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Kasai Rinkai Park: Tokyo’s largest park, a river away from Tokyo Disney Resort

Kasai Rinkai Park: Tokyo’s largest park, a river away from Tokyo Disney Resort

Kasai Rinkai Park (葛西臨海公園 Kasai rinkai kōen) is a park located by the Tokyo Bay (東京湾 Tōkyō-wan) in Edogawa Ward (江戸川区 Edogawa-ku), Tokyo (東京). It is the largest park in Central Tokyo occupying a vast 810,000 square meters. It was established by Tokyo Metropolitan City in order to preserve the area around the Tokyo Bay.

 

The very beautiful Crystal View Observatory will greet you once you enter the park. This observatory is actually an information centre filled with information about the history of Kasai Rinkai Park. (Image credit: Wanping)

 

The Park has various facilities, including an aquarium: Tokyo Sea Life Park (葛西臨海水族園 Kasai-rinkai-suizoku-en), the Crystal View Observatory (クリスタルビュー), and Japan’s tallest operational Ferris wheel: the Diamond and Flower Ferris Wheel (ダイヤと花の大観覧車 Daiya to hana no daikanransha). Kasai Rinkai Park is very popular among families and couples, and it is also just one station away from Tokyo Disney Resort (東京ディズニーリゾート) by the JR Keiyo Line (京葉線 Keiyō-sen). 

 

“Welcome to Kasai Rinkai Park” is what the Japanese words say at the bottom of the signboard. (Image credit: Wanping) 

 

The smiling flowers symbolising the ferris wheel carriages were so adorable that I simply had to commemorate my time at the park with a photo opportunity of a cut-out signboard. In most tourist attractions in Japan, there is usually a board with a hole to stick your face in to take a photo for memories sake. This time round, the Diamond and Flower Ferris wheel, Tokyo Sea Life Park (the round globe in the background) and animal shaped trains that run around the park. Try looking for a board to take a photo with the next time you visit Japan! 

 

Kasai Rinkai Park (葛西臨海公園)
Address: 6-2 Rinkai-cho, Edogawa-ku, Tokyo 134-0086
Nearest station: Kasai Rinkai Park Station (葛西臨海公園駅)
Access: 1-minute walk from station
Admission: Free

 

Tokyo Sea Life Park 

(Image credit: photoAC)

 

Beneath a glass dome, which seems to float above Tokyo Bay, is the aquarium that is home to sea life such as bluefin tuna, hammerhead sharks, flapnose rays and purple sea urchins. Tokyo Sea Life Park is the most well-known for the Aqua Theater, an exhibition of a school of tuna swimming in a large doughnut-shaped tank. There are various attractions within its dome-shaped building. The penguin enclosure, one of the country's largest, houses three different types of penguins where a penguin had once escaped! 

 

(Top) Bluefin tuna up close and personal. (Bottom) Bluefin tuna opening its mouth during feeding time, looking satisfied with its meal. (Image credit: Wanping)

 

This was my very first time seeing live swimming tuna at such a close distance. I was also very surprised to see that the bluefin tuna has a silvery-blue skin that somewhat reflects light. Tuna looks so different from salmon! Prior to this, I’ve only seen tuna at sushi stores and the supermarket. In Japan, sometimes, wet markets or hotels have maguro kaitai (マグロ解体) shows, which are live demonstrations of tuna filleting. They are usually very popular and have a lot of people gathered around to watch, so seeing the live fish at such a close distance in the aquarium was a very refreshing experience. 

 

(Image credit: Wanping)

 

While it’s fun to observe the tuna fish, visitors will also get to learn more about the tuna. For instance, one of the exhibits shows the various parts of the tuna in blocks. There are actually various parts of the tuna which we can choose if we were to order tuna sashimi. There are mainly three grades of tuna: akami (赤身), chūtoro (中トロ), and ōtoro (大トロ). Akami is the leanest while otoro is the fattiest, which is also known as the A5 wagyu equivalent of fish. It melts in your mouth when you eat it. Some people prefer chutoro as it is not as fatty and you can have more slices of it. My favourite happens to be chutoro as well, since it has a nice balance between fish fat and meat. 

 

Apart from observing the live tuna and learning about them from books and exhibits in print, if you’re looking for something more hands-on, there are also opportunities to touch a real tuna. I was very excited to touch a real tuna! Tokyo Sea Life Park is great because there are lots of interactive opportunities. Both young children and adults would have a fun learning experience here. 

 

(Image credit: Wanping)

 

If you were to visit during a morning with great weather, you might even get to see Mount Fuji. The sea at the background of the photo taken above is Tokyo Bay. This photogenic spot is within the Tokyo Sea Life Park and you will be greeted with this when you exit the aquarium area.

 

Tokyo Sea Life Park (葛西臨海水族園)
Address: 6-2-3 Rinkai-cho, Edogawa-ku, Tokyo 134-8587
Nearest station: Kasai Rinkai Park Station (葛西臨海公園駅) 
Access: 5-minute walk from station
Admission: ¥700 (Adults), ¥350 (Seniors, 65 and above), ¥250 (Students, 13-15 yrs old)

 

Diamond and Flower Ferris Wheel

The Diamond and Flower Ferris Wheel during sunset. (Image credit: Wanping)

 

The Diamond and Flower Ferris Wheel stands tall at 117m. It has beautiful light shows around its Ferris wheel cars, which have the appearance of a sparkling diamond or flower. Each rotation takes approximately 17 minutes. On a perfect weather day, you should be able to see Tokyo, Tokyo Bay, Tokyo Disneyland, Mount Fuji, and the Boso Peninsula from the top of the wheel. 

 

Diamond and Flower Ferris Wheel (ダイヤと花の大観覧車)
Address: 6-2 Rinkai-cho, Edogawa-ku, Tokyo 134-0086
Nearest station: Kasai Rinkai Park Station (葛西臨海公園駅) 
Access: 5-minute walk from station
Admission: ¥800 (3 years and above)

 

The next time you visit Tokyo Disney Resort, try to make a brief stop at Kasai Rinkai Park. This is a park that might bring you unexpected joy and surprises!

 

Header image credit: photoAC

 

Writer's profile: Wanping is the CEO of TokudAw Inc., a tour company based in Tokyo. She loves seasonal flowers and spends most of her free time looking for off the beaten track spots.

 

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