The Five Star Vagabond

Super travel tips, all road tested by David Herd. I'm an Australian guy who moved to Thailand in 2011 & still travel the world as often as possible.

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

July 19, 2017 by David Herd

Typical Bangkok street kitchen

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy over a 4 day period in July 2017. There are so many terrific places to eat in Bangkok, from 5 star hotels to street food & everything in between. The 3 of us guys were wondering if any Thai people actually eat a home. 🙂

Au Bon Pain for breakfast

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy We start our day at Au Bon Pain in Silom or one of the many Starbucks in and around Silom Rd near Sala Daeng BTS station. The coffee & croissants are excellent, my favorite is the ham & cheese at Starbucks.

Here it is

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

 A perfect start to the day, add a tall latte for a cost of B230 or $7 usd.

However if you are on a budget

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy Foodland (open 24/7) has a breakfast “happy hour”, if you eat before 9.am an American breakfast including coffee & juice will only cost you B62 or $1.80 usd, priceless. 🙂

Le Bouchen in Patpong

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

TripAdvisor rates Le Bouchen #176 of 9,969 restaurants in Bangkok. I think this is a gross exaggeration, don’t get me wrong, the couple of entrees we had were very good, however it’s an old world French restaurant that doesn’t deserve such a high rating. Dishes were Lasagna with lobster sauce & a Lobster bisque in pastry which was quite excellent.

 These were excellent

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy    Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy    

Lasagna with lobster sauce & a Lobster bisque in pastry.

Uminoya Izakaya

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy 

I really enjoyed the food & wine at Uminoya.

Two excellent dishes

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy 

Funny story of the day, the skewers were around B250 & the eel B180, or so I thought until the bill came. It was B2100 or $84 aud including 2 large glasses of red, I had made a small error, the eel was B1189 ++, when I ordered it I thought it seemed too cheap. 🙂 🙂 🙂

 China White 3rd floor Central World

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy Really good low cost Chinese food.

I will definitely visit China White again.

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy They served the best BBQ pork I have had for a long time.

Roast at The Commons

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy 

My brother Warren & I both agree the lunch “special” at “Roast” on the top floor is the best value we have ever had in Thailand, & in most other countries as well. There is a choice on entree, main course & desert for only B340 or $10 usd.

The busy kitchen at “Roast”.

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

We were both so impressed not just with the food, but the presentation, service & cleanliness of this reasonably hard to find top floor restaurant.

 Fresh vegetables in Patpong

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy Thai people has taken street to an art form. Follow THIS LINK for more Thai street food.

Capri pizzas at Asiatique

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy This is definitely one of my favorite photos.

 Chicken skewers look good here.

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy The Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy continues, there is temptation around every corner.

The Wine Connection

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy There are about 6 branches in Bangkok, this one is in Silom. Choose your wine from their well stocked cellar.

My favorite dish at Wine Connection

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

 Garlic prawns cooked exactly like I used to have them in Australia 40 years ago. 🙂

Ice cream shop at Central World

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy We used our willpower & resisted the temptation until we got to Swensen’s at Siam Paragon. 🙂 Can you believe TripAdvisor rate Swensen’s  #166 of 10,489 Places to Eat in Bangkok.

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy 

The frenzy continued in Pattaya, here is Ray overwhelmed by the size of the schnitzel at Lekerle.

Well that’s all for now folks, farewell from EmQuartier

Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy Many thanks for visiting my Three Aussies Bangkok Feeding Frenzy photo blog.

All the Bangkok photos are here.

When I’m in Bangkok I like to stay in Sukhumvit Soi 11, here is an excellent budget hotel, if you USE THIS LINK you will get a great rate of around B1100 per night, or $30 USD.

The best Bangkok budget hotel I have ever stayed in.

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Close to Nana BTS.

                Checkout some more of my terrific blogs on the links below.         

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 That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

Pattaya live webcam
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Kagoshima restaurant village

November 6, 2016 by David Herd

Kagomma Furusato Yataimura

Kagoshima restaurant village

Kagoshima restaurant village

 Kagoshima restaurant village near the railway station is called Kagomma Furusato Yataimura. There are about 25 small restaurants that seat only 8 or 10 people.

