There are many great draws to the historic city of Inuyama in northern Aichi Prefecture, but none are perhaps so eclectic as the Japan Monkey Park. Set upon a luscious hillside overlooking the Kiso River, the Japan Monkey Park is a combined amusement park and zoological garden created to celebrate and preserve, that’s right, you guessed it, monkeys!
The Japan Monkey Center is a zoological garden dedicated to primates from all over the world. It holds around 1,000 primates from 100 species within its 250,000m² grounds. Thanks to this vast expansive space, the animals can live in a relatively free environment in enclosures that broadly reflect their natural habitats.
There is also a visitor and educational center at which you and your family can learn about how the monkeys live before going on to see the various enclosures of Gibbon Inland, Spider Monkey Inland, Squirrel Monkey Inland as well as troop of Japanese Yaku valley Monkeys. Be warned that some of the monkeys are given quite a lot of freedom and that there is a ‘drop zone’ over which some primates such as the spider monkeys traverse a specially created wooden bridge. A lot of fun to watch, but there are inherent dangers within!
After watching the jungle VIPs going about their daily life, it could be time for you and your own little monkeys to start monkeying about, which is where the Japan Monkey Park amusement park comes in. Here there are over 35 attractions and rides for your to enjoy.
Most of the attractions are catered towards younger children such as tea cup rides and rides emblazoned with Anpanman and Thomas The Tank Engine, however there are attractions for older children (and those of us who are still kids heart) such as the roller coaster, the Ferris wheel and the Canyon Splash. In the summer months the pool is particularly popular (i.e. crowded), and all year round there are plenty of shops and restaurants to choose from.
Inuyama isn’t just about monkeys, and there is plenty to see in this historical city.
Photo: flickr.com "Couple" by masaru minoya (CC BY-SA 2.0) -Modified Photo: flickr.com "20080628-009 Monkey Park" by Foto Captor (CC BY-SA 2.0) -Modified Photo: flickr.com "P1050579" by Yusuke Kawasaki (CC BY-SA 2.0) -Modified