Help Rescue Sumida Aquarium’s Spotted Garden Eels by Showing Your Face Online
29.April.2020 | SPOT
Something unprecedented is happening over at Sumida Aquarium. The living creatures at the aquarium are starting to forget about humans as a result of the building’s closure in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, save for the aquarium staff who are looking after them. In the case of their spotted garden eels, the eels are now hiding in the sand, even when the aquarium staff check in on them.
What exactly is happening with the spotted garden eels?
Spotted garden eels by nature are extremely fragile and alert creatures, and so are prone to diving under the sand to hide themselves. Around 300 of these eels live in a single tank at Sumida Aquarium, and since they are used to people being in the aquarium all the time, they rarely bury themselves even when people get close. However, since the closure of Sumida Aquarium on March 1, 2020, a change has been seen in the spotted garden eels.
Humans not being around is the new norm for the eels. It’s as if they have forgotten about the existence of humans, and now hide themselves away when the staff come through. With the eels no longer showing themselves to the staff, it has becoming difficult to run daily checks to see if the eels are unwell, famished, and so on. The change of environment may even lead to stress of the eels fighting. It has become a serious problem for the staff to ensure they are living an adequate quality of life.
That is where Sumida Aquarium’s “Spotted Garden Eel Face Reveal Festival” comes into play. The aquarium has called for emergency measures for people to video call in to show their faces to the eels so they don’t forget about humans and so they no longer feel afraid of people being around.
Spotted Garden Eel Face Reveal Festival
The festival is a chance for people to meet the spotted garden eels from their own home by using an iPhone, iPad or computer to call in using video chat. As long as you can video call, anyone is free to join. Two sessions will be held per day where people can see the eels pop their heads out of the sand, feed, and so on.
This is the first time Sumida Aquarium has held such a project, and it may or may not work, but they won’t know unless they try. Check the dates below and see if you can get involved.
May 3rd @ 10:30-14:00 (JST)
May 4th @ 10:30-14:00 (JST)
May 5th @ 10:30-14:00 (JST)
How to Participate
Use an iPhone or an iPad to FaceTime any of the Gmail addresses below.i
１）Open the FaceTime app and enter any of the Gmail addresses. Select video call.
２）Screens will be placed in front of the water tanks with the spotted garden eels live. Once the call starts, show your face, wave your hand, and call out to them. Please note that talking loudly is strictly prohibited.
３）5 screens was the limit of what could be set up. They ask for you to call for only 5 minutes so that many different people can show their face so it feels like lots of people at a festival.
*The aquarium apologies if the eels don’t show themselves
*The aquarium apologies in the case that anything goes wrong with the call
*Only iOS can be used at this time and not Android OS
World Heritage Site Nijo Castle to Welcome Gorgeous Goldfish Art Exhibition
Kyoto City and Art Aquarium are set to host Art Aquarium Castle -Kyoto・Kingyo Dance- this year at the World Heritage Site of Nijo Castle from October 14 to December 7.
Art Aquarium is an art, design, and entertainment fusion created by aquarium artist Hidetomo Kimura, who opened the first ART AQUARIUM MUSEUM in Nihonbashi, Tokyo back in August.
Art Aquarium Castle -Kyoto・Kingyo Dance- will be the first outdoor exhibition by Art Aquarium, vividly portraying the Japanese world of goldfish and carps through traditional Kyoto-inspired works.
Nijo Castle has a rich history. Constructed by Tokugawa Ieyasu in the early days of the Edo Bakufu, it is a striking symbol of the Edo Period. It will play as the stage for the exhibition, which will be themed on goldfish—which first arrived in Japan in the Muromachi Period and became a boom during the Edo Period—and carp, which were propagated to Japan in the Edo Period.
Displayed artwork will be inspired by the castle’s Ninomaru Palace and sliding door artwork, the season flowers that bloom in the Ninomaru Palace Gardens and castle grounds, and more. It will be a marriage of both historical art and contemporary art that captures the beauty of Japan.