 Kagoshima restaurant village

Kagoshima restaurant village

Many of the places are so tiny it’s hard to get a seat. 🙂

Some have seats outside as well

Kagoshima restaurant village

Big & small, it doesn’t matter, the atmosphere is fantastic.

 Big crowd for a Sunday

Kagoshima restaurant village

I’m guessing this place is crowded every night.

Yakitori washed down with hot sake.

Kagoshima restaurant village

One of my favourite Japanese dishes.

Such a busy place

Kagoshima restaurant village

The action never stops here. There really isn’t any English spoken however you can get by just pointing at the menu. 🙂

This nice guy spoke a little English

Kagoshima restaurant village

Not only that he was in Thailand on holiday the previous week. He took great delight in telling me how much he enjoyed Soi 4 & Nana Plaza. 🙂 

Lots of narrow little alleys

 Kagoshima restaurant village

This village reminded me so much of “Piss Alley” in Shinjuku in Tokyo.

Wonderful smiling faces

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Some things in Japan you can be sure of, happy smiling faces, they love to be in a photograph, & people are just so nice & polite.

Hot sake coming up sir. 🙂

Kagoshima restaurant village

 

I realised after my first two glasses of sake the waitress was adding about 30% hot water, I thought they were tasting a little weak. Perhaps she did me a favour. 🙂

Great location & excellent hotel

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

 

My hotel was only 10 minutes walk to lots of restaurants & the ferry terminal, a great location and a great room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

A very busy village

Kagoshima restaurant village

I didn’t see any other foreigners here, I was the only one.

Kagoshima restaurant village

Kagoshima restaurant village

 

The village is quite close to the railway station which is adjacent to the Ferris wheel.

Keeping the rain out

Kagoshima restaurant village

Rain is absolutely no problem here.

Happy customers

Kagoshima restaurant village

You gotta love the Japanese people, as soon as they see a camera they want to be in the photo. 🙂

Here is a map of the village

  Kagoshima restaurant village

That’s all folks

Kagoshima restaurant village

 

Thank you for visiting my Kagoshima restaurant village photo blog. Just a reminder my hotel was in a great location, you will get a discounted room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

Here is another photo blog for Kagoshima. 

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Pattaya live webcam
 
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That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

 

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Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima

November 6, 2016 by David Herd

Ferry across Kinko Bay to Sakurajima

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima had been peaceful since 2013 until July 2016, then suddenly plumes of smoke, cracks of lighting and a flow of lava came bellowing out of Japan’s Mount Sakruajima in July 2016. Located in a scenic bay on the southern island of Kyushu, this 1,117 meter high volcano has been a sleeping giant for the past three years prior to this fiery spectacle. The incident took place at 12:02 am on Tuesday at the mountain’s Showa crater, which resulted in a 5,000 meter high column of ash – but officials say no fatalities have been reported. Credit to STACY LIBERATORE FOR DAILYMAIL.COM  Read about it here.

Experts have voiced concerns about the volcanic activity on the Pacific Island, primarily that it could be completely wiped by one massive eruption in the next century – killing all of its some 127 million inhabitants.

Leaving the terminal

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima Plenty to see on the short voyage across Kinko Bay.

On deck with the breeze in your face

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima Best spot for a photo opportunity.

Here I am heading for the island.

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima Hope to see at least a few puffs of smoke. 🙂

We arrive at Sakurajima

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima It’s a very short ferry ride, about 4 km at a cost of 170 Yen.

It is also a car ferry

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima About 5,000 people live on the island.

Tour bus around the island

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima For a 90 minute trip the cost was 500 Yen or about $6 AUD. You can get on & off the bus at different points of interest.

SAKEBI-NO-ZO (Shouting Statue) Park

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima Apparently a rock musician held a concert in 2004 in front of 75,000 screaming fans. To commemorate the concert, he built a statue of himself, this statue shouts at Sakurajima.

