AQUA WORLD Ibaraki Prefectural Oarai Aquarium
A massive aquarium full of entertainment where you can encounter marine life from around the world
Aqua World (Ibaraki Prefectural Oarai Aquarium) is one of Japan's largest aquariums, with a total floor area of about 19,800 square metre, in an area facing the Pacific Ocean in Oarai Town, Ibaraki Prefecture. You can meet about 68,000 sea creatures of about 580 species.
Let us pick up some of the highly recommended spots among many must-see exhibits. One is the corner for sharks, where the largest number of species is kept in Japan. It is a corner in the Seas of the World Zone, and the only place in Japan where you can see 48 species of shark! Another is a tank exclusively developed for ocean sunfish, a popular fish with quite unique shape and winsome expression. Many visitors must feel relaxed by watching ocean sunfish swimming slowly in the largest tank in Japan. Museum Zone, incorporating the exhibition methods that are used for museums, is also very attractive. You can watch various forms of marine life using images and stuffed specimens. The popular corner among children is Kids Land, the largest facility in the aquarium. You can actually touch the fish here, and there is play equipment resembling a large fish. Children will surely be fascinated and will not notice time passing.
There are many more attractions: "Ocean Live," a dolphin and seal show is held four times a day; meal time for penguins; a giant tank holding 1300 t of water in the Encounter Sea Zone; and the Deep Sea Zone, where you can meet some strange creatures. Your entire family can spend the whole day here, enjoying the entertainment of marine creatures.
Address: 8252-3 Isohama-cho, Oaraimachi, Higashiibaraki-gun, Ibaraki
Hours open to visitors: 9:00-17:00 (last entry: 16:00)
Admission Fee: 1,800 yen (Adult); 900 yen (elementary school students and junior high school students); 300 yen (young children aged 3 years and older)
Closed: No fixed holidays
Directions: Train: 15 minutes from Oarai station, which is on the Kashima Rinkai Tetusdo Line (about 80 minutes from Ueno Station using the JR Joban limited express) by Kaiyu-Go loop bus (eight services each day) to Aqua-World-Oarai; the site is a short walk from the bus stop
Car : About 15 minutes from Mito-Oarai interchange on the Kita-Kanto Expressway
(Free parking lot available)