Lotusrium: Its first exhibit in western Japan
The design motif based on the lotus, a flower whose name is a seasonal haiku word for summer. Lotus plants require thick, muddy water in order to make the large, beautiful flowers bloom, despite the hardship and difficulty they must overcome to do so. This art piece imbibes a worldview of grace and splendour that interweaves the lotus, a symbol of beautiful and painfully ephemeral things, with the kingyo, an elegant fish that swims beautifully.
Sakurarium: A flower symbolising Nijo Castle
Combined with the cherry blossom shape of compound works. Swimming freely under the shining of the cherry blossoms, those are goldfish bearing “Sakura” such as Sakura Nishiki, Sakura To Nishiki and Sakura Ryukin,
Taisei Hokan Kingyo Large Byobu: A large-scale piece capturing Nijo Castle’s history
The huge fish tank with a length of 5.4 meters and an expansion of 18 screens projected beautiful paintings like splash-ink art through light and shadow. Countless goldfish swim among them, interpreting the changing process of Japanese art history in the scattered lights.
Even more new artworks are scheduled to be displayed. If you’re in Kyoto this autumn, don’t miss Art Aquarium’s first-ever outdoor exhibition.
Art Aquarium Castle -Kyoto・Kingyo Dance-
Running: October 14 – December 7, 2020
*No Closing Days
Opening Hours: 17:00 – 22:00 (Last Entries: 21:30)
Location: Front yard of Ninomaru-goten Palace Daidokoro Kitchen, Courtyard of Ninomaru-goten Palace, Nijo Castle
* The exhibition will also take place in the Daidokoro Kitchen for a short period of time.
Address: 541 Nijo-jo-cho, Horikawa-nishi-iru, Nijo-dori, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto City
Official site： https://artaquarium.jp/branch/kyoto
Learn About Animal Sex Habits at Sunshine Aquarium’s Exhibition in Tokyo
16.August.2020 | SPOT
Following the success of last year’s event, Sunshine Aquarium in Ikebukuro, Tokyo is bringing back its animal reproduction-themed exhibition this year which will run in the evenings at the aquarium from September 12 to November 5.
The exhibition looks at the reproductive habits of various animals from different angles using informative explanation boards with cute illustrations amongst other things which enable visitors to learn things they probably didn’t know about this topic. During the run of the evening exhibition, all of the fish tanks and lighting throughout the aquarium will be turned pink, lending a more mature adult fun vibe to the event.
All visitors will be given a free lucky bag which has even more secret stuff inside than last year, as well as a ‘fitting’ prop for taking photos at the exhibition.
♡Sex Explanation Panels
The regular daytime panels which have captions explaining each animal will be replaced in the evenings with different explanations regarding their reproductive habits. Visitors can scan the QR codes on the panels to see cute illustrations of the animals along with descriptions.
Videos will be placed on screens located around five places in the aquarium showing the moment of different animals’ copulation, something which you normally can’t see when visiting the aquarium on a normal day.
The aquarium will be dyed a cute pink, including the outdoor rooftop area Marine Garden and the magical new jellyfish area that opened earlier this summer.
An original score of background music will sound throughout the aquarium to set the evening mood, lending an atmosphere that is different from that during the daytime. You might even hear different animal sounds in the music.
♡The “Tsun Tsun” Poking Wall
Visitors can learn about the genitalia of different animals at the exhibition, both by reading the panels or by poking the “Poking Wall” to understand the firmness of the genitals.
♡The “Kun Kun” Smelling Wall
Step on the pedal and you’ll be able to smell what the animals smell like, as well as the scents they give off to attract partners.
♡A drink filled with love
Sold at Aqua Pocket | ¥300 (Tax Included)
An original energy drink made by Sunshine Aquarium.
More sexy content online
Those unable to visit the aquarium can enjoy the variety of online content related to the exhibition.
♡Digital Lucky Bag (Fee Charged)
Check out a variety of informative videos and photos related to animal copulation and more, including content featured in the first exhibition.
