Dotonbori, Japan, Osaka

Travel Guide: Tombori River Cruise in Osaka, Japan

Dotonbori is Osaka’s most famous tourist attraction and has been called the heart of Osaka, known for its bright and extravagant neon lights, which pierce the night and reflect off the surface of the Dotonbori Canal. This “bright heart” of Osaka is a colorful must-see anytime you travel through Japan’s Kansai region.

To be honest, I haven’t considered doing the cruise as I thought it’s going to be expensive until I read that when you get an Osaka E-Pass, you’ll be able to enjoy the ride for FREE.

What Is Tombori River Cruise?

The Tombori River Cruise takes you to a delightful “stroll” along the the Dotonbori Canal, let your breath be taken away by a brand-new view of Dotonbori, packed with some of Naniwa’s most well-known sights. The mini-cruise usually takes 20 minutes and they have a friendly tour guide on board to give you brief history and facts of this vibrant district.

How To Get Tickets To Tombori River Cruise

You can purchase tickets at the reception center by the boarding point. A ticket costs ¥700 for adults (including students above junior high school age) and ¥300 for elementary school students.

You may also get an Osaka E-Pass, it gives you unlimited travel via subways, new trams and city buses within Kansai. Plus FREE ride to Tombori River Cruise.

Things To Remember

  • Tickets are sold at the reception center located along the Tombori River Walk, in front of the “Don Quixote” Dotonbori store, a discount store by the Tazaemon-bashi Bridge. The building with the yellow Ferris wheel.
  • The boarding point is just behind the reception center.
  • Queue can get busy at night, what I did was: Had dinner before doing the cruise (it was my last activity for the day).
  • When using the Osaka E-Pass:
    • Required to show the pass at the ticket counter (opens an hour before the first ship ) and exchange for the designated cruise’s boarding pass
    • It is recommended to exchange the ticket during the daytime since evening cruises sell out quickly
    • You can’t go on board when all seats are taken
    • Operated in case of light rain
    • There may be more cruises depending on the season
    • You can only use one from 09, 10
    • Phone reservation is not accepted


Attraction Details
English name: Tombori River Cruise
Japanese name: とんぼりリバークルーズ
English address: 1 Chome-9 Dotonbori, Chuo Ward, Osaka, 542-0071, Japan
Japanese address: 〒542-0071 大阪府大阪市中央区道頓堀1丁目9
Business hours: Weekdays 1:00 PM – 11:00 PM, departs on the hour and half-hour
Weekends and holidays, peak days 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM, departs on the hour and half-hour
Phone: +81662114542
Nearest Station: Namba station of the Midosuji Line, Yotsubashi Line, and Sennichimae Line of the Osaka Municipal Subway,
Nihonbashi station of the Sennichimae Line and Sakaisuji Line of the Osaka Municipal Subway

📌 DISCLAIMER: Golden Island Senorita seeks to deliver readers with honest and straightforward reviews. This review is entirely based on my personal experience. I did not (and still do not) get any compensation for my visit, including freebies, gift vouchers, and the like, and I paid for the use of the facilities out of my own wallet. For more information, please check out our Disclosure page.

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Polly Amora

Polly Amora is the general manager of a privately owned corporation in Manila, Philippines. She is a life-long learner who is extroverted to the extreme, knows four languages, is loud and outspoken, and enjoys adventure in the mountains, the beach, and the city. You can throw her wherever and she'll handle it like a pro. Her weaknesses include ice cream and beer.

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  1. Fun! I’d love to visit. Thank you for sharing!

  2. risalopez says:

    Osaka is such a beautiful place. I’ve been to Japan but in Fukushima and Niigata only. I never had a chance to visit Osaka. But next time I will try to.

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