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Minoo Park (ʌ, Minō Kōen, also spelled Mino or Minoh) is a forested valley on the outskirts of Osaka, just north of the urban sprawl. During the fall, it is one of the best places in the Kansai Region to see the autumn colors in a natural setting, as opposed to the attractive fall foliage found at temples and gardens. The colors are usually best in the second half of November.

Similar to Tokyo's Mount Takao, Minoo Park is the closest spot to the busy metropolis of Osaka to find a spacious natural recreation area. The park can be reached in less than 30 minutes from the downtown Umeda area. Another similarity, Takao and Minoo were both given quasi-national park status in 1967 to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the Meiji Period (1868-1912).

Minoo Park's main hiking trail extends about three kilometers through a valley alongside the Minoo River. The trail begins near Hankyu Minoo Station and leads to the Minoo Waterfall. With a height of 33 meters, the waterfall is the park's main natural attraction. The name Minoo Waterfall comes from the fall's resemblance to winnowing, a traditional farming technique to separate grains from husks (the Japanese word for "winnow basket" is "mino"). The name was later applied to the area in general.

The trail from the station to the waterfall does not have any dramatic inclines, is paved and should take most hikers about 45 minutes to walk (one way). The first half of the trail passes by several shops, temples buildings and other facilities, while the later half is a bit steeper and surrounded by trees.

Among the few temple buildings along the hiking trail, Ryuanji Temple is the most impressive. Located at about the midpoint between the train station and the waterfall, the temple is part of the Shugendo mountain worship religious sect and has a number of interesting buildings.

During the fall season the shops alongside the path sell an interesting snack called momiji tempura: maple leaves deep fried in batter. The park also has a small insectarium and more extensive hiking trails, which lead to observation points and into the hills beyond the waterfall.

Getting there and around

Minoo Park starts a short walk north of Hankyu Minoo Station.

From Umeda in central Osaka, take the Hankyu Takarazuka Line from Hankyu Umeda Station to Ishibashi Sation (15 minutes) and transfer to the Hankyu Minoo Line to Minoo Station (5 minutes). The entire one way trip takes about 25 minutes, costs 280 yen and is not covered by the Japan Rail Pass. There are frequent connections.

