Meriken park is a place where buildings with original designs such as the Kobe Maritime Museum and Kobe Port Tower are lined up, making it a place with lots of spots to take commemorative photos. Also, you can enjoy sightseeing in Kobe from the cruise ship, an experience you won’t have anywhere else. At night, there are light up and illumination streets, creating a romantic atmosphere at this popular spot. There are also plenty of restaurants with a great atmosphere, which is why it is a spot we’d also recommend for the cuisine.
Popular Bay Area Spots: Kobe Meriken Park
Meriken park which is located in Kobe Port in Kobe City's Chuo Ward was built in 1987 in commemoration of the 120th anniversary of opening of the port. Currently, it is a tourist attraction that represents Kobe. Hotel Okura Kobe and the Kobe Maritime Museum are built in the Meriken Park, and cruise ships and floating restaurants come and go at the dock on the west side of Meriken Park. A landmark of Kobe, the Kobe Port Tower, can also be found here. The various monuments and objects scattered in the premises are recommended photo spots. Also, when night falls, the buildings in Meriken Park are lighted up, a beautiful and romantic sight which gives you an impression which is completely different from daytime.
- Spot name: Meriken Park (メリケンパーク)
- Street address: 2 Hatobacho, Chuo-ku, Chuo, Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture
- Access: 10 minutes walk from the JR Motomachi Station (Hanshin Railway)
Day 1: Kobe Port Tower to Spend An Entire Day
The Kobe Port Tower which had opened around 50 years ago is famous as one of the landmarks of Kobe. On the top floor is the observation deck which isn’t free, but you can see the streets of Kobe on the 5th floor of the observation deck from all angles. On the Second floor above ground, there is a glass floor where you can experience being 75 meters off the ground, besides shopping and browsing the restaurants.
It is characterized by a world's first pipe structure building with a beautiful hyperbolic structure, similar to a long drum (Japanese musical instrument). In the evening, it lights up and color the port city Kobe with 7040 LED lights. From the observation deck, you can have the wide stretch view of Kobe, the urban area, and the wide panoramic view of the Rokko mountain range. You can fully enjoy the views of azure sea meeting the sky, or watch the red sunset sinking down the skyline, and the night view of skies filled with sparkling stars.
- Spot name: Kobe Port Tower
- Street address: 5-5 Hatobacho, Chuo Ward, Kobe, Hyōgo Prefecture 650-0042, Japan
- Access: 5 minute walk from the Minato Motomachi Station (Kobe Municipal Subway Kaigan Line)
Day 2: Satisfy Your Curiosity for Knowledge at the Kobe Maritime Museum
Kobe Maritime Museum features a white roof which frames the building in a way that brings to mind the image of sails and waves. It opened in 1987 to commemorate the 120th anniversary of the opening of Kobe. Because of its exciting exhibition on ports and various ship model collection, it is a famous museum. You can learn about the structure of ship, the charms of a cruise liner, the history of the facilities, the sea, ships and the harbor. In the hall, we are introduced to navigational instruments, fleet, through diorama models, images and graphics in an easy-to-understand manner. Also, a part of the wharf which collapsed at the Great Hanshin Earthquake is preserved as the Kobe Port Earthquake Memorial Park. Some exhibits impart the lessons learned from the disaster for the future. The adjoined building is the Kawasaki Heavy Industries' corporate museum Kawasaki World which displays bikes and vehicles, a popular place for children.
- Spot name: Kobe Maritime Museum
- Street address: 2-2 Hatobacho, Chuo Ward, Kobe, Hyōgo Prefecture 650-0042, Japan
- Access: 10 minute walk from the Minato Motomachi Station (Kobe Municipal Subway Kaigan Line)
Stay at Kobe Meriken Park Oriental Hotel
You can experience a hotel stay as if you’re on a journey on a ship at the Kobe Meriken Park Oriental Hotel which is surrounded by the seas. Each rooms have a furnished open terrace with wooden deck balcony, and the rooms itself are furnished with large sofa, rugs, furthermore, it is a space which is complete. In the hotel, there are six types of restaurants. The restaurant where you can have buffet, French Dining, Japanese Cuisine, Chinese Cuisine, so you can pick from a wide variety of scenes. From all the restaurants, you can dine while looking at a charming view of Kobe.
- Spot name: Kobe Meriken Park Oriental Hotel
- Street address: 5-6 Hatobacho, Chuo Ward, Kobe, Hyōgo Prefecture 650-0042, Japan
- Access: 15 minute walk from JR Motomachi Station