The ancient Japanese city of Osaka has launched multiple campaigns to celebrate Pride and let the world know LGBTQ+ travelers are welcome in the city.
The city’s tourism board had teamed with local businesses, restaurants, and hotels to offer special “One Cup Rainbow” sake from Ozeki Corporation served in a rainbow glass bearing the message “One Love, One Cup.” Portions of the sales will be donated to city’s Kansai Rainbow Festa Pride event. Last year the company, founded in 1711, became the first sake producer to embrace diversity and support Pride.
Osaka has also launched the Open Arms Project to promote the inclusive and affirming environment of the city regardless of sexuality, gender, or national origin. The project has produced a video campaign entitled Visit Gay Osaka (below), featuring a gay couple exploring the city’s many dining and tourism options, and exchanging rings in a traditional ceremony.
Osaka has the second-highest number of LGBTQ+ bars of any city worldwide, with well over 100 located in the city’s Doyama district. It’s also the birthplace to Japan’s first, oldest, and longest-running drag queen party, Diamonds Are Forever, although the party has since moved to Kyoto. The annual Kansai Rainbow Festa, the city’s Pride event, is tentatively scheduled to take place this October.
The city was recently declared an IGLTA Featured Destination for LGBTQ+ travelers, and the Osaka Convention and Tourism Board has been working hard to ensure queer travelers know they are welcome and wanted in the vibrant and modern city with a history dating back thousands of years.
Out travelers to the city will find a wealth of information on the gay scene and establishments at www.visitgayosaka.com. Visitors to the site will also find helpful tips for what to see and do beyond the gay scene in the city.