How to get to and around Osaka

Hotels around Osaka

    • Kaneyoshi Ryokan
      A modern Japanese inn in Dotombori. the center of Osaka. 2 subway stations nearby. Close to many shops and Osaka Castle.
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    • Guest House Yadomaru
      Budget-friendly
      Set in Osaka and within 500 metres of Tempozan Ferris Wheel, Guest House Yadomaru has a shared lounge, non-smoking rooms, and free WiFithroughout the property. Built in 2017, this 1-star guest house is within 3.1 km of Isoji Central Park and 3.2 km of Minato Kumin Centre. Hirao Park is 5.8 km from the guest house and Aeon Mall Osaka Dome City is 5.8 km away. At the guest house the rooms are equipped with a shared bathroom. Ansei Earthquake Tsunami Monument is 6.3 km from Guest House Yadomaru, while Universal Studios Japan is 6.4 km from the property. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 27 km from the accommodation.
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    • Guesthouse Ten-roku - Female Only
      Budget-friendly
      Attractively set in the centre of Osaka, Guesthouse Ten-roku - Female Only features free WiFithroughout the property and free bikes. Boasting a shared lounge, the guest house is close to several noted attractions, around less than 1 km from Seibi Park, a 12-minute walk from Toyosaki Shrine and 1.2 km from Catholic Osaka Umeda Church. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, a shared kitchen and luggage storage for guests. All guest rooms in the guest house are fitted with a coffee machine and an iPad. The rooms have a shared bathroom, slippers and bed linen. Popular points of interest near Guesthouse Ten-roku - Female Only include Tsunashikiten Shrine Otabisha, Hankyu Men's Osaka and Taiy?-ji Temple. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 20 km from the accommodation.
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    • Hotel 88 Shinsaibashi
      Mid-range
      Hotel 88 Shinsaibashi is an 8-minute walk from OCAT (Osaka City Air Terminal) and a 10-minute walk from Namba Station. Glico Man Sign is a 4-minute walk from the property. Free WiFi is available in all rooms. Featuring modern d?cor, all rooms come with air conditioning and heating facilities, a flat-screen TV and pajamas. Private bathroom includes a bath, walk-in shower, hairdryer, toilet with an electronic bidet and free toiletries. Free luggage storage is available at the 24-hour front desk. Guests can enjoy billiards at the property. There is a drinks vending machine, and laundry service can be arranged. Tsutenkaku and Shinsekai shopping street are a 16-minute train ride away. Osaka Itami Airport is a 45-minute drive from Hotel 88 Shinsaibashi.
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    • HOTEL THE LEBEN OSAKA
      Luxury
      Well set in the centre of Osaka, HOTEL THE LEBEN OSAKA provides American breakfast and free WiFi throughout the property. This 4-star hotel offers a 24-hour front desk. Private parking is available on site. All units are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, free toiletries and a wardrobe. Popular points of interest near the hotel include TKP Shinsaibashi Ekimae Conference Center, Stage Ku and Shinsaibashi Station. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 21 km from HOTEL THE LEBEN OSAKA.
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    • MIMARU Osaka Shinsaibashi North
      Luxury
      Located in the Chuo Ward district in Osaka, MIMARU Osaka Shinsaibashi North offers 4-star rooms with free WiFi. This 4-star hotel offers luggage storage space. The property is 500 metres from Stage Ku, and within 2.3 km of the city centre. All units are equipped with air conditioning, a fridge, a microwave, a kettle, a bidet, a hairdryer and a wardrobe. At the hotel every room is equipped with a private bathroom and bed linen. Popular points of interest near MIMARU Osaka Shinsaibashi North include TKP Shinsaibashi Ekimae Conference Center, Shinsaibashi Station and Namba Shrine. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 21 km from the accommodation.
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    • Houseږx
      Mid-range
      Located in Osaka, 200 metres from Shimoyamatobashi Monument and 1.2 km from the centre, Houseږx provides air-conditioned accommodation with free WiFi, and a terrace. Each unit is equipped with a balcony, a fully equipped kitchen with a microwave, a seating area, a TV, a washing machine, and a private bathroom with bath and slippers. A fridge, a stovetop and kitchenware are also provided, as well as a kettle. Popular points of interest near the apartment include Hoan-ji Temple, Nipponbashi Monument and Zojugoi Yasuidoton Dobokukiko Monument. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 22 km from Houseږx.
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    • Citadines Namba Osaka
      Luxury
      Citadines Namba Osaka has a fitness centre, shared lounge, a restaurant and bar in Osaka. With free WiFi, this 4-star hotel offers a shared kitchen and a 24-hour front desk. The property is 700 metres from the city centre and 300 metres from Nipponbashi Catholic Church. At the hotel the rooms include air conditioning, a seating area, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a safety deposit box and a private bathroom with a shower, free toiletries and a hairdryer. The rooms have a kettle, while some rooms are fitted with a kitchen with a stovetop. At Citadines Namba Osaka each room is fitted with bed linen and towels. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Nipponbashi Park, Komyo-ji Temple and Shinko-ji Temple. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 22 km from Citadines Namba Osaka.
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    • HOTEL THE FLAG Shinsaibashi
      Mid-range
      3-star accommodation, HOTEL THE FLAG Shinsaibashi is located in central Osaka, 600 metres from Dotonbori River and the Ebisu Tower Ferris Wheel, 700 metres from popular music and shopping district America Village. Conveniently located in the Chuo Ward, the hotel is situated 2.4 km from Shinsekai. The hotel offers a 24-hour front desk with multi-lingual staff. Free WiFi is available at the hotel. Each air-conditioned room is equipped with a flat-screen TV and desk. Free toiletries and rain shower are provided in all rooms, while certain rooms feature a bathtub. A buffet breakfast is available daily at the hotel. Traditional locations such as Shitennoji Temple and Kuromon Ichiba Market are within 2.5 km from the hotel. Osaka Itami Airport and Kansai International Airport are both less than a one-hour train ride from HOTEL THE FLAG Shinsaibashi.
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    • MIMARU OSAKA SHINSAIBASHI WEST
      Luxury
      Featuring 4-star accommodation, MIMARU OSAKA SHINSAIBASHI WEST is situated in Osaka, 600 metres from Namba Shrine and less than 1 km from Samuhara Shrine. This 4-star hotel offers a 24-hour front desk, luggage storage space and free WiFi. The property is 400 metres from Kokoni Sunaba Ariki Monument, and within 1.9 km of the city centre. The rooms are fitted with air conditioning, a fridge, a microwave, a kettle, a bidet, a hairdryer and a wardrobe. At the hotel rooms include a private bathroom and bed linen. Popular points of interest near MIMARU OSAKA SHINSAIBASHI WEST include Manpuku-ji Temple, Wakoji Temple and Orange Street. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 20 km from the accommodation.
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    • LIBER HOTEL AT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS JAPAN
      Luxury
      LIBER HOTEL AT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS JAPAN features air-conditioned rooms with satellite flat-screen TV in the Osaka Bay district of Osaka. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and ticket service, along with free WiFi. The hotel has a garden and provides a terrace. Guest rooms in the hotel are equipped with a kettle. All units will provide guests with a fridge. A continental breakfast is available daily at LIBER HOTEL AT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS JAPAN. Universal Studios Japan is 3.1 km from the accommodation, while Tempozan Ferris Wheel is 6 km away. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 22 km from LIBER HOTEL AT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS JAPAN.
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