 Up close to the volcano

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima We enjoy a 15 minute stop at the lookout to take some photos.

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima lava spread

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima

Many types of fruit & vegetables florish due to the volcanic ash. The Sakurajima radish is a representative traditional vegetable of Kagoshima Prefecture, normally weighing about 10kg but one may also see radish that weigh as much as 20 – 30 kg. This is the world’s heaviest radish (weighing 31.1kg) and is registered in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Sakurajima Radish is cherished by people across Japan as a uniquely original product of Kagoshima. It stays consistent when boiled and has a flavor that absorbs well, along with a fine flesh that looks as white as snow. Sakurajima Radish can be used in a wide variety of ways, such as boiled or pickled to name but a few.

Eruption in 2012

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima

Here is a photo I found on the internet.

The view from the mainland

Sakurajima active volcano Kagoshima This spot is only 5 minutes walk from my hotel & another 5 minutes to thee ferry terminal. A great location and a great room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

           Please check out some of the most popular photo blogs below.

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Main Square Zagreb          Good Value Brisbane City Hotels         Brisbane Australia

           Koh Samui                          Korea                                  London

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         Bangkok                                Osaka                                     Pattaya

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                    Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                     through these links below.  Book now & pay later. ?
                                                       Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                                                                           Amazing Bangkok busses
Pattaya webcam

That’s all folks

Beckington Trowbridge

 

 

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Kagoshima Japanese seaside city

November 5, 2016 by David Herd

On the shores on Kinko Bay

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city on Kyushu Island, is the capital of Kagoshima Prefecture. It’s well known for Sakurajima, an active volcano that faces Kinko Bay. Once set on an isolated island, the volcano became connected to the Osumi Peninsula after an eruption in 1914.

A very interesting city

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Lots to see & do, sadly the weather was not kind to me so I didn’t get to see as much as I would have liked.

Some very cute cars

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Japan is a great country for producing interesting vehicles, here is a very cute example. It reminded me of the great little “drive yourself” cars I saw in Yokohama last year. 

Helpful Docomo staff

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city I had some trouble with my sim card that I purchased in Tokyo, these lovely people at Docomo shop in Tenmonkan really went to a lot of trouble to help me out. 

Did I mention the wonderful food?

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city I was so impressed by the great food in Kagoshima, this restaurant was called Unagi no Sueyoshi & specialised in eel.

Covered arcades

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Hundreds of shops & restaurants in the Tenmonkan shopping arcade which has a roof to provide shade from the sun and also protection from the volcanic ash from Mount Sakurajima. There are retail stores, boutiques, & restaurants selling traditional Kagoshima food.

 Ferry to Mount Sakurajima

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Just a short inexpensive boat across Kinko Bay.

Hotel Sunflex

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city My hotel was only 10 minutes walk to lots of restaurants & the ferry terminal, a great location and a great room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

Japanese hotels have everything you need

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city The only thing to keep in mind is most of the budget hotels won’t let you check in until 3 or 4pm. So best to time your arrival around then.

Of course you can buy cold beer 24/7

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city

Unlike the nanny states in Australia you can buy alcohol from vending machines in your hotel. 🙂

 Shinkansen

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Or Bullet train as it is called in the west transports you from city to city at speeds up to 320 km per hour.

Here is a short video of the Bullet train.

The train is arriving at Hiroshima. 

Looks like Sydney Opera House

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay has a similar look to the Sydney Opera House. Not nearly as spectacular of course but certainly well worth a visit.

This guy is giving me the stare.

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city They are so sleek and sinister.

Mount Sakurajima

Kagoshima Japanese seaside cityThe active volcano dominates the skyline just a 4 kilometres across Kinko Bay.

Plumes of smoke, cracks of lighting and a flow of lava came bellowing out of Japan’s Mount Sakruajima in July 2016. Located in a scenic bay on the southern island of Kyushu, this 1,117 meter high volcano has been a sleeping giant for the past three years prior to this fiery spectacle. The incident took place at 12:02 am on Tuesday at the mountain’s Showa crater, which resulted in a 5,000 meter high column of ash – but officials say no fatalities have been reported. Credit to STACY LIBERATORE FOR DAILYMAIL.COM  Read about it here.

