Kobe Maritime Museum 神戸海洋博物館
The exterior architecture of the museum is designed to look like the sails and rigging of a sailing ship.
The entrance hall of the museum has a scale model of the British warship Rodney, which marked the opening of the Treaty Port with the firing of its guns. The lobby also introduces Kobe's sister and friendship cities around the world including the ports of Seattle, Tianjin, Rotterdam, Marseilles, Riga, Brisbane, Barcelona and Marseilles.
The gallery on the first floor has exhibits on ship construction, cruise ships (which frequently dock now in Kobe) and port facilities in the city. Items on show include dioramas, model ships, rigging and navigation instruments in addition to explanatory videos.
The second floor of the museum showcases the history of Kobe port, and how the city has developed over the years and recovered from the Great Hanshin Earthquake of 1995. The 33-seat Maritime Theater shows a video of this often turbulent history which includes the effects of World War II and the earthquake.
The outdoor exhibition area in Meriken Park preserves part of Meriken wharf, damaged in the Great Hanshin earthquake, and the Yamato-1 a 1990's ship built by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries using magnetohydrodynamic drives (MHDs) for its propulsion.
Kawasaki Good Times World
The Kawasaki Good Times World, opened in 2006 and is sponsored by Heavy Industries Group, which started its business in Kobe. On display are exhibits on land, sea, and air transportation including a 0-series (0系, Zero-kei) Shinkansen, the first bullet trains, a Kawasaki motorbike, jet ski and a company manufactured helicopter.
Getting to Kobe Maritime Museum
Kobe Maritime Museum
2-2 Hatoba-cho, Chuo-ku
Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture 650-0042
Tel: 078 327 8983
Hours: 10am-5pm; closed Monday unless Monday is a public holiday.
Admission: 600 yen for adults (250 yen children); 1,000 yen (400 yen children) for a combined ticket to visit Kobe Port Tower.
Kobe Maritime Museum is located close to Minato-motomachi Station on the Kobe subway Kaigan Line from where it is a 5-minute walk.
Alternatively, the Kobe Maritime Museum is a 20-minute walk from Kencho-mae Station on the Seishin-Yamate Line or 15 minutes on foot from Hankyu Hanakuma and JR/Hanshin Motomachi Station.