Farms & Zoos in Kobe

ByJustin Hanus
Aug 18, 2021

Farms & Zoos in Kobe

Spending time with animals is a great way to switch off and unwind for a few hours. Whether you want to get up close and pet or admire from a distance, a trip to a local zoo or farm can make for the ideal family day out. Here is a selection of the best places to visit in Kobe.

Kobe Animal Kingdom

This giant 10-acre greenhouse-like venue on Port Island is one of Kobe’s top family attractions. The animals are very friendly and well looked after, given plenty of space, and many interact with the public. You can get in close and feed pet or play with many of the zoo’s inhabitants. There is a great selection here, from dogs and cats to alpacas, capybaras, raccoons, and kangaroos. This animal kingdom also boasts one of the largest owl enclosures in the world. You can watch bird shows, go on camel rides and chill out in the botanical garden—a great option for keeping kids entertained for a whole day.


Rokkosan Farm

Rokkosan Farm is a pasture farm located high up in Mount Rokko. It is a friendly sightseeing farm where you can travel and soak in the sights by cable car and then visit cows, horses, ponies, goats, sheep, and geese. There is pony riding for those who really want to interact with the animals, and you can also bottle-feed the baby cows. The farm also offers cheese-making and ice-cream-making classes. You need to book any visits and sessions in advance. To reach the farm by public transport, travel to Rokko Station and then take a bus to the farm from there.

Address: 1-1 Nakaichiriyama, Rokkosancho, Nada Ward, Hyogo 657-0101

Oji Zoo

This municipal zoo is situated within Oji Park. It is an “Animal Supporter System” venue and houses 850 animals across 150 species within its 80,000 sq. meter space. These include the ever-popular giant pandas (one of only three places in Japan where you can see them), amur tigers, snow leopards, koalas, and polar bears. There is a children’s petting area where kids can get up close and touch rabbits and goats. There is also a small amusement park with a big Ferris wheel. You can reach the zoo by taking a short walk from Oji Koen station.


Kobe Takami Farm

This is a slightly different farm experience than the one offered by Rokkosan Farm. Here, there are stricter rules about interacting with the 300 or so cattle kept here, and it’s more about learning about the process of producing the world-renowned Kobe beef. This is something that Takami Farm knows all about, having won the Best Kobe Beef award in 2010. You can see the cows up-close and learn about the rearing process (cows are fed Sakamizu spring water as part of a daily diet). Plus, visits are free if you eat at the on-site beef restaurant.

Suma Aqualife Park

Not exactly a zoo or a park but another of the city’s creature treats, Suma Aqualife Park opened in 1957 and hosts an array of water species, including sharks, sting rays, penguins, and dolphins. There’s an Amazon-themed area (dedicated to the South American region, not the global company!) where you can discover what kind of plants, creatures, and climate you’d encounter on a trip there. Other highlights include dolphin performances and piranha feeding sessions.


663highland, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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