Two For One: Osaka Aquarium and Tempozan Ferris Wheel
whale sharks, ferris wheels and discounts oh my…
When I was doing research for this trip to Japan, there was no shortage of adventures. In fact, I had so much written down that I knew our two weeks in Japan wouldn’t even scratch the surface of all the fun! But, when I found out Osaka had one of the biggest aquariums, complete with Whale Sharks… our plans were magically cleared up ;)
It is no doubt that this is one of the most popular activities here in Japan. The aquarium is practically maxed out the number of guest everyday. But that does not stop them from making your experience memorable and unique! Just like at Tokyo Tower, they offered to take our picture, on my Nikon, for free!! I am telling you the US needs to up its photo game!
why the hype around osaka’s aquarium?
This aquarim is not just any aquarium. Before I made the decison to come here, I had to make sure it was worth it and figure out what all this hype was about. I found out it was one of the largest aquariums in the world, was home to multiple whale sharks, and tons of other animals I have only seen on Planet Earth. As soon as we got to the aquarium, all my expectations were met and passed! There were so many unique animals, interactive zones and shows, and we truly learned so much.
They have a few interactive zones where you can touch stingrays, or watch sea lions dance and eat - but my favorite was this fish face haha! Japan is so far ahead on technology and efficiency it is amazing. After snapping some fish selfies, you just scan the QR code and it sends you the pictures straight to your phone for free! I love places that encourage you to hold onto your memories <3
lets talk: whale sharks
Seeing these guys for the first time was a major bucket list item for me. I still would love to see them in the wild and gracefully swim by their side, but this was heart warming enough. Osaka actually has two whale sharks here and the tank they live in stretches THREE floors high! So you can see them from a ton of different view points. There is also lots of other sharks and stingrays co-existing in here. After seeing them, it truly flipped a switch in my brain, and Rashawns, that aquariums just aren’t it. It was almost tear-jerking to see such big, amazing, animals trapped, swimming in circles for the rest of there life. It is amazing to provide the opportunity for so many of us to be able to see an animal we other wise would not get to, but at what cost to the animal?
is there english EXPLANATIONS?
Yes! I was very please with the amount of information we were still able to learn. Obviously, Japanese comes first here, but at the beginning they will give you a map in your native language. All the animals have name tags in both Japanese and English. Demonstrations, explanations, and are all in Japanese.
Tempozan Ferris Wheel | What To Know
how to get a discount
One amazing thing about travel, is that cities want you to experience as much as possible, so they often find ways to give you discounts and deals. Thats right, you don’t have to be a famous Instagrammer just reep some travel benefits! For example, In my New Book ‘How To Travel Young And Broke’ I talk about the City Pass - which we use when ever possible. When it is not available I always search discounts for the activities we have planned. Lucky enough, on the aquarium website they mentioned a special discount when you purchased the aquarium tickets and ferris wheel! It is 3,000 Yen(about $26) per person, so you end up saving a few bucks! Just look for details here under ‘Package Ticket’. If you just want to book the Ferris Wheel Tickets can be purchased there for 8,000 Yen per person.
In my book I also talk about how important it is for us to see a city from above. The Tempozan Ferris Wheel is a perfect opportunity for that! Standing 360 Feet above the Osaka City is this beauty!
Red Vs Blue Cabin
There are two cabins on the Ferris Wheel, Blue and Red. You may notice that the Red cabin has a veryyyy long line and might cost you a few extra bucks. Thats because you are paying for transparency! Ha! The whole bottom of the red cabin is glass so you can see all the way to the bottom of the city *gulp*. We opted for the regular one because of the line, and I was honestly a bit scared haha! There is windows all the way around both cabins so it is truly a personal choice if you want to see all the way down or not!
There official website is all in Japanese, so I did all my research here. One important thing to note is that this wheel is Wheel Chair and Handicap friendly! Three of its cabins are wheelchair accessible, so everyone can enjoy this adventure.
How many fit in a cabin?
Each cabin can hold up to 8 people. Something important to note is that on a busy day you maybe riding with a few others from line! We luckily came on a good day, and early in the morning, so we had a whole cabin to ourselves!
how long is the ride?
One thing I loved about this Ferris Wheel was how long we got to enjoy it! It was well over 15 minutes to go all the way around. And depending on how busy, could be up to 30! I think this is the perfect amount of time to enjoy the city views and the relaxing ride of the spinning wheel.
How Can I get Here?
Aquarium Address: 1-1-10 Kaigandori, Minato-ku, Osaka City 552-0022 Japan
Hours Of Operation: 10:00 am - 8:00 pm [last admission is 7:00 pm]
Ferris Wheel Address: 〒 552-0022 1-1-10 Kaigandori, Minato-ku, Osaka
Hours Of Operation: 10:00 am - 10:00 pm [last ride leaves at 9:30 pm]