Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise
Yokohama Hakkeijima: Aquarium
Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise: Yokohama Hakkeijima
Yokohama Hakkeijima / Aquarium
Open hours vary between 9am-9pm (summer weekends) to 10am-5pm (winter weekdays). Open every day.
Admission to Aqua Museum and Aqua Stadium: general Y3000; 6-15 years old Y1750; all-day tickets including the amusement park are also available
Average visit time: 1.5-3 hours

Hakkeijima Sea Paradise is one of the best aquariums in the country and also one of the largest, housing over 100,000 fish and other marine creatures, including polar bears and sea otters. In addition to the main aquarium building there's also a big interactive zone where kids can wade around in ponds and touch the fish, and visitors of all ages can meet the resident dolphins and sea lions face to face.

The aquarium stretches out over four separate areas, so hold onto your set of tickets (aka the Aqua Resorts Pass) after purchase. The attractive main aquarium building contains a huge, three-story aquarium with an underwater viewing tunnel. It's also home to a big parliament of penguins, one sleepy polar bear, many exotic jellyfish, some impressively large crabs, and giant sea turtles that live in an outdoor pool on the roof. This is also the location for the marine mammal show, which is held four times a day.

A few minutes down the bay is the Fureiai Lagoon, the hands-on area where kids can play in the water and adults can pet a sea lion (ask your guide first). There's a very thorough, six-minute safety video to watch before you can enter this area, basically warning that you might get wet, and that sometimes animals bite if you're not careful.

One of the more unexpected features of Hakkeijima is the so-called "Umi Farm," where after watching another safety video (this one much shorter), you can fish for your lunch, then have it grilled up for you. Next to the fishing area is a Submarine Research Vessel where you go below water level to observe the local fish population of the bay swimming through forests of seaweed.

If you want to do some souvenir shopping there's a whole mini-mall here to explore. The aquarium is located on a large man-made island at the southern tip of Yokohama, and is one part of an entertainment complex that includes an amusement park, a hotel, a marina, restaurants and shops.

Yokohama Kanazawa-ku, Hakkeijima.
Hakkeijima station (Seaside Line), 25-40 minutes from Yokohama station (depending on route)
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