Here is a listing of Animal-themed Facilities and Zoological Parks:
Adventure World, Shirahama Town (Kansai region) Access: Direct bus goes right up to Adventure World from JR Shirahama station. Attractions include marine world (swimming with the dolphins), animal safari kingdom, penguins, animal museum, etc.
(It takes about 10 min) plus 60 mins by JAL airflight.
Animal Ark in Osaka Animal Refuge Kansai , Volunteers welcomed. 595 Noma Ohara, Nose-cho, Toyono-gun, Osaka-fu 563-0131 Phone: 081 727 37 0712
Abiko City Museum of Bird (English, Japanese) A good museum for a good spot to observe birds around Tega Marsh. 234-3 Khonoyama. Abiko, Chiba 270-1145 Phone: 0471-85-2212 Fax: 0471-85-0639
Asahiyama Zoo, Asahikawa, Hokkaido is an excellent zoo and very popular with both locals and tourists. Its seal, penguin and polar bear displays are much loved.
Atagawa Tropical and Alligator Garden (Atagawa Banana Wani-en) Izu, Shizuoka
Baji Koen (Equestrian Park aka Tokyo’s Horse Park) The site of the 1964 Olympics equestrian events. The park hosts two major events each year: During Golden Week, a free three-day Spring Horse Show (May 3-5) that includes a steeplechase and many other top-notch equestrian events; Equestrian Day on the September 23 Autumn Equinox holiday celebrates the use of horses in Japanese culture and festivals. Some of its highlights are demonstrations of yabusame (archery on horseback) and dakyu (Japanese polo). Stroll through the woods and the small Japanese garden that are in the grounds. Horses housed in the park can be visited in their paddocks daily between 10am and 2:30pm. And one Sunday each month, thoroughbred horse and pony rides for kids four-to-ten years of age are offered. All events are free. There is a kid’s play area as well. Access: Baji Koen is located two minutes from the Nodaimae bus stop on Bus No. 24 from Shibuya station. Phone: 3429-5101. Or take the bus from Chitose-Funabashi station, Odakyu line.
(The) Cat Museum
Cattle Museum Did you know that bison fossils from the Pleistocene period have been found in Japan? A rather interesting museum that shows the 8,000 domestic relationship between man and cattle, features the 8 types of cattle found in Japan and all things bovine from innards to plough equipment, ancient ceramic artefacts that show the close relationship between ancient peoples in times past. 103-1, Minamijinba, Maesawa, Isawa-gun, Iwate, 029-4205 Phone: 0197-56-7666 Fax: 0197-56-6264
Chiba Zoological Park
Children’s Zoological Park in Saitama 554 Iwadono, Higashi-Matsuyama-shi Phone: 0493-35-1234 Access: Short walk from Kodomo Dobutsu Shizen Koen-mae bus stop. Catch bus bound for Hatoyama New Town at Takasaka Sta., Tobu-Tojo Line.
Equine Museum of Japan A museum in Yamate, Yokohama, featuring horse exhibits, art, including displays of historical information or ancient archaeological artifacts related to horses. Worth paying a brief visit.
Fuji Safari Park
Fuji Subaru Rando Dogu Paku (Fuji Subaru Land Dog Park), Yamaguchi-ko. Phone: 0555-72-2239 A doggy theme park near Yamaguchi Lake with 250 dogs of 70 kinds are featured with staged dog shows. BBQ facilities and merry-go-round are its other attractions.
Fukuyama Municipal Zoo
Himeji City Zoo
Higashi-Itabashi Park’s Children’s Zoo & River-water Aquarium Free admission. A petting zoo with hamsters, sheep, ponies, goats and the like. Free pony morning rides for children from 3 years to primary school children. Kids will also like the carp pond (though turtles and ducks are present too). And the hamster’s corner. Children are allowed to carry, stroke & play with them. Take the train from Itabashikukyakushomae, Toei Mita Line. Walk for 10 minutes to reach the park. Access: 3-50-1 Itabashi Phone: 3763-8003 Note: Closed from December 28 to January 4.
Hiroshima City Asa Zoological Park What’s worth seeing is the native Eurasian giant salamander, the largest in the world. Dobutsuen, Asa-cho Oaza, Asa-Kita-ku, Hiroshima Phone: 082-838-1111
Hyogo prefecture Awaji Farm Park famous for its cattle that look like horses.
Hamamatsu Zoological Garden Hamamatu Zoological Garden
Ikeda Zoo (Website in Japanese only)
Itami City Museum of Insects Website in English or Japanese 3-1 Koyaike, Itami-shi, Hyogo 664-0015 Phone: 0727-85-3582 Fax: 0727-85-230
Izu-Kogen Dog Forest Ito city, Shizuoka features a dog field and a breeder’s village.
