Things to do in Osaka

Explore The Best Of Marine Life At The Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan – Complete Guide

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Located in Minato, the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is amongst the largest public aquariums in the world and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Osaka. Visit this beautiful underwater world and witness over a dozen marine life and freshwater species, including sea otters, hammerhead sharks, capybaras, dolphins, penguins and more! This exceptional aquarium displays marine life from different regions of the Pacific Rim in 15 individual tanks. Without a doubt, the aquarium's main attraction is the nine meters deep central tank, representing the Pacific Ocean, that houses a whale shark! Offering a unique experience, the aquarium tour begins from the 8th floor and spirals down floor by floor. If you're visiting Osaka, a trip to the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is a must-visit. From specific attractions to the best time to visit, our Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan guide has all the information you need to make your experience memorable.

Why Should You Visit The Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan?

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Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

  • Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is home to over 30,000 aquatic creatures from 630 species. These animals are spread across 15 zones and 27 tanks, making this one of the biggest aquariums in the world.
  • From sharks and rays in the Maldives zone to friendly seals in the Arctic zone, each section of the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan offers a wildly unique experience to visitors.
  • Rent an audio guide to learn more about the aquatic animals you come across, including their habitats and other interesting facts about their ways of life.
  • Watch in amazement as two whale sharks, the undisputed star attractions of the aquarium, swim past you in the 30 feet deep tank which holds almost 5400 cubic meters of water.
  • At Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, you'll get to enjoy close encounters with various marine creatures. For instance, the rockhopper penguins will be playing less than a meter away from you. The tanks are designed to afford you maximum visibility and clear views of all the animals living inside.
  • Tickets for Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan are valid for 180 days from the date of purchase. This gives you incredible flexibility to plan your itinerary and visit the aquarium whenever you want.
  • Perfect for a half-day trip in Osaka, the aquarium is surrounded by other interesting things to do as well. You can enjoy a relaxed stroll through the neighboring Tempozan market area or ride the giant Ferris Wheel located right outside the aquarium.

Osaka Aquarium Tickets

Grab discounted tickets to the Osaka Aquarium and skip the hassle of standing in queues on-site.

Top 10 Things to Watch Out For at The Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

Here are the top things you must do at the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan. Don't miss out on these!

1. Pacific Ocean

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Generally considered the most popular attraction of the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, the Pacific Ocean zone is home to a whale shark along with a host of other sea creatures including spotted eagle rays, leopard sharks and more.

2. Japan Forest

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One of the few surface zones in the aquarium, the Japan Forest is an uncanny life-like recreation of an actual Japanese forest. Featuring both creatures that live near rivers and surface waters, including otters, this is a beautiful zone to spend time at.

3. Aleutian Islands

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Make your way to the mysterious Aleutian Islands zone which is modeled after the cold and harsh region located in the North Pacific Ocean. Discover the unique species of birds and fishes who brave the difficult terrain, including the tufted puffin.

4. Gulf of Panama

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At this exhibit, watch the tropical fish and marine life that once existed in the tropical rainforest of Panama. The present environmental condition of the once thriving nation, makes this zone all the more special.

5. Monterey Bay

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Travel to California's coastline at the Monterey Bay zone, which is home to many species of aquatic animals. At this exhibit, you can witness coastal sea lions and seals on both land and sea.

6. Ecuador Rainforest

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Continue your tour of water bodies around the world with a stop at the Ecuador Rainforest which is home to plants and animals located directly on the equator in a South American tropical rainforest.

7. Antarctica

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Featuring both ice and chilly ocean water, the Antarctica zone is another major highlight of the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan. Watch in amazement as penguins exhibit their humorous behavior on land and rapid movements in the water.

8. Tasman Sea

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Discover the extreme water temperature of the sea around New Zealand at the Tasman Sea zone. Visit this exhibit to learn about the ecology of the Pacific white-side dolphins located in New Zealand.

9. The Great Barrier Reef

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With over 5,000 connected coral reefs, Australia's Great Barrier Reef is home to a multitude of vibrantly coloured fish. At the Great Barrier Reef zone, enjoy a spectacular recreation of the reef with the same multicolored hues available at the original.

10. Cook Strait

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At the Cook Strait exhibit, you'll get to witness sea turtles and other indigenous species of fish pertaining to the divide between New Zealand's North and South Islands.

Is it Worth Visiting The Kaiyukan Night Aquarium?

Every day after 5:00 PM, the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan transforms into the Kaiyukan Night Aquarium and reveals an unexpectedly beautiful side. If you choose to visit the aquarium post 5:00 PM, you'll be greeted by an aquarium resembling the ocean in moonlight. The music playing inside changes as the fish swim under the deep blue lights Illuminating the aquarium. Making for a deeply mystical and enchanting experience, the Kaiyukan Night Aquarium is definitely worth visiting for its innovative concept alone. There's nothing quite as mystical and enchanting as the Kaiyukan Night Aquarium.

Osaka Aquarium Tickets
Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan at night

Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan Opening Hours

The Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is open from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM every day. However, the last entry time is 7:00 PM.

Directions to Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan

Via Bullet Train

The nearest station on the Osaka Monorail is Bampakukinenkoen Station. NIFREL Osaka is about 5 mins or 400m away from the station.

Via Bus

The nearest bus stop is Banpakukinen Koen Eki (Expo City Bus Stop) from where NIFREL Osaka is about 3 mins or 280m away from the bus stop.

You can take the buses on these lines - ExpoCity Line 100, Suita City Line 21, ExpoCity Line 50128

Via Subway

Take the Chuo subway line to Osakako Station, which is a 5 minute walk from the aquarium.

Via Shuttle Ferry

Take the Captain Line fast shuttle to the Universal City Port. This port is 10 minutes away from Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few frequently asked questions about the Osaka Aquarium.

How long do you spend at Osaka aquarium?

Does Osaka Aquarium have a whale shark?

Are lockers available at the aquarium?

Can tickets for the aquarium be purchased at the entrance?

Can wheelchairs be rented at the aquarium?

Is re-entry into the aquarium allowed?

What is the nearest train station to the Osaka Aquarium?

Does the aquarium remain open on December 24?

Does the aquarium provide information in English?

Is onsite parking available at the aquarium?

Are guide dogs allowed inside the aquarium?

Is there a nursing room facility at the aquarium?

Are audio guides available at the aquarium?