♡Online Talk (Fee Charged)
An online talk will be held by the aquarium staff, and participants can take a quiz related to animal reproduction too. More information can be found here (Japanese).
Sunshine City Motto♡ Sei Ippai Exhibition (Japanese: もっと♡性いっぱい展)
Running: September 12, 2020 – November 5, 2020 (Closed October 31)
Regular Opening Hours: 10:00-18:00
Exhibition Opening Hours: 18:30-22:00 (Last Entries 21:00)
Official Website: https://sunshinecity.jp/file/aquarium/sexy/
Kyoto Aquarium Begins Special Opening Service For After 3 o’clock
02.August.2020 | SPOT
Kyoto Aquarium is now holding a special “off-peak” opening service after 3:00pm where visitors can receive free novelties amongst other things. The service began on July 23 and will run until September 30 this year.
The service comes as a measure against the spread of COVID-19. Normally, the aquarium can become crowded during the day, and to spread the number of visitors out, they are offering a special service for those visiting after 3:00pm. This means that visitors can enjoy the aquarium at a more relaxed pace and take their time.
But that’s not all. On days when the aquarium closes at 6:00pm, visitors will receive a free original Kyoto Aquarium seal made to promote the new jellyfish exhibition area which opened on July 16, 2020. And on days when it closes at 8:00pm, visitors will not only receive a free folder, but can get a serving of the aquarium’s mini soft serve ice cream at three times the amount as usual, or a free mini drink.
Kyoto Aquarium After 3 o’clock Special Service
Running: July 23, 2020 – September 30, 2020
[Closing Hours: 18:00] ①Jellyfish Seal
[Closing Hours: 20:00] Arriving between 15:00-17:00 = ①Jellyfish Seal / ①Jellyfish Folder, ②Mini Ice Cream or Mini Drink
*One novelty per person
*Aimed at visitors aged 3-years old and above who hold a valid ticket
*Harvest Cafe is open until 19:15
Official Website: https://www.kyoto-aquarium.com/
Tokyo’s Sumida Aquarium Begins Summer Evening ‘Penguin Firework’ Projection Mapping Event
28.July.2020 | SPOT
Sumida Aquarium began its new “Penguin Firework” projection mapping show on July 23 which is set to run on weekends and public holidays up to August 30.
Due to the situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, summer firework festivals up and down Japan have had to be cancelled. Sumida Aquarium conceived the idea of this event in response to this, since fireworks are a summer pastime in Japan.
Penguin Fireworks is an 8-minute show that uses projection mapping around the aquarium’s penguin pool to create kaleidoscopic firework patterns. Together with an original music score and the sound effects of fireworks, visitors are pulled into a magical performance as the penguins swim and dance around the lights.
Enjoy Japan’s summer fireworks this year at Sumida Aquarium.
Running: July 23, 2020 – August 30, 2020 (Weekends & Public Holidays Only)
Location: Sumida Aquarium’s Penguin Pool
Times: ①17:45, ②18:30, ③19:30 (8 minutes each)
*Times subject to change in the case of other events
Official Website: https://www.sumida-aquarium.com/
Tokyo’s New ART AQUARIUM MUSEUM to Open in Nihonbashi This Summer
26.July.2020 | SPOT
ART AQUARIUM MUSEUM is set to open in Nihonbashi, Tokyo on August 28, 2020. Produced by Hidetomo Kimura, the museum will be Art Aquarium’s first permanent museum which will fuse music and lighting to create a breathtaking aquarium experience
ART AQUARIUM MUSEUM will offer Art Aquarium’s biggest museum space to date, with each area having its own unique theme.
Dive into the extraordinary world of water. This area will showcase popular artworks of past events held by Art Aquarium, with artwork altered on an irregular basis from the company’s collection.
This area symbolises the modern Edo Hanamachi district, which represents the basic concept of the Art Aquarium. Feel the beautifully transient stories and gorgeous glittering world through the life of oiran.