Experts have voiced concerns about the volcanic activity on the Pacific Island, primarily that it could be completely wiped by one massive eruption in the next century – killing all of its some 127 million inhabitants.

Dolphin Port

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Only 5 minutes walk from my hotel Kagoshima’s newest spot “Dolphin Port” opened along the Kinko Bay in April, 2005. Dolphin Port consists of restaurants and shops.

Mekkemon, Dolphin Port

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Rated number 5 by TripAdvisor from 2921 restaurants in Kagoshima, this really was the best sushi train restaurant I have ever been to.

Kagomma Furusato Yataimura

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city There are 25 restaurants in this little village near the station, each one offers a variety of delicious dishes with ingredients from different areas of Kagoshima.

Overcast & raining

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city

Except for my first day it was overcast & raining for the rest of my stay.

Umbrellas everywhere

 photo IMG_5702.jpg In the 3 weeks I was away there was only 3 or 4 days of rain.

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city

Plenty of lights at night.

That’s all for now

Kagoshima Japanese seaside city Thanks for visiting my Kagoshima Japanese seaside city photo blog.

         Please check out some of the most popular photo blogs below.

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Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                                                through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
                                                                 Plus free cancelation .?
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Pattaya webcam

That’s all folks

Beckington Trowbridge

 
 

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Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

October 22, 2016 by David Herd

Unagi no Sueyoshi

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

 Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan, I have enjoyed eating in the local restaurants so much I had to do a photo blog focusing just on the food. Unagi is rated number 6 out of 2,921 in Kagoshima by TripAdvisor.

They specialize in eel

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

I must say the food was fantastic, best eel I have ever tasted, washed down with a bottle of Kirin beer and some hot sake.

Miami Ave

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Right next door to my hotel is this terrific restaurant. The best Ramen I have ever eaten.

These guys love their work

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Put this on you list, food & service is terrific.

 McDonalds was terrific

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

I can’t believe how good the Coffee, cheese cake & Big Mac was at McDonalds. Then again I am in Japan where most food is terrific. 🙂

Great location & excellent hotel

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

 

My hotel is only 10 minutes walk to all these restaurants, a great location and a great room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

Mekkemon, Dolphin Port

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Rated number 5 by TripAdvisor from 2921 restaurants in Kagoshima, this really was the best sushi train restaurant I have ever been to.

Fabulous food & great atmosphere.

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

The food & service was excellent, a typical noisey, happy, busy Japanese restaurant.

The 3 Samuri at Mekkemon

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

I like this photo, it seems to capture the happiness, energy & enthusiasm of the chefs.

 Dotour coffee

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

 

A very well known chain of coffee shops throughout Japan specialising in coffee roasting and coffee shop franchising.

Happy faces at Kagomma Furusato Yataimura

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

This is a whole different story & deserves it’s own blog. There are 25 lively and unique stalls and each has room for only 8 or nine customers, in fact it’s Kagoshima’s answer to Tokyo’s Piss Alley. 🙂 

Here is my photo blog on Kagomma Furusato Yataimura.

Map

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

 

As you can see there are about 25 little stalls.

Dolphin Port

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

There are lots of restaurants here Mekkemon.

Yamakataya Kagoshima

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

This is southern Japan’s largest department store. Founded in 1751, however apparently most of the current store was been built between 1917 ~ 1950. Hundreds of shops & restaurants here.

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan

Thank you for visiting my Fabulous food Kagoshima Japan photo blog. Just a reminder my hotel was in a great location, you will get a discounted room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

         Please check out some of the most popular photo blogs below. 

                        Here are some more posts to check out 

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           London                            Beijing                            Capetown
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            Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you            
                book through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
                                                                 Plus free cancellation .
                                               Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
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 Pattaya live webcam
 
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That’s all folks

1g Duck

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Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

October 22, 2016 by David Herd

Looks like Sydney Opera House

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay has a similar look to the Sydney Opera House. Not nearly as spectacular of course but certainly well worth a visit.

