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The world underwater is an interesting place! 5 Aquariums Where You Can Meet Rare Creatures

It's said that based on the Japanese population, there are a huge number of aquariums. Various aquariums exhibit a diverse amount of creatures. Here are 5 aquariums where you can meet some rare, precious creatures. Why not add seeing a unique creature to your memories of the trip?

1. Dugong at Toba Aquarium

This is the only aquarium where you can meet dugong, the marine mammals said to be the basis of mermaids. They have about 30,000 creatures exhibited from 1,200 species, the most of any aquarium in Japan. This aquarium was in the news thanks to its giant isopod, which set a record for amount of time fasting. In the Ancient Ocean area, there are creatures that have existed since the Paleozoic and Mesozoic eras, including horseshoe crabs, chambered nautili, alligator gar, and living fossils like sand tiger sharks. The idols of the aquarium are the dugong Serena, as well as green turtles, black finless porpoises, capybaras, and sea otters. The event outfits of the walruses and eared seals in the shows and the electric tree made of electric eels attract lots of attention.

The dugong Serena


1. Dugong at Toba Aquarium

3-3-6 Toba, Toba-shi, Mie

2. Aqua World, where there are many rare sharks

The logo of Aqua World is a shark. You can see 49 types of unique sharks from around the world, like the smooth-hound shark. This is the only place in Japan where you can see that many different kinds of sharks. You can also watch the sharks from above the tank. They also have a tank dedicated to Japan's biggest ocean sunfish. The ocean sunfish is very popular tanks to its large, characteristic body and dumb face, but it's very hard to raise! You can watch five of them swim around peacefully. While the huge, rare fish get a lot of attention, the young fuusenuo (Eumicrotremus pacificus) and lumpsuckers will make you smile without realizing because they're very cute and will warm your heart.

The huge tank housing sharks


2. Aqua World, where there are many rare sharks

8252-3 Isohama-cho, Oarai-machi, Higashi-Ibaraki-gun, Ibaraki

3. See the rare whale shark at Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan was the first aquarium in Japan to reach 70 million visitors. In the Pacific Ocean tank, you can see a coupled pair of whale sharks (a precious species preserved by the Washington Convention) swimming leisurely. The female is 5.03m long and weighs 1,100kg. The tank they live in is the 5th biggest tank in the world, so the sheer size of the tank has also attracted attention. Other popular attractions are the very rare, seldom seen animals collected from the Arctic Ocean, as well as Moya, the ringed seal that looks like Darth Vader from the Star Wars movies.

The Washington Convention, or CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora), is a multilateral treaty to protect endangered plants and animals.

Whale shark

Ringed seal

3. See the rare whale shark at Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

1-1-10 Kaigandori, Minato-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka

4. Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium, where beluga whales are born

This aquarium facing Nagoya Port has about 50,000 creatures of around 500 species exhibited here. In the north building, there are marine mammals like orcas, belugas, and bottlenose dolphins are housed. In 2004, they succeeded at being the first aquarium in Japan to successfully breed beluga whales, and since then they have birthed 5 belugas. Of those 5, 2 of them are living healthily in the aquarium. The main pool is 60m long, the longest in Japan, and there you can see a dolphin performance. In the south building, they introduce creatures categorized by region and water area, such as the ocean around Japan. Next to the aquarium is a turtle breeding and research facility, and the sea turtles born there are released back into the wild.

Feeding the belugas

Orcas and dolphins

4. Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium, where beluga whales are born

1-3 Minato-cho, Nagoya-shi, Aichi

5. Tokyo Sea Life Park, where tuna swim in schools

This aquarium is managed by Kasai Rinkai Park, facing Tokyo Bay. The huge glass dome rising 30m into the air will catch your eye. Below it is a 2,200t doughnut-shaped tank, and in it is a school of tuna! You can also watch penguins swim in circles, among other sights available in their more than 600 specimens of marine life from all around the world. In the Tokyo's Sea area on the 1st floor of the main building, there's a new exhibit about plankton. The guided tour where an expert teaches you about the creatures as you move around the aquarium is popular.

Pacific bluefin tuna


5. Tokyo Sea Life Park, where tuna swim in schools

6-2-3 Rinkai-cho, Edogawa-ku, Tokyo

Japan, which is surrounded by water on all sides, has many aquariums that not just exhibit but also research. The exhibits are always changing and switching based on new challenges. There are many rare creatures that you can't see anywhere else, so if you go to Japan, please check out an aquarium or two!

*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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