Visitors are invited to an extraordinary world and surreal space, one with different dimensions beyond human wisdom. Is it on the ground? Underwater? In the universe? Stepping into this mysterious and overwhelming space where different worlds coexist at the same time will bring you incredibly unforgettable experiences.
Here, you can feel the Japanese aesthetics while gazing at Oimatsu, the cultural property drawn by the Kano school during the Edo period. Traditional art performances will often take place here too.
The sense of taste is most familiar to human beings among five basic human senses. Enjoy the Art Aquarium and feel the Japanese nostalgic atmosphere along with the original cuisines of the Cafe Lounge.
Souvenirs are essential for remembering the places where you have visited. Visit the gift shop and take away a piece of the dreamlike Art Aquarium world away with you.
ART AQUARIUM MUSEUM
Grand Opening: August 28, 2020
Address: 1-3 Nihonbashihoncho, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 10:00-22:00 (subject to change)
No Fixed Holidays (Except for planned maintenance, special events, and so on)
Official Website: https://artaquarium.jp/en/
Summertime has finally shone on Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise which began its “Sea Paradise Summer 2020” event on July 23. It’s set to run until August 31, and opening hours have been extended so visitors can enjoy the aquarium both in the morning and evening times. They are also now taking online bookings via their website.
Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise is Japan’s biggest aquarium, housing over 120,000 animals which span 700 different species. The facility houses 4 different aquariums as well as restaurants, attractions, and more. Visitors can see lots of different sea creatures like sea turtles, sea lions, jellyfish, sharks, and more. They even have red pandas, capybara, flamingos, and other animals too.
With opening hours extended, the aquarium has brought back its “LIGHTIA” night show which makes use of projection mapping, lasers, and moving lights as the audience join the dolphins and their trainers in the show.
There are lots of programs taking place where visitors can get close and interact with various sea creatures. There’s also the “Dolphin Fantasy,” an arch-shaped tank where dolphins swim overhead.
Sea Paradise 2020
Running: July 23, 2020 – August 31, 2020
Location: Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise
Official Website: http://www.seaparadise.co.jp/
Ikebukuro’s Sunshine Aquarium to Open Magical New Jellyfish Area
01.July.2020 | SPOT
Sunshine Aquarium in Ikebukuro, Tokyo is set to open its brand new jellyfish area as part of the aquarium’s third major renovation on July 9, 2020.
Jellyfish Panorama Tank
Two tanks will grace this area: the magnificent moon jellyfish will dance across the 14-meter wide “Jellyfish Panorama” tank, while sea nettle jellyfish, which are known for their long tentacles, will swim in the “Jellyfish Screen.”
The jellyfish exhibit already in Sunshine Aquarium is also being renovated, with gorgeous new flooring and walls being put in place. Six tanks will be housed here, including the 360° “Jellyfish Tunnel,” “Jellyfish Loop,” “Jellyfish Drop,” and “Jellyfish Dream.”
A Spectacular Performance of Music, Smells, and Lighting
The new jellyfish area will feature original sounds newly recorded to capture the vibe of the jellyfish’s movements. There will also be special fragrances you can smell, as well as beautiful lighting that twinkles like the swaying of the water. All of this serves to make visitors feel calm and relaxed.
Exclusive Tully’s Coffee Beverage
T’s Splash Nata de Coco in Oasis: Have-In ¥649 / Takeout ¥637
This refreshing carbonated drink is inspired by jellyfish filled with lemon flavoured nata de coco coconut jelly. Exclusive to Sunshine Aquarium, the drink comes with one of four possible special jellyfish straw flags.
Grand Opening Commemoration Products
High Grade Jellyfish Confection: ¥400
Limited in stock, this confection was made in collaboration with Ikebukuro’s long-stand confectionery shop Ikebukuro Miharado and also under the guidance of the aquarium’s jellyfish staff.
Jellyfish Konjac: ¥972
Konjac shaped just like real jellyfish.
