By Maren Pauli
Located in front of the Chiba National Museum and Floral Museum, beside the Inage Artificial Beach (the longest artificial beach at present in Japan) on the opposite side, lies the Inage Seaside Park Pool, run by the Chiba City Greenery Association. There are two huge parking lots. One near the Floral Museum and one near the Inage pool. It is open from from July to early September every summer
It was on a hot summer day that we went swimming there. We arrived at the parking lot at around 8:55am. There were still spaces open but far from the entrance. It is 600 yen for a 1-day parking fee.
The seaside park is a huge place with 14 different pools to enjoy. It is hard to decide thinking which one to go into first. I started first in the "going-around-pool" (1 meter high) which I later called the "Lazy Pool", so my niece would know where I was.
We wanted to find a place with shelter so we wouldn't get barbecued from the hot sun. We settled under the slides of the pool which stood 11.4 meters above us. We were able to lay down all our bags and spread a cushioned mat. Rental sheds are available for 3000 yen if you want a private space.
The seaside park has some rules you should be aware of. Cans are prohibited, so any drinks need to be poured in plastic cups for security reasons. Also long shorts below the knees are not allowed. They ask that tattoos be kept covered up. There is strictly no smoking.
We then proceeded to the air pumping station for our floatation devices. My niece was happy after seeing her float filled with air and ready to be used. We first went the "Lazy Pool" to have a taste of it but when my foot touched the water, it was very cold , so we went to the shower area to cool ourselves first before going back again in the pool. We then splashed and had fun.
Pool-hopping is what the park is for. There is the Chibi pool (children's pool) with lots of attractions and there are plenty of slides. The indoor pool used mostly by adults was there so we passed. There is a 25-meter pool with height of 1.2 meter, and a 50 meter one. A big attraction is the wave machine. Staff announce when it will be turned-on. All of us went to the pool area to experience the wave. It was a 15-minute wave plunge and we enjoyed it a lot.
Every hour they do a 10-minute break for a pool check and everyone is asked to leave the pool.
We strolled around to buy something to drink and eat. We tasted the ichigo (strawberry) flavored crushed ice for 300 yen a serving. It was cool and refreshing. We bought it from the food convi-van inside the area. There is also a store that sells fast food like yakisoba (fried noodles) for 350 yen, hamburger for 200 yen, nikuman (Chinese white bread with sweet pork gravy inside) for 150 yen. There is a restaurant on the the 2nd floor. Most prices are higher than that of an ordinary convenience store.
It was a nice pool experience surely to be enjoyed by the young and young once. A good place for the family to bond that suits the budget. They only open during summer, school vacation time. Even if it’s summer and the weather is bad, it is best to call their information @ 043 (247) 2771 to ask if they are open or not, so you won’t be going there just to find out that they’re closed because of bad weather.
A great place to enjoy summer and escape from the heat!
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