Izu Andyland a turtle aquarium, raising various tortoises like the giant tortoise, the model of “Gamera” the movie, and alligator snapper, etc. Kids can have giant tortoise rides. or watching the “tortoise race”.
Jigokudani Yaen-Koen (website in English, Japanese website) A park that generally receives a great deal of interest deal to the famous Snow Monkeys, the northernmost monkeys of the world.
Kanazawa Zoological Garden of Yokohama
Kawaguchiko-saru-mawashi-gekijyou Comic monkey shows and meet-the-monkeys afterwards. Phone: 0555-76-8855
Kiryugaoka Zoo (Website in Japanese)
Kofu Yuki Park Zoo, Yamanashi prefecture. Website in Japanese only.
Koiwai Farm 36-1 Maruyachi, Shizukuishi-cho, Iwate-gun, Iwate 020-0507 Phone 81-19-692-3115 Website in English
Kumamoto City Zoological and Botanical Gardens Webpage Information in English. 5-14-2 Kengun Kumamoto City Phone 096-368-4416 Fax: 096-365-5671
Kyoto Municipal Zoo
Municipal Kobe Oji Zoo
Morioka Zoological Park
Nagoya Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens (English, Japanese)
Nanko Bird Sanctuary features natural woodlands and mudflats that are home to dozens of species of wild birds. Visit the visitor’s center with free telescopes and bird information, and take one of the many good walking trails. Access: 13 mins walk from Trade Center-mae Station on the OTS New Tram Technoport line. Location: 3-5-30 Nanko-kita, Suminoe-ku Phone: 06-6613-5556
Nihondaira Zoo, Shizuoka Prefecture. Access information in English at website.
Noboribetsu Bear Park, Kumabokujo Noribetsu in Hokkaido
Nogeyama Zoological Gardens of Yokohama This one’s very popular with the locals and with schools because entry to the zoo is free.
Noichi Zoological Park of Kochi Prefecture, Kochi Prefecture (Website in Japanese only)
Oshima Park Zoo
Ohmiyacho Insect Museum
Sabae Nishikawa Zoo in Fukui prefecture.
Sea Turtle Museum , The Caretta Museum on Ohama Beach, Miyagi Prefecture focuses on information on loggerhead turtles. (See also suggested nature trail including Ohama Beach)
Shibetsu Salmon Park (website in Japanese)
Shunan Zoo aka Tokuyama Zoo in Shunan city, Yamaguchi prefecture. Website in Japanese.
*The Silk Center/Silk Museum Learn all about Silkworms and silk production at the Silk Center No.1 Yamashita-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama Phone : 045-641-0841 Fax : 045-671-0727 (Related museums: The Kyoto Costume Institute (KCI) and Nippon Silk Center)
Susaka City Zoo in Nagano Prefecture. Website in Japanese.
* Tama Zoological Park in Hino-shi, Tokyo Admission: 600yen/adult; 200yen/junior high school students. But jr high and high school students get free admission on the second and fourth Saturday of every month. Access: Take the monorail to Tama Dobutsu Koen station, on the Tama Monorail line which runs between Shin Yurigaoka on the Odakyu line, and Tachikawa on the JR Chuo line. Phone: 042-591-1611. Closed Mondays, or the day following a public holiday.
Tennoji Zoo in Osaka. 1,500 animals, including koalas, kiwis and a Tasmanian devil. Located in Tennoji Park at: 1-108 Chausuyama-cho, Tennoji-ku Access: Near Dobutsuen-mae Station, on the Midosuji and Sakaisuji subway lines Phone: 06-6771-8401
Toyama Municipal Park Zoo
Tobe Zoological Park of Ehime Prefecture, (English, Japanese)
*Ueno Zoological Gardens is Japan’s oldest zoo, though nowhere the best, but very popular with Tokyo-ites anyway.
* Yokohama Zoological Gardens Zooasia(English, Japanese) Adults 600yen, 6-15 yrs /200yen, high school kids/300yen. An open-concept zoo that is more animal friendly, less cagey and more green. Still it has a slightly commercial tropical resort feel as you enter the park. Also has a Kid’s playground and picnic bench areas. Closed on Tuesdays. Access: Asahiku. Yokohama-city. Phone: 045-959-1040
Yumemigasaki Zoological Park in Kawasaki City
*Zooasia (English, Japanese) in Yokohama Adults 600yen, 6-15 yrs /200yen, high school kids/300yen. An open-concept zoo that is more animal friendly, less cagey and more green. Still it has a slightly commercial tropical resort feel as you enter the park. Also has a Kid’s playground and picnic bench areas. Closed on Tuesdays. Access: Asahiku. Yokohama-city. Phone: 045-959-1040