Grand Opening Commemoration Menu
Jellyfish Cold Greens: ¥1,100 / CHUKA SHUNSAI RYOURI・HINABE SHU (Alpa Floor 3F)
Blue Hawaii Tiny Aquarium & Jellyfish Jelly: ¥495 AGIO (Alpa Floor 3F) *15 served per day
Select restaurants in Sunshine City Alpa will also serve up some limited-time jellyfish-inspired dishes and drinks from July 9 to celebrate the opening of Sunshine Aquarium.
Address: Sunshine City World Import Mart Bldg. Rooftop, 3-1 Higashiikebukuro, Toshima Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 9:30-21:00 (until September 10) / 10:00-18:00 (from September 11)
General (High School Students and Older) ¥2,200 (¥2,400 from July 9)
Children (Elementary & Junior High School Students) ¥1,200
Infants (Aged 4+ Years): ¥700
Official Website: https://sunshinecity.jp/
*Photos are for illustrative purposes only. All listed prices are tax-inclusive.
Kawasaki Aquarium to Open Inside Kawasaki Le FRONT This Summer
29.June.2020 | SPOT
Aqua Live Investment is set to open Kawasaki Aquarium, which will also be known as Kawa Sui for short, on floors 9F and 10F of Kawasaki Le FRONT, a shopping centre in front of Kawasaki Station, on July 17, 2020.
In the lead up to its grand opening, Kawasaki Aquarium launched its own official app, as well as opened purchases of Annual Passports to the aquarium, on June 17.
What is Kawasaki Aquarium all about?
The theme of Kawasaki Aquarium is “The World’s Beautiful Waters.” It will showcase creatures and living things from around the world—from the waters of Tama River which flows through Kawasaki to Asia, Africa, and the Amazon in South America—using the latest technology combining lighting, sound, and visuals.
There are three kinds of Annual Passports to choose from which let you access Kawasaki Aquarium as many times as you want throughout the year. They are valid for an entire year and let you bypass the ticket counter so you don’t have to line up. These passports can be bought via the aquarium’s official app before its grand opening. After that they can be bought either on the app or directly at the aquarium at the Passport counter.
Those who purchase an Annual Passport between June 17, 2020 and July 16, 2020 will receive an extra free two months on top of their guaranteed 12 months.
3 Annual Passport Types
Dual Passport: Daytime & Nighttime
Allowed Entry Times: [Day] 10:00-17:00 (Last Entries 16:00) / [Night] 18:00-22:00 (Last Entries 21:00)
Prices (Tax Included): Adults ¥6,000 / High School Students ¥4,500 / Elementary & Junior High School Students ¥3,600 / Children (4+ Years) ¥1,800
Daytime Passport: Daytime Only
Allowed Entry Times: [Day] 10:00-17:00 (Last Entries 16:00)
Prices (Tax Included): Adults ¥4,000 / High School Students ¥3,000 / Elementary & Junior High School Students ¥2,400 / Children (4+ Years) ¥1,200
Nighttime Passport: Nighttime Only
Allowed Entry Times: [Night] 18:00-22:00 (Last Entries 21:00)
Prices (Tax Included): Adults ¥4,000 / High School Students ¥3,000 / Elementary & Junior High School Students ¥2,400 / Children (4+ Years) ¥1,200
Experience the aquarium at night
Kawasaki Aquarium is open everyday until 22:00. Visiting the aquarium at this time offers a completely different experience as warm lights set the mood and different sounds play from daytime hours. It’s also a chance to see nocturnal creatures that only come out at night. Plus, the aquarium serves alcohol and bar food in the evenings.
Download the app
The Kawasaki Aquarium app is free to download and lets guests enjoy coupons with their Annual Passport, gives them the latest news about upcoming events, lets them access the online shop, and more.
