.

323series on Osaka Kanjo lineNetwork of JR trains
Dotonbori is one of most popular spots.

If you use JR Pass and visit Osaka, you should know how much you can use JR Pass in Osaka. I forcus on using JR Pass in downtown Osaka. If you use the following passes, you have same coverage.

I will show you JR train network in downtown Osaka in this post.

JR lines in downtown Osaka

Please see the map below:

Click to view large

The above map shows you all JR lines in downtown Osaka. I will explain you the line of JR one by one.

In this post, I explain you only JR trains. If you want to know whole part of train system in downtown Osaka, please see the link below:

I also explain this topic in YouTube movie too. Please watch it instead of reading the post:

Osaka Kanjo line (Osaka loop line)

323series on Osaka Kanjo line
Osaka Kanjo line train

This line encircles downtown Osaka. You will use this line often when you stay in Osaka. This line is started from Osaka station which is the biggest station in Osaka. It is located in Umeda area and JR Osaka station and other railway’s Umeda stations are same location.

This line go through Kyobashi, Tsuruhashi, Tennoji, Shin-Imamiya, Bentencho, Nishikujo and come back to Osaka again. All these stations are transfer points to other lines and railways.

  • Osaka (Umeda)
    1. Hankyu Railway (to Arashiyama, Gion, Kobe-Sannomiya, Takarazuka, Ikeda, Minoo),
    2. Hanshin Railway (to Kobe-Sannomiya)
    3. Osaka Metro (to almost everywhere in Osaka)
  • Kyobashi – Keihan Railway (to Gion, Kyoto)
  • Tsuruhashi – Kintetsu Railway (to Osaka-Namba, TennojiNara, Nagoya)
  • Tennoji
    1. JR Kansai Airport line (to Kansai airport)
    2. JR Yamatoji line (to Nara)
    3. JR Hanwa line (to Wakayama)
    4. Kintetsu Railway (to Yoshino)
    5. Osaka Metro (to Namba, Tanimachi)
  • Shin-Imamiya – Nankai Railway (to Namba, Kansai airport)
  • Bentencho – Osaka Metro Chuo line (to Osaka Kaiyukan aquarium)
  • Nishikujo
    1. Hanshin Railway (to Osaka-Namba, to Kobe-Sannomiya)
    2. JR Yumesaki line (to Universal city)

Tennoji is the biggest JR terminal station in south side of Osaka. All trains that go to Wakayama, Kansai airport and Nara stop at this station. But many train run on Osaka Kanjo line and then go through the line to Nara, Kansai airport and Wakayama.

Yamatoji line

This line connects JR Namba and Nara. Many rapid train go through Osaka Kanjo line and it connects Kyobashi, Osaka, Nishikujo, Bentencho, Tennoji and Nara. This rapoid train is called Yamatoji Rapid. Please see the link below to find more information about Yamatoji Rapid:

Many local train of Yamatoji line train depart from JR-Namba station. JR-Namba is only JR station in Namba. But this is a bit away from the center of Namba. Please see the link below to find the information about Namba stations:

You can access Namba by JR line. And also you can access from another huge downtown core, Umeda by JR only. But You need to take Osaka Kanjo line to Imamiya and transfer the train to JR Namba. It is not shortest way. Osaka subway Midosuji line (大阪地下鉄御堂筋線) is much faster and more convenient. I tell you about Osaka subway later.

Kansai airport line and Hanwa line

Many trains go through from Osaka Kanjo line to Kansai Airport and Wakayama. These trains are called Kansai Airport Rapid and Kishuji Rapid.

You can get Kansai airport and Wakayama from Osaka without a transfer.

The limited express Haruka connects Kyoto, Shin-Osaka and Kansai airport. The limited express Kuroshio connects Shin-Osaka and Wakayama, Shirahama, Shingu. You may take these trains between Shin-Osaka and Tennoji if you like.

Yumesaki line

This line starts from Nishikujo station on Osaka Kanjo line and goes to Sakurajima. Universal City station is located on this line and it is the gateway to Universal Studio Japan.

