Takasakiyama Monkey Park 高崎山自然動物園
Get up close to the wild and fuzzy locals at this fun and educational park
Mt. Takasaki Wild Monkey Park is located in the western end of the city of Oita on the steep slopes of the mountain. This popular park is home to more than 1,500 wild Japanese monkeys, who spend most of their days roaming the mountain's steep, forested grounds.
What's unusual here is that no nets or fences are separating you from these simians—you can wander among them at will. Just don't feed them, look them in the eye or try to touch them.
- Watching swarms of monkeys scramble down the mountain to the monkey park
- The wardens feeding the monkeys
- A trip to the viewing platform
How to Get There
The park is a comfortable 10-minute bus or taxi ride from Beppu Station.
Beppu Station can be reached by limited express train from Hakata, Oita, Miyazaki and Hitoyoshi as well as neighboring areas. From Beppu Station, take bus number AS60 or AS61 bound for Oita Station, and get off at Takasakiyama-Umitamago. Since there is about one bus per hour, taking a taxi is often the better alternative.
Ride the monkey monorail
On arrival, you can either walk to the park's main area or ride a monkey-themed monorail for the five-minute trip to where most of the monkeys gather. The fee is 100 yen for a round-trip monorail ticket.
The world's biggest monkey troops
The mountain is home to an estimated population of around 1,500 Japanese macaques, also known as "snow monkeys," which are native to the area. The ones from this particular park are separated into two troops of about 700 to 800, making them some of the biggest troops of monkeys in the world. Each troop takes turns visiting the park, one in the morning and one in the afternoon.
Get up close to all the action
When the monkeys are not eating in the park, they spend their time playing and resting. Watch them run around, play, take in the sun and groom each other. There are a number of walking courses to choose from to wander through the park and get up close to the cheeky locals.
Monkey meal delivery service
To prevent the monkeys from wandering off and eating local crops, park wardens feed them every day. Feedings are a favorite time at the park, as the monkeys can be seen scurrying about competing for food. Smaller feeding sessions are done hourly, while larger feedings occur a few times per day.