Kawasaki Aquarium (Kawa Sui)
Address: Kawasaki Le FRONT (Floors 9F-10F), 1-11 Nisshinchō, Kawasaki-ku, Kawasaki, Kanagawa
Opening Hours: [Day] 10:00-17:00 (Last Entries 16:00) / [Night] 18:00-22:00 (Last Entries 21:00)
Official Website: https://kawa-sui.com
*No refunds are given on Annual Passports
*Student ID required for students
*Free entry for those aged 3-years and below
*Those aged 12-years and below must be accompanied by a parent or guardian aged 16+
Beautiful Jellyfish Umbrellas Designed by Kamo Aquarium Will Keep You Dry
26.April.2020 | FASHION
YOU+MORE!, a brand of humorous merchandise and accessories developed by Felissimo, has teamed up with the famous Kamo Aquarium to release a series of jellyfish umbrellas.
The intricate umbrella designs were developed in cooperation with the staff at Kamo Aquarium’s Jellyfish Dream House. Three different kinds of jellyfish were used as inspiration for the umbrellas.
Moon Jelly Umbrella
YOU+MORE! Moon Jelly Umbrella – ¥1,600
Moon jellyfish are perhaps one of the most popular kinds of jellyfish out there. What may be the most striking part of this umbrella is the colour gradation which gives it a transparent effect. The edges of the umbrella are also curved, giving it a delicate silhouette and making it look even more like the real things.
The umbrella’s frames are built strong, and the material of the umbrella itself is a white glass fibre which serves not only to mimic the colour of a moon jelly, but so that you can still see through it too. (As a side note, all three of the umbrella designs are made from glass fibre.)
Northern Sea Nettle Umbrella
YOU+MORE! Northern Sea Nettle Umbrella – ¥1,600
Like the northern sea nettle itself, this umbrella features a dome shape and incorporates a stripe design. A northern sea nettle has 16 stripes, and so that many were added to the umbrella. The jellyfish staff at the aquarium praised this one as the most realistic.
YOU+MORE! Spotted Jelly Umbrella – ¥1,600
Like the northern sea nettle, the spotted jelly too as a cute dome-shaped body. If someone who has never seen one of these jellyfish umbrellas before sees this design, they’ll think of it as just having cute spotted design. However, a jellyfish enthusiast is sure to get excited as the sight of this one with its details like its orange colour and the dots around the edges.
Kamo Aquarium will begin selling limited edition versions from the end of June this year which come with an ephyra charmーthat’s the name for a baby jellyfish. The aquarium is currently closed until May 6 due to the coronavirus. The latest updates can be found on their official website.
Address: Okubo-657-1 Imaizumi, Tsuruoka, Yamagata
Official Website (Japanese): https://kamo-kurage.jp/
Official Website (English): https://kamo-kurage.jp/english/
Must-Visit Spots in Kagawa Prefecture in 2020: Cherry Blossoms, Dolphins, Bonsai & More
15.March.2020 | SPOT
Appreciation for the Seto Inland Sea in Japan is on the rise: American company Discovery named Shikoku one of its Top 10 must-visit rising locations around the world for 2020, and the city of Setouchi in Okayama has featured as a recommended travel destination in Western media. One particular location, Kagawa Prefecture, has been featured on many international travel sites as a must-visit place, including on Booking.com, Skyscanner, and REMOTE LANDS, with places such as Takamatsu, Teshima, and Shōdo Island being picked up.
Takamatsu is known as the doorstep that brings together the many islands of Seto Inland Sea. It’s a port city with great fresh food, highly convenient for travellers wanting to visit lots of different islands, and a popular region that brings together elements of Japanese culture.
Today, we take a look at some must-visit locations around Takamatsu, including a new facility opening, must-visit spots for spring to early summer, food, and more.
Shikoku Aquarium – The largest aquarium in Shikoku
Shikoku Aquarium is set to be the largest across Shikoku when it opens its doors to the public on March 20, 2020. It’s located inside Utazu Seaside Park in the town of Utazu where it will exhibit the creatures that live in Shikoku and feature the many different seaside landscapes located there. But the aquarium won’t just stop at showcasing animals, it will also be a cultural facility where you can learn about the history, culture, and natural environment of Shikoku, and there’ll be artwork perfect for the Setouchi Triennale contemporary art festival which is held around Seto Inland Sea every three years.