JR Tozai line

This line connects Amagasaki and Kyobashi. Kitashinchi station is 10 minutes away from Osaka station on foot.

Kobe/Kyoto line

If you go to Kobe or Kyoto, you take this line from Osaka station. Special Rapid run on this line and stop at major stations only. It is very fast train service. Please find more information about Special Rapid in the link below:

And also when you take the Shinkansen, you have to go to Shin-Osaka station by Kyoto line. It is 4 minutes away from Osaka by any trains.

The places where you can go by JR Pass

You may get these following places by JR Pass and other JR train passes without any extra charge:

  • Umeda, Umeda Sky Building (at JR Osaka station)
  • Osaka Castle (at Osakajokoen station)
  • Abeno Harukas (at Tennoji station)
  • Tennoji Zoo (at Tennoji station)
  • Shitenno-ji temple (at Tennoji station)
  • Shinsekai, Tsutenkaku (at Shin-Imamiya station)
  • Namba, Shinsaibashi, Dotonbori (at JR-Namba station)
  • USJ (at Universal City station)

The places where you can NOT go by JR Pass

You have to pay a regular fare to take subway or non JR trains to visit the following places:

Osaka Kaiyukan Aquarium and Tenpozan Market Place

Click to view large.

You have to take Osaka Metro Chuo line to get Osakako station. You may take subway from Namba or Umeda.

Cup Noodle Museum and Minoo Falls

Click to view large

These are located outside downtown Osaka. You must take Hankyu Railway.

Osaka Metro

As you have been reading this post, JR Pass covers many places. But you still may need to take subway. Please see the link below to find all train system in Osaka.

I hope you have got an idea to build your trip by this post.


  1. Jockeylyn says:


    My boyfriend and I will be travelling to Japan this coming May 2-10, 2019. We will arrive from Osaka Kansa airport. We will travel from Osaka for 2-3 days then Kyoto for 2 days to Tokyo for 4 days. I’m confused if we should buy the JR pass or not. Can we use the JR pass in all trains that we will use while we’re there? My idea is only that we can use the JR pass for the train ride from Kyoto-Tokyo. Is the JR pass worth it? Thank you.

  2. Grenn says:

    Hi Mr Takeshi,

    I will be in Japan for 13 days.
    I will be in Osaka for from Day 1 to Day 7 and Tokyo from Day 7 to Day 13.
    As I will be arriving only at night on Day 1, I planned to get the JR pass for Day 2 to Day 8.
    For my 7 days in Osaka, I plan to make day-trips to Kyoto, Nara and Kobe.
    I will be staying in Dotonburi area for the Osaka part of my trip and I plan to visit the Cup Factory Museum, Rinku Outlets, USJ, Osaka Castle, Osaka Aquarium as well.

    I was wondering if a JR pass is worth it or is there any other more suitable deals?
    I was considering the JR pass because I need to take the shinkansen from Osaka to Tokyo so it probably covers half the cost of the JR pass.
    But I saw that trips to Kyoto, Nara and Kobe are only about 1000+ yen from Osaka and taking the midosuji line seems faster and more convenient than the Osaka loop line.

    Please let me know your opinion. Thank you!

  3. Zac says:


    I will be travelling to Japan for 14 days. Below is my planned trip:
    Day 1-6: Tokyo (Shinjuku, Shibuya, Disneysea etc)
    Day 7: Hakone
    Day 8-11: Kyoto (Arashiyama Bamboo grove, Fushimi Inari Shrine etc)
    Day 12-14: Osaka
    Day 15: Tokyo

    I am confused and would like to know if it is better to buy a 7 or 14 days JR pass. Please advise!

    Thank you

  4. Mick says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    I will be getting 14days JR pass for my following itinerary.

    12/12 – Arrived Narita (JR Pass to Tokyo)
    13/12 – Disneyland
    14/12 – Tokyo to Fujinomiya (JR Pass)
    15/12- Fujinomiya to Kyoto (JR Pass)
    16/12- Kyoto
    17/12- Kyoto to Osaka (JR Pass)
    18/12-Universal Studio
    19/12- Osaka to Kobe (round trip) (JR Pass)
    20/12- Osaka to Nara (round trip) (JR Pass)
    21/12- Osaka to Tokyo (JR Pass)
    23/12- Tokyo to Gala Yuzawa (JR Pass)
    24/12- Tokyo to Narita airport (JR Pass)

    I am confused and wondering if the JR Pass can be used in downtown of Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka? If cannot use, which card should I use? Kindly advise. Domo arigatou gozaimasu.

