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Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens celebrates its 80th anniversary! Feel your heart race at the sight of the Sumatran tiger up close!

Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens marked its 80th anniversary on March 3, 2017, and to commemorate such a milestone, it will hold an event titled “Taiken! Gyoten! Higashiyama! Higashiyama 80th” (Experience! Be amazed! Higashiyama! Higashiyama 80th) from March 18th (Sat.) until June 4th (Sun.). In the course of the event, various shows and events will be held, including exhibitions where you will feel the animals up close and events that will give you a feeling of being one with nature.

The wild animal houses have been renovated! Snow leopards are actively running around in their enclosure now!

In line with the commemorative event, the snow leopard house has been extended to put in a second floor. By nature, snow leopards live in alpine zones, where the temperatures are low, and run up rocky mountains and other high places. By adding the second floor, they will not be limited to lateral movements anymore. Guests can now witness them moving up and down their enclosure.

The Sumatran tiger on the other side of a glass wall is such a thrilling sight!

Further, a part of the wild animal house where the Sumatran tiger lives has been changed to glass paneling. There used to be a 1.8-meter distance between the cage holding the tiger and the railing where people stand, but the glass walls have made things more intense as the tiger can be seen from such a short distance now. There are no more cages, so it has become much easier to observe and take photos of the tiger!

There will also be an exhibit on the “Complete Skeleton of an African Elephant,” something that is rarely seen in zoos, and the “Dinosaur Monument & Square,” which was built to commemorate the 1st anniversary of the zoo, will be renovated (scheduled to be unveiled to the public in late April).

There will be an exhibit on priceless historical heritage, including a display of Tafel Anatomie

In the Keisuke Ito Memorial Hall inside Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens, the “Siebold and Keisuke Ito Exhibit” will be mounted. Keisuke Ito was the first Doctor of Science in Japan from Nagoya who lived from the late Edo period until the Meiji era. He was a great man who was associated with Philipp Franz von Siebold, a Dutch physician. The memorial hall dedicated to him is already filled with items related to him that were preserved by his descendants, but in celebration of the zoo’s 80th anniversary, a special exhibit about him will be held. Guests will get to see “Tafel Anatomie” (a medical text in Dutch language), the book that became the basis of “Kaitai Shinsho” (New Text on Anatomy) which was published by Genpaku Sugita during the Edo period, as well as the microscope that was given to him by Siebold. There are only four copies of “Tafel Anatomie” in existence in Japan today, and this book’s exhibit at Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens this year comes after a hiatus of 10 years.

Further, a new smartphone app called “Higashiyama80” will be released to make Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens even more fun and exciting. This application is designed to help guests make original illustrated guides for the zoo and gardens, so if you take photos of plants, animals and spots inside the park and then upload them into the application, various trivia and tips about them will automatically be added. You can even get the latest information inside the park. There is also a raffle wherein you can win a prize just by uploading a lot of qualifying photos, so try to use the app when you go around the zoo and gardens.

Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens

3-70 Higashiyamamotomachi, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya-shi, Aichi

To top it all off, limited merchandise and gourmet dishes will be sold, and events that will let guests try feeding the animals and take part in treasure hunting games will be held to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical gardens. So, it looks like this zoo will be more fun than usual this spring! [This article was originally published in Walkerplus on 03.04.2017]

*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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