Kaiyukan(海遊館): Osaka aquarium

Kaiyukan (大阪海遊館) is one of the most magnificent aquariums in the world. Giant whale sharks are the primary attraction of this aquarium. There are 15 tanks of aquatic creatures set in different zones. Each zone is named based on the original habitat of the aquatic species kept there. The best thing about this aquarium is that the natural habitat of the organisms are recreated at its best for them to live peacefully interacting with other creatures of the same environment. The entrance fee costs 2300 yen for adults.


Osaka aquarium building is an enormous building with eight floors situated near the Osaka bay. After checking the entrance pass, we were welcomed into the aquarium through a beautiful tunnel. Sharks, rays and other fishes were swimming above and on our sides. We were guided to the topmost part of the aquarium from where our journey through the marine world begins.


The first part of the aquarium is the ‘Japan Forest’ which is a recreated forest with rocks, waterfalls, and canopy through which sun rays are falling down. Small clawed Otters and Giant Salamanders are the main attractions of this section. Many varieties of fishes were also swimming around. Otters were moving around us beyond the glass walls.

It leads to a spiral sloping path, that took us into the vast marine world. The water tanks are kept around us in a circle and we were moving down through the spiral pathway watching the aquatic species around us. The biggest tank of this aquarium is situated at the center of this pathway which has different types of small and large Pacific fishes. It is named as the ‘Pacific Ocean’ with a depth of 9 meters and length of 32 meters. This tank holds the Whale fishes which are the largest fish species in the world along with other fishes of the Pacific ocean. The small tanks on the other side have various species of marine organisms kept in their shoals.

Aleutian Island is the tank where the Sea Otters are kept. Another tank named Monterey Bay have Harbor Seals, California Sea Lions etc.

Gulf of Panama holds the Ring-tailed Coati that climbs and jumps on the trees swaying over the water underneath where the fishes of Panama were swimming around. The Long-Spine Porcupine fish is one among the main attractions of Gulf of Panama. Ecuador Rain Forest is the section with Pirarucu fish, the largest fresh water fish in the world and Capybara, the largest rodents are kept.

 

 

Capybara
“Antartica” tank

The zone of Antarctica has lots of penguins swimming and walking around. They are kept in thick glass tanks with rocks and the environment is preserved in Antartican temperature. The Tasman Sea is the tank that keeps the many white sided Dolphins who are always busy swimming around in the tank.

 

The Seto Inland Sea is the tank with Spiny Lobsters and Octopus. There is a tank with seasonal exhibits which changes in every season. The Coast of Chile tank with Japanese Anchovies, the Cook Strait tank with loggerhead sea turtle, pink and blue maomao, the Japan Deep tank with giant Japanese Spider Crabs, giant isopods etc. are the other sections.

Japanese spider crabs
Loggerhead sea turtle

The beautiful coral reefs with small and colourful fishes swimming around could be watched as we move towards the bottom portion of the aquarium through the spiral ramp. There are small and big tanks with beautiful jelly fishes of various types, fairies, sea horses etc.

The Third floor has an interactive section with three different portions. The Artic zone is an area where the visitors can watch the ringed seals in an icy environment. The recreated habitat of these animals could be felt by the visitors while experiencing their sounds and movements in snow and water. Penguins could be watched in the Falkland Island section where the rock hopper penguins are kept in an open space to interact with the visitors. We can see them walking and jumping on rocks just behind a short glass wall. Maldives zone is an area where the Rays and sharks are kept in a touch tank and the visitors are allowed to touch them.


Feeding time of the marine animals is scheduled at fixed timings every day. It is another interesting thing things to watch while visiting the aquarium. Please check here for the feeding schedule.

Many souvenir shops are also situated on the ground floor of the Kaiyukan. Tempozan shopping market, Tempozan Ferris wheel etc. are also situated very near to the aquarium which could also be explored while travelling to Kaiyukan.

Official website(ENG): http://www.kaiyukan.com/language/eng/