Whale shark

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

 The whale shark is the largest of the fish species. The biggest confirmed individual had a length of 12.65 meters and a weight of around 21.5 ton.

Here is a video of the Whale Shark & others.

I’t’s so peaceful & relaxing watching these amazing fish swim lazily in circles around the huge pool.

Another big guy

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

I can’t remember how many years it has been since I was at an aquarium, it was a total pleasure visiting the aquarium at Kagoshima. Entry was 1500 Yen or $14 USD.

Another huge tank with a great variety of fish

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

The women in the photo gives you an idea of the size of the tank & the fish.

Jelly fish

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

 Jellyfish are the most efficient swimmers in the oceans. They use less energy to cover a given distance than any other ocean creature. Follow THIS LINK for some great information.

Big body, small head.

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

The huge variety of marine life is quite amazing.

Hiding among the reeds

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

This little guy was only about 6 inches long.

Here are some starfish in the background

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

 

The starfish is not a fish. It’s an echinoderm, closely related to sea urchins and sand dollars.

There are some 2,000 species of sea star living in all the world’s oceans, from tropical habitats to the cold seafloor. The five-arm varieties are the most common, hence their name, but species with 10, 20, and even 40 arms exist.

They have bony, calcified skin, which protects them from most predators, and many wear striking colors that camouflage them or scare off potential attackers. Purely marine animals, there are no freshwater sea stars, and only a few live in brackish water.

Beyond their distinctive shape, sea stars are famous for their ability to regenerate limbs, and in some cases, entire bodies. They accomplish this by housing most or all of their vital organs in their arms. Some require the central body to be intact to regenerate, but a few species can grow an entirely new sea star just from a portion of a severed limb.

Most sea stars also have the remarkable ability to consume prey outside their bodies. Using tiny, suction-cupped tube feet, they pry open clams or oysters, and their sack-like cardiac stomach emerges from their mouth and oozes inside the shell. The stomach then envelops the prey to digest it, and finally withdraws back into the body. Credit National Geographic.

Here is another video, great shots of sharks swimming.

These sharks are absolutely fascinating creatures, so streamlined & graceful.

Great location & excellent hotel

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

My hotel is only 10 minutes walk to the aquarium, a great location and a great room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

Now for some more sashimi 🙂

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Another beautiful looking creature.

Deep sea worms

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

  Despite being an inland bay, Kinko Bay reaches depths of more than 200 meters, making it home to deep see marine life as well. Additionally, a new species of tube worm, or Lamellibrachia Satsuma, can be found on the sea floor at depths of around 90 meters in the upper bay. Research has shown that this unique population is supported by underwater volcanic vents from Mt. Sakurajima that spew hydrogen sulfide from the sea floor.

A few small fish among the coral

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

The coral itself makes a beautiful display.

You have seen the worms, now how about a sea snake?

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Snakes are one of the things I have always been afraid of. Growing up in Australia which has nine of the ten most venemous snakes in the world, is it any wonder we are scared of them? 🙂

Beautiful colours

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

You really can spend hours watching these wonderful creatures.

Stonefish, most venemous fish in the world.

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

  Stonefish are venomous, dangerous, and even fatal to humans. It is one of the most venomous fish known. They are found in the coastal regions of the Indo-Pacific.

Video of the Stonefish in full camouflage

Very hard to see this guy, looks just like the surrounding rocks.

This guy is giving me the stare. 🙂

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

They are so sleek and sinister.

Imagine swimming in the sea & seeing this guy coming toward you.

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

 

I think I would die of a heart attack before he got to me. 🙂

Watching the seals being fed

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Always popular with the crowd is feeding time.

Video of the dolphins

Personally I don’t like to see these wonderful intelligent animals in captivity, they need to be free in the ocean, not imprisoned in a small pool.

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay

 

Just 10 minutes walk from my great hotel.

Thanks for visiting my Kagoshima City Aquarium Kinko Bay photo blog. I think this is the first rather educational blog I have ever published. 🙂

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1g Duck

 

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