Monkey parks are always good fun especially a monkey park with scheduled feedings that cause all the monkeys to congregate in one spot. Lets get this straight I’ve been to a bunch of monkey parks so I guess you can call me somewhat of a monkey mountain connoisseur. I’ve been to a monkey temples in Bali and the Swanbu temple in Nepal and several others in Thailand. Both of the other ones were free to enter and allowed you to feed and interact with the monkeys. Takasakiyama has a six dollar entrance fee and you can pay two dollars extra for a cable car ride that takes you up the mountain. You can easily convert dollars to yen by adding two 0’s after the figure for example 6 dollars is 600 yen. Once you go up the mountain there are literally monkeys everywhere. As usual when around monkeys WATCH YOUR VALUABLES. Those little rascals like to grab whatever they can with their adorably evil little demonic foothands and handfeet. The other monkey temples I’ve been to were more cultural and less of an actual zoo (keyword temple). In Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries it’s easy to purchase bananas and feed the monkeys but the zookeepers don’t allow that at Takasakiyama. The closest you will get to a monkey is one passing between your legs which is supposedly “goodluck”. Due to the zookeepers mindfulness and overall cleanliness this place is great for 1st time monkey mountain viewers. It’s also a must do when in Beppu, Oita along with the Umi Tamago (water egg) Aquarium and Tsurumidake Ropeway. There are tons of cute baby monkey that slide down little swing sets along with a grizzly looking alpha male who never gets up from a particular stump. The zookeepers are happy to inform guests about the dynamics of the monkey group however they only speak Japanese. It was a great and memorable experience and I plan on going back next year.
One more tip monkeys are pretty unpredictable we saw a monkey suddenly screech and lunge at a woman who got a little to close when taking a picture. I also have a friend from High School who was bit by a monkey while we were running a cross country race in New Dehli, India. The race attendants told us not to make eye contact with the monkeys as it causes them to feel threatened. Charlie now has a mouth shaped scar on his back shoulder which is sorta badass.
Note: The monkeys have currently disappeared into the forest. This was an update I saw on the local Oita news. Locals are pretty nervous because it is a pretty big tourist attraction around here. Many monkey experts speculate the monkey will return in the winter season once food in the forest becomes less scarce.
I found it so satisfying when the monkey posed for me as a monkey!