There are many aquariums in Kyushu with various entertaining exhibitions, such as the aquarium with the warm Tsushima current as its theme, or the world's first futuristic aquarium floating on the sea. Here are 5 aquariums in Kyushu where you can reach from Fukuoka.
1. Oita Marine Palace Aquarium Umitamago
This aquarium, along the seashore looking over Beppu Bay, has the theme of being able to interact with fish. There are 15,000 sea creatures of around 500 species living here. 1,500 specimens from 90 species from the Bungo Channel are in the Big Migration Water Tank. The Sea Mammal Zone is home to elephant seals, dolphins, Stellar's sea lions, and seals. There's also a petting pool where you can touch rays, and in 2015, they opened the Asobeach, an area where you can play with freely swimming dolphins and fish. There are shows such as Splash Time (summer only) where dolphins splash a lot of water on guests, and the elephant seal show where the seals make the audience laugh by performing tricks like sit-ups. You can even tough the body or the shaggy beard of an elephant sea lion after the show!
2. Nagasaki Penguin Aquarium
There are 18 species of penguin in the world, and 9 of them, the largest number in Japan, are represented in this aquarium among 180 penguins. The biggest of them in this aquarium are king penguins, which are second in size to emperor penguins. Ginkichi the penguin, who died in 2002, still holds the record as the penguin that lived the longest in captivity. He lived in this aquarium for about 40 years. There are events on the weekends and holidays where you can feed or pet the penguins. There's a beach where you can watch penguins swim in the sea. There are also many sea creatures including marine and freshwater fish. This aquarium is great because you aren't limited to just looking around, but there's also a kayak ride or a nature experience zone.
3. Kujukushima Aquarium Umi Kirara
This aquarium exhibits an abundance of various sea creatures from the Kujukushima Islands, where some of the warm Tsushima current flows. Approximately 1,000 species live in the seas around the Kujukushima Islands, including more than 100 jellyfish species, more than 60 seashore-dwelling crabs, and 120 shellfish species. These are exhibited in the Jellyfish Symphony Dome and the large Kujukushima Bay Aquarium. They have rare species like the watage jellyfish, a newly discovered species as well as the heart-shaped Kiyohime aurita jellyfish. They also have bottlenose dolphins, giant groupers, green turtles, cow stingray families, and horseshoe crabs. The sight of a school of more than 10,000 sardines is impressive. Why not be soothed by the sparkling world of the Kujukushima Islands' seas?
4. Mutsugoro Aquarium
This aquarium, located in Isahaya Yuyu Land Kantaku no Sato, faces Nagasaki's Ariake Sea. There are 2,000 sea creatures from 100 species here, including fish and shellfish from the Honmyo River and the Ariake Sea. You can watch mudskippers, including a variety called mutsugoro that only lives in the Ariake Sea, walk on the tideland in the round, 5m Tideland Water Tank. They are famous for their looks, and can live on land even when the tide is low. There are also rare creatures like a male fiddler crab with only one big claw, an alien-like eel goby named Odontamblyopus lacepedii, a catfish called Pseudobagrus aurantiacus, and the roughskin sculpin. After you're done looking around the aquarium, you should check out the tideland, including the reclaimed land and the sea dike, and the tideland data library.
KENOUKIKAKU Co., Ltd.
KENOUKIKAKU Co., Ltd.
5. Wakuwaku Underwater Aquarium Sea Doughnut
This is the world's first floating aquarium, located in Amakusa, Kumamoto. The gigantic doughnut-shaped ship, which measures 50 by 34 meters and weighs 3,200 tons, floats in the sea off the coast of Matsushima. You can also reach the entrance of the aquarium by riding on the Fuguchan-go trolley (fee required). The ship is split into 7 zones, one for each continent, and you can enjoy going around the world with various fish, such as piranhas and electric eels in the South America zone and axolotls in the North America zone. From the windows of the ship, you can watch schools of fish playing underwater and coral so close that it feels like you can touch them. There are also various dolphin programs. When they hold the Night Aquarium, viewing the lights of the sea fireflies is popular (reservation required).
Dragon moray from the Asia zone
Siberian sturgeon from the cold region zone
There are approximately 20,000 species of marine fish on Earth, and 3,500 of them in Japan. Almost 30% of those Japanese species live around the Kujukushima Islands, so that tells you how rich the ocean around Kyushu is. Thanks to the this, each aquarium has a unique and relaxing atmosphere that sparkle with their own unique charms. Definitely pay a visit!
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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