Zao Fox Village: Japan's Cutest Tourist Attraction

02 Jun 2016 by Olga Brighton

Travelling to Japan

Mount Zao is the location of one of the most unique zoos and animal shelters one will ever find. It’s called the Zao Fox Village. The shelter plays home to over 100 foxes, most of them very playful. These cute cuddlies are allowed to mingle with visitors and run around the premises.

The shelter was established in 1990 and has been entertaining guests in a world run by foxes and fox lovers. The caretakers focus their attention on feeding and caring for six species of foxes that come in a variety of colours. The most common of these is the Japanese red Fox. Best time to visit: summer and spring.

Animal Shelter Japan


Listen carefully to the shelter personnel at the entrance because they will run you through the rules and policies of the village.

  1. Fox food must be hidden and must only be given at the platform assigned.
  2. Never put any part of your body inside the cages as these foxes are not tamed. These cuties do bite.
  3. Baby foxes are available for hugging at an extra cost and there is an assigned time limit to it.
  4. It is important that you do not carry anything that will hang from your body as the foxes will try to jump at it and take it. Things like scarves and cameras have been snatched by these sneaky cuddlies.
  5. Feeding the foxes food that you have brought in with you is strictly prohibited. The reason for this is that all of the foxes have strict dietary restrictions. You will be fined 5,000 JPY and escorted off the premises if caught.
  6. Never leave your children unattended. Make sure you always hold their hand or carry them to keep them safe.

The guides take you to where they nurse foxes that are injured or sick. After that you get to view the baby foxes. Then you move onto the natural habitat for the foxes. Once you reach this point, you can walk freely with the foxes, with no time restrictions. There is also a souvenir shop where you will find their very own Fox Village Candy and lots more.

Read also: 11 Must-Visit Gardens in Japan

How to Get There

Taxi: by far the easiest way to reach the village is by taking a taxi. You can share with other visitors to make it easy on your pocket. The good thing is that most drivers know where the Fox Village is.

Bus: Buses run on a schedule and only on Tuesday and Friday from Shiroishi Station.

Direct transport: They have their very own cab that leaves Shiroishi station at 10:30 am and brings you back to the station at 12:30. But there has to be at least five passengers on board before it leaves.

Fox Shelter


- 1000 yen for adults;

- 600 yen for older children;

- small children go free;

- snacks for the foxes and rabbits are 100 yen each.

This is definitely a one of a kind experience where you can close to one of the cutest, yet untamed animals. Seeing these foxes in their natural habitat and yet still come close to them is such a treat. The good thing about it is that a day trip from Tokyo can be easily arranged. So call the Zao Fox Village 0224-24-8812 and arrange a wonderful and educational trip.

Don’t forget to get appropriate Travel Insurance cover for your trip or call +44 (0)1353 699082 to contact Globelink Travel Insurance Customer Service Team.

We accept