Osaka’s Sea Creatures, Cherry Blossoms & Castle Views

We hadn’t planned on visiting the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, but we had some time to kill after returning from Nara. The aquarium is located in the Tempozan Harbor Village in the Port of Osaka, basically a mall with shops and eateries and a large ferris wheel.

IMG_1798

IMG_1802

IMG_1803

IMG_1806

IMG_1807

IMG_1808

IMG_1811

IMG_1810

IMG_1809

The aquarium is pretty good! They have dolphins, seals, a sloth, otters, sunfish, the usual … and a HUGE Pacific Ocean tank that spans three stories, featuring a whale shark, hammerhead sharks and more.

IMG_1812

Seals napping

Who put baby in the corner?

Whale shark belly view

Admiring the Pacific Ocean tank

Sunfish

Glowing comb jellies

Ringed Seal exhibit

IMG_1882

IMG_1883

We wrapped up our day at an izakaya — Will and our friend ate the smelt whole, I couldn’t do it.

Izakaya menu

IMG_1890

Smelt, served on a mini grill

For our last day in Osaka, Will took me to Osakajo Park. There were many folks enjoying the sunny weather and the cherry blossoms, of course. The main attraction at the park, however, is Osaka Castle, built in 1583 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and site of a series of historical battles known as the Siege of Osaka. The castle has a nice observation deck with panoramic views and doubles as a museum.

IMG_1900

IMG_1901

IMG_1902

IMG_1908

20150330_132444

IMG_1913

Osaka Castle

20150330_141932

20150330_141952

IMG_1930

IMG_1931

IMG_1937

IMG_1938

IMG_1941

IMG_1944

From there, we walked over to the Sakuranomiya Park area to enjoy the cherry blossoms along the Okawa River. So many of them! Very beautiful.

Sakuranomiya Park map

IMG_1945

20150330_155550

IMG_1954

IMG_1957

IMG_1963

20150330_163600

Suddenly these two girls walk up near us and we realize … they have a pet owl. Yes, an owl! Who the heck owns an owl as a pet? Anyway. The owner was placing it on the branch and taking photos of it under the cherry blossoms. Poor owl. It had flowers on its head. Still awesome to see. Though it was scary when the owl would look at you with those predator eyes.

IMG_1973

IMG_1974

IMG_1982

IMG_1985

IMG_1988

We enjoyed some yakiniku (grilled meats) for our last dinner in Osaka and called it a night.

IMG_1994

IMG_1990

We had an incredible time in Japan and are lucky to have been able to witness the short-lived cherry blossoms, among so many other sights. Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. For more photos from our trip to Osaka, visit my Flickr page here.

Advertisements

One thought on “Osaka’s Sea Creatures, Cherry Blossoms & Castle Views”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s