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Tsukuba Space Center
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is progressing with space development. At Tsukuba Space Center run by JAXA located in Tsukuba city, they mainly develop artificial satellites and rockets, as well as train astronauts. This cutting-edge facility opens some parts as an exhibition for free! They exhibit the rocket engine that was actually used and a life-size model of “Kibou”, Japan’s first training facility for the International Space Station. Since they also do tours of astronaut training facilities where it’s usually impossible to enter, you can experience the large scale of the space program.
- 2-1-1 Sengen, Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki
- Contact No.
- From Tsukuba Station on Tsukuba Express, take Kanto Bus bound for Arakawa-oki-eki. A minute walk from “Busshitsu-zairyo-kenkyu-kiko Bus Stop
- Opening Hours / Holidays
- Official Website
- Time Required
- 2.5 hours
- Admission fee
- Admission free (Tour charge not included)
- Other Information
- *Reservation in advance is required for the tour
※ Some information is displayed in Japanese and machine-translated English, which may not be accurate.
For the latest information, please check the official website for each spot.
The exhibition room “Space Dome”
In the exhibition room “Space Dome,” the first thing you will see is many artificial satellites and rocket engines. Some of these actually orbited around the earth and are displayed here after their term. The large satellite taller than humans and parts of the rocket are overwhelming.
“Kibou” experience section
“Kibou” is the first Japanese manned experiment facility in International Space Station (ISS), that floats above the earth even at this moment. There is a life-size model of Kibou in Tsukuba Space Center, so you can enter and observe it. You’ll feel as if you have become an astronaut with the inside that has been replicated down to the smallest details.
Limited items with a space theme
In the shop “UNiBO,” items related to space and JAXA are sold. Of the items, space food is especially popular. Of course, they also have curry and rice, and also desert like cakes and ice cream, so they are good souvenirs.
If you make a reservation prior to your visit, you can take a special tour where you can go into places which are usually off limits. There aresome courses you can’t experience anywhere else including astronauts training facility and control room where communication with “Kibou” floating in space is held (tour fee required).