Ahoy there friends and family!
Happy Birthday to me!~
First birthday in Japan was one for the books! As someone who has worked mainly in retail during the summer months, I’ve never once gotten a day off on my birthday (3rd of July will always be a massively busy day in America with people who actually get the 4th off…) but luckily my birthday fell on my day off this year! I wanted to keep it homey and low-key since I’ve been so massively burned out from working lately, so Shin and I decided to check out the Enoshima Aquarium!
Enoshima is about 30 minutes by train from our house and man, oh man. We are so completely blessed to live in such a beautiful place! Enoshima is like another world, for a Northerner like me the closest thing I think I can describe Enoshima to is Santa Monica in California. Beautiful sandy beaches, gorgeous scenery, amazing waves, I could go on and on. I’d been to Enoshima two other times before, so we didn’t check out the beach this time, but I’d been dying to go to the aquarium and I’m so glad that we finally got the chance!
When you first go in you’re greeted by a large two story tank, which is like a scene out of a Disney movie! Sharks, rays, massive schools of fish, it’s incredible! Honestly, this display could have kept me entertained all day.
The aquarium also has a variety of shows happening periodically throughout the day. We saw the penguin feeding and show, which was so cute and completely hilarious. Of course we also saw the incredibly fun main feature show featuring sea lions (which were so cute and funny) and dolphins.
The rest of the exhibits are fairly standard, the sea turtles were really neat to see, and totally massive. Besides the dolphins, the thing Enoshima is most famous for is the spectacular jellyfish exhibit. Featured in the anime and live action movie Princess Jellyfish, I was so excited to finally see it in person!
The jellyfish hall was definitely the most crowded area of the aquarium, and we kept missing our chance to get in and see the jellyfish light show– they temporarily close the exhibit periodically for the show, and we had the worst timing trying to get in. Even though we didn’t see the show, the jellyfish were definitely a sight to see. The exhibit was definitely smaller than I expected, but it lived up to the hype.
As with every Japanese tourist trap, Enoshima aquarium has a great selection of omiyage and signature snacks. We had the cutest melon-pan shaped like a turtle and a soft cream soda float with a cute dolphin-shaped cookie. What can I say, I’m definitely a sucker for novelty snacks.
As for the rest of the day– after the aquarium, we went home and had a temaki sushi party with Shin’s family and his sister’s family! I share a birthday with his five year old nephew so we had double birthday cake, and celebrated together. I was so happy they included me and threw me a party, I’m really starting to feel like a part of the family here! It’s a great feeling to finally start feeling more comfortable as a part of a new family, and I hope to celebrate many, many fun more birthdays together!
That’s all for now!
PS. Check out that turtle-pan. I’d go back just for these cute guys!