Explore Expocity & Japan's Biggest Ferris Wheel

A symbol of the 1970 World Expo held in Osaka, artist Taro Okamoto's Tower of the Sun stands tall, arms outstretched, looking out at all around him. Soon, this iconic statue will be looking up and across the Expo ’70 Commemorative Park to Expocity and a newer, taller attraction: the Redhorse Osaka Wheel.

Japan's Tallest Ferris Wheel

EXPOCITY Redhorse Osaka Wheel -- Photo Courtesy of Redhorse Corporation

 The New Redhorse Osaka Wheel Towers Over Expocity -- Photo by Lauren Shannon
Debuting on July 1, 2016, this ferris wheel, standing at 123 metres, is Japan's tallest and the fifth highest in the world. Special shock absorbers are used to mitigate any shaking from potential earthquakes. Glass gondolas, temperature-controlled according to season, also allow passengers sweeping -- or sweat-inducing -- views of the surrounding area. Should you be afraid of heights, touchscreen tablets displaying local attractions on "Expo TV" provide a welcome distraction. The carriages seat six people, while the two VIP gondolas have extra room and are equipped with LED lighting.
The ferris wheel and accompanying Redhorse Marumie Plaza, which sells Expo '70-type Tower of the Sun ice creams and ferris wheel tickets, are owned and operated by Odigo's parent company, Redhorse Corporation. Yet by no means are they the only go-to spots at the new LaLaPort EXPOCITY shopping mall and centre.

Learn -- or Shop -- 'Til You Drop

Nature is Red at Orbi (Osaka) -- Photo by Jane K
EXPOCITY has been billed as Japan's largest shopping mall. The complex also contains a number of educational theme parks, such as Orbi (Osaka) and the Nifrel aquarium. The former is an interactive nature experience centre with content and tech provided by BBC Earth and Sega. The latter, run by the same team as the world-famous Osaka Aquarium, is an exploration of all things related to oceanic waters.

Pokemon Expo Gym at EXPOCITY -- Photo by Jane K
Fans of Japanese pop culture are also given a nod at EXPOCITY. Pokemon enthusiasts are well served by the Pokemon EXPO GYM, a gymnasium and cafe/shop selling all things Pikachu.

Duelling Gundam Figures -- Photo by Jane K
The more conventional Gundam Square Shop and Gundam Cafe stocks figurines, stationery and even instant retort (pouch) Gundam curry. Gundam-themed cakes and snacks are also available.

Open for Business -- Photo from Flickr cc by Gorimon
The mall is a good place to stop and refuel if you are exploring the general Suita or northern Osaka area. The food court is especially family friendly. Residents of Japan will also appreciate the center's international offerings whether it be food, fashion or both. 4D and IMAX cinemas round out an excellent entertainment experience.
Before summer's end, be on the lookout for Odigo at EXPOCITY near the ferris wheel. We will soon be offering a selection of Odigo services within the Redhorse Marumie Plaza.

 The View Across to Expo '70 Commemoration Park -- Photo by Lauren Shannon 
Perhaps the Tower of the Sun is keen to join in on the fun.
Getting there:
  • To reach Osaka EXPOCITY by public transport, take the monorail and get off at Banpaku Kinen Koen Station
  • You can also take the bus from JR Ibaraki Station (Osaka) and disembark at EXPOCITY Mae bus stop
  • EXPOCITY is within walking distance from either destination

Explore more of EXPOCITY and its surrounds 

Jane K