Amerikamura Osaka, known more commonly amongst locals by the name Amemura, literally translates as “American Village” and unsurprisingly is a part of Osaka that’s been influenced by the pop culture of the United States. It’s a popular entertainment and shopping district that’s popular with Osaka’s youth and has an eclectic, energetic vibe.
There are a lot of American themed places in the area – burger joints, diner-like cafes and loads of American vintage and modern pop influenced clothing shops. Need a Harley Davidson jacket, a Lady Gaga t-shirt, or a piece of clothing with some badly translated American catchphrases written on it? This is the place for you.
There are a lot of music stores in the area, and as for the music itself, there’s a lot of American music playing from the various shops.
Given the popularity of Purikura with teenage girls in Japan, it’s no surprise to discover that Amerikamura is full of them. Purikura are photo sticker booths that were first developed by Altus and Sega in 1995. You got in with a few friends and get a few photos taken then apply any number of modifications to the images on touch screens to make the photos more animated and kawaii (cute). My friend who lived in Japan a few years back insisted we go in and it’s certainly an experience you’ll only get in Japan. I may have some photos hidden away somewhere 😉
Americamura is centred around Triangle Park which is a great place to people watch. You’ll see all sorts of wacky and interesting stuff going on around here.
I’ve never been to a country other than Japan where store owners can display goods for sale outside of their store, unattended without having to worry that anybody will steal anything. The level of trust in Japanese society is astounding.
This Alice in Wonderland themed shop’s fitout, both external and internal had a very high attention to detail.
I spent a while chilling out on this corner planning my next moves for the day as the store behind me was playing 2Pac’s Greatest Hits quite loudly which I was quite happy about.
We tried to visit a cat cafe but this one required bookings. There were some very fat, well looked after, lazy cats inside.
Amerikamura is an interesting part of Osaka to walk through. It’s certainly more youth-oriented than neighbouring Orange Street and has a vibe all of its own.