August is good month to chill with snakes at Okinawa World
August is the hottest month in Okinawa, and it’s also the season for haunted houses, ghost stories and anything else that gives you chills and supposedly thus alleviated the unrelenting heat.
Now, most people are scared of snakes, and people in Japan are no exception. So why not use snakes to give people chills. That’s at least what people at Gyokusendo Habu Museum in Okinawa World theme park in Tamagusuku, Nanjo City, think as they have introduced a rather unique annual event to their park.
The Japanese name of the event comes translated to something like “Exploring Habu forest in the dark!” and it’s an attraction where visitors walk into a dark forest armed with a flashlight. A number of snakes has been released into the trees, and visitors don’t know where they are, only that they really are there somewhere. It’s an experience a little like a haunted house of snakes.
Of course, it’s all safe and there’s no chance that anyone gets bitten. The Habu Museum staff will be there in case anything happens, like if the thrill becomes a little too much. It’s a thrilling experience, for sure.
Another event that takes place at the Habu Museum at the same time is “Catch-a-snake Experience!” where people can actually catch a variety of non-poisonous snakes in a box within a time limit. Most snakes don’t like to be touched, so it’s not so easy to catch them.
There are also turtles, lizards and hermit crabs that visitors can pet and get to know better. Visitors can take pictures with the snakes they catch. This is a good chance to interact with this animal that is surrounded by plenty of myths few people actually know much about. Besides, according to Chinese beliefs, snakes are creatures that bring good luck.
Both events run through the end of August at the Okinawa World Habu Museum daily from 10:00 to 13:00 and 14:30 to 17:00.
The Habu Forest is set up in front of the Habu Museum and costs ¥300 to enter. Children thee years of age and younger are free with an adult.
The snake catching event takes place in the Habu Museum Park. The experience itself is free, but the admission to the Habu Museum Park is ¥620 for adults and ¥310 for children from 4 through junior high school age.