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Japan – a family-friendly destination with 9 great Theme Parks to visit

Japan – It’s a curious blend of ancient and modern, fast and slow, cute and concrete. And from the palace to the petrol station, it’s a world where culture and computers merge; often referred to as nature’s paradise.

Universal Studio
Universal Studio

Whether you’re traveling with young children or teenagers (or both!), Japan’s dynamic and eclectic culture has something for everybody. Bullet trains, medieval castles, neon and robots, temples and gardens, colourful art and fashion – and very helpful people. Here is a list of some family fun experiences one can enjoy.

Japan is home to some of the most exciting amusement parks, you’ll find a number of popular parks to choose from when visiting Japan with kids – including Tokyo Disney Resort which consists of both Tokyo Disney Land & Tokyo Disney Sea. One unknown fact is that there are many Disney Parks around the world but Disney Sea exists only in Japan.

Tokyo Disney Sea is a fantasy theme park in Tokyo Disney Resort that is unique to Japan. Inspired by the myths and legends of the sea, Tokyo Disney Sea is made up of seven themed ports of call: Mediterranean Harbor, Mysterious Island, Mermaid Lagoon, Arabian Coast, Lost River Delta, Port Discovery and American Waterfront. While suitable for all ages, Tokyo Disney Sea was designed to specifically also appeal to a more grown-up audience. Kids can enjoy Sindbad the sailor and his loyal tiger cub, Chandu.

 Believe and follow the “compass of your heart” and your journey will be true. The music was written by Disney songwriting legend Alan Menken. Families can enjoy the day at the park and rest it out at Tokyo Disney Resort including a unique show on the sea inside the theme park. For more thrill and fun you can also stay at Hotel, Tokyo Disney Sea MiraCosta to experience more excitement.

Universal Studios Japan (Usj)  is a very popular theme park located in Osaka Bay. The Park covers a whole spectrum of world-class entertainment through thrilling rides and shows themed on blockbuster Hollywood movies, as well as seasonal events for all ages to enjoy. 

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ will reproduce the world from the Harry Potter™ stories, bringing it to life on a phenomenal scale at Universal Studios Japan. The Park also hosts Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem- This all-new attraction brings you into the whirling world of the Minions! 

With a massive dome screen and hyper-realistic projection system, you won’t know what’s up and what’s down! Climb aboard a vehicle designed by Gru and enter his laboratory to begin the process of becoming an actual Minion. There are a lot of more exciting things one can do at the park.

Legoland Japan is a great attraction that opened in April 2017 in Nagoya. The outdoor amusement park has many attractions aimed at young children and some attractions of interest to accompanying adults. Visitors can expect large Lego models, rides, building stations, and dining areas. The amusement park is separated into themed areas, matching the different universes in the Lego world.  Imagine your kid having a driving license -Where else can a 6–13-year-old get their own driver’s license? 

After watching a road safety video, children jump in their very own electric car where they then drive around a realistic circuit before being rewarded with their very own driver’s license at the end. Alternatively, hop on a dragon’s back to fly through the skies like a ninja! Those who are brave enough can spin 360 degrees while flying. A breathtaking ninja training attraction that flies through the air at heights of 22 meters and speeds of 50 kilometers per hour.

 Submarine Adventure-Join the LEGO® divers on an exploration that the whole family will enjoy.  Venture along a secret passage on a journey to the bottom of the sea and see if you can spot all the amazing creatures and incredible LEGO models in your search for ancient ruins.

Ever wonder what an anime theme park would look like? Whether it’s been a long-time dream to see one or just something that crossed your mind once, there are actually several anime theme parks in Japan that you can visit

Pokémon Center Tokyo Dx & Pokémon Café has been one of the most popular things on the planet for a couple of decades. It’s still pretty fresh in our memories that the whole world had gone crazy about Pokemon Go lately. Pokemon Centre is an official Pokemon store offering games and merchandise which every Pokemon fans would wish for. The biggest Pokemon centre, Pokemon Centre TOKYO DX has opened in Nihonbashi, Tokyo with their first permanent Pokemon Cafe.

Tokyo Joypolis In Odaiba is a roofed theme park offering fun and entertainment even in the rain. Enjoy thrilling rides and the latest virtual reality (VR) content on over 20 different attractions: a full day out for the family! You can also enjoy events created in collaboration with Japanese movies, anime, and artists like the Transformer, which originated from Japan and visitors can team up with Transformers to experience this unique and special attraction called Transformers Human-Alliance Special.

 Another attraction that surely needs a mention here is “Halfpipe Tokyo” which is Next-generation extreme attraction that Merged the “Digital Effect” into “Screaming Experience”.  Visitors are free to come and go throughout the day, allowing you to explore the wide range of other attractions and shopping on Odaiba, which include a giant Unicorn Gundam statue, Ferris wheel, and the renowned interactive science museum Miraikan

Have you ever seen a whale shark, one of the largest fish alive today? What about orcas, polar bears, and penguins? You can see these amazing animals and more in Japan’s aquariums.

Whale shark in Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium
Whale shark in Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium  Heralded as the best aquarium in Japan, Churaumi is the second largest aquarium in the world. Its main attraction is its massive Kuroshio Sea Tank housing numerous whale sharks that can measure up to 12 metres in length.

The aquarium also features hands-on exhibits of seashells, starfish, coral exhibit, feedings, and animal shows. Overall there are 26,000 living creatures at the aquarium and 740 different species

Jigokudani Yaen-Koen (Wild Snow Monkey Park),  offers visitors the unique experience of seeing wild monkeys bathing in a natural hot spring. The Park is inhabited by Japanese Macaques, which are also known as Snow Monkeys. It is located in the monkey’s natural habitat, in the forests of the Jigokudani valley in Yamanouchi, not far from the onsen towns of Shibu and Yudanaka. The Park has one man-made pool around which the monkeys gather, located a few minutes’ walk from the park entrance. 

Visitors will likely already encounter monkeys along the path to the pool. The monkeys live in large social groups, and it can be quite entertaining to watch their interactions. Accustomed to humans, the monkeys can be observed from very close and almost completely ignore their human guests. Naturally, it is prohibited to touch or feed the monkeys.

Japan is home to a large number and a variety of excellent museums. Whether it is about religion, science, history, geography or arts and crafts, museums of different subjects and interests can be found across the country

Japan The Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum
The Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum 

 The Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum is said to be one of the three largest dinosaur museums in the world and is an active international center of research on dinosaurs with a team of Japanese. The Museum is a specialist geology and paleontology museum, focused particularly on dinosaurs, which is located in Katsuyama City, Fukui Prefecture (an area where many dinosaur fossils have been found).

More than 40 complete dinosaur skeletons are on display, enabling visitors to get a feel for just how big dinosaurs were. The Museum also has large-scale dioramas and a computer graphics theatre that recreate the type of prehistoric forest in which dinosaurs lived, giving visitors a sense of having “traveled back in time.” Both adults and children can enjoy learning about the history of the Earth through the dinosaurs’ stories.

Japan has a way of taking something completely ordinary and making it whimsical and cute. Take for example their food. If you order a donut for your child, it will very likely be decorated with googly eyes and a face. If you order Sausages from the child’s menu, they’ll cut it and cook it to look like an octopus.

There are also numerous themed dining experiences, as well. From the popular Robot Restaurant in Tokyo, which is more appropriate for teenagers, to an Alice and Wonderland restaurant and a Hello Kitty restaurant that little ones will love, there are plenty of places to experience all things whimsical in Japan.

So, if you are thinking of a special family trip, full of unique experiences together head to Japan for an absolute favorite for family travel.

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