Oji Zoo

Description: 

Oji zoo is a lovely name for children not only in Kobe but also in the whole Kansai area as the only zoo in Japan protecting both Giant Panda and Koalas. Not stopping at a simple amusement spot, Oji zoo keeps changing to be one of the most significant centers of natural education with several animal protection campaigns over previous years, including Splash Time of North Pole Bears, Animal Class for Kids or Animal Suporter System.

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Source: Oji Zoo

You can not complete the story about Oji zoo without mentioning Panda, the star of Oji zoo. Originally, Japanese widely give a great love for this stout friends. Then Oji zoo is so proud to be one of only three zoos in Japan, along with Ueno in Tokyo and Adventure World in Shirahama, to raise and protect Panda. This kind of animal started to be raised here in 2000, following the collaborative research project between Japan and China. At Oji zoo, the center of Panda collection is called Tan Tan where a system of ropes and holes are installed for the endless stream of visitors coming to enjoy Panda exhibits. On some fine day, you can luckily see some Tan Tan sitting on the sunshine and eating its lunch of bamboo leaves. There is also a Panda House Giant serving as the center of Panda protection and preservation. 

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Source: Oji Zoo

Red Panda is a little more popular around Japanese zoos, however, remaining as the first runner up at Oji zoo with its small and lovely appearance.

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Source: Oji Zoo

Koala house is an other attraction inside Kobe Oji zoo where Koalas enjoy sitting or sleeping on green boughs of eucalyptus. Koalas comes to Kobe as the present form Brisbane city in Australia. Wild Animals Circle is home of Big Cat including different species of Tiger or Lion and Snow Leopard which can be seen clearly through the glass wall. The Forest Building saves squirrel and small bird, located in the area of Children’s World Animal Land together with Koala house. Beside Koala House, Squirrel and Birds forest, there is also the Petting Zoo with cutest goats, sheep, geese, rabbits and guinea pigs. With the Polar Bear House, the environment of polar bear is even reproduced by waterfalls and rocks for visitors to observe its natural habitat. Giraffe, penguins, chimpanzee or elephant are some others among more than 850 animals of 150 species living inside Oji zoo over the area of more than 80000 square meters.

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Source: Oji Zoo

Inside the precinct of Oji zoo, there are the Zoological Science Center keeping the skeletal structure of elephants and giraffes, a small space of penguins, exhibitions of feed, characteristics and lifestyle of wild animals, and the Foreign Settlement, Former Hunter's residence opened to the public in April, May and October and designated as an Important Cultural Property by the national government.

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Source: Oji Zoo

Overall, Oji zoo is famous most about cherry blossom. In spring, cherry blossom foliage open highly to be canopy for lovely animals inside the Oji Zoo in Kobe. The number of cherry trees in the zoo has reached 480 trees lining along the roads running between and along animal exhibitions. Uniquely, cherry flowers in Oji Zoo often together fall after a short time of blooming and covering all the roads and pools inside the zoo. Therefore, it is a familiar scene at Oji zoo when an elephant walking slowly on the carpet of sakura or a seal swimming excitedly in clear water full of sakura.

Open time: 
From March to October: from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
From November to February: from 11:00 am to 4:30 pm
Closed on Wednesdays and from December 29th to January 1st
Admission: 
Adult: 600 yen
Junior High School Student: 200 yen
Elementary School Student and younger: Free
How to access: 

Take a 3 minute walk west from Oji Koen Station on Hankyu line.