Nanyo-dori shopping street is 180 meters long running from North to South in the eastern part of Ebisu-higashi 3 chome, in Osaka. It is commonly known as "Janjan Yokocho Alley." When the Tobita red-light district existed from Meiji era (1868-1912) to post-WWII, the shops used shamisen (a three-stringed Japanese banjo) players to call in customers. The name of "Janjan Yokocho" apparently is derived from the onomatopoeia of the jangled loud sound of a shamisen playing. Restaurants and bars serving tasty and affordable dishes as well as drinks familiar amongst local Osaka people, are packed side by side along this tight shopping street. The width of the street is only 2.5 meters.
Restaurants, stores in the shopping street
Janjan Yokocho Alley is home to Osaka's "B-grade gourmet restaurants." These so-called "B-grade" gourmet dishes refer to the ordinary but tasty and cheaper cuisine of Osaka including kushi-katsu (deep-fried pork on skewers), sushi, yakiniku (grilled meat), udon noodles, and the eateries, coffee shops, and standing drink bars where they are served. Restaurants and bars in the alley have a nostalgic atmosphere in which they serve meals at inexpensive prices. You should drop by some of them. Janjan Yokocho Alley also has many go and shogi (Japanese chess) clubs. It may be a good idea to visit there if you are interested in go or shogi.
It is recommended to take public transportation to go to Janjan Yokocho Alley. The nearest stations are Shin-imamiya station of the JR Osaka Loop Line and Dobutsuen-mae station of the Midosuji Line and Sakaisuji Line of the Osaka Municipal Subway. It takes roughly five minutes on foot to the Alley from both stations.
Image Gallery: Janjan Yokocho Alley
Description: Janjan Yokocho Alley
Map: Janjan Yokocho Alley