Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Three weekends in a row found me on one isle or another. This time I was on a man-made island called Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, which is a combination of an aquarium and rides.
The weather on Sunday wasn't ideal to spend a day at a theme park, but I figured we could always change plans when I picked my friend up. He was OK with heading to Sea Paradise, which was good since I had to renew my year pass anyway. So armed with an umbrella and a couple of compact raincoats, off we went, hi ho hi ho. We got there just as the park opened so I didn't have any trouble finding a parking spot and the line to get his ticket was short. I had to go to the office to hand in the paperwork to renew my pass. With that done, we started off wandering about in the main aquarium.
Like I said, Sea Paradise is a combination of an aquarium and rides. There's the main aquarium, a dolphin aquarium, an open aquarium and a new attraction called Ocean Farm, where they have pools split up where they're breeding fish. The rides include a roller coaster that juts out over the water, 351-ft free fall, a few motion-sickness-inducing rides that go in circles, a few water rides and one where you can enjoy the view in panorama.
Even tho you know that they're behind a thick layer of glass, it's not all that comforting to see a set of huge sharp teeth swimming towards you. But my friend was pretty fascinated in seeing the sharks and manta rays swimming in the main tank. Looks like the caretakers dropped a bucket or something in the polar bear enclosure since it was playing with something blue, which usually isn't there. We laughed out assess off watching a penguin with a serious case of itchy butt. It was frantically rolling this way and that, trying to get at the itch with its flippers, but it was just out of reach and that was one hilarious sight! LOL We also saw all the pretty little fishies in the smaller tanks and huge crabs. Them crabs were pretty active that day. In the dolphin aquarium, the dolphins were playing with a bouy and there was a mola mola swimming in the round tank. Them's one funny-looking fish, looking like someone forgot to attach a body to the fish. We went over to the open aquarium and saw dolphins and belugas playing with balls, a penguin running away from their caretakers and a walrus standing in the water napping with its head propped up on its flipper. They brought out a couple of penguins to let the visitors pet them, and one tried to make a get-away by jumping out of the cart. That brought out a few chuckles from the audience.
After we got our fill of fish and other ocean creatures, we went on a ride. One ride can get you really wet if you're not careful. If you catch the waves at a certain angle, the waves will totally splash you from behind. But, I brought a couple of compact raincoats just for that purpose. We got splashed a little but not that bad. Then we went on the roller coaster and the girl behind us was totally freaking out! LOL I wanted to go on another water ride after that, but wasn't inclined to wait 50 minutes so we went on a ferry boat ride that took us from one side of the island to another instead. That took us to the free fall ride. I did mention it was 351-ft high, right? I wasn't all that thrilled to go on it, but he seemed keen so I tagged along. As we were going up higher and higher and higher, he mentions that he doesn't really like heights. I'm like you tell me that now??!! Holy Shite!! We get to the very top and man could we see vast and far!! Then we hear 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . . schwoomp! We were dropped a few feet and the ride stopped! WTF??!! And before we could collect our wits, the ride dropped us the rest of the way. AAAAHHHHHH!!!! OMFG!! My friend SQUEALED! He was really enjoying himself on the roller coaster, but he actually squealed on the free fall ride! LMAO!! We got on a tame ride that gave us a panorama view of the area then had a late lunch and ice cream for dessert. When I asked him if there was a ride he wanted to go on again, he didn't have a specific preference so I suggested we go see if we can get wet. He opened his mouth but nothing came out. Hahaha! We went on the splashy ride and made it out without getting too wet. His boots caught some of the splash, tho. We got on the roller coaster again and called it a day.
Man, I did NOT appreciate my alarm clock at all the next morning!! My friend had the day off so HE got to sleep in. Hmph!! It was a busy but fun weekend.