As I stepped out of the Osakako station exit, I was greeted by a charming neighbourhood that seemed straight out of a story book.

The streets were lined with a variety of charming flowers in every color imaginable. 
Even the trees were different!

Behind the foliage was an assortment of little shops and restaurants that appear to have been plucked out of a Sylvanian Families play set. I could've stayed there for hours just strolling along the sidewalks but with an excited child in tow and an aquarium just a few blocks away, aimlessly wandering was out of the question...

osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium travel guide

In case you're reading this and already in Osaka, feeling somewhat lost (I don't blame you), let's begin with...
Look for Osakako on the mid-left of the map below (the aquarium is located around that area)

subway map
osaka aquarium subway directions


  • From JR Namba Station, ride the JR Namba West Line (baby blue on subway map) to Imamiya
  • Get down at Imamiya and transfer to train going to Bentencho  (also baby blue)
  • Get off at Bentencho and switch to pink line train going to Osaka-ko station
  • Get off at Osaka-ko and exit at the Osaka Aquarium gate
  • Walk towards giant Ferris Wheel/Tempozan Market Place, the aquarium is tight beside it.

WHERE TO GET A SUBWAY MAP: Look for an English SPeaking Information Booth for a free area map and directions. OR- For a full subway map, request for one when you purchase an ICOCA card or a Kansai One Pass.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
where to eat osaka aquarium
So anyway....

The pull of the shops was just too strong. I was forced to use my superior mommy bargaining skills to end up here...

A little mom and pop coffee shop operated by a charming old couple who do both the prepping and serving.

I'm not sure of the name cause it only says "COFFEE" on the green awning at its shop front but do pop in if you're in the area.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
best pancakes in osaka
Just like all other tourist-y areas in Japan, prices here a bit steeper but quality is exceptional. This place had one of the best coffee and pancakes I have ever had. Fruits were fresh and sweet, coffee was robust yet well balanced.

Cost for both: roughly around 1500 YEN, give or take (coffee was around 500 YEN but pancakes are big enough to share).

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
where to eat osaka aquarium
On the opposite side of this road, you'll spot a giant Ferris Wheel. Just walk towards it.
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
tempozan market
The Ferris Wheel is located at Tempozan Market which is just across the aquarium. 

The Tempozan Market is a mini mall with shops and chain restaurants. If you're looking for a cheaper meal in the area, have it here.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
tempozan market
The larger than life Lego-like building is the aquarium.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
budget guide osaka aquarium
Ticket Price + Operating Hours
Adults: 2300 YEN
Over 60 Years: 2000 YEN

Kids under 3: FREE
4-6 Years: 600 YEN
7-15 Years: 1200 YEN
16 and older: 2300 YEN

OR YOU CAN ALSO OPT FOR AN OSAKA KAIYU TICKET which offers bundle discounts on the Ferris Wheel, train rides and other tourist attractions in the area.

Open Daily from 10:00am to 8:00pm
last admission is at 7:00pm

*A good 2-3 hours is enough to explore the entire aquarium + shop for souvenirs

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
ticket price osaka aquarium

Kaiyukan is one of the largest aquariums in the world and boasts a total of 19 permanent exhibits, 8 floors and 15 tanks each representing a specific region of the Pacific Rim.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
travel guide osaka aquarium

You begin your journey at the top and slowly make your way down to the bottom exit and souvenir shops.

There are arrows, markers and pathways that will lead you in the right direction.

The system maintains order and prevents counterflow, confusion and congestion amongst visitors. 
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
how to get to osaka aquarium
Aqua Gate, Japan Forest, ALeutian Islands, Monterey Bay, Gulf of Panama, Ecuador Rain Forest, Antartica, Tasman Sea, Great Barrier Reef, Pacific Ocean, Seto Inland Sea, Seasonal Exhibit,
Coast of Chile, Cook Strait, Japan Deep, Floating Jellyfish, Arctic, Falkland Islands, and the Maldives.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
japan forest

The best word to describe the Osaka Aquarium experience is WOW. I would go so far as to compare it to our  visit to Universal Studios.

But of course that's just a matter of personal preference.

It is however a definite must-see when in Osaka.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
otters osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
crabs osaka aquarium
Sorry if some of my shots are a bit out of focus, it's quite dark inside the aquarium.

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sea lion osaka aquarium
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acrylic glass osaka aquarium
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giant crabs osaka aquarium
Each exhibit is equally entertaining but the Pacific Ocean with its sharks and whale sharks will take your breathe away.

For kicks and giggles, spend a bit of time at Monterey and its adorable Sea Lion or Harbor Seal (not sure which one  he is but you'll know cause he's the most adorable tenant there) which I guarantee will pull at even the toughest person's heartstrings.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
pacific ocean exhibit osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
whale shark osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
floating jelly fish exhibit
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jelly fish kaiyukan
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
osaka aquarium budget guide


Also, make sure to save enough time for Kaiyukan's interactive exhibits where you get to enjoy the company of penguins, sea lions, mantarays and sharks without a thick glass divider!

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penguins osaka aquarium
There's even a part where you get to touch them! Awesome. They're slimy and yet rough. Just make sure to stay away from their tails.

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
interactive shark and mantaray exhibit
Empty shark eggs by the pool that you can also touch and observe.
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shark eggs
As you exit the Mantaray/Shark area there's still a couple of exhibits reserved for the more "out of this world" species.
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
osaka aquarium guide
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
weird creatures at osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
osaka travel gide
Leave a message on the large grafitti wall leading up to the souvenir shops:

osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
filipino travel blogger
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
osaka aquarium travel guide
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
souvenir shops osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
plush toys osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
cute souvenirs osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
osaka aquarium souvenir shop
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
ref magnets osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
vending machine osaka aquarium
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
osaka aquarium coin
Before you go, line up for a soft serve ice cream at Milky:
osaka aquarium/kaiyukan
milky ice cream osaka

We used our JR Kansai Pass so we didn't have to pay for 2/3rds of the way but if you don't have one, one way fare should cost you around 720 YEN/Php335/7USD.

Entrance for 2 adults and 1 10 year old child: 5900 YEN/Php2745/56USD

Food: 2000 YEN/Php930/19USD

Souvenirs: you can get one for as low as 100 YEN but we ended up getting a shirt 1500 YEN, some stationary, washi tapes, pens and keychains. (They have really cute souvenirs, I regret not buying a ref magnet!) In total I think I spent about 5000 YEN/Php2300/48USD


But you can go as low as around 8000YEN/Php3725/76USD for a family of 3 if you have a JR Pass and if you decide to forego shopping.

Here's a short video I made of our visit:

Parents, can you relate to 1:23? LOL

Hope you found this post helpful and if you enjoyed watching the video, please subscribe, share and give it a thumbs up! Thank yoU!

 For comments, questions, additional tips and suggestions, please leave a comment below.

More Japan pics and tidbits on my Instagram account: @sarahtirona

Now on to the next adventure!!! :)