Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

Welcome to Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

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Picture of 3 whale sharks swimming in the Kuroshio tank

The Impressive Experience of Churaumi
The Mysteries of Okinawa in Living Color

Okinawa's wealth of nature, history and culture can be experienced at Ocean Expo Park, a place where you can even enjoy a dolphin show.
Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium is one of many popular facilities at Ocean Expo Park.

At the Aquarium, an intriguing world of marine life found in Okinawa is spread out before you. A sea of coral dazzled with sunlight exhibits living coral colonies in large scale.
With its enormous capacity, a gigantic tank called The Kuroshio Sea Tank the largest fish in the world, the whale shark, and the world's first successfully bred-in-captivity manta can also be seen. Moreover, you can experience the sea of Okinawa when you journey into the deep sea, which recreates Okinawa's mystery-enshrouded sea.

We hope to see you at Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, where new encounters and discoveries await each time you visit!

Overview of Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

PictureThe marine life of Kuroshio is displayed through the large acrylic window
A kaleidoscopic variety of fish swim in a large tank, including the 8.6 meter whale shark and manta rays. The large acrylic window through which this impressive scene is displayed measures 8.2m in height, 22.5m in width, and is 60cm thick. We are confident that you will be impressed and excited to be within hands' reach of the sharks, rays, and other wide-ranging fish that thrive in the Kuroshio Sea.
PictureWorld's first! Multiple whale sharks in captivity
Up until now, captive reproduction of whale sharks has been fraught with difficulties. However, at Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, multiple captivity will be undertaken in the world class aquarium tank, aimed at captive reproduction of the whale shark species. The whale shark is a species that still poses us many questions. Here at Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium we have taken up the challenge to be the first to unravel these mysteries.
* Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium has endeavored to raise whale sharks since 1980, when it was then known as Okinawa Commemorative National Government Park Aquarium (first opened in 1975).
PictureOne of the largest ray! We are the first to breed multiple manta rays in captivity!
Manta rays swim with ease in the beautiful seas of Okinawa. Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium was the first to succeed in keeping multiple individual of manta rays and increasing their numbers after the successful reproductions in the tank.
PictureA recreation of the Sea of Okinawa through large-scale reproduction coral
The Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium introduces an open system in which sea water that is scooped from the ocean enters the aquarium tanks and then is returned to the ocean once again. The Coral Sea exhibit showcases the beauty of the seas of Okinawa. The large 300m³ tank has no roof, allowing natural sunlight to flood inside. Most of the coral has been cultivated for over ten years.
Fish that naturally inhabit coral reef swim excitedly in and out of our coral reef, playing an important role in controlling seaweed and zoanthids which inhibit the growth of coral.
We hope you enjoy encountering coral that has been cultivated in its natural coral reef habitat.
PictureWe've recreated unknown species from the deep sea of Okinawa!
The deep sea contains mysteries as deep as the Universe. Did you know that there are many mysterious forms of life living on the beautiful ocean floor that surrounds Okinawa?
In this corner, we introduce the marine life that inhabits the deep sea 200-700 meters below the ocean's surface. In addition to rare marine life that is difficult to breed in captivity, such as the Ruby Snapper, Blacksail Snake Mackerel, and luminous shrimp, you can also enjoy an explanation through images and panels of the deep sea environment and the marine life.

About this Exhibit


Three factors contribute to the rich natural habit for marine life here in our Okinawa seas: (1) the enormous warm Kuroshio lack Current, (2) living coral reefs; and 3) the two deep sea areas located on each side of the Ryukyu Island. A variety of the world's most rare creatures can be found in our mystical seas.

At Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, we have been recreated these seas in all their natural beauty down to a depth around of 700 meters, paying close attention to factors such as light as well as the quality and clarity of the water. The exhibits here at our Aquarium have been designed to allow visitors to start at the beach and gradually voyage down into the deep sea world, as if taking a dive themseleves. Through these exhibits, we hope to show visitors the beauty of the sea and it's precious value.

The aquarium's exhibits can be experienced in many different ways, and your experience will go far beyond simply viewing exhibits in tanks. In addition to the various lecture programs we provide, we also put on a number of special exhibitions every year so that our guests can experience a fresh and fascinating encounter with the aquarium upon every visit.

What's in a Name? - The Meaning of 'Churaumi'


Do you know the meaning of "Chura" in Churaumi Aquarium? In the Okinawan dialect, "chura" means "beautiful".

The name "Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium" was chosen from 13,897 candidate names obtained in a nationwide competition prior to the aquarium's re-opening on November 1, 2002, after the aquarium had gone through a major renovation.
With so many good candidate names, the committee in charge of selecting the final name deliberated long and hard before settling on "Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium". What tipped the scales in favor of this name was its ability to evoke the essence of Okinawa, distinguishing the Aquarium from others in different prefectures, and its likeable, easy to remember name.

At Churaumi, an Aquarium enveloped by the beautiful seas of Okinawa, we will always do our utmost to provide our guests with an experience to treasure and an Aquarium to fall fond of.

Overview of Facilities

Built Area Approx 10,000 m²
Total Floor Approx 19,000 m²
Building Structure Reinforced concrete, four-stories high
Aquaria Volume Total water quantity 10,000 m³
The Largest Tank Kuroshio Sea (7,500 m³)
Number of exhibition tanks 77
Water System From a 20m deep location 300m offshore
Water Intake Rate
3,000 m³/hr
Water Intake Method Intake pipe
Diameter of Intake Pipe 1.8m
Power Supply Commercial electric (6,600v)
Filtration System Closed high-pressure filtration system
Intake Water filters Eight filter units of 3.2m diameter
Filter Material Polyester fiber
Circulating Water Filters Sixty-two filter units of 2.8m - 3m diameter
Filter Material Silicate sand

Registration of Class1 Animal Handling Business

Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

Applicant Ocean Exposition Commemorative Park Management Foundation /
Administrative Director
Place of Business Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium
Location 424 Ishikawa, Motobu-cho, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa 905-0206, Japan
Classification of Animal Handling Business Exhibition
Registry number 沖動展第353号
Registration Date May 16, 2007
Expiration Date May 15th, 2017
Person Responsible for Animal Handling Masanori Nonaka, Miyuki Nakazato, Hideaki Toma, Makoto Tsukahara, Takuo Higashiji

Ocen Expo Park

Applicant Okinawa Commemorative National Government Park Office, Okinawa General Bureau, Cabinet Office / Manager
Place of Business Okinawa Commemorative National Government Park (Ocean Exposition District)
Location 424 Ishikawa, Motobu-cho, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa 905-0206, Japan
Classification of Animal Handling Bussiness Exhibition
Registry number 沖動展第643号
Registration Date September 14, 2010
Expiration Date September 10, 2020
Person Responsible for Animal Handling Kouji Tokutake, Masaya Koami