Family Days Out in Kumamoto

ByJustin Hanus
May 25, 2022

Family Days Out in Kumamoto

Kumamoto prefecture has plenty of attractions and opportunities for great days out for family and kids, with everything from theaters and museums to some of the most wondrous natural sites in the area. Here are a few suggestions if you live in the region or are heading there on a family excursion.

Kumamoto Zoo and Botanical Gardens

You can’t go wrong with a zoo on a family day out. This zoo in the central Kumamoto city area also features a botanical garden with a giant greenhouse displaying plants, shrubs, trees, and flowers. There are over 1,000 animals from nearly 100 different species at the zoo. You can see the likes of giraffes, elephants, monkeys, lions, and snakes. There are also children’s rides plus refreshments.

Website: Kumamoto Zoo and Botanical Gardens

Reigando Cave

If you fancy a small hike with the kids, check out this ancient rock cave located to the west of Kumamoto. You can access it by a stone pathway leading up a hillside from the Unganzen Shrine. Around 500 Buddhist statues line the path, many of them headless. The cave is notorious for being the dwelling of legendary 17th-century philosopher and Samurai, Miyamoto Musashi, who spent his last years here from 1643 and wrote his “Book of Five Rings” here.

Website: Reigando Cave

Kumamoto Contemporary Arts Museum

The words “contemporary arts” might not immediately conjure up images of entertainment for kids, but this art museum in the downtown area of Kumamoto has many kid-friendly exhibits and attractions and is popular with families. These include a children’s art workshop area and plenty of sensory experiences, such as an infinity mirror installation that can keep the young ones transfixed for quite a while.

Address: 2-3 Kamitoricho, Chuo Ward 860-0845

Sea Donut Aquarium

As hinted at in the name, this is a donut-shaped aquarium that floats in the sea of Matsumisha, Amakusa. There are seven sections named after each of the world’s continents, with each one offering the chance for children and adults alike to observe a range of fish living in their natural habitat. There are also programs where the public can observe, meet and touch dolphins. The aquarium is a short bus ride away from Misumi train station.

Address: 6255-7 Matsushimamachi Aitsu, Kamiamakusa 861-6102

Forest Adventure Misato

This option is a real treat combined with a workout if you have older kids. Forest Adventure Misato is a forest-based fun adventure course next to the Midorikawa Dam in the southern part of the prefecture. It involves treetops, rope bridges, zip wires, and more, with the time to complete the course lasting around two hours in total, plus a 15-minute induction session at the beginning. The whole course costs 2,600 yen for kids and 3,600 yen for adults.

Website: Forest Adventure Misato

STA3816, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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