  5. WENDY LEE says:

    Hi Takeshi-san,

    My family will be travelling to Osaka on 14th to 26th December 2018 and we will be arriving late night. We are staying in Nishi-ku, Osaka -shi for 12 days. We would like to cover as many places as we could. We would like to cover Osaka (2 days), Kyoto (2 days), Nara, Kobe, Hiroshima, Wakayama, Biwako Valley, and Ise-shima area.

    I would like to know what is the best JR pass to buy. And if possible, can I use my SUICA card from Kansai International Airport to Nishi-ku on the night of my arrival?

    Thanking you in advance for your advise.

  6. Mel says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    I need some help on which pass I should take for my trip.
    Day 1: Kyoto (staying at Kyoto Higashiyama)
    Day 2: Osaka (staying at Osaka Namba)
    Day 3: Osaka (staying at Osaka Namba)
    Day 4: Kobe (staying at Osaka Namba)
    Day 5: Nara (staying at Osaka Namba)
    Day 6: Hiroshima (staying in Hiroshima)
    Day 7: Miyajima (staying in Hiroshima)
    Day 8: Fukuoka (staying at Fukuoka Hakata)
    We will be spending a couple more days in Fukuoka after day 8.
    Hope to hear from you.

  7. Diane says:

    My family of 5 will be in Osaka for 5 nights.
    We will be spending some time in Kyoto (Arashiyama, Fushimi Inari Shrine) and going to Cup Noodle Osaka.
    We will have an activated 7day jrpass- just wondering how much would be covered by the jrpass and what other passes you might recommend?
    Also, siuca vs icoca- which one, as we will be returning to Tokyo for 4 nights, then 2 nights Disney land.
    Thank you In advance 🙂

  8. Ftaraya says:

    Dear Takeshi,
    Please advise my (revised) itinerary, whether i have understood correctly:

    Stay during trip Nishinari.
    Day 1: KIX – Nishinari; We use ICOCA/Haruka .
    Which nearest station we have to reach Nishinari from KIX?
    Day2 – 3: Exploring Osaka (Kaiyukan, USJ, etc); We use ICOCA/Haruka

    Day 4: Kyoto (Fushimi Inari – Arashiyama – Kameoka) – back to Nishinari
    Day 5: Nara – back to Nishimari
    Day 4 and 5 using 2 Day Kansai Area Pass

    Day 6 Nishinari –KIX; We use ICOCA/Haruka

    Thank you so much, Takeshi.

  9. Ftaraya says:

    Hi Takeshi, we need your advice for the pass we need to take. We’ll stay 7 days in Osaka (We stay at Nishinari) and planning to visit several places:
    Day 1: KIX – Go to homestay at Nishinari – Dotonburi
    Day 2: Kyoto: Arashiyama – Fishimi– Kameoka*
    *We got 5.30 pm ticket Sagano Train at Kameoka-Saga. Please advise due to time constraint, because we stay at Nishinari and hv to go back to Osaka)
    Day3: Osaka Aquarium
    Day 4: USJ
    Day 5-7: Nara and exploring Osaka
    Is it possible for me to use 5 days KANSAI Wide Area? And what other passes do I need to cover my itinerary above.

    Thank you, Takeshi.

  10. Faith Co says:

    hi!! our schedule is simple… and i’m still confused about which pass to take.

    KIX-> JR Namba Station (our hotel is near the station -> Umeda Sky Building

    JR-> Kyoto -> Bamboo Forest -> Fishimi -> Gion -> JR Namba Station

    JR Namba Station-> Osaka Castle ->Osaka Aquarium -> JR Namba

    Then, 2 days in Dotunburi after the schedule above. Which pass should we get?

    Thank you!!!

Copied title and URL