1Haven’t you ever secretly wanted to play with a pack of the world’s largest rodent? Even if you’re one of those people who don’t quite understand the allure of the water-loving capybara, a native of South America, the folks at Shizuoka Prefecture’s Izu Shaboten Park are on a mission to change your mind. The park is already famous for its capybara hot spring during the winter months, and it will soon add another capybara-themed attraction to its roster–the “Cabybara Rainbow Plaza,” in which you can actually engage in water play with the animals! How can you pass up this chance to play with Mickey Mouse’s bigger, perpetually spacey-looking cousins??

But don’t book your tickets quite yet, because the “Capybara Rainbow Plaza” opens on July 19. More details after the jump.

With their slightly goofy looks, chilled demeanor, and somehow irresistible charm, capybaras have already melted the hearts of Japanese people across the country. Did you know that there’s even a character franchise called Kapibara-san with tons of collectible goods?

▼Not quite as famous as Hello Kitty, but working his way up!


Fans of the both the character and real capybaras will undoubtedly be pleased to hear about the new attraction called “Capybara Rainbow Plaza” opening at Shizuoka Prefecture’s Izu Saboten Park on July 19. What’s the main draw of the plaza, you ask? You’ll actually be able to play with the little guys up close and personal! And since four new babies were born at the park last November, you’re promised a whole lotta capybara fun.

 ▼Capybara babies are definitely on the cuter side, don’t you agree?


The plaza will feature tons of activities revolving around the mini celebrities, including opportunities to pet them, feed them, participate in informational workshops, and engage in other hands-on learning experiences. Furthermore, in the summertime, children can enjoy water play with them in a water fountain area, while in the winter visitors and rodents alike will be able to warm up together when a heater is installed in the fountain.

Since 1982, Izu Shaboten Park has already been famous for its annual tradition of converting the capybaras’ swimming area into a hot spring come the winter. People travel from all over the country to see the rodents enjoy a relaxing dip in the hot water.

▼Even cuter than Nagano’s hot spring monkeys!



The park has also hinted at plans to let giant tortoises and turkeys mingle with the capybara sometime in the future…we’ll definitely keep you updated with any news!

Izu Shaboten Park
1317-13 Futo, Ito City, Shizuoka Prefecture 413-0231
TEL. 0557-51-1111

〒413-0231 静岡県伊東市富戸1317-13
TEL. 0557-51-1111

Coming by train
Take the Tokaido Shinkansen or Tokaido Main Line to Atami Station, then transfer to the Ito Line and get off at Ito Station. From Ito Station, it’s approximately 35 minutes by bus or 25 minutes by taxi to the park.


Sources: Izu Shaboten Park Press Release via IT Media
Images: Izu Shaboten Park 1, 2Kapibarasan