Address: Utazu Rinkaikoen, 4-1 Utazu, Ayauta District, Kagawa
[March 20, 2020 – September 30, 2020] 9:00-18:00
[October 1, 2020 – March 19, 2021] 10:00-18:00
[Golden Week/Summer Break] 9:00-21:00
No Fixed Holidays
Price: General (16+ Years & High School Students) ¥2,200 / Children (Elementary School Students) ¥1,200 / Toddlers (3+ Years) ¥60
Official Website: http://shikoku-aquarium.jp/
Well-Known & Little-Known-Good Cherry Blossom Spots
Kagawa Prefecture is home to many spots that offer beautiful sounds and sights throughout the four seasons. Cherry blossom season is right around the corner in Japan, so let’s take a look at some must-visit spots, both popular and little-known good ones.
Ritsurin Garden (Takamatsu)
One of the most famous historical gardens in Japan, Ritsurin Garden is home to around 320 Yoshino cherry trees, whose pink colour reflects beautifully off the lake together with the 1,000 green pine trees.
Marugame Castle (Marugame)
Marugame Castle is one of only 12 castle in Japan to have an original wooden tenshu, or castle tower, built. From the great height of the castle’s stone wall, which is the tallest in Japan, one can gaze down at 1,000 cherry blossom trees in bloom.
Around 3,000 cherry trees bloom on t he island, including Yoshino cherries, yama-zakura, and yae-zakura, which roll from the port to the lighthouse.
Asahiyama Forest Park (Mitoyo)
Asahiyama Forest Park is located on the peak of Mt. Asahi, up 238 meters high. There, you can witness 2,000 vibrant cherry blossom trees bloom in spring, including Yoshino cherries. The park’s observation deck is popular too, offering a 360° panoramic view.
Experience the world of bonsai in Kagawa, the only place in Japan which produces pine bonsai trees
Interest in bonsai trees continues to grow every year not just in Japan but overseas too. The number of people incorporating them into their lives as interior decoration is on the rise. Kagawa Prefecture is the only place in Japan which produces pine bonsai trees, the largest places being Kinashi and Kokubunji in Takamatsu. There are around 60 bonsai makers in both of these towns, so you are sure to spot some if you walk through them.
Official Website: https://takamatsu-bonsai.com/en/
The new Takamatsu Bonsai no Sato is also set to open on April 17, which will include an information centre providing information on bonsai culture in Takamatsu, and there will be workshops too. Whether you’re new to bonsai or a pro, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
Takamatsu Bonsai no Sato
Grand Opening: April 17, 2020
Address: 353-1 Kokubunjichō Kokubu, Takamatsu, Kagawa
Travel to Kagawa this spring to enjoy the cherry blossoms and pay a visit to the new Shikoku Aquarium.
Kyoto Aquarium to House 20 Types of Jellyfish With New ‘Jellyfish Wonder’ Area
29.February.2020 | SPOT
Kyoto Aquarium is currently undergoing a large-scale renovation and is set to reopen on April 29, 2020.
When it reopens, visitors will be able to visit the new jellyfish area, called “Kurage Wonder” (Jellyfish Wonder), which will span 350㎡ in width and 40 meters in length. It will house the largest number of different species in western Japanーup to 20ーwith around 5,000 individual jellyfish to see, like the northern sea nettle and pacific sea nettle.
The area begins at 10 individual water tanks where you can see how moon jellyfish change and grow. It then moves onto the 6.5 meter circumference “GURURI” panorama tank which offers a 360° view of 1,500 moon jellyfish.
This tank is entered through an arch, which once you pass through leads you under the tank where your vision is filled with the sight of countless moon jellyfish.
The new “Kyoto Jellyfish Research Lab” has also been built where guests can observe the staff breeding and researching jellyfish on a day-to-day basis. Enjoy hearing how the jellyfish are cared for behind the scenes while chatting together with the staff. Various other activities you can participate in will be introduced in the future too.
Discover the wonderful world of jellyfish at the newly-renovated Kyoto Aquarium.
