Kobe Maritime Museum


The scene of a towering dazzling red drum standing imposingly next to a giant white fishing net in the middle of Meriken park outstanding in the background of vast ocean is considered as the theme image of Kobe city. While the red drum can be easily seen as an impressive tower, not so many people know clearly about the secret world hiding under the white fishing net. Actually, this unique appearance is only one among a long list of Kobe Maritime Museum’s specialities. For a remarkable port city like Kobe, the existence of Kobe Maritime Museum is something naturally evident and indispensable but special and meaningful. Over hundreds years, people can remember and be impressed by the role as one of the main port city of Japan, but gradually forget about how difficult but brilliant the city has overcome to be shiny in wind and wave today. Kobe Maritime Museum, standing silently in the middle of the bustling port area, is exactly the typical evidence for not only this magnanimous history but also the bright future which is smiling and waiting for the port city.


Kobe used to live as the busiest port in Japan, certainly, before the Great Hanshin Earthquake rushed in and devastating almost all the whole city. Even the damage was extremely serious, many important constructions and establishments stood up strongly from the ruin, Kobe Maritime Museum among them. The Museum was built in 1987 as a commemoration construction for the anniversary of 120 years since Kobe Port was opened to welcome foreign trade for the very first time in 1868. Under the concept of Born from the sea and port, sailing into the future with Kobe, Kobe Maritime Museum was designed as a white ship sailing out to the open sea. In the daylight, the white lattice roof beautifully stand out in the Meriken Park, back dropping against the grey clouds of a coming storm. Even at night when the brightly red light of the Kobe Port Tower dominates all over the port, the unique architecture along with the clearly white light from the steel system still make the Museum shine bright.


Source: http://inakajingogo.seesaa.net/article/302294837.html

Kobe Maritime Museum is a story teller about the port, its history as well as future and how important it is with the city. All the exhibitions inside the museum which you can only see in a sea port city express the brilliance of technology and the importance of craftman ship. Right in the entrance lobby of the first floor, you can contemplate the evolution of ships on the large ceramic wall, together with a huge model of the British warship Rodney which fired the signal gun to mark the opening of Kobe port. Actual ship navigation instruments, diorama models, videos, and graphics are used in the Exhibition room on the first floor to give a clear look at the roles and facilities of Kobe Port. The history of Kobe Port is displayed on the second floor along with a maritime theater showing interesting videos on the history of sea, ports and ships of Kobe Port. Specially, actual watercraft are exhibited outside at the outdoor exhibition area. They are too lively and impressive to recall the Meriken wharf which was destroyed in the Great Hanshin Earthquake in 1995.

Open time: 

From 10:00 am to 5:00 pm (Last admittance at 4:30 pm)

Closing day: Mondays or the following day if Monday is a holiday, New Year’s Holiday (from December 29th to January 3rd)


-Adult: 600 yen

-Children: 250 yen

There is a multi- use ticket for visiting both the Museum and Kobe Port Tower

-Adult: 1000 yen

-Children: 400 yen

How to access: 

From Shinkansen lines: From Shin-Kobe Station, ride the Kobe Municipal Subway Seishin-Yamate Line to Sannomiya Station, change to JR/Hanshin line to Motomachi Station. Then take a 15-minute walk from the station.

From JR/Hanshin lines: Take a 15-minute walk from Motomachi Station.

From Hankyu lines: Take a 15-minute walk from Hanakuma Station .

From Kobe Municipal Subway Seishin-Yamate Line: Take a 20-minute walk from Kenchomae Station.

From Kobe Municipal Subway Kaigan Line: Take a 5-minute walk from Minatomotomachi Station.