Your Complete Guide to Traveling from Namba to Awaji Island


With the number of foreign visitors to Japan reaching an incredible number of 3 million in March 2024, Osaka has become increasingly crowded, especially in bustling districts like Namba. Many tourists use Namba as a starting point to explore other tourist destinations, including Awaji Island.

In this article, we will guide you on how to get to Awaji Island from Namba, Osaka.

A Brief Introduction to Awaji Island

awaji island

As Japan becomes increasingly crowded with visitors, many people are seeking an escape to quieter destinations away from major touristic spots. Awaji Island is an ideal retreat. Located in the Seto Inland Sea, this island is highly known for its natural beauty, rich history, and delicious cuisine. It holds the distinction of being the first island created in Japan, according to Japanese historical records and myth.

What’s intriguing about Awaji Island is its unique blend of countryside charm and big-city appeal. Despite its rural atmosphere, the island has numerous luxurious and trendy seaside restaurants, cafés, and even the anime theme park as well as HELLO KITTY theater/restaurants/media art facility. Contrary to popular belief, transportation to Awaji Island is quite simple, making it an accessible getaway from Osaka.

1) Namba –> Sannomiya –> Awaji Island

Getting to Awaji Island from Namba is very simple. You just need to go to Sannomiya where from that point you can go to Awaji Island. From the Namba area in Osaka, the easiest way is to use the Hanshin Namba Line from Osaka-Namba Station (platform 3) to Kobe-Sannomiya Station.

The next step is to go to Awaji Island from Sannomiya. We recommend using the Awaji Resort Bus – Kita-Awaji Nishi-Kaigan Line (Shinki Bus). The bus service streamlines access to Awaji Island, and goes to the most popular places along the island’s amazing West Coast, including the anime theme park Nijigen no Mori, Zenbo Seinei, HELLO KITTY facilities, and many more!

The Kita-Awaji Nishi-Kaigan Line to Awaji Island departs from the “Shinki Bus Kobe Sannomiya Bus Terminal”. Please note that this is not the ” Sannomiya Bus Terminal (Mint Kobe)”. The two bus terminals are approximately a 2-minute walk from each other. Please refer to the map above to locate the correct terminal.

Please check the article below for details of the routes and schedule of the bus.

2) Namba –> Sannomiya –> Awaji Island (Through Awaji IC)

The Awaji Resort Bus – Kita-Awaji Nishi-Kaigan Line (Shinki Bus) is your best option for traveling to Awaji Island, but it runs only a few times a day, so your schedule might not always align with it.

Don’t worry, there’s another option that’s not as straightforward but still quite convenient. From Sannomiya Station, you can head to Awaji Interchange (IC). Two bus stops serve Awaji IC: one at Sannomiya Bus Terminal (Mint Kobe) and the other at Shinki Bus Kobe Sannomiya Bus Terminal. Both buses will take you to Awaji IC.

From Awaji IC, a free shuttle bus travels to all the major facilities on the west coast of Awaji Island. Simply inform the driver of your destination before boarding, and you’ll be all set!

Please check the article below for details of the routes and schedule of the bus.

Free Shuttle Bus: Convenient Transportation in Awaji Island

There is a free shuttle bus that travels around the facilities on the west coast of Awaji Island. This is the same bus that picks you up from Awaji IC if you are using the second option. It’s a very convenient way to get around the island. Please look for the bus with the design shown above.

Traveling Back to Osaka

Traveling from Awaji Island to Namba, or other areas in Osaka, is also easy. The return journey is simply the reverse of your trip to Awaji Island. The Kita-Awaji Nishi-Kaigan Line is the best option, as it goes directly to Sannomiya.

Alternatively, you can use the free shuttle bus to Awaji IC, and then take a bus to Sannomiya. From Sannomiya, getting to Osaka is very straightforward using the train.