Address: 35-1 Kankijicho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto
Reopening: April 29, 2020
Access: 15-minutes on foot west from Kyoto Station’s Central Exit / 7-minutes on foot from Umekōji-Kyōtonishi Station via the JR San’in Main Line
Official Website: https://www.kyoto-aquarium.com/en/
NAKED SAKURA AQUARIUM: Cherry Blossoms and the Sea Come Together at Tokyo’s Maxell Aqua Park
23.February.2020 | SPOT
Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa has announced the holding of a new exhibition entitled “NAKED SAKURA AQUARIUM” which will run at the Tokyo-based aquarium from March 1, 2020 to April 19, 2020.
Offering “cutting-edge Tokyo entertainment,” the exhibition is combined music, lighting, and visuals with living beings. Using the latest in leading edge tech, visitors will be treated to a visual treat of animals living harmoniously with the season. The exhibition promises you will notice something new with each visit. Enter a world of spring like never before as cherry blossoms and the ocean come together through digital art.
Cherry Blossom Tayori
The entrance to the aquarium will be in full bloom with cherry blossoms. The water tanks in the centre will be perfectly pink and house madai snapper, a type of fish also nicknamed “sakura-dai” around this season.
Spilling Cherry Blossoms
This area will be like an atrium, with water tanks and showcases lined up beautifully next to each other and decorated with cherry blossom art flowers. The water tanks, which bring to mind the image of a “banquet,” will house sakura-dai, sea goldie, and other fishes.
Dancing Cherry Blossom Garden
In the immersive Patterns area, you can see the “possibilities” of the four seasons as digital art works to combine a seasonal landscape with the sea creatures on display.
Also in the Dancing Cherry Blossom Garden will be Cape penguins who will put on a performance using their physical abilities. The performance, which is split into two parts, will make use of projection mapping. The first part will see the bloom of yaezakura cherry trees, while the second part will have jacaranda, also called the “purple cherry blossom,” a flower that blooms in South Africa where Cape penguins originate.
Dolphin Performance Day Version – Cherry Blossom Dance
The daytime dolphin performance sees visitors gathering in the amphitheatre. This interactive performance is inspired by springtime banquets and Hanami flower-viewing. Enjoy seeing the dolphins dance high-speed to the rhythm of Japanese rock music.
Dolphin Performance Night Version – Cherry Blossom Story
The nighttime dolphin performance uses the water, lighting, visuals, and music to celebrate cherry blossoms in the evening. Enjoy a more delicate, but powerful performance from the dolphins, and see the flowers in all their beauty.
Jewellery Fish Rumble
The ceiling and walls of the spacious Jewellery Fish Rumble area all have reflective mirror surfaces. Countless pink and blue illuminations light up this evening cherry blossom-themed area, where you can enjoy a digital Hanami experience together with the jellyfish.
Katou Flower Lantern
The NAKED SAKURA AQUARIUM cafe and bar is adorned with a cylindrical water tank with illuminated coral. The cafe/bar is inspired by Katou, which is when the evening light feels like it is being lit up by fully bloomed cherry blossom flowers. The menu includes a selection of cherry blossom and matcha drinks, as well as a selection of sweet treats perfect for the Hanami season.
3 Dango & Mini Taiyaki – ¥500 (Red Bean Paste/Cream)
Sakura Mizu-warabi Rice Cake – ¥500
Enjoy a completely different kind of Hanami experience at Maxwell Aqua Park.
*Photos are for illustrative purposes only
NAKED SAKURA AQUARIUM at Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa
Running: March 1, 2020 – April 19, 2020
Address: Shinagawa Prince Hotel, 4-10-30 Takanawa, Minato Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 10:00-22:00
Prices: General (High School Students and Older) ¥2,300 / Elementary-Middle School Students ¥1,200 / Children (4+ Years) ¥700
Exhibition Page: http://www.aqua-park.jp/special/snowaquarium2019/en_index.html
Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa Official Website: http://www.aqua